Yuka, the wooly mammoth preserved for thousands of years in Russian ice, is on display in Yokohama this summer – and you can get as close as you like to her.

Short of seeing the extinct species in the flesh, exhibition centre Pacifico Yokohama is displaying a mammoth that has been preserved in Siberia for the past 39,000 years. The 3-metre tall mammoth is a 10 year-old female, and it is believed to be one of the world’s largest. It was nicknamed Yuka, after Russia’s Sakha (Yakutia) republic, where it was unearthed in 2010.

Yuka was preserved in the ice, and her legs, arms, trunk and fur are in excellent condition. Since its discovery, the mammal has been scrutinized by the eyes of researchers and scientists at an institute in Russia. But, how in the world would a mammoth make its way from Russia to Yokohama? Turns out Yuka was shipped in a special container from Vladivostok to Tottori prefecture, then traveled by land all the way up to Yokohama.

Those making their way to the exhibition will be allowed to touch the fur of the animal (or whatever remains), and we think it’s a pretty unique chance to get up close to that fascinating species, especially as it’s in almost perfect condition. In addition, over 100 samples of other extinct species including a wooly rhino will be displayed.

A good family activity this summer with a bit of an educational and historical twist, as the kids will undoubtedly be captivated by Yuka.

Yuka, the Wooly Mammoth (click here for more information)

When: until Sept. 16, 9:00- 17:00 (Thu, Fri until 19:30)

Where: Pacifico Yokohama (click for map)

How much:  ¥2,200 (adults)/ ¥1,200 (students)