This is nothing like watching a nature show on television; this is an awe-inspiring experience. The sharks with their deadly calm, that slow moving search but you know they can strike with incredible speed and power.
The manta rays with their majestic underwater flight and and an octopus suddenly darting about and then descending gently to lie still on the ocean floor. All of this wonder seeming to be above me as I stand at the bottom of the ocean. No, I’m not standing at the bottom of the ocean, but it’s as close as you can get. I am at the world famous Lisbon Oceanarium in Portugal.
The Lisbon Oceanarium; One of the Top Five Aquariums In the entire world.
The ‘Oceanarium,’ or aquarium, in Lisbon, Portugal is the biggest aquarium in all of Europe. From the outside, the first appearance is very impressive, and there’s a good reason for that. Built in 1998 for the Lisbon World Exposition it was originally a ‘Virtual Reality Tour’ and after the exposition it was developed into the Lisbon Oceanarium with exceptional attention to detail and beauty. Even thought it is over 20 years old the architecture still stands toe to toe with anything built since then.
It is located at the end of a designed pier in an artificial lagoon that boasts of a modern-day look but feels right at home in its surroundings.
Once inside you will literally feel like you’re walking on the ocean floor as the Lisbon Oceanarium is composed of five different aquarium tanks with a depth of almost 25 feet and the main tank has seamless windows floor to ‘ceiling’ totaling more than 2,000 sq. ft.
The ‘Experience’ of the Lisbon Oceanarium
It is basically impossible to explain what it feels like to stand inches away from these majestic sea creatures; over 400 different species of marine mammals and fish as well as a diverse abundance of marine plant life.
Along with this main tank there there are actually four other separate tanks each with its own unique ocean environment specific to a certain area of the world; the rocky coastline of the North Atlantic, coral reefs of the Tropical Indian Ocean, the ‘Kelp Forests’ of the Pacific ocean and then all the way down to coast line off of Antarctica. These five aquarium tanks of the Lisbon Oceanarium are placed next to each other in such a fashion that they all appear as one to give that expansive feeling that one gets when gazing out from an ocean shore.
Yes, It’s Worth It.
More than 8.000 ocean creatures and an astounding abundance of marine plant life, It only costs about $20.00 U.S. dollars. This personal trip through the world’s oceans can last from two hours or, depending upon your pace and interest, you can spend all day there.
For my experience, on vacation with the Atlantic ocean between all my worries about work and any other problems; I wanted all of that to entirely disappear for awhile. With this incredible display on such a vast scale; they did.
This is nothing like watching a nature show on television; this is an awe-inspiring experience. When you have sharks and barracudas and massively sized grouper swimming literally inches away from you, you really do feel the beauty and and a sense of total wonder of all that is in the depths of our oceans. And my kids, well, walking with slow steps and both of them with their jaw hanging open; they loved it.
Esplanada Dom Carlos I s/nº,
1990-005 Lisboa, Portugal
daily: 10 – 20 h
24. Dezember: 10 – 19 h
25. Dezember: 11 – 20 h
31. Dezember: 10 – 19 h
01. Januar: 11 – 20 h
Admission fees (2017):
Adult (13-64 Jahre): 22 €
Children (0-3 Jahre): free
Children (3-12 Jahre): 15 €
Seniors (über 65 Jahre): 17 €