Review of the best according to the editorial board. On the selection criteria. This material is subjective, does not constitute advertising and does not serve as a purchase guide. Before buying, you need to consult with a specialist.
There is something mysterious, attractive and alluring in underwater life. You can admire the dance of bright, unusual fish for hours – until this relaxed, pacifying feeling is replaced by 'wow!' – admiration when you look at a whale swimming by. Or until the shark scares. Or until the fussy shrimps are amused, now and then scurrying along the rocky bottom in search of a snack.
And you can enjoy all the splendor of marine life in the aquariums. These are not just aquariums, they are full-fledged biomes in which the underwater fauna feels at ease and therefore delights visitors. And for those who want to marvel at and marvel at the marine fauna, we have compiled a rating of the 10 largest aquariums in the world – with a huge variety of 'populations', unusual inhabitants and interesting tourist attractions.
- Overview of the largest oceanariums in the world
- 10th place: Oceanogràfic, Valencia, Spain (7 million liters)
- 9th place: Churaumi Aquarium, Motobu, Japan (9.8 million liters)
- 8th place: Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan, Osaka, Japan (10 million liters)
- 7th place: Dubai aquarium , Dubai, UAE (10.5 million liters)
- 6th place: Aqua planet jeju , Jeju, South Korea (10.8 million liters)
- 5th place: Cube oceanarium , Chengdu, China (11 million liters)
- 4th place: 'Moskvarium', Moscow, Russia (25 million liters)
- 3rd place: Georgia Aquarium, Atlanta, USA (37.8 million liters)
- 2nd place: S.E.A. Oceanarium, Singapore (45.2 million liters)
- 1st place: Chimelong Ocean Kingdom, Hengqin, China (48.7 million liters)
Overview of the largest oceanariums in the world
|Ranking of the largest oceanariums in the world||10||Oceanogràfic, Valencia, Spain||7 MILLION LITERS|
|9||Churaumi Aquarium, Motobu, Japan||9.8 MILLION LITERS|
|8||Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan, Osaka, Japan||10 MILLION LITERS|
|7||Dubai aquarium , Dubai, UAE||10.5 MILLION LITERS|
|6||Aqua planet jeju , Jeju, South Korea||10.8 MILLION LITERS|
|5||Cube oceanarium , Chengdu, China||11 MILLION LITERS|
|4||'Moskvarium', Moscow, Russia||25 MILLION LITERS|
|3||Georgia Aquarium , Atlanta, USA||37.8 MILLION LITERS|
|2||S.E.A. Oceanarium, Singapore||45.2 MILLION LITERS|
|1||Chimelong Ocean Kingdom, Hengqin, China||48.7 MILLION LITERS|
10th place: Oceanogràfic, Valencia, Spain (7 million liters)
The Oceanogràfic aquarium is striking just by appearing on the horizon. It is located in a building of amazing shape, somewhat reminiscent of both a flower and a shell. Inside the complex there are 9 tower-shaped cisterns, in which various biomes are reproduced – from cold subarctic waters to hot tropical ones.
More than 450 species of underwater animals live in the aquarium. You can also see walruses, penguins, sea lions, turtles and dolphins there. The special pride of Oceanogràfic is the rarest moonfish, which is distinguished by its enormous size and extremely unusual body shape: almost round, with large fins above and below.
In addition, in this aquarium it is worth visiting the tropical zone, which is inhabited by representatives of the animal world from different parts of the world – from the Canary Islands to Bermuda. It is crossed by a 35-meter underwater tunnel. Here you can see the rarest and most unusual species of sharks – sandy and flat-headed. They are distinguished by their peaceful disposition, but they still harbor some mysterious, ancient power.
After walking through the tropical zone, you can admire the temperate biome. A 70-meter tunnel stretches through this part of the oceanarium. And it is here that the largest and most impressive representatives of the underwater fauna live.
9th place: Churaumi Aquarium, Motobu, Japan (9.8 million liters)
Churaumi Aquarium is not only one of the largest aquariums in the world. It contains 4 whale sharks at once – the most gigantic, grandiose and impressive marine life. More – only in the Chinese Chimelong Ocean Kingdom.
But not only whale sharks can boast of Churaumi Aquarium. Here you can also find mantu – a huge stingray, which, despite its enormous size, is distinguished by a peaceful disposition and amazing beauty. In total, the Churaumi Aquarium is home to more than 740 species of fish, marine mammals and arthropods.
The main overview panel, however, is not as large as that of other aquariums in the ranking. It is 22.5 m long and 8.2 m high. But the location of the panel and special lighting technologies make it really impressive. And, of course, through it you can see the majestic whale sharks, slowly swimming before the eyes of visitors.
In addition, a deep sea biome has been recreated here. That is, in this aquarium you can admire the sea inhabitants living under tremendous pressure in the most mysterious places of the World Ocean. For example, see bioluminescent fish that glow on their own. Or that very drop fish, which became the hero of Internet memes because of its strange shape.
8th place: Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan, Osaka, Japan (10 million liters)
Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan is the perfect place to admire the largest, giant and most impressive inhabitants of the deep sea. It is home to the whale shark, arapaima (one of the greatest representatives of the Amazonian fauna) and even the moonfish.
In addition, a very interesting observation deck is organized in this aquarium – in fact, a vertical tunnel, which is a spiral staircase in a glass tube as high as an 8-storey building. When descending on it, a full immersion effect is created. There is also a horizontal tunnel, but relatively short – only 11 meters.
The main observation panel is also rounded and looks like an almost square glass sheet with a length of 6 m and a height of 5 m. Its relatively small dimensions are explained by the 'old age' of the oceanarium itself. Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan was opened back in 1990 and is currently one of the oldest aquariums in our ranking.
In addition to the largest inhabitants of the depths of the sea, you can also meet the cutest seals here, which gladly make contact with visitors; a variety of dolphins giving performances; as well as rare glowing jellyfish that will take your breath away. An interesting feature of Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan is the presence of a night aquarium, where you can watch the life of creatures that wake up at sunset. And local biomes embody not only underwater kingdoms, but also, for example, the Japanese forest with otters and giant salamanders, or the Aleutian Islands with the cutest puffin birds.
7th place: Dubai aquarium , Dubai, UAE (10.5 million liters)
A few decades ago, the residents of the United Arab Emirates realized that they can turn their country into a tourist paradise – just add more attractive attractions. And the local oceanarium is one of them. Dubai Aquarium is focused on the 'wow' effect rather than showcasing underwater life. But this is by no means a drawback.
The 10 million liter aquarium is home to over 300 sharks and rays of various species. These fish are really impressive! Especially when they float past the main observation wall, which is 32.8 m long and 8.3 m high.
Dubai Aquarium is home to the world's largest collection of sand sharks. In addition, you can admire the groupers (one of the largest bony fish in the ocean) and huge schools of pelagic tunas. Of course, numerous tropical fish, painted with the brightest and most unusual colors, are also present.
It is quite possible to spend the whole day in Dubai Aquarium. And it's not just the 48-meter tunnel through which you can see sharks and rays swimming from above. The aquarium maintains special lighting based on the cycles of the moon, so with the onset of evening it gets dark outside and inside – and the nocturnal inhabitants of the underwater kingdom wake up.
And also Dubai Aquarium is located in the largest shopping center in Dubai – Dubai Mall. So you can also enjoy shopping – at the same time as visiting the oceanarium.
6th place: Aqua planet jeju , Jeju, South Korea (10.8 million liters)
Until 2012, whale sharks, the largest underwater creatures on the planet, lived in the Aqua Planet Jeju aquarium. They were a special pride of the institution – even today, these fish are on the organization's logo. However, in 2012, marine biologists decided to release whale sharks into the wild.
However, even without whale sharks, there is someone to admire in the aquarium. In total, more than 500 species of underwater inhabitants live here. Aqua Planet Jeju is so big that it had to be taken to a separate island!
In addition to a large number of underwater inhabitants, guests of Aqua Planet Jeju will enjoy entertainment programs. For example, dolphin and fur seal shows. And the main observation deck is a huge aquarium, 23 meters long and 8 meters high! The view on it is impressive and mesmerizing, you can stand for hours and admire. For children (and adults, of course) there is a contact aquarium where you can touch some marine life – and, of course, dolphins.
And the dolphins here are very humane. They are happy to perform at sea shows, are very reckless, happily swim to the visitors of the contact aquarium and pose in front of the cameras in the main part of the aquarium.
However, it should be noted that Aqua Planet Jeju is not only an entertainment, but also a scientific institution. Therefore, a large part of the area is simply hidden from view. Research of the inhabitants of the marine world is being conducted there. But you can visit the scientific part – and watch a 3D film about the underwater fauna.
The tunnel, of course, is.
5th place: Cube oceanarium , Chengdu, China (11 million liters)
Cube Oceanarium is an oceanarium with one of the world's largest observation panels. Its length is 39.6 m and its height is 8.3 m! In addition, it is one of the newest aquariums in the world and was opened to visitors in 2015.
The Cube Oceanarium is impressive on the way. The building in which it is located is equipped with a variety of LED lighting. Therefore, you will not be able to pass by the Cube Oceanarium – it is visible in almost the entire city of Chengdu.
But the exposition of the aquarium is not as large as that of the other aquariums in the ranking. It contains more than 33 thousand creatures belonging to 400 species. The 'pearl' of the oceanarium is giant jellyfish, which live only here. In addition, the Cube Oceanarium contains two whale sharks (although very young, therefore of a relatively small size), arapaima and many other impressive creatures. The exposition includes several reproduced biomes at once – from cold subarctic waters to hot tropical ones.
Cube Oceanarium also boasts a very long observation tunnel – as much as 36 meters! The building itself has a multi-storey structure, and on the third floor you can admire seals and birds.
4th place: 'Moskvarium', Moscow, Russia (25 million liters)
Moskvarium proudly bears the title of the largest oceanarium in Europe. Opened just a few years ago at VDNKh in the capital of Russia, it has a total volume of 25 million liters, contains more than 12 thousand animals and is equipped with an overview panel 30 m wide and 14 m high.
The Moskvarium also has a swimming area with dolphins. It hosts various water shows, including killer whale theatrical performances and dolphin therapy classes. The exposition itself is divided into thematic zones, including an aquarium with representatives of the Russian underwater fauna – including the Baikal seals.
The Moskvarium regularly hosts various thematic and exposition shows. You can admire exhibitions of arapaimas, sharks, octopuses, crocodile caimans, Baikal seals, jellyfish, starfish, turtles, piranhas and many, many other inhabitants of the underwater world. There is a contact aquarium. But the underwater tunnel is small, so it is worth admiring individual thematic expositions.
Besides, 'Moskvarium' is one of the most budgetary oceanariums in the ranking. At the time of this writing, a ticket for an adult costs about 10 euros, while for the same Cube Oceanarium (the previous one in the rating) it costs about 18 euros.
3rd place: Georgia Aquarium, Atlanta, USA (37.8 million liters)
Only in one American aquarium you can find a giant whale shark – Georgia Aquarium, the largest in the United States. But you can admire not only this fish there. The permanent exhibition includes arapaim, beluga whales and manta rays – giant rays.
The oceanarium is divided into five thematic zones – tropical, oceanic temperate, subarctic with cold waters, river and a special pool with dolphins. You can see Californian sea lions, African penguins, Atlantic killer whales, seahorses … In total, the Georgia Aquarium contains over 700 species of animals!
In addition, the aquarium boasts a large underwater tunnel – 30 meters long. But the overview panel is not that huge. With a length of 19.2 meters, it has a height of 7.9 meters.
Georgia Aquarium is one of the few aquariums that allow indoor events. For example, weddings, parties, conferences and so on. Therefore, before booking your ticket (which costs $ 35.95 plus taxes), you should make sure that the aquarium will not be busy with any event that day.
In addition, various shows are regularly held here. For example, New Year's parties, children's workshops, and even yoga classes.
2nd place: S.E.A. Oceanarium, Singapore (45.2 million liters)
S.E.A. Oceanarium boasts the largest collection of manta rays in the world! Only here you can find a giant manta ray that lives in captivity. In total, more than 50 thousand different fish, mammals and arthropods live here. The exposition includes over 800 kinds of creatures!
The entire exposition is divided into 49 thematic biomes, embodying various regions of the ocean – from the South Asian seas to the Arabian Gulf, from open waters to the tropics, from temperate climates to the Arctic. The aquarium with sharks stands out separately. Here you can watch the hammerhead shark and the aggressive whitetip shark. In total, this aquarium is home to over 200 marine predators.
The main viewing panel has impressive dimensions – length 36 m, height 8.3 m. But the tunnel is very short, only a few meters, so it is better to admire the shark pool and other exhibits.
But S.E.A. Oceanarium offers a unique attraction – almost a diving dive in a specially designed suit with a huge viewing area. The descent is made into an aquarium with the brightest and most unusual tropical fish, so you can enjoy the inhabitants of coral reefs and warm waters up close, literally being in their school.
1st place: Chimelong Ocean Kingdom, Hengqin, China (48.7 million liters)
Chimelong Ocean Kingdom is the largest oceanarium in the world. It is impossible to miss this building – in front of it there is a huge statue of a blue whale, as if symbolizing the majesty of this place. The aquarium is home to over 800 species of marine animals, including whale sharks (of which there are as many as 5), mantas, coral reefs with live corals and numerous small inhabitants, and many, many others.
In addition, Chimelong Ocean Kingdom will appeal to fans of 'underwater viewing'. There is also a tunnel (albeit relatively short, only a few meters), and the world's largest dome with a diameter of 12 meters.
It's not just fish that can be found in biomes. For example, polar bears and penguins are found in the Arctic. And in the subarctic – beluga whales. Chimelong Ocean Kingdom is also home to manatees, elephant seals and otters. There is also a contact pool where you can pet devil fish, various catfish and starfish.
It should be noted that Chimelong Ocean Kingdom is not exclusively an oceanarium. This is a huge amusement park for the whole family, with numerous attractions and entertainment programs. There is a 'sea battle' in the dolphinarium, a museum in the oceanarium, a rope park, roller coasters and an elevating carousel in the tropical zone. The entrance to Chimelong Ocean Kingdom costs about 45 euros, but you can spend the whole day here and not get bored.
Attention! This rating is subjective and does not constitute an advertisement and does not serve as a purchase guide. Before buying, you need to consult with a specialist.