Kelly Tarlton’s Sea Life Aquarium is one of New Zealand’s most popular tourist and visitor attractions. Situated on Ohaku Bay, Auckland, this aquarium was inaugurated in 1985 and is a brainchild of Kelly Tarlton – perhaps New Zealand’s most prolific sea diver and marine archaeologist.
His idea to create an aquarium using unused sewage storage tanks coupled with curved acrylic tunnels was novel at the time and was the beginning of a much awaited journey into the ocean world. The current aquarium has undergone many changes in management and the latest refurbishments have seen the it become bigger and better than it ever was. Visitors to Kelly Tarlton’s Sea Life Aquarium are able to now view many exhibits and displays as well as have interactive and up close experiences.
The shark dives or shark cages are perhaps the most popular dare devil activities on board at the museum, where visitors have the opportunity of diving into the large tank filled with many sharks of different varieties including the School Shark, Sand Tiger Shark, Wobbegong Shark and much more. Experienced divers accompany the guests in order to ensure a safe dive. For those not as daring the cage is an excellent opportunity to get close to these predators in relative safety.
The Stingray Bay houses many different varieties as does the all new Seahorse Kingdom. As seahorses are an unusual and unique sea creature that is gradually being threatened, the Kelly Tarlton Sea Life Aquarium has given special attention to the conservation of these animals.
Additional attractions include the fish gallery housing many different varieties of fish found both in rivers and oceans from around the world like the pig fish and cray fish, lionfish, piranha and moray eels. The Antarctic Ice Adventure takes visitors through penguin exhibits housing King Penguins and Gentoo Penguins in their temperature controlled habitat. Children’s activities and other educational and knowledge intensifying displays and exhibits will certainly add to the overall experience that is sure to have you coming back for more.