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An underwater adventure at Sea Life Manchester Aquarium


Sea Life Manchester Aquarium is a great family day out. I was invited to visit the underwater kingdom with Tall Boy and the twins. Keep reading to find out what we made of it.


The aquatic experience

The aquarium is home to a wide variety of sea life. The first animals you meet are the turtles at Turtle Beach. A 3D projection experience explains the life cycle of a sea turtle as it hatches from the egg and navigates its way to the sea. The centre is home to two giant green sea turtles, Cammy and Ernie, who live in the tropical ocean tank.

Giant Sea Turtle

There are many other, small turtles to meet as you explore.

Turtle tank

Sea Life Manchester Aquarium allows you to get up close to the sea creatures and fish, whilst learning about them as you go. Interactive experiences encourage you to explore the underwater world more closely.

There are several unusual shaped tanks that give you a new perspective on the sea life inside, which makes the centre even more exciting. We found Nemo in the specially designed mini ocean tunnel.

Clown fish in mini ocean tunnel

There’s even a jellyfish tank you can sit in (don’t worry they can’t sting through the glass), and an open rockpool means you can touch a chocolate star fish or a cleaner shrimp.

Up close with a star fish

The large ocean tunnel allows you to submerge yourself in tropical seas as fish swim overhead and beside you.

Ocean Tunnel



The aquarium is well laid out and accessible even with a double buggy. Tall Boy was happy to explore at his own pace, pausing at tanks that caught his attention. Much thought has gone in to making the tanks varied and eye catching, which makes for a truly interactive experience.

The aquarium caters well for young children with the addition of a soft-play structure, which includes several ball pits and a climbing frame.


Our Verdict

The semi darkness and peaceful surroundings in the aquarium are great for lulling babies to sleep. And if they are awake the colourful fish provide a unique sensory experience.

Tall Boy was mesmerised by his encounter with the giant crabs.

Giant crabs

He also spent a lot of time pressing the buttons to change the colour of the jelly fish tank.

Light up the jellies

Changing the jelly fish colour

For children older than Tall Boy, there are treasure hunts designed to get them learning about the centres inhabitants. Over this summer (2019) you can choose to join team pirate or team mermaid in a quest to find hidden treasure. On special days you can meet mermaids who swim in the tropical ocean tank.

We visited Sea Life Aquarium Manchester after a very busy trip to Legoland Discovery Centre Manchester, which you can read about here. It is possible to buy a joint ticket to both attractions and if you do this I would recommend making Sea Life the second stop in your day out because watching colourful fish swimming around is a very relaxing pastime.


I was gifted our visit to Sea Life Manchester Aquarium for the purpose of writing a review. Views are, as always, my own.


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Becci Johnson

Hi, I’m an almost 6 ft, thirty-something living in Manchester. Writer, blogger & mum to twins plus one.

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