The first aquarium in the world to grow live Californian giant kelp, Monterey also has one of the most comprehensive jellyfish exhibits in the world, as well as being one of few to display both yellowfin and bluefin tuna. Built on the site of an old sardine cannery, the kelp display is a number of floors high, allowing visitors to see the different sorts of life displayed at different depths in kelp forests.
Prior to the opening of the Georgia Aquarium in 2005, the Baltimore Aquarium was consistently rated the best aquarium in the United States. With an extremely family-friendly layout situated in the Inner Harbor, the aquarium is home to over 600 permanent residents, as well as two large rotating exhibits. The multi-level centre tank allows visitors to look at four different levels of marine life inside their domain.
The largest aquarium in Australia in size and the only aquarium in the western half of the country, it has over 400 species of native Australian marine life representing all 12,000 kilometres of Western Australia’s coastline. It also has one of the world’s premiere coral exhibits.
The newest aquarium on this list, only a little over two years old, it is the largest aquarium in Europe as well. Forty-three different exhibits house over 10,000 animals, and an underwater tunnel with moving walkway offers an incredible look under the sea.
Being home to the greatest variety of aquatic life in Australia means hosting a great number of wild, exotic creatures. The Sydney Aquarium is home to a number of unique creatures not found elsewhere in captivity, including bizarre wildlife such as dugongs, platypus, grey nurse sharks, smalltooth sawfish and more. Not as large as the previously mentioned (at number 8) AQWA, it is more thorough in its collection of Australian aquatic life, with over 650 separate species.
The world’s largest mall plays host to the world’s largest acrylic panel, which holds behind it a giant seascape containing almost 33,000 specimens. The sheer size alone makes it worth seeing, but it has also managed to include a 270-degree walkthrough tunnel, as well as a small zoo directly above the aquarium tank.
One of the largest and most modern aquariums in Japan, it also contains a great variety of specimens, with over 740 separate species. It is located within the Ocean Expo Park, which contains plenty of other experiences to go with your aquarium visit.
Containing bi-level displays in unique aquarium towers, L’Oceanografic is beautifully designed as well as being very thorough. It is part of the largest marine life park in Europe, which contains over 500 species of animals, although some are of the non-aquatic type.
The oldest aquarium on the list at 55 years of age, it is also the most thorough, with over 70,000 creatures spanning approximately 6,000 species. It was the first aquarium to employ professional naturalists to interpret the behaviour of the marine life in captivity, and is one of the world leaders in oceanic research, conservation and rehabilitation. While not as spectacular as many of the other aquariums on this list, being fairly modest in size, it is almost certainly the most important in terms of education and conservation.
Only one aquarium in the United States can boast of being home to manta rays, whale sharks and hammerheads, along with over 100,000 other specimens. It also happens to be the largest aquarium in the world and one of the most modern. The Georgia Aquarium is only six years old, but those short years have been used to create a vast expanse of educational exhibits that have brought together a variety of sea life not found in captivity at the same aquarium anywhere else in the world.
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