How happy do those smiling rays look, cruising around in one of the biggest aquariums in Europe? The Lisbon Oceanarium is a bit out-of-the-way, but the 15-minute-ish metro ride from the city centre is well worth the effort. With several sections representing 5 different seas’ habitats, the range of species to examine is impressive.
When you first come in you’re met with the giant indoor aquarium that shelters sharks, majestic rays and plenty of schools. Keep an eye for the lonely sunfish, a rarety in captivity as it is a difficult one to take care of. I am not going to lie, I still haven’t figured out how it manages to move forward with its tiny fins awkwardly placed on its giant body.
But the real main attraction of this aquarium is the presence of two very playful sea otters. I couldn’t for the life of me capture them in picture as they seemed to be in the middle of an intense game of hide-and-seek, you’ll have to trust my words now when I tell you they were one of the cutest things I have ever seen.
Other highlights of the place for me were the puffins who looked like they were holding a very important conference, and some extremely sassy pink tropical fish that were jazzing up the dark tanks.
Also, psychedelic jellyfish! Need I say more?
Oceanario de Lisboa
Esplanada D. Carlos I – Doca Dos Olivais
Metro: Oriente (when you get out of the station, go towards the Vasco de Gama shopping centre, go through it, you’ll be facing the sea front, the Oceanarium is on your right)
Bus: 5, 10, 19, 21, 28, 50, 68, 81, 82, 85
Opening Hours: 10am-8pm (summer) / 10am-7pm (winter)
Entrance: General 13€ / Seniors 11€ / <3 year old Free / <12 year old 11€
Additional charge for temporary exhibitions.