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Leisure

Liguria

The Aquarium of Genoa, a tour of the world under the sea

17 October 2022

2 minutes

In Europe's largest aquarium, inaugurated on the 500th anniversary of the discovery of America in Genoa's Old Port, habitats from all continents are reproduced to house more than 12,000 animals from all over the world.

The spectacle of the underwater world is housed in a series of buildings designed by the Genoese architect Renzo Piano, where you can have memorable experiences face to face with the animals.

1. 70 ecosystems to see 12,000 animals

The numbers of the Genoa Aquarium speak for themselves: 27,000 square metres of floor space, 12,000 animals of 600 species living in 43 tanks where 70 different ecosystems with 200 plant species are reconstructed. You need at least 3 hours to visit it, although you could stand for a whole day in front of the dolphin tank and watch their performances.

So many different environments to marvel at: the moray eel grotto, the mermaid labyrinth where manatees sway placidly, the shark bay, the seal island, the ice kingdom with penguins and Antarctic fish, the open-air dolphin pool, the touching pool for stroking stingrays, then tropical lagoons, coral reefs with the ever-present clown fish amidst sea anemones, jellyfish and much more, because new things come along year after year.

2. Find out how an aquarium works

In addition to visits, the aquarium offers experiences (advance booking required) to learn more about the marine world and its animals and discover how a machine as complex as an aquarium works.

You can be face-to-face with the penguins, with a guide illustrating the daily work of managing the animals, with the possibility of witnessing the distribution of food. Or face-to-face with dolphins, poolside, to learn training skills, naturally without any physical contact with the animals, prohibited by animal protection regulations.

A family can request a visit in the company of a biologist on a specific topic of their choice, with the possibility of visiting restricted areas. Everyone can get a behind-the-scenes look at the aquarium, visiting offices and laboratories where the activities required to maintain the tanks and care for the animals take place.

Younger visitors (aged 7-11) can experience the thrill of a night with the sharks by stopping to sleep in front of their tank, while mainly for adults, there are emotional dinners in front of the dolphin tank, with classical music and a soprano concert. 

3. Tropical Forest in the Biosphere

The Bio-sphere is the spherical glass and steel structure next to the main aquarium building that houses the habitat of tropical forests and their animals. Inside, more than 150 species of tropical plants can be seen, from tree ferns, the tallest grown in pots, to orchids, from banana trees to cinnamon, from chewing gum plants to coffee plants, including parrots and scarlet ibis.

Also included in the Aquarium complex is the Bigo panoramic lift, which takes you 40 metres high and rotates 360°, allowing you to observe, like a drone, the entire harbour and the historic centre of Genoa.

 

To find out more

www.acquariodigenova.it/