Learning about the wonder of the oceans is a great way to educate the kids about the natural world. The first moment they see an otherworldly octopus, giant manta ray, or electric conger eel can spark a dozen questions — and a passion that lasts a lifetime. To help learn about the oceans and the creatures that inhabit them, be sure to check out the following aquariums in and not far from Bangkok.
Officially the largest aquarium in South East Asia, Sea Life Bangkok is home to an astounding 30,000 native and exotic marine life creatures. One of the big attractions of a visit here are the fantastic interactive experiences. Highlights include live feeding demonstrations, a 4D cinema, and a glass bottom boat that lets you get up close with sharks and stingrays. In the Rockpool section, little ones will love exploring the Pop Up Tank, Crawl Through Tank, and Secret Cave Tank as they’re invited to feel part of the underwater world.
Offering a blend of fun and interactive learning zones, the slightly dated but still amusing Science Museum and Planetarium is spread across four main buildings, and it includes its own aquarium — located in the Aquatic Life building. The exhibit isn’t exactly huge, but it does house some interesting species of marine life that complement the range of other exhibits and shows on offer. Entry is just 30 baht for adults and 20 baht for kids. A location right next to Ekkamai BTS makes this an easy visit with little ones.
The Bangkok Aquariumwas founded back in 1940, making it the oldest aquarium in Thailand. Located in the main campus of Kasetsart University, visitors can see around 560 different species of freshwater fish native to Thailand, along with approximately 100 species of aquarium plants. The aquarium is home to several showcase species, including the Siamese Tigerfish, Siamese giant carp, and Chao Phraya giant catfish. Entry is free, and there’s also an on-site kids’ playground.
4. Bang Saen Aquarium (Institute of Marine Science)
Along with acting as a centre for research, Bang Saen Aquarium is open to the public and offers a series of fascinating exhibits on marine preservation. Housed within Burapha University at Bang Saen Beach in Chonburi, the institute’s impressive aquarium will arguably prove the biggest hit with kids. Here, they can get up close to an array of aquatic life, including a giant tank that contains 1,000 tons of sea water and sea animals. Admission is 180 baht for adults, and 100 baht for children.
First opened in 2003, Underwater World has been developing and supporting marine life education programs that are geared towards the sustainable side of aquarium attractions. Displays are thematic, giving visitors a virtual ‘journey’ from the sandy beach shore down to the depths of the ocean. There are also separate zones that provide different interactive experiences concerning the marine environment, encouraging kids to overcome their natural fear of the unknown and get elbow deep in the touch pools and tanks.