The Two Oceans Aquarium will have a number of programmes this festive season.
From the reopened play area for kids with crafts and puppet shows, extended opening hours, a new interactive exhibit, afternoon discounts, various experiences on offer, and membership to the aquarium, there is bound to be something for everyone.
From Monday December 20 until Friday January 7 2022, the aquarium will be open from 9am to 7pm. The aquarium has also extended it’s “After 3 Special” with discounted rates effective from 3pm on site at the aquarium’s ticket office.
I&J Children’s Play Centre
The I&J Children’s Play Centre will be open for the 2021 festive season. The centre will have acceptable interactive exhibits and arts and crafts according to Covid-19 regulations. Allowances have been made to accommodate more children at one time and still offer a safe space for the little ones to experience the aquarium and learn about the South African marine life and environment.
The aquarium is now offering daily behind-the-scenes tours for visitors over the age of eight.
In the company of one of the curatorial staff members, visitors will be able to go behind the “staff-only” access doors and into the areas where pumps are humming, food for the animals is being prepared and divers are kitting up, among other activities.
Experts will share information about how the aquarium runs.
Tours will take place from 10am to 1pm daily, and will last 1 hour to 75 minutes. A maximum of eight people can join a tour.
The tour costs R590 for adults and R470 for children, and includes free all day access to the front of house at the aquarium. Tours must be booked at least 24 hours in advance.
The tour is not suitable for children under the age of 8.
An interactive penguin experience will see visitors meet the Two Oceans Aquarium’s rockhopper penguins, and learn more about their species and behaviour from one of the aquarium’s knowledgeable staff.
These experiences are suitable for adults and children over the age of 8, but only two people are permitted at a time.
Bookings are essential with slots available from Tuesday to Sunday.
The Two Oceans Aquarium has recently joined the international diving fraternity by opening the Two Oceans Aquarium Dive School, a certified PADI Dive Resort.
The aquarium’s exhibits provide all-weather diving conditions for adventure seekers. The aquarium is now a one-stop dive centre, offering a range of dive qualifications from the basic Discover Scuba Diving experience to the Advanced Open Water Diver course.
The aquarium has the facilities and equipment for training and exhibits for divers from the age of 10, (in reasonably good health) to learn and try out their newly acquired skills.
As part of the aquarium’s in-house adventure dive experiences, qualified divers can dive in the I&J Ocean Exhibit with the rays and turtles, the Save Our Seas Foundation Shark Exhibit with the ragged-tooth sharks, or the Kelp Forest Exhibit, depending on the diver’s qualification.
Bookings for Adventure Dives are required and can be done by visiting https://shop.aquarium.co.za/adventure-diving.
New interactive Shark Alley Exhibit
In October, in partnership with the Save Our Seas Foundation, the aquarium opened the Shark Alley Exhibit. Shark Alley curves around the outer walls of the Save Our Seas Foundation Shark Exhibit and complements the viewing of live sharks with informative signage and interactive exhibits that convey fascinating shark facts.
The interactive exhibits provide hands-on learning experiences, encouraging visitors of all ages to delve into various aspects of shark biology and conservation. At the same time, seeing live sharks inspires awe and admiration for these animals that have inhabited our planet’s oceans for the past 400 million years.
Foundation donations as festive gifts
The Two Oceans Aquarium Education Foundation is the Aquarium’s NPO/PBO partner and focuses on conservation, education and research. The foundation relies on donations and sponsorships to continue its good work which includes turtle rescue, rehab and release, as well as seal rescues and disentanglements. All donations to the aquarium foundation are tax deductible.
Tickets to the aquarium can be purchased online at https://shop.aquarium.co.za/ or at the aquarium’s ticket office.
Covid protocols are in place with all visitors required to wear masks that cover their noses and mouths at all times, hand sanitiser is freely available throughout the aquarium, and Covid marshals will be on duty.
For more information about the aquarium, please visit www.aquarium.co.za