Best Aquariums In The Philippines


The Philippines is known for boasting a wide range of destinations and attractions that would attract local and international tourists. Being home to various sea animals and underwater life, the country is also home to several aquariums. The aquarium in the Philippines stands out as it exhibits not only marine sea life but also different species associated with water life. 

Top Aquariums in the Philippines Guests Should Check Out

Visiting aquariums provides a different feel to anyone compared to other attractions and establishments. Here, the sound of moving waters paired with the view of beautiful sea animals gliding across the clear displays provides a tranquil and soothing ambiance to visitors of all ages. It also offers a wonderful exhibit for young children as well. 

Just like zoos, aquariums also play a role in conservation efforts and educating the public on the importance of sea life. Seeing these creatures swim in real life beats any video documentaries, making aquariums a must-visit attraction for all kinds of visitors. Here are the top aquariums you should check out on your next trip to the Philippines. 

Misamis Occidental Aquamarine Park

When it comes to checking out live sea animals, chances are that checking out or swimming with dolphins is the first thought that comes into anyone’s mind. Misamis Occidental Aquamarine Park, MOAP for short, provides guests with the opportunity and more. The park is located in Libertad Bago, Sinacaban, and houses numerous sea animals, most native to the Philippines. 

What makes this park famous is its main attraction, the Dolphin Island. Living up to its name, the attraction houses numerous dolphins who were rescued and nursed back to health. If the dolphin is considered back in full health, it will be released back into the wild. 

Here, guests have the opportunity to check out and see these dolphins. Not only that, but they also have the option to dive in and swim along with them. Diving with dolphins can be compared to several thrilling outdoor activities in the Philippines worth trying.

See also: Top Must-Try Thrilling Adventures In The Philippines

Mactan Island Aquarium

Located on Mactan Island, Cebu, this aquarium was opened to the public in October 2008 and continues its run today. The aquarium was founded by a British Marine biologist who wished to build the first aquarium in Cebu and the Mactan area.

The aquarium houses over 30 exhibits showcasing hundreds of aquatic life, including sharks, starfishes, sea snakes, and numerous fish species. Some of the aquarium’s popular activities include feeding live sharks and watching sea turtles. The Mactan Aquarium Tour offers complimentary guided tours for groups of up to 30 people per guide. Operating daily from 10 AM to 6 PM.

Bohol Aquarium Zoo

Bohol Aquarium Zoo is a new addition to the numerous aquariums in the Philippines. This aquarium provides local and international visitors with a wide array of exhibits that display different kinds of live sea animals. It is a perfect place for young individuals or families to visit and relax while having a nice view of the nearby mangroves.

Having this latest addition alongside its many other natural tourist attractions makes Bohol one of the top central Visayas tourist destinations guests must check out.

Cebu Ocean Park

Another newly opened aquarium in the Philippines, it is considered the largest ocean park in the country to date. Cebu Ocean Park boasts many exhibits that showcase both marine and terrestrial wildlife. The park’s theme and ambiance provide a unique experience for all visitors while remaining humble in their conservation and educational efforts.

Here, guests have so many activities they can choose from, including spectating the many sea animals displayed in great detail exhibits. Additionally, guests can dare and dive into an enclosure to engage and have a very close view of crocodiles in a secured cage. They can also put in a diving suit and “sea trek” alongside a school of fishes and even stingrays.

Guests can also join in on scheduled activities such as the main tank feeding and bird show. This aquarium can even be best described as a water-themed amusement park with live sea animals being their main attraction.

Manila Ocean Park

The Manila Ocean Park is the most widely recognized aquarium in the Philippines, as well as one of the most popular places to visit in Manila. The aquarium’s main attraction, the Oceanarium, is home to over 14,000 marine animals from around 277 species. Every sea animal and marine life featured within this attraction is indigenous to the Philippines and Southeast Asia.

The displays alone boast sheer size, giving guests a more open view of its many sea life. Nearly every spot in the park provides the perfect background for photos. Manila Ocean Park offers activities and entertainment suitable for all ages, making it an ideal destination for families. From animal shows to interactive exhibits, there’s something enjoyable for everyone.

See also: The Best Vacation Spots in the Philippines for Family

Closing Thoughts

Visiting an aquarium in the Philippines provides an escape from the demands of daily life. Its live displays and soothing ambiance offer visitors a serene environment to unwind and relax, even just for a while. Local aquariums accessible to the public also give visitors a unique experience by admiring a close representation of how life in the ocean behaves and how peaceful it is compared to city life.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions and matters tourists tend to ask regarding local aquariums.

Why is Manila Ocean Park famous?

Manila Ocean Park is famous for its numerous exhibits and collection of over 14,000 marine life. It is also considered the Philippines’ first world-class marine theme park and research facility.

Are zoos and aquariums different?

Zoos and aquariums both exhibit various animal species, but they have several differences. Aquariums prioritize showcasing aquatic creatures, while zoos primarily keep mammals, birds, and reptiles in captivity.

Is Cebu Ocean Park bigger than Manila Ocean Park?

While Manila Ocean Park remains the more popular attraction out of the two, Cebu Ocean Park boasts the distinction of being the country’s largest ocean park, tripling the former in size.

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