Today, I went to the Sea Life Aquarium in Melbourne with my Australian friend Kevin, his cousin Shannon, and her boyfriend. I love aquariums. Seriously, looking at fish is the best.

Sea Life Aquarium! Ready to stalk some fish!
Sea Life Aquarium! Ready to stalk some fish!

The Aquarium was actually rather crowded, it being a Saturday and all. Lots of families with their kids. It’s great that children are interested in nature and wildlife!

It's an anenenenennemeone, an anenemenenmanenome....
It’s an anenenenennemeone, an anenemenenmanenome….

The aquarium has a layout that I really like – basically, you go from room to room, and they have a path laid out for you so that there’s only one way to go from every room. It takes the pressure off of “oh we have to look at this, then backtrack to go this way and look at this, and” blah blah blah, because if you just make it to the end, you get to see everything in the aquarium! Plus, it means that the crowds are moving in the same direction, which definitely makes things a lot easier.

Look at those teeth!
Look at those teeth!
This is a grumpy fish alright.
This is a grumpy fish alright.
Lionfish! So beautiful!
Lionfish! So beautiful!

The highlight of the aquarium is this giant, 2.2 million liter tank which houses sharks, massive stingrays, and other marine animals. There is an underwater tube where you can walk through and watch swordfish, nurse sharks, and other huge marine animals swim past you. Seeing a huge stingray swim over you, revealing its pale, derpy looking “face” on its underbelly and casting a dark shadow over 2 meters in diameter is definitely an experience not to be missed!

Underwater tube! Spent forever here looking at the marine animals.
Underwater tube! Spent forever here looking at the marine animals.
Stingrays: The derps of the ocean
Stingrays: The derps of the ocean
Mesmerized!
Mesmerized!

One of the most memorable animals we came across was Pinjarra, a saltwater crocodile. Measuring in at over 5 meters, this fearsome beast is housed in an awesome exhibit which allows multiple views, including from above. I had no idea that crocodiles could get so big – it was a frightening sight, not gonna lie.

Pinjarra, one of the largest freshwater crocodiles on display in the world. I know this is a weird picture - he was half submerged in the water!
Pinjarra, one of the largest freshwater crocodiles on display in the world. I know this is a weird picture – he was half submerged in the water!

Some more animal highlights were the seahorses, which are masters of camouflage. It was fun spotting them among the reefs and sea kelp. Did you know that male seahorses carry the offspring? The female produces the eggs and passes it off to the male, who then keeps the eggs in their pouches until they hatch. Fascinating stuff!

IMG_3345
No this is not a piece of coral… this is a sea dragon!
IMG_3354
Beautiful stringy fish!

Finally, the ever-popular penguin enclosure! The Sea Life aquarium is home to both King and Gentoo penguins. These beautiful birds are graceful and fast in the water but it is quite hilarious to watch them waddle around on land. We got there just in time for the keeper presentation(aka feeding time!) and to see all the penguins try to waddle down a snowy slope was an amusing sight indeed.

Why hello there little penguin!
Why hello there little penguin!
In the center of the exhibit is a little area for the penguin chicks to be able to get used to dat penguin lyfe from a safe environment.
In the center of the exhibit is a little area for the penguin chicks to be able to get used to dat penguin lyfe from a safe environment.

A great day at the aquarium. What is your favorite aquatic animal? For me, I loved going into the tube and seeing so many different marine animals co-existing in the same huge tank! Getting a peek at life under water was so much fun and such an illuminating experience.

Stopping by (and goofing off at) the gift shop is a great way to end the day!
Stopping by (and goofing off at) the gift shop is a great way to end the day!
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