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This month we visited the Blue Reef Aquarium, an indoor attraction which is next to Towan Beach, Newquay. It is in the middle of Newquay and is a super place to visit when the weather is less than favourable. We also found it to be a wonderful place to wander around with young children.
You can park in town and walk down to the aquarium, which can be accessed via a gentle slope which is nice and easy when using a pushchair. The whole aquarium is also pushchair friendly. The aquarium is an excellent choice if you are on your own with two young children, as many attractions can be quite challenging with two small ones.
We visited with a one-year-old and a three-year old, who both really liked looking at the all the weird and wonderful sea creatures. There is plenty to see and many fun facts about the creatures as you go along. There are events on throughout each day, with talks about the octopus, a rockpool encounter, and you can watch the turtle, tropical fish and shark feed at various times throughout the day.
There’s lots to see here and it will certainly keep little eyes busy and amazed. The 1-year-old loved looking at the colourful fish and was fascinated by the giant pacific octopus, which the older one was a bit unsure about! There are crabs, lobsters, seahorses, stone fish, piranhas, hermit crabs, shrimps, clown fish, tropical fish, and black tip reef sharks.
There is the underwater tunnel; the centrepiece of the aquarium where you can get up close to some amazing ocean creatures including angelfish, pufferfish, and hundreds of brightly-coloured fish, along with sharks, rays, moray eels and the venomous lion fish.
Favourites included Loggerhead Turtle. At the end of the displays there is a pool which you can look in to directly and see some of the creatures. The turtle swan right to the top and the eldest was wowed by the sight. The Cuvier’s Dwarf Caiman Crocodiles also got a long stare. These small crocodiles originate from the Amazon rain forest.
The Blue Reef Gift Shop is filled with a wide range of marine-themed gifts, souvenirs, toys, cards and posters.
There is the Blue Reef Cafe where you can choose from a wide selection of drinks, snacks and meals. For younger families, baby food is available plus high chairs, a bottle warmer and microwave for parental use.
If the weather perks up, and the tide is out you can wander on the beach, which is great for rockpools, so you can continue your ocean experience! The Blue Reef Aquarium is very close to Hendra, in the town centre, with a discount voucher in the Hendra Welcome Book.