Jan 11, 2012

Manila Ocean Park

Manila Ocean Park in Manila, Philippines

Though modestly tagged as the first “marine-theme park” in the Philippines at its opening, Manila Ocean Park has become a tourist hotspot and resort destination. Manila’s Ocean Park is the top aquarium in the Philippines, and while it’s not the largest, most diverse, or most impressive aquarium in the world, it is one of the best values in Southeast Asia, as a sure bet for families and the aquatically-inclined. Located in Rizal Park, behind the Quirino Grandstand in the heart of the city, Manila’s Ocean Park has been a popular attraction in Manila since it opened it’s doors in early 2008.

Oceanarium

The park features an exhibition of coral, 8 tanks of freshwater fish, and the most impressive “oceanarium” in Southeast Asia. The Oceanium is considered to be the main attraction of the park, and features an underwater walkway-tunnel that runs for 25 meters, with 220-degree curved acrylic walls. No other aquarium in Southeast Asia offers the viewing area that Manila Ocean Park’s Oceanarium does. Over 300 species of marine animals are featured in this aquarium.

ManilaOceanPark

via: Charlie V. Antonio

 

Jellies

Manila Ocean Park’s jellyfish exhibit transports you to an alien world, where a darkened room displays glowing tubes of hundreds of species of jellyfish. The exhibit fascinates children and adults alike, and does a great job in educating visitors about the many varieties of these fascinating creatures.

Fish Spa

Sit back and dip your feet into the Fish Spa and watch as doctorfish, or “nibble fish” flock to your legs and feet looking for their next meal. The “fish pedicure” is a painless procedure, and many visitors grow to enjoy the tingling sensation on their feet and legs as “doctorfish” nibble away at dead skin on feet and legs in an attempt to forage for food. The practice is banned in many countries due to sanitary concerns, but most visitors ultimately find it to be a relaxing, enjoyable, and harmless experience.

Manila Ocean Park also features a sea lion show, glass bottom boat ride, musical fountain show, Antarctica exhibit, and much more. Those swept away by the delights of the ocean may the Park’s four-star hotel, Hotel H2O to be the perfect place to rest their head.

Hotel H2O (http://www.hotelh2o.com)
Depending on the day of the week that you visit, and the time of day that you go, it should take no more than half of a day to traverse the aquarium and its exhibits. There’s much more to see and do in Manila Ocean Park, and Rizal Park, and one of the best places to stay in Manila is Hotel H2O.

Hotel H20

The hotel is located within the compound, and features innovative aquarium-themed suites that offer magnificent views. The Makan Makan Food Village and the Zenyu Eco Spa are highly rated attractions within the hotel. Centrally located within one of Southeast Asia’s best aquariums, and just minutes away from one of its best malls, SM Mall of Asia, Hotel H2O is not to be missed.

Good Buy Tips:
- The park seems to be constantly undergoing construction and renovation though the 3rd and “final phase” of the park was completed in mid-2009.
- Skip the sea lion show. It’s short (20-30 minutes), and many visitors come away unimpressed.
- See the aquarium on a weekday to avoid the crowds. Schools in Manila use the aquarium for field trips, visit the ocean park during less-trafficked hours to avoid throngs of children.

 

Hotels Near Manila Ocean Park

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