With half term upon us we were thrilled to be asked to visit the Sea Life London Aquarium and get involved in their #jawsomesharks event. We have been to the Sea Life centre several times before so we knew what to expect and the kids were really excited to go back.
We were given complimentary entry into the Sea Life London Aquarium. All opinions given are entirely my own.
For half term there is a Jawsome Sharks event where kids are given a task to find various shark teeth in the tanks as they go around the Aquarium. If they complete them all they are then given a sticker at the end. There is also an activity area near the shark tank (upper level) where the children can use play doh to make their own sea creatures or shark teeth. They also got the chance to see a real shark jaw up close and there were Aquarium employees there to give the kids more information.
They were so engaged with the idea of finding the shark teeth that I had to keep reminding one of them to slow down and look at every tank. They loved the idea and were helping one another to find the shark teeth.
This was not the only interactive element for the kids in the aquarium. Since the last time we visited lots of things have changed and there is so much more for the children to get involved with. There were buttons to press, handles to turn, exhibits to really ‘get in’, starfish to touch and anemones to see up close just to mention a few.
This was great for my older boys (5 and 7) who didn’t want to spend as long watching the sea creatures as their younger siblings. There is even a jellyfish video game for the kids which may have been my husband’s favourite bit. I wasn’t sure we would ever get him away from it…
The Rain Forest Adventure section really had the older boys engaged with tales of poison and man eating piranha fish….
It really is one of those places were you can spend as little or as much time as you want. We were there for around 2.5 hours. The kids looked at pretty much everything and we were definitely trying out all of the interactive elements and we spent quite a bit of time at the shark tank and the penguins.
Who should go
There is genuinely something for everyone at the Sea Life centre. Each one of us had a different favourite area or animal. The centre is split into various zones and habitats and it isn’t just fish that you get to see. There are loads of creepy crawlies, crocodiles (small ones) and even penguins which never fail to entertain.
Our kids are aged 3, 5 and 7 and they all loved the trip and I should say that we have taken them since they were around a year old and they loved it then too. It is really easy to take young children to the Sea Life London Aquarium as they are considered the whole way through. There are low level viewing holes for the large tanks, the toilets have lowered sinks and you can easily take a buggy. I was carrying our foldable buggy this time, but we have done trips to Sea Life with a side by side double and have had no problems. Even when it is busy there is so much to see the children always have something to do or look at.
Favorites this time included penguins, the Sea Turtle, Rays and of course those amazing sharks. My personal favourite were the JellyFish. Now I would never want to end up in the water with them, but watching them was fascinating. They are so relaxing and majestic to watch or at least they would be without my kids around…. I could stay in Aquarium for hours watching both the larger sea creatures such as the sharks and the rays or just relaxing in front of those fab jellyfish.
When to go
We chose to go at 10am and for us going in the morning works best as, of course, it does tend to get busier later. I will say though that we have visited both in the morning and afternoon and you can always still get to see everything you want to, but you just might need to be more patient. As we have four little kids patience is in short supply and they are up at the crack of dawn so we thought lets go early… I will say that I noticed that the shark feeding is at 2:30pm (3 days per week) so if you wanted to see that then you would need to arrive later than we did.
There are talks on the sharks and the rays at several times during the day so you can find out more about these fabulous creatures. Check the website for times if you want to know more.
Overall I would recommend the Sea Life London Aquarium to any family for a visit. We learnt lots (adults included!) and had a lot of fun. It is a great way to spend a morning or afternoon in London and has the added bonus of being on the South Bank so once you are done the fun keeps on going as there is just always something interesting to see there.