It is the Europe’s largest aquarium located far away from the seaside. It opened in 2015 in a specially constructed building on the territory of VDNKh (Russian: ВДНХ). Over 11 thousand sea, river and lake inhabitants from all over the world live on its 12 thousand square meters. There had never been anything like this in Moscow before. The aquarium features huge sharks, dolphins, killer whales, white whales, octopuses, and other fish. In a petting zoo you can not only see, but also touch cramp-fish and horseshoe crabs. Almost every day there is a water show on. There is an operating Swimming Centre where you can swim with dolphins. Moskvarium is divided into three zones: an aquarium, a water show zone, and a centre for swimming with dolphins. Tickets to each zone are sold separately.
Incredible sea artists perform in the huge auditorium seating 2300 including killer whales, white whales, and walruses. What they do excites not only children, but also adults. Walruses work out abs, killer whales rocket up above the water, swing, and jump out on the platform demonstrating their power and beauty to the spectators, white whales waltz, dolphins make synchronised jumps and people can have a ride on them. All these things happen against three-dimensional views as the backdrop.
The aquarium is located on the ground floor of the pavilion. Its 600-metre long display is divided into themed areas: fresh waters and salt waters of Russia, waters of Africa, South America, reef hall, and more. Over 600 species of fish and other underwater inhabitants are presented in 80 aquariums in total.
The unusual inhabitants of the oceanarium – cramp-fish – open up the exposition followed by fresh water fish of Russian rivers and lakes: ruff fish, perches, carps, and huge catfish. Aquariums opposite them demonstrate creatures inhabiting Russian seas such as the White Sea, the Black sea, and the Sea of Japan. You can admire unusual blue-and-orange starfish in the section reproducing the Sea of Japan. Huge crabs and lobsters live in the aquariums beside. Reference information and photos necessary to recognise the main characters are provided near each aquarium.
After that you can take a look at the rivers of South-East Asia’s rain forests. Small and colourfull fish live here. Some of them are very well known to home aquarium fans: platies, loaches, gouramis, barbels, Siamese fighting fish, razorfish, and many others.
While looking at the “Waters of Africa” display, why don’t you pay attention to the aquariums in the hexagonal column. Very special fish live there, whose life time is limited to one rainy season only. They are born, grow up, and breed within just two months. Then we go on to take a look at what South American fishers catch. Here we come across the famous piranhas from the Amazon.
The petting aquarium area is particularly popular with visitors. There you can not only see deep water sea creatures but also touch cramp-fish and horseshoe crabs.
From the petting aquarium the stairs lead you to the first floor. Dolphins and white whales play behind its huge panoramic windows. The space in front of the aquarium window panes where killer whales live is always crowded with visitors. This group of scary predators only swims in front of spectators for a little while but this moment is worth waiting for. The beauty and size of the animals can strike both children and adults. You can see them in more detail during a water show.
If you walk further on, you can stay for a long time in front of the aquariums in the Reef Hall. It offers an array of colours of its inhabitants: actinias, corals, sea-urchins, starfish, and small coral fish. Some unusual long-horned cowfish are close by. In this hall you can also admire a beautiful but very dangerous butterfly-fish.
The Reef Hall is followed by the last and the most impressive display – the “Main Sea Aquarium” with sharks. It is equipped with a small tunnel walkthrough where you can watch sharks swim by right above your head within arm’s reach. Opposite the tunnel you will find Baikal seals. It seems like these amazing creatures are ready to play and run about for hours on end. Here you can see some other creatures inhabiting the world’s oceans. Among them is an enigmatic octopus and transparent jelly fish, charming in their beauty.
Fish in Moskvarium are not just demonstrated. They are studied and told about. Educational lessons are held for children over 5 several times a day from Monday to Friday in Moskvarium. Individual and group tours are also available. Do not miss the opportunity to see the way sharks, piranhas, seals, and blowfish are fed by divers. The feeding schedule is available on the Moskvarium website.
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