Boyfriend and I both love aquariums. The coolest one we’ve visited so far was the San Sebastian Aquarium. We’re fascinated by the underwater world and just can’t believe how much money is being spent on getting people in space, while we don’t even know what lives on the bottoms of our oceans just yet.
We know that an aquarium might not always be the best place to live for the animals that are there, but we just can’t help turning into little children again whenever we see all that amazing sea life. It wasn’t any different when we visited the Barcelona Aquarium.
The Aquarium, or “L’Aquàrium” in Catalán, of Barcelona in Spain is located at Port Vell, where you can also find the Maremàgnum cinema and shopping complex.
We visited the Aquarium on the one day of our trip that it rained, but even when the skies are dry this place is worth some of your time.
Like most, if not all aquariums, the Barcelona Aquarium houses a number of tanks in which you can see a wide variety of sea life. These tanks are divided into themes:
- 14 tanks are devoted to Mediterranean species
- 7 tanks focus on tropical sea life
- 5 kinds of mini aquariums zoom in on creatures that often go unnoticed in larger tanks, like the weedy sea dragon
The most impressive aquarium, however, is the Oceanarium. It has a diameter of 36 meters, is 5 meters deep and contains almost 4 million liters of water.
Oh and yes, there are fish swimming around in it.
A moving sidewalk takes visitors slowly through the tunnel that goes right through the Oceanarium. I’m sure this is great to make sure people don’t have to wait too long to get in the tunnel on busy days, but when it’s calm and you want to observe the animals a little longer, it’s a bit of a shame that you can’t do it at your own speed.
You can step a bit next to the moving sidewalk, but you’re not really meant to do so.
Here’s is a short video of the tunnel:
(You can also watch this video directly on YouTube.)
Besides the many tanks, the Barcelona Aquarium also has a permanent shell exhibition and an area that focuses on ‘extreme’ ocean life: creatures living in tropical, very cold or very dark waters.
And if you’re tired of just looking you can always get active at the children’s educational area or… if you’re a certified scuba diver you can dive into the Oceanarium and swim with the sharks!
Address: Moll d’Espanya del Port Vell, Barcelona
Opening hours: The Barcelona Aquarium is open all year round from 9.30 am until
- 9 pm from Monday until Friday, from October until May
- 9.30 pm on weekends and bank holidays
- 9.30 every day in June and September
- 11 pm in July and August
Entrance fee: Prices vary depending on age and height of the visitor (yes, height), but a regular adult ticket costs €20.
Where to stay in Barcelona?
If you’re looking for an apartment rather than a hotel, I would recommend checking airbnb. Sign up through my link and get a discount on your first stay!
How to get to Barcelona
We flew from Brussels directly to Barcelona. If you’re traveling within Europe and are nearby, you can also consider taking the train.
Read more about Barcelona
Things to do in Barcelona on your first day there
Casa Batlló: one of Gaudí’s architectural highlights
Why the Camp Nou Experience isn’t just for football fans
La Sagrada Familia: well worth the wait
We received two complimentary entrance tickets to the Barcelona Aquarium from Turisme de Barcelona. That doesn’t change the fact that we happily spend almost three hours inside. Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. If you book a stay through them, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks for supporting the site!