The Sydney Sealife Aquarium
1-5 Wheat Rd,
Sydney NSW 2000
Cost: $42 AUD per adult (2017) – Can be combined into a ticket to other attractions nearby.
How to get there: Take the train to Wynyard station, come out of the back entrance towards Barangaroo, walk down to King Street Wharf, turn left and keep walking, you will run straight into it.
Highlights: They’ve got an actual Sword Fish!
Must do: The Penguin Expedition ride is awesome. Bring a jacket its 6 degrees in there to maintain proper temperatures for the birds.
I really enjoyed my day here, or half day. (It really only takes half a day to work your way around all the exhibits) The penguin expedition was definitely my favourite part, seeing the birds in their semi natural habitat. They also have a variety of penguins including Gentoo and King Penguins.
The have an underwater tunnel so you can see sharks and manta rays swimming above your head. The sharks are the harmless grey nurse type and the manta rays are huge! In one other large tank they also had a sword fish, something I hadn’t seen anywhere else, more closely related to a ray than a shark, it is one of the strangest creatures I’ve ever seen. One of the tunnel tanks also contains a Dugong called pig, this is probably one of the only venues in the world where you can see a Dugong in captivity.
There have a couple of tanks of tropical fish and coral found on the Great Barrier Reef as well and a touch tank for the kids….of which there are plenty, especially during the school holiday period so you might want to avoid it at this time if you don’t have kids, if at all possible.
They do have the add on costs down to an art form, as you leave the venue, you are predictably forced to go through the gift shop and then not so predictably from the gift
shop into the restaurant. The restaurant isn’t too unreasonable if you consider where it is (right in Sydney, at a major tourist attraction), around $12 AUD for lunch per person…although I’m not sure about the selling of fish and chips at an Aquarium. A little on the nose that one!
The only downer with this place is the price, it’s a really great attraction but it isn’t worth $42 AUD, even if you buy a combo ticket for both the Aquarium and the Wildlife park its $60 AUD and then additional $10 add on for each of the other surrounding attractions. Does seem like better value, but how many attractions can a person visit in one day?