Metro Manila: Manila Ocean Park (Part 1)

Manila Ocean Park ~ March 2013

I’ve wanted to go to Manila Ocean Park ever since I heard they have sharks. But we were waiting to see if they’d get dolphins as well LOL. Then I spotted a deal on their website: Php550 for a package that includes the Oceanarium, Sea Lion Show/Marine Life Habitat & the Jellies Exhibit. It was a great deal considering that the regular rate for the Oceanarium is Php500, Php150 for the Jellies and Php150 (or was it Php250?) for the Sea Lion Show. I wasn’t really interested in the Sea Lion show, but I did want to see their habitat, so it was a pretty good deal ๐Ÿ™‚

Hubby got our tickets from SM tickets, so we could avoid the long lines at the MOP ticket counters. We forgot all about them LOL until a week before the promo expiration date. So we went early on a Friday, March 15, the last day of the promo, hoping there wouldn’t be any school trips scheduled that day.

How to get to Manila Ocean Park: (from Quezon City) We took the LRT1 from Munoz to UN Ave. (Php20 each) then a cab to MOP for Php80. Not sure if there are jeeps in the area, but it was hot and we didn’t want to get stuck in traffic ๐Ÿ˜›

When we got to the park, we went straight to the ticket counter to claim our tickets. Vouchers & SM prepaid tickets have to be exchanged for actual tickets at the small counter to the right. The process is a bit slow since you have to present a valid ID and fill out a form before they give the tickets. If the regular lines are long, then this line is probably shorter.

Finally, giddily clutching our tickets, we walked into the main building:

The center atrium. Isn’t it pretty? ๐Ÿ˜€

First stop, the Oceanarium. The ticket lady was insisting we watch the Sea Lion show first as one was about to start. She seemed somewhat insulted when I said, thanks, but I didn’t want to see the Sea Lion show o.O

Finally, the fishies! ๐Ÿ˜€ (I apologize for not being able to name all the fishies properly; when you get there you’ll see signs with their names & details :D)

Love love love the huge fishies in the top-right corner. They were HUGE! Also it was feeding time, and a staff member was on top of the tank dropping fish for them. The tank shuddered everytime they jumped up and snapped at the fish ๐Ÿ˜€ The tiny ones on the lower-right are piranhas. Sadly, it wasn’t feeding time for them. Also, you’re only allowed to feed the koi. Boo.

Tiger Barbs: According to their sign, they are quite aggressive and notorious “fin nippers”, especially in smaller numbers. Pet owners are advised to keep them in groups no smaller than 5, as the smaller the group, the more territorial they are.

I loved this. Has a very jungle-like feel

This was actually my favorite area, very nice for muni-muni moments (as long as there aren’t any huge noisy crowds). I was disappointed though that we didn’t get to see the croc, as it was hiding in a corner.

After the open area, you enter a dark room with several aquariums. Flash photography is strictly NOT allowed, as it disturbs the fish. Wag pasaway, tsk!

How cute are those seahorses?! Please resist the urge to tap the glass XD

Baby shark eggs, definitely a crowd pleaser ๐Ÿ˜€

More fishies; check out Mr. Googly Eyes! And shempre, si Nemo! ๐Ÿ˜€

The underwater tunnel. Was rather disappointed as the tunnel at the Sydney Aquarium was awesome…but it’s still pretty nice, and another spot great for muni-muni moments (again, as long as there aren’t any crowds).

(Top) A creepy eel & a fish disguised as a rock ; (Bottom) A striped frilly fishie & tiny worms (?)

A largetooth sawfish

Finally, the shark tank! *dun dun dun dun dun dun…* Honestly, I felt kinda sorry for them ๐Ÿ˜ฆ The tank seemed too small and cramped for them. They looked bored (I don’t blame them)

Make sure you spend as much time as you want in each section, because you won’t be allowed to go back once you’ve passed through. This is why it’s better to go on a weekday, early in the morning, and make the Oceanarium your first stop. It can get crowded, especially in the tunnel, and you’ll be pushed forward whether you like it or not. Since we came early and made sure we got into the Oceanarium before the field trip kiddies (they were lining up at the Ghost House when we came in), we took as much time as we wanted in each area ๐Ÿ™‚

So, that’s it for Part 1! Next, the Fish Spa & Jellies Exhibit! ๐Ÿ™‚

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