Designated as the National Aquarium of Ireland and the largest aquarium in the country, Galway Atlantaquaria is one of western Ireland’s most popular attractions. An incredible 170 saltwater and freshwater species inhabit the aquarium’s tanks, imaginatively designed to mimic their natural environments and showcasing Ireland’s incredible diversity of marine ecosystems. Seahorses, stingrays, eels, lobster and even sharks are among the highlights, as well as the world’s only White Skate on public display, lovingly nicknamed ‘Valentine’.
It’s not only the colorful sea creatures that draw in the crowds - the aquarium’s unique displays and hands-on approach has proven a hit with all ages. Visitors can help out at feeding time, delve into the waters inside a model submarine and visit the aquarium’s popular ‘touch tanks’ for the chance to hold starfish and spider crabs. The enlightening exhibits include the chance to experience a waterfall from a ‘fish eye view’ or follow a Galway Salmon on its journey from the Corrib River to Galway Bay. There’s even an enormous skeleton of a Fin Whale on display.