Blue Water in the City.
Let me lay my cards on the table before I begin, I am not a great afficianado of aquaria. I am, however, a huge fan of the Cuidad de las Artes y Ciencias, and so, when I got the invite to the press opening of the latest phase in the development, I went more to see the architecture up close than to look at the fishes.
First impressions – It is stunning. The towering, shell-like buildings, the steel, the wooden walkways and all that water is a beautiful combination. There is chill-out music playing everywhere. So, the visit is very calming from the moment you walk in.
The Oceanografic officially opens its doors on 15 February, until then they are allowing small parties and invited guests in so that they can acclimatise the fish and sea animals to visitors in their droves. When we visited, quite a few of the tanks had only murky water in them(conditioning before the introduction of the marine life) but there was still a lot to see. We visited the igloo, representing the Arctic, which will eventually have small whales and walruses in tanks that are all around the walls inside this dark and very stunning building. They did, however, have the King Penguins in. We watched them cavorting for a very long while.
The next port of call was the Dolphin Auditorium. No shows whilst we were there, but we watched a few being fed, and the auditorium itself is state of the art.
We saw most of the exhibits during our visit but the highlight of the day was the glass tunnel under the sea, at over 70 metres long – it is one of the longest in the world – and it was wonderful. We spent more time here than anywhere in the park – it was a little like a session of meditation.
Get along to the Oceanografic when it opens – it is an excellent day out and I have no space left to tell you about the other seas and the restaurants and the flamingoes – but hey, visit the web site www.cac.es – it’s fun too, with lots of whale/dolphin songs.