Today we visited the other aquarium in Singapore — you know, the largest one in the world with 12,000,000 gallons of water and 800 species of marine life. S.E.A. Aquarium is the newest attraction at Resorts World Sentosa. It has overshadowed Sentosa’s older (and still worthy) aquarium called Underwater World located toward the west end of the island (see Go Fish, Part One).
S.E.A. Aquarium is pretty awesome, and there were many moments today when we could have happily sat for hours and watched the mesmerizing parade of marine life glide past us. Small to large, each habitat displayed is a colorful world of activity and if you watch long enough you see not just a bunch of fish, but an entire ecosystem in motion. Sand Sifting Gobies burrowed head-first into the seabed, aerating the sand and sifting out uneaten food and debris. Japanese Spider Crabs posed, climbed and displayed their dominance, with legs spanning up to 12 feet and lives spanning up to 100 years. Red and yellow Skunk Cleaner Shrimp congregated under fan coral and tried to flag down passing fish so they could clear them of parasites and dead tissue in exchange for a meal. In the Open Ocean habitat, an endless swirl of sharks, rays and unique Guitarfish captivated a theater of viewers through a glass wall nearly 120 feet long and 30 feet tall.
The Open Ocean habitat is the home of a giant oceanic manta ray. This ray is enormous, like a 747 coming in for a landing each time it swooped through the water from one side of the aquarium to the other.
Jellyfish, always a crowd favorite, danced together like a big pot of spaghetti noodles yet never seemed to become permanently entangled.
A photogenic Boxfish seemed particularly happy to pause, turn and smile for the camera in her dazzling gown of black and white spots.
Sea anemones, always one of my favorites, lit up the smaller coral reef aquariums in wavy blobs of iridescent color.
And the eels? Well, the “swarm” of eels was typically creepy and menacing — some as big as my arms and legs. They wormed their way around the port holes of their specially created environment, sticking out their heads with mouths agape. “Heeeey…”
Our journey concluded with a walk through the shark tank by way of a glass tube that puts you right into the heart of the deep ocean environment with reef sharks, sand sharks and a few elusive hammerheads.
S.E.A. Aquarium is beautiful, educational and captivating — well worth a trip if you’re in Singapore. And if you’re a scuba diver? Even better. It’ll leave you wanting to get back in the water as soon as possible to see all these creatures without glass, in the grandeur of the deep blue sea.