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“Sealife Trafford” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Sea Life Manchester

Sea Life Manchester
Barton Square | The Trafford Centre, Trafford M17 8AS, England
0871 221 2483
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Ranked #9 of 13 things to do in Trafford
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Attraction details
Owner description: SEA LIFE Manchester Aquarium transports you into the amazing underwater world. Prepare for astonishingly close views of everything from humble starfish and seahorses to graceful rays and powerful sharks. With an amazing ocean tunnel, 30 display tanks and more than 5,000 sea creatures the aquarium is the perfect stop for family fun! To get any closer you would have to get wet!
Preston, United Kingdom
1 review
“Sealife Trafford”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2013

I recently took our family to the Trafford Centre to spend my son's birthday (the BIG 3) at Legoland and Sealife.

I don't want to dwell on the cost as others have covered this in detail. It's expensive. The best option is getting a Merlin Annual Pass on one of their seasonal Clubcard offers. Failing that a two for one offer from a supermarket. Failing that do what we did and buy the combination ticket for Sealife and Legoland and spend an entire day out.

My son liked the Turtle introduction at the start. It was a sound and light show that's slightly out of the ordinary. Without giving too many spoilers, I'd say it's about an 'ooo ahhh nice' but misses 'wow amazing' by quite a bit. The life of the sea turtle is synopsised rather quickly but in a toddler friendly way.

Other high points were the beveled aquariums which give you that swimming with the fish feeling, and the many child walk-through and climb under aquariums. The animatronic turtle with touchscreen interactivity was also a hit with our little ones and hopefully gave them some more depth to the visit.

The soft play provided is a small vertical climbing area which our (rather large) three year old didn't mind, but younger children may want to stick to the ball pit on the ground floor. If you are after this type of facility Legoland is far superior at the Trafford Centre.

All in all a good 40mins to an hours activity but unless you are going to fork out a fair amount for the seabed walk (special event), you'll want to include something else in your day.

Visited October 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SEALIFEManchester, Public Relations Manager at Sea Life Manchester, responded to this review, January 6, 2014
Thank you for your feedback. We are really pleased that your toddler liked Ernie our turtle - he certainly is a favourite amongst our visitors.

We appreciate that some visitors experience shorter visits than others, one of the reasons for this can be the amount of time taken to explore each tank - our creatures don't always line up to be admired unfortunately but often will come out if guests are patient, or if one of our staff help to point them out.

We hope to see you again soon.
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Bolton, UK
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Get vouchers!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013 via mobile

We visited Sea Life for my sons 2nd birthday and had a great time. They take your photograph then do a talk then you are free to roam. There's some good features for toddlers such as low windows and lights. Watch out for the dome shaped glass window which sticks out as my son ran straight into it. There's quite a few different tanks with a variety of fish and a climbing frame part way round. The sharks are fairly small but there's a few of them so you get a good view.

I'd recommend you look for vouchers as we only had to pay for one adult as under 3 are free.

End to end with 10 mins on the climbing frame we were in 1 hour 10 mins and that was walking at toddler pace. I wouldn't have paid for 2 full price adults as there just isn't enough to justify the cost. You can go back in but once you have seen it I wouldn't see the point of going back in.

Nice idea but could do with being bigger and a longer experience. For the same price I can go to an open farm and spend all day there.

Visited October 2013
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SEALIFEManchester, Public Relations Manager at Sea Life Manchester, responded to this review, October 28, 2013
Thank you for your comments. We are really pleased that you enjoyed your time in Sea Life Manchester and we hope you will come back to visit us again soon.

In response to your comment about the size, we just wanted to point out that although the attraction is compact by comparison with some, we believe the ingenuity of its design and layout has enabled us to maximize the space and provide a substantial and absorbing experience for anyone willing to take the time to investigate thoroughly.

We feature in the region of 5,000 sea creatures of more than 100 species, and the quality of the environs we provide both inside and outside the tanks is, we believe, second to none.

Looking forward to seeing you soon!
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Lake District, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Relaxing ... Amazing ... Take your time!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013

A wonderful attraction ... Take time ... Relax and enjoy the wonderful creatures ... Especially the giant sea turtle who can be seen through at least 3 different tanks ... Have patience and he will appear!
I visited the centre during a business trip! I had a few hours and thought I would visit instead of going for lunch! It was wonderful .... It is small in comparison to other sealife centers but i still spent around an hour and a half walking around the exhibition despite being alone adult. I am astonished by some of the reviews on here which say they could get around the exhibition in less than half an hour!! With anything like this (similar to a zoo or conservation centre) the key really is to relax and take your time, stand and look at tanks and soak up the wonderful animals in front of you! It always astounds me how many families with children just rush and in some cases run past ... They don't even stop and look at the things around them ... Even more astounding when so many parents on trip advisor are commenting on how much they have paid! Stop your children, show them the tanks, make them look! Read the information signs to them, get them to examine the wonderful colors and creatures and you could be in sealife for hours ... And who knows ... you might all learn something?

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SEALIFEManchester, Public Relations Manager at Sea Life Manchester, responded to this review, January 6, 2014
We are delighted that you enjoyed your visit to Sea Life Manchester and would love to welcome you back again soon! Thank you very much for taking the time to share your feedback.
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Warrington, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Sea Life, but not much”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013

Very poor value: all tanks contain artificial rocks and plants, little variety and the "touch" experience is a joke - one tiny crab and that's it!
Spend a bit more and go to Blue Planet

Visited October 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SEALIFEManchester, Public Relations Manager at Sea Life Manchester, responded to this review, January 6, 2014
Thank you for your comments.

We are sorry you felt your experience did not represent good value. We monitor guest perception on this issue very closely and happily the vast majority believe they get excellent value for money. We also take into consideration the prices charged by competitors, both in the aquarium sector and in other leisure attractions, and are confident our pricing, given the quality of our offering, is extremely competitive. One factor which may have a bearing is the time taken to investigate each of our displays. Sea creatures seldom line up to be admired of course, and those who derive most from a visit to Sea Life are invariably those who linger at each display and make sure they see everything, if necessary asking one of our friendly staff to help point out the more elusive creatures and explain some of their fascinating features. We sincerely hope you will visit again and explore more thoroughly.
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Manchester, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
93 reviews 93 reviews
37 attraction reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
“Aimed At & Great For Small Children”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2013

I took my nephew for his birthday and it kept him entertained thoughout :D Its alot smaller than the others that I have been to but as my nephew is only two years old it was the right size to keep him entertained and not loose interest. The staff are really nice and in each section pointed out things to my nephew. He really enjoyed the stamp stations and the little tunnels to be face to face with the fish. We booked online that morning before going which is cheeper than buying there.

Visited October 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SEALIFEManchester, Public Relations Manager at Sea Life Manchester, responded to this review, October 28, 2013
Thanks for taking the time to review us. We are really pleased that you and your nephew enjoyed your visit - we believe that there is something for everyone at Sea Life Manchester, no matter how old you are! We look forward to seeing you again soon.
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