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“Below par & dated” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary

Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary
Scalby Mills, Scarborough, England
01723 373414
Website
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Ranked #15 of 18 Attractions in Scarborough
Type: Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Zoos & Aquariums
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Attraction details
Owner description: Let us take you on a fascinating journey from the coastline to the depths of the ocean. Discover a magical underwater world filled with a dazzling array of amazing creatures. Every step will reveal something new, from a face to face encounter with sharks to a hands-on rockpool experience. Discover the truth about the much-misunderstood shark, the plight on the endangered sea turtle, the remarkable life of the seahorse plus countless surprising facts about these and hundreds of other incredible creatures. Meet Ed our playful seal and watch out for him splashing around. Watch our otters Eric and Pumpkin as they learn new skills through a special training programme. Visit our Turtle Sanctuary and help feed our native sharks and rays!Pirate Adventure Mini Golf at SEA LIFE ScarboroughNow you can combine your SEA LIFE voyage with a round of Pirate Adventure Mini Golf*! It’s a swashbuckling game for the whole family offering a new challenge at every hole.In true pirate style, your navigation skills will be tested as you make your way around cannons, treasure chests and gunpowder barrels.Will you hold your nerve as you jump aboard a pirate raft and make your way over water to the half way point? Can you conquer all 12 holes? Do you have enough skill to beat your friends and family? There’s only one way to find out!*Separate charge applies
Manchester, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Below par & dated”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2014

Thankfully we had half price vouchers, because I imagine the disappointment would have been much greater had we paid the expensive full price. I'm all for supporting conservation work but if you are expecting people to pay for a tourist attraction rather than donate to a charitable cause then you need to offer value for money, and sadly Sea Life Scarborough falls well short on this score.

We visited as three families, each with a child under two years old. Having paid we were then advised to park our buggies because the aquarium wasn't really buggy friendly. We decided to persevere with the buggy, but it was clearly unsuitable. Narrow, bottle necks due to part of the aquarium being closed, stairs to negotiate and a cafe / soft play centre on the top floor that was so cramped it was ridiculous. What kind of family attraction can't accommodate buggies? That in itself was disappointing, but to only be told this after having paid felt like we were being ripped off.

The aquarium itself was small, dated and poorly laid out by comparison to others we have visited. I'm sure that if it was quiet you might get the opportunity to observe the marine life from the somewhat limited viewing points, but when it is busy it is little more than a walk by with a quick sideways glance.

I hope that some funding is found to bring this centre into the 21st century to allow it to continue its valuable conservation work by operating as a viable tourist attraction because from my experience it certainly needs it.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scarborough S, Guest Relations Manager at Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary, responded to this review, February 27, 2014
Dear Guest

I am saddened to hear that your recent trip to Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary did not live up to your expectations.

I am glad to see you took advantage of our half price promotional tickets and would like to explain to you what the entrance fee you paid goes towards.

At Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary, we aim to offer good value for money to all of our guests. Our pricing structure reflects the amount of conservation and rescue work we carry out at the centre. At present, it costs approximately £2,000 to rescue, rehabilitate and release an injured seal pup. Since November we have helped 15 seals and rescued numerous sea birds following the recent bad weather. We are grateful that our guests can help us do this.

Our admission price does reflect the conservation work we carry out and we are grateful for your support.

Regarding the buggy issues - as a family attraction, you can imagine how much of a hazard a attraction full of buggies could be. That is why we encourage visitors to be pro-active in using the buggy park.

It saddens me to hear that you felt you could only give some of our displays a short side glance. Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary is home to a dazzling array of amazing creatures, and we actively encourage people to join in with feeding talks, feeding demonstrations and touch pools.

Here at Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary we are 100% customer focused and we wish you had informed a duty manager at the time of your issues.

Thank you for your review.
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English first
Sedbergh, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Totally underwhelming”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2014

We went to robin hoods bay for a short break recently and decided to go to the sea life centre at scarborough .
we were both really looking forward to the visit, we paid for the tickets online otherwise it would have been about nearly double the price - what a waste of money terrible,the tanks looked tired - hard to find your way to the next station -there didn't seem to be a plan to follow to get round , most of the doors had A4 paper stuck on saying no entry.Seal rescue programme is brilliant but as a visitor centre it's a definite no no.
We were there about an hour and we had a coffee in that time, sorry sea life but you really do need to up your game.

Visited February 2014
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Scarborough S, Guest Relations Manager at Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary, responded to this review, February 10, 2014
Hi Wilf971

At Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary, we aim to offer good value for money to all of our guests. Our pricing structure reflects the amount of conservation and rescue work we carry out at the centre. At present, it costs approximately £2,000 to rescue, rehabilitate and release an injured seal pup. Since November we have helped over 15 seals and rescued numerous sea birds following the recent bad weather. We are grateful that our guests can help us do this.

Our admission price does reflect the conservation work we carry out and we are grateful for your support.

It's sad to hear that you feel a visit to our attraction would be complete in an hour. We have over 50 displays of marine life at Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary and offer regular talks and feeding demonstrations throughout the day as well as a hands-on rockpool experience and a quiz trail.

Regarding the restricted access you encoutered on your trip, please accept our appologies, we have introduced a new route for the public to take whilst work is undergone on our new feature Jellyfish Discovery! In future please don't hesitate to ask a member of staff which way to go - they'll be happy to assist!
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York, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“dont even bother waste of time”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 4, 2014 via mobile

Our vist to day totally waste if our money not suitable for wheelchair users I have ms they couldnt open doors fire hazzard.
wish id never gone it was waste money time petrol RUDE STAFF
AND ITCWAS FOR MY GRANDAUGTER BIRTHDAY RUBBISH The I sign on wall out side it's misleading once inside rubbish not suitable for wheekchair users alll staff did was make excuses don't charge that amont money rip off not happy

Visited February 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scarborough S, Guest Relations Manager at Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary, responded to this review, February 7, 2014
Hi Rita

Thank you for your review.

We are sorry that you felt your trip to the Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary didn't meet expectations. As you were informed on the day we are currently undergoing extensive work to improve our disabled access and we are sorry that you felt the alternative route was not suitable.

We understand that you raised your concerns with the manger on duty and it was our understanding the matter had been resolved. We are working hard to improve our disabled access.

We appreciate all feedback.
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Leeds, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Great day out for fish fanciers”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2014

Have visited this sea life centre several times, having a keen interest in fish keeping and marine life. Personally, I think the price is great value, and a good proportion of it goes towards maintenance rescue projects. However it is often the case with public aquariums that visitors only see the change left in their pockets rather than the bigger picture. People do not realise just how much effort goes into maintaining an attraction such as this, and I think the money you pay for a visit to scarborough sea life centre does go a long way. Although not the largest aquarium, the displays are clean and the inhabitants healthy and vibrant. the exhibits are interactive and engaging for younger children, which is great for notoriously short attention spans. my only criticism on my latest visit was that areas were closed, I think due to new developments. This isn't too much of an issue, as you can see where part of the entrance fee is going! Staff were very friendly to us and accommodating. they genuinely seemed happy in their jobs.

Visited January 2014
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Scarborough S, Guest Relations Manager at Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary, responded to this review, February 7, 2014
Hi Denham

Thank you for your review.

It's great to hear you've a keen interest in marine life and understand the important work we do in our conservation!

We are currently working on our latest feature Jellyfish Discovery which opens February 15th and we hope you too see you there.

Many thanks
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Leeds
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Lord Terence and Lady Helen visit Scarborough”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2014 via mobile

The Sea Life Centre was a place to visit we were delighted with the service we recieved and there was so much to see what an experience this was.

Visited September 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scarborough S, Guest Relations Manager at Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary, responded to this review, January 30, 2014
Thank you for your review of Scarborough SEA LIFE Sanctuary.

We are pleased to hear that you were delighted with the service and had an enjoyable experience.

We hope to welcome you again in the future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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