I can't quite understand the bad reviews about Scarborough Sea Life Centre.
We went on a holiday to Bridlington, and got the train to Scarborough to visit the Sea Life Centre. There were 3 of us, and so we used a Tesco 2 for 1 voucher and bought one full price ticket, totalling about £28 for the 3 of us.
We only waited for about five minutes in the queue to get in, and that was with a group of schoolchildren in front of us. The till staff were brilliant and explained various leaflets to us before we entered.
When we went in, there was a bit of trouble getting around, especially with a large group of school children in front, but we hung back and enjoyed the jellyfish until they had cleared out. There is also a Barrier Reef section, that hosted the characters from Finding Nemo - brilliant for me so I imagine that real children would find this incredible! As we got to the "Invasion of the Vikings" tank, my camera ran out of batteries, and so I took a quick dash to the shop and bought some batteries that were actually cheaper than in the local supermarket - again, brilliant staff too!
Around the vikings area, there is the main tank that hosts a variety of fish and rays, but also smaller tanks that contain mermaid's purses (unhatched fish). There is also a section where you can pick up and touch some of the creatures in one of the tanks with supervision.
Next, there is the seal rescue centre. There are plenty of leaflets about the work being carried out here, but also a few games and activities for children - the few that were there at the same time as us seemed to be enjoying them!
Next, the otters. At first, they were nowhere to be seen, and then their feeder appeared and summoned them - Eric and Cherry for their lunch! Another fantastic staff member, he told us lots of information about otters, about Eric and Cherry, and even had a good sense of humour. After the crowds begun to disperse, we even stayed and had a chat with him!
We then continued to the penguins, who must as been molting as they were too busy biting to bother with anything else! There was also a "hide out" feature here, and us "big kids" went into it to see the penguins as if we were in the enclosure with them - fab!
Then, the seals. There were no seals in the rescue centre, and to me this itself shows the good work that Sea Life are doing. This section was very crowded, as a large youth group were sat in the seats, and so we couldn't really hear what the team member was saying. However, the seals seemed more than happy, and responded well to their feeder, and even showed off to their audience a little!
We then moved onto the ocean tunnel, where some of the sharks were. Granted, they were not massive, but they were big enough for me to not want to be on the other side of the glass! We also caught sight of the giant turtle here, hovering around one particular space, which concerned us - we later discovered why.
Next - the sea horses, and the new attraction - sea dragons. Only a few tanks, but the creatures were beautiful, and again, more than happy to be in front of the camera! We then moved onto the turtle sanctuary, and were told of the recent release of "Murtle the Turtle", and the tale of the turtle that currently resides in the Sea Life Centre - who was hovering around the same place because she was brain damaged after being hit by a boat in the wild. Again, the staff conducting the talk were brilliant, and, again, more than happy to answer any questions. And there was obviously some kind of bond between the turtle and her feeder, as the turtle happily had her shell scratched and thoroughly appreciated it!
We then went through to the cafe, but didn't eat there, and so I can't comment on the prices here. However, it was very clean. There are then some steps to head back down to the gift shop, with a stairlift attached. A member of staff was controlling this for a disabled visitor, and again, incredibly friendly and patient.
I found the whole place to be clean and presentable. , Outside of the tanks and in them. I don't think ticket prices are overpriced at all, even without discounts, considering the vast amout of attention and care that the creatures, and the running of the venue requires. Especially considering that to visit a theme park such as Alton Towers you pay £20 plus to queue up for most of the day.
The three of us had an absolutely brilliant day, and were in there for about 5 hours in total. If we didn't have to catch a train we would happily have gone around again!
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