In addition to the hundreds of varieties of fish and sea life from all over the world, including stingrays, sharks, piranhas and sea scorpions, the aquarium's Shark Walk allows visitors to walk over a glass platform with sharks swimming just below their feet. Californian cownose rays, which swim in synchronised formations, are another notable feature, as is a tunnel constructed from a 25m-long whale skeleton, beneath which visitors can watch a tropical ocean of fish, coral and green turtles. The Rainforests of the World area, complete with exotic vegetation and a tropical waterfall, is home to a pair of six-foot dwarf crocodiles. A crustacean invasion is coming; the aquarium's, 'Claws' brings together species from the gigantic Japanese Spider crab (which can grow to 12 feet long) to the humble blue lobster (apparently they aren't pink until they are cooked). Guests can see the crabs from all angles in the new crawl-through tunnel and discover how these armored creatures’ function with a giant mechanical claw.
A charming recent addition to the aquarium is Sea Dragon Kingdom, a new collection of strange and colourful fish including Weedy Sea Dragons, Alligator pipefish and yellow seahorses. Little explorers can venture into the lost temple to catch glimpses of these mystical creatures. The aquarium extends its opening hours for half term and holidays with last entry 8pm. To draw the crowds in for the 2015 a new zone has been created, themed around the River Thames. It’s often hard to spot any kind of wildlife (unless your counting pigeons or the odd rat) along the murky waters of the real thing so visitors to this truncated version of The Thames Walk will get a clear idea what lies beneath: copper-coloured Rudd, striped Perch and dorsal finned Grayling. Alongside the tanks visitors can brush up on their history of the river, find out up to date information on pollution, get involved with interactive film projections and a walk through a virtual reality imagining of the river’s future.