The Curaçao Sea Aquarium

This is a guest post by Nikki of Reef’d Up Aquatics.

The Curaçao Sea Aquarium is off the beaten path on a small island named Curaçao in the Netherland Antilles located just north of Venezuela.  Situated right beside Bonaire, Curaçao has some of the most amazing diving and sea life.  Their aquarium is no different.

Curacao Aquarium

All aquarium life is collected on and around the island, which makes it a great pre-dive learning experience on what could be encountered.  Flamingos search for food in a small pool filled with rays, starfish, and large hermit crabs.

Flamingos

The Dolphin Academy gives swimmers, snorkelers, and divers all the chance to interact with their dolphins in a very natural habitat.  The dolphin area is just barely sectioned off from the ocean and has a continuous supply of fresh ocean water.  Located by the Dolphin Academy are the Dolphin Suites – a unique hotel dedicated to people with special needs.

Dolphin Academy

Back inside the aquarium, a display shows coral predators:  Gorgonia-eating nudibranchs.

Nudibranchs

Other nudibranchs graze past an eel poking out of its hole.

EelA lobster tries to make the great escape:

Lobster

A quick hunt over the rocks that separate the aquarium from the ocean resulted in all sorts of crabs, nerites resting on the rock after high tide, and even some beautiful coral skeletons remnant from a time long since past.

Nerites

Crab

Coral Skeleton

For the true adventurer, the Curaçao Sea Aquarium has one far-out attraction:  a deep sea submarine!  The sub is rated down to 1000 feet, and tourists can visit the 450 feet deep Stella Mares wreck.  All in all, the Curaçao Sea Aquarium has beautiful displays thanks to their beautiful natural habitat.

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