COVID-19 Update: Exploris Aquarium has reopened to the public! Visit must be pre-booked at explorisni.com.

Description

Located in Portaferry on the shores of Strangford Lough, you can enjoy a diver's view of marine life from around the world.

Explore the colourful coral reefs of the Tropical Ocean and see if you can find 'Nemo' and 'Dory' before entering the smugglers cove where sharks circle above you. Return to the shores to see endangered but playful otters and witness conservation in action in the nursery seal pens and outdoor pools.

Don't forget to explore the dark depths of the Reptile filled rainforest where a snappy crocodile and green gecko hide.

After you've checked out the seal sanctuary and jellyfish, browse the gift shop and play at the soft play area, then enjoy something to eat at the Cracken Cafe and Restaurant.

Check out the website for open pool talks and feeding times across the day.

Visit exploirisni.com for more information on:

  • Birthday party packages

  • Quiet sessions available daily

  • Group tour packages with catering

  • An exciting new education programme

  • Annual membership and gift cards


Please note that last admission time is 4pm.
  • The Rope Walk
  • Castle Street
  • Portaferry
  • Down
  • BT22 1NZ

Top Reasons To Visit

  • Fun for all the family
  • Educational experience
  • Support the Seal Sanctuary
  • Annual membership and gift cards
  • Seal Sanctuary

    With support by DAERA, Exploris responds to calls from the public by taking in sick or abandoned common and grey seal pups.

    On your visit, explore the seal hospital and watch the development of the seals as they move to the nursery pool and a rehabilitation pool and enjoy the underwater viewing arena. You will learn about the seals’ journey before returning to the wild.

  • Pollution and The Sea

    Check out the new ‘pollution zone’, and follow a series of story boards, which tell the story of human-induced climate change in the ocean.

  • Rise Of The Jellies

    You can observe some local jellyfish species and learn about the exciting global research effort regarding these fascinating animals. While you are visiting, why not brush up on some of your identification skills?

  • The Cracken Café and Restaurant

    A licensed café and restaurant, providing space to relax and enjoy some fabulous home bakes and authentic fusion cuisine, all sourced from local producers and suppliers, whilst overlooking our seal sanctuary. Check out the menu online. The restaurant caters for any special dietary requirements.

  • Eat, shop and play at Exploris Aquarium

    • Open 7 days a week from 10am (Last admission time is 4pm)
    • Visit the gift shop, full of gifts for family, friends and home
    • Visit The Cracken Cafe
    • Locally sourced and freshly prepared food
    • Speciality coffees and refreshments
    • Beers, wines and spirits available.

You might also like

  • Titanic Belfast
    Titanic Belfast
    Attractions

    Titanic Belfast

    2.72KM

    Titanic Belfast is the world's largest Titanic visitor experience and a must-see on any visit to Belfast and…

    Find Out More
  • Crumlin Road Gaol
    Crumlin Road Gaol
    Attractions

    Crumlin Road Gaol

    1.82KM

    The Crumlin Road Gaol is a 19th century Grade A listed jail, open to the public for tours,…

    Find Out More
  • Barnett Demesne
    Barnett Demesne
    Attractions

    Barnett Demesne

    5.57KM

    Barnett Demesne opened to the public in 1951. Today, the park, in south Belfast, retains much of the…

    Find Out More
  • Big Fish
    Big Fish
    Attractions

    Big Fish

    1.02KM

    This 10m (32ft) salmon was commissioned in 1999 to celebrate the regeneration of the River Lagan and the…

    Find Out More
  • Wallace Park Lisburn
    Wallace Park Lisburn
    Attractions

    Wallace Park Lisburn

    15.29KM

    Wallace Park is ideal for families, with an excellent children's play area and a variety of gentle walks.

    Find Out More
  • SS Nomadic
    SS Nomadic
    Attractions

    SS Nomadic

    2.3KM

    RMS Titanic's tender ship and the last remaining White Star Line vessel has been restored to her original…

    Find Out More
  • Ulster Transport Museum
    Ulster Transport Museum
    See & Do

    Ulster Transport Museum

    15.59KM

    Be transported back in time and explore one of the most comprehensive transport collections in Europe at the…

    Find Out More
  • Bangor Castle
    Bangor Castle
    Attractions

    Bangor Castle

    29.75KM

    This impressive building was built in 1852 for The Hon Robert Edward Ward. It is presently home to…

    Find Out More
Ask Us
Ask Us

We're here to help, so if you can't find the info you're after, or you just want to ask a really odd question, then we're here for you.

Ask A Question

Ask a Question

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Start
Choose a date
End
Choose a date
Back To Top
In order to display distances relevant to you, we'd like to be able to use your GPS location. Privacy Policy
In order to display distances relevant to your current position, we'd need to be able to use your GPS location. To find out more about how we use your location, please read our Privacy Policy
You have previously denied access to your GPS location. In order to allow access to your location, you need to update your site settings through your browser settings to allow this site access to your location.

To find out more about how we use your location, please read our Privacy Policy
Your settings have been updated. They will take effect next time you refresh the page.
By default, all distances on the site are calculated from Belfast City Centre. You can choose a different starting point here, or specify your own.
Open 'Ask a Question' window Close 'Ask a Question' window

Ask a Question

X

Hide this tool

Open 'Sign up for Newsletter' window Close 'Sign up for Newsletter' window

Visit Belfast Newsletter

X

Sign up to the Visit Belfast newsletter and receive inspiring ideas, events and offers which showcase the best of Belfast and Northern Ireland.

Sign-Up

Hide this tool