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.
location_on
  • 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.

Night at the Aquarium

gps_fixed 48.57KM
28 Feb - 26 Jun 2020

Do things go bump in the aquarium at night? Well now is your chance to find out with the new alternative night out – Night at…

location_on Exploris Aquarium
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Gerry Cinnamon Tribute

gps_fixed 48.57KM
Fri, 28 Aug 2020, 8:00pm

Exploris Aquarium will be hosting the UK's number one tribute to Gerry Cinnamon this August!

location_on Exploris Aquarium
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Ocean Currents and Climate at Exploris

gps_fixed 48.57KM
22 - 23 Feb 2020

Find out how innovative companies are looking to tackle our plastic waste problem through the use of alternative materials.

location_on Exploris Aquarium
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