Friday, June 15, 2012

KL Friday: Aquaria KLCC

Back when we first moved to town and were living in the Hilton I spent my days exploring different parts of the city.  Knowing we were about to move to the suburbs and it would be a while before I had a car, I was taking advantage of being across the street from KL Sentral and having easy access to most of the city's rail links.  My days were full of exploring different areas of the city and trying to take in everything it has to offer.  Looking back, I didn't even scratch the surface.  The problem was I didn't know anyone who could suggest places to go, telling me what was worth it and what to skip.

I wish that I had.  So I have decided to do just that.  I've been through the whole trying to adjust and explore while living in a hotel in a brand new place twice now, so I hope that I can do a little bit to make the transition easier on someone else  Every Friday I am going to blog about something to see or do in KL along with my opinions about it, in hopes that it will help someone in the same position I was just last year.  I suppose I could come up with a cutesy name for it, but I'm not that creative and dislike alliteration--so boring name it is.

One of my first exploratory trips was to the aquarium, so I shall start there.

The Facts:

Aquaria KLCC is in the convention center.  I didn't realize this, which made the entrance slightly difficult to find.  If you get there via the park behind Suria KLCC you will enter the convention center and will have to go up and down a couple escalators to get to the Aquarium.  As of several months ago, the way to the aquarium from that entrance isn't marked, so you may have to ask a security guard to point you in the right direction.

At 45 MYR for adults and 35 MYR for kids it's on the pricey side for KL's attractions, which is compounded by the fact that it's only supposed to take 45 minutes to see everything.  The main attraction is a single massive tank with a 90 meter moving sidewalk under a glass-domed tunnel.  There are a few interesting species in the big tank, like manta rays and sea turtles, both of which are on the aquarium's public viewing feeding schedule.  If you time your visit around feeding times, you can easily spend more than 45 minutes inside.  Additionally, there is a petting pool and a few interactive displays for the kids.

My Opinion:

The day I went it was really crowded and difficult to actually see the exhibits.  The aquarium itself wasn't bad, but it's far from the best I've seen.  Aside from the big tank, there aren't a lot of exibits.  Don't get me wrong, it's leaps and bounds better than the glorified fish pond that passes for a national aquarium in DC.  It's just that it's on the small side.

The aquarium is very kid friendly and a lot of the exhibits are geared towards engaging the younger crowd.  However, the super kid friendliness combined with the compactness of the aquarium creates a problem. You're supposed to be able to see everything in 45 minutes, but some of the walkways are narrow and winding, which leads to massive bottlenecks when you get people with strollers in front of you.  It's not a lot of walking, so if you're taking small children consider leaving your stroller at the entrance.
The Verdict:

It's worth a visit if you've got some time to kill or are looking for a place to take your kids.  Avoid it at all costs on weekends and school holidays.  Trust me, you do not want to deal with it when it's crowded.


  1. I took my younger 2 kids to Aquaria, and they really enjoyed it. I agree that it's only worth about 1 hour of time. We went just before dinner on a Friday, and there were not many people there. We tried to go back a couple days later on a public holiday, and the line to enter was incredibly long. I managed to get the admission price for locals which is RM 10 less than for foreigners.

  2. Do you actually have some sort of residency card? They weren't giving them to people the month our visas were approved. I feel like I'm seriously missing out on local pricing as a result.