Do you like the idea of discovering strange new species without leaving your holiday destination? Do you enjoy taking your children for a special day out to a zoo or aquarium? Perfect, because Spain has some very interesting and educational ones for you. They all have places to eat, so it makes sense to set aside a whole day to see them properly. These are a few of the most important:
Very close to the historic city centre, next to the amusement park, is the Zoo Aquarium: the only place in Europe to combine a zoo, dolphinarium, aquarium, and aviary in a single space. It’s very easy to get there, and you can spend a very entertaining day with over 6,000 animals. The biggest stars are the giant pandas.
Less than 10 kilometres from the city centre, you can also visit the biopark Faunia. You’ll discover different ecosystems, like the jungle or the African rainforest, and you can have the unique experience of interacting with marine mammals.
Without leaving the city, you and your family can have lots of fun at the Zoo and the Aquàrium, which are very close together. The Zoo, in the Ciutadella Park, is the ideal place for an outing, with an iconic setting, first opened in 1892. The Aquàrium, in Port Vell, is one of the biggest in Europe and offers amazing experiences like being a submarine crew for a day, or diving with sharks.
You have plenty of different options if your destination is southern Spain. Would you like to take your children to zoo-experience spaces, where the animals live in semi-freedom? Try the Bioparc in Fuengirola, Selwo Aventura in Estepona, or the Castillo de las Guardas Reserve, just 50 kilometres from Seville, which is one of Europe’s largest animal parks. Or do you prefer the worlds of water? You’ll like Selwo Marina in Benalmádena, or the Seville Aquarium.
The City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia is very famous. Its stunning buildings, designed by Santiago Calatrava, have become a symbol of the city, and are home to a Science Museum and the enormous Oceanogràfic, the biggest aquarium in Europe. Also in the centre of Valencia, you can find a “piece of Africa” in the Bioparc, which recreates the habitat of several endangered species.
If you are visiting the island of Majorca with your family, a must-see in the capital is the Palma Aquarium, where you can take a glass-bottomed boat and see sharks swimming under your feet.
Probably the best place anywhere in the Canary Islands to go with children is Loro Parque, in Tenerife. It’s one of the world’s largest zoos, where you can enjoy Planet Penguin (with over 200 penguins in the world’s largest artificial habitat), shows with sea lions, dolphins, and killer whales, and a fascinating jellyfish ride.
Meanwhile, Fuerteventura offers the Oasis Park. It has a unique interactive show with snakes and crocodiles from the Canary Islands, and organises camel rides from the top of a mountain to inside the park.