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“Small aquarium”

National Sea Life Centre
Ranked #43 of 266 things to do in Birmingham
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Dive and be wowed by the many strange, beautiful and fascinating creatures of the deep as you journey through the amazing underwater world of The National SEA LIFE Centre Brimingham. Prepare for astonishing close views of everything from humble starfish to tropical sharks. To get any closer you'll have to get wet!
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Reviewed 28 June 2018 via mobile

I booked my ticket online still I had to wait at the reception,that was quite annoying. Aquarium is small as per expectation.

Thank somas260
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SLC_Birmingham, Guest Relations Manager at National Sea Life Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 17 July 2018

Hi Soma S,

We offer a timed entry system to the centre. When booking online all guests are asked to pick an time for entry.

Our animal care team do try to maximise the potential of our aquarium space by bringing a large variety of different displays to the centre and we do like to keep things new and exciting by bringing new displays! Last year we opened our Octopus Hideout area and this year we have launched both our brand new Piranha tunnel and Jellyfish areas.

We hope to see you at some time in future!

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Write a ReviewReviews (3 614)
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"underwater tunnel"
in 75 reviews
"penguin enclosure"
in 49 reviews
"star fish"
in 43 reviews
"sealife centres"
in 39 reviews
"glass tunnel"
in 35 reviews
"behind the scenes"
in 83 reviews
"gift shop"
in 142 reviews
"school holidays"
in 78 reviews
"couple of hours"
in 111 reviews
"half term"
in 62 reviews
"rainy day"
in 58 reviews
"booked online"
in 44 reviews
"brindley place"
in 54 reviews
"cinema experience"
in 46 reviews
"book in advance"
in 35 reviews
"sharks"
in 312 reviews
"aquarium"
in 197 reviews
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243 - 247 of 3 614 reviews

Reviewed 28 June 2018

It was our 35th (Coral) Wedding Anniversary, so as part of our stay in Birmingham I decided it would be a nice idea to take my wife here.
But after waiting 25 minutes in an ever growing queue, while the guy on the reception desk was perpetually grinning, smiling, and making jokes with the young lady he was serving, intermittently disappearing somewhere behind the reception, before re-engaging with the same girl.(She was very pretty, maybe that was a coincidence) anyway, he seemed totally oblivious to the people waiting, so after my very long wait, with no end insight regarding him serving the same young lady, I abandoned the idea and wandered off to the Gas Street Basin.

1  Thank Andy H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SLC_Birmingham, Guest Relations Manager at National Sea Life Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 17 July 2018

Hi Andy H,

I am sorry to hear that you didn't get to visit the centre!

From what you have described, it seems that the particular member of staff was most likely making an annual pass for one of our guests and we do like to deliver a great experience to all guests we talk to.

If you would like to discuss the above issue further, please contact us at slcbirmingham@merlinentertainments.biz

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Reviewed 25 June 2018

We hadn't been here for three years but I don't think we'll be leaving it so long to return, we had such a good day! The place is full of all kinds of interesting creatures and information about animals and their conservation alike. We spent 5 hours here taking everything in. We attended four talks (Ray pool, clown fish, mangrove and archer fish and jellyfish talks) as well as doing the behind the scenes tour which was super reasonable for what you get! I learned so much about everything here. The mixture if talks, interactive signs and information kept it interesting all the way through.

The lady that gave the clown fish and jellyfish talk in particular was lovely and had a lot of time for our group (Unfortunately I did not catch a name!). We came on a term week day and so had her almost to ourselves and she gave long and interesting talks and had time for all of our questions. She also told us about jellyfish crisps and how they could be a good alternative for the environment and ourselves. We've since looked to see if we could find some but unfortunately can't source them anywhere, it would be great to see these in the shop in the future. Thank-you sea life for a fab day!

Thank Meg461
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SLC_Birmingham, Guest Relations Manager at National Sea Life Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 17 July 2018

Hi Meg461,

I am very pleased to see that you made the most of your visit and it does seem like you had a great day indeed!

I have checked to see which member of our guest experience team was talking at those areas on the day of your visit and I have passed on your feedback to the relevant person and their supervisor!

We hope to see you again very soon!

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Reviewed 25 June 2018 via mobile

Will go again my grandson loved it especially the penguins and memo. So much fun great fun filled day.

Thank kenny2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SLC_Birmingham, Guest Relations Manager at National Sea Life Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 17 July 2018

Hi kenny2015,

I am glad your grandson had a great time with our Gentoo penguins and our clown fish!

We do hope you will visit us some time soon!

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Reviewed 22 June 2018

This is a nice place to visit with the family. I came with my wife, my inlaws and my 2 young daughters during the half term holiday. They have a timed queing system if buying on the door, to help with crowd control. However, I'm not convinced it works to its full effect.

Anyway, once we came back at our allocated time, we started the journey. There are a lot of fish and sea creatures (unsurprisingly), but the day we went there were a lot of prams and pushchairs. This made it difficult to get a decent view of the main creatures including the underwater tunnel, which is crowded anyway.

Also, for kids there is a "passport style" of guide. However, a majority of the kids (including my two) just wanted to get the stamps. Maybe the game should be they get the stamps once they answer a question correctly!

The cinema section had a queue of over 30 minutes including waiting outside, so we decided to continue without going into this bit.

At the end is the usual gift shop with tourist priced gifts. Not too expensive, but obviously priced as expected.

It is a nice place to go, but I am unlikely to go again in the near future.

PS. Remember to take your 2 for 1 vouchers.

Thank Pritesh M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SLC_Birmingham, Guest Relations Manager at National Sea Life Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 17 July 2018

Hi Pritesh M,

I am glad that the entire family enjoyed their visit during the half term holidays!

As you have stated we do use a timed queuing system to help relieve crowds around the centre, we have found that this system does work more effectively than open walk in entry during peak periods!

I am sorry that you did not get to enjoy our 360 degree tunnel as much as hoped. We do offer a buggy park for guests during peak times to help reduce the amount of pram and pushchairs around the centre and guests are informed of the buggy park upon entry.

Our passport trail does offer a "challenge" for each stamp machine around the centre, however the challenges are optional and if the little ones just want to get each stamp in turn that is absolutely fine!

Our 4D cinema runs approximately every 15 mins, during the school holidays this feature of the centre can be very popular so we do recommend queuing as early as possible to avoid disappointment .

You are correct, you can make the best savings by using two for one vouchers or by booking online in advance!

We do hope you will visit again!

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