An Ocean Park Adventure – Originally written for Her Uni

Ocean Park is one of Hong Kong’s most popular tourist spots. The wonderful theme park first opened in 1977. Situated in southern Hong Kong, the park is divided into two parts, one on each side of the mountain.

The park includes 35 attractions and currently has over 15 rides as well as 11 animal exhibits. Those featuring an Aquarium, Jelly Fish Exhibition, Red Panda and Wild Panda House, Dolphin and Sea Lion Shows and The Rainforest, not to mention the numerous amount of other things to do and see.

The visitor has the choice to take a cable car ride or train to the other side of the mountain. The views from the cable car are simply enchanting. The tourist will witness one of the world’s most beautiful coastlines including that of Repulse Bay and Stanley. (Which cannot be seen on foot or by car, so it’s truly a rare experience).

Advice

When planning your trip to Ocean Park, make sure you decide which attraction that you want to see first. The park has over 2000 visitors a day, so be diligent and plan your trip well in advance, so you can see all the shows on offer. Try to stay away from public holidays; this is the busiest time for the park.

Usually the sea lion show is the first on the list. Take a walk through the panda house and you will be guided towards the sea lion enclosure, home to the parks resident seal, Whiskers. Enjoy a thirty minute show meeting the friendly sea lion and find out some quirky facts about the sea creatures.

Before moving onto the next show, take a look at Lee – lee, the parks eldest panda bear. She’s a very shy panda and only peers through her bamboo at meal times. Try catching a glimpse of one of China’s deepest treasures and also a nearly extinct animal. If you’re lucky you may even get a photo! Don’t forget to have a browse at the gift shop on your way out for all those panda themed gifts.

After strolling through first half of the park, it’s now time for the cable car ride. On your journey, see if you are able to spot the Hair Raiser Rollercoaster. With its windy drops and upside down turns, this ride will leave your hair looking like Marge Simpson. Definitely not a ride for the faint hearted. If you do dare take a chance on this ride, purchase yourself a keychain of a photograph of your unforgettable experience. The rides are divided into separate areas such as Thrill Mountain and Adventure Land. Recommended rides to try are The Rapids, The Whirly Bird and the Bungee Trampoline. Be sure to leave plenty of time to cue up for some of the bigger and more popular rides of the park.

Above – The exhibition had special light installations in place, giving the feeling of another world encounter

Before going to watch the Dolphin show in the afternoon, you must take a dark walk through the jelly fish garden. This is by far the coolest and most educational part of the park. With over 1000 species, all shapes and sizes, this is one of the world’s most superb collection of the sea creatures. You will be truly swept into the underwater world, with unique music and special effects; you will spend at least an hour in here. The mirror maze is fantastic, almost like a ride in the park; you don’t know which wall is real. Be sure to take some photographs in here, not something you see every day!

Now it must be nearly time to visit the parks infamous Dolphin theatre show. This event usually accumulates a large amount of people at each showing. Arrive at least twenty minutes of so before, just so you can get the right seat to take those special snaps. The latest show is called ‘Sea Dreams’, a story about a grandfather explaining to his granddaughter about how humans and animals can be as one, and be friends. This is an Oscar winning production and features a beautiful soundtrack. The Dolphins put on an excellent show.

You may have had time to walk though the Polar Adventure and the Rainforest but when it’s nearly 5pm, take a train back to the entrance of the park. Once back, take a stroll through the Grand Aquarium, one of Ocean Parks greatest attractions. Like the jelly fish garden, you are taken on a unique journey through the oceans depths of the Great Barrier Reef and beyond. On your way don’t forget to say hello to one of the oceans hungriest predators, the Hammer Head Shark.

Your journey through the glass house guides you towards the notorious bubble tunnel, where you can glance up at some of the seas most wonderful creatures. A truly magical and phenomenal moment into the underwater abyss.

When you finally arrive to the end of the tour, this is where you will take a moment to look over the big tank. It really makes you believe you are in the ocean yourself. With the sound of the waves crashing through and the harmonious atmosphere, this is a calming and relaxing experience after your busy day.

After your under the sea adventure, have a romantic meal at world famous Neptune’s restaurant and bar which overlooks the Grand Aquarium, the perfect ending to what was a perfect day.

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