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New Cairns aquarium gets official opening
The much-anticipated $54 million Cairns Aquarium & Reef Research Centre has officially opened its doors to the public.
The first new public aquarium to be opened in Australia in 18 years, the new attraction features over 15,000 aquatic animals, fish, plants, and other organisms housed within 71 live exhibits.
Allowing visitors to experience elements of the Great Barrier Reef without leaving dry land, the two-level facility, offers an immersive, two-and-a-half-hour journey through five geographical locations - Wet Tropics, Cape York, Gulf Savanna, Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea – and 10 life-like recreated habitats, representing river systems, creeks and streams, reefs, billabongs and flooded waterways, rainforest, forest floor and mangroves.
The attraction features 71 displays with 40 aquarium exhibit tanks, supplied by Queensland’s Advanced Aquarium Technologies (AAT), the world leader in aquarium infrastructure.
Creatures on display include humphead maori wrasse, hammerhead sharks and 4-metre long scrub pythons.
Commenting on the project, co-founder and co-Director Daniel Leipnik explains “when we visited the Reef six years ago we were amazed by the colours and variety of fish and coral but couldn’t help noticing the vast number of people who had made the journey, but for one reason or another, did not go into the water or venture off the islands while others were left wanting to see more.
“A Cairns city location was therefore the ideal place for an attraction of this kind to enhance people’s love of the Reef and marine world while providing absolutely everyone with a memorable experience irrespective of whether they travelled to the Reef or not.”
The Cairns Aquarium & Reef Research Centre was officially opened today by Federal Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Steven Ciobo.
Click here to visit the official Cairns Aquarium website.
Images courtesy Cairns Aquarium.
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