Fish-eyed: My journey to Atlanta’s ‘Georgia Aquarium’

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I love aquariums. The collage of color, with denizens of the deep flying across an inverse sky.  Jovial clownfish who skit through a dense kelp forest, while menacing armored crabs patrol below.  And alabaster jellyfish performing a dance macabre against impenetrable darkness. Alright; so that’s a bit too much, but you get the idea. Aquariums bring out the poet in me.

I had the blessing of visiting the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta Georgia a while back. When the aquarium was built in 2005, it was the largest in the world, a title it held until 2014 when it was surpassed by the ‘Chimelong Ocean Kingdom’ in Macau. The aquarium houses over one hundred thousand marine animals and contains over 10 million gallons of both fresh and saltwater.

The feature attraction the whale shark, the world’s largest fish.

The whale shark is the largest fish in the world. The aquarium has four (two males and two females)  These are all still growing. A full-grown whale shark can be over 30ft long and weigh up to 20 tons. They’re actually benign despite the shark name and eat plankton.

The main exhibit called Ocean Voyager features a tank that is over four stories tall and contains over six million gallons
The Georgia Aquarium is one of only four aquariums in the world to house Manta Rays.
The Ocean Voyager also has an acrylic corridor that goes through the middle of the tank. Seeing sea turtles swimming above your head is a common sight.
Despite all their traffic congestion you rarely see a head-on collision with fish.
The surreal beauty of jellyfish. When I was a kid, I asked if there’s a jellyfish why isn’t there a peanut butterfish? Still, haven’t had that question answered.
The aquarium features aquatic life from many different environments including the Antarctic. They also have a large beluga whale family in this exhibit.
A rare Albino sea turtle.
This tank is massive. But it has to be to house four Whale Sharks and over ten thousand other fish.
Creepy Japanese snow crabs. The less said about them, the better.

The aquarium is located next to the centennial park with ‘The World of Coca-Cola” and the CNN Center within a very short walking distance. The admission for the Georgia Aquarium is nearly $40.00, but there’s a 20% early bird and a 30% evening discount available.

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