We’ve been to Stanley Park for the Ghost Train and Christmas Train, but several years have passed since we last explored the rest of area. I think it’s been about a decade since I’ve been to the Vancouver Aquarium and, understandably, a lot has changed. But this was the first time for Addie, so it was all new to her. Including witnessing the cannibalistic tendencies of the rays. Ouch!


My Childhood Memories

When I was a kid, I remember going to the now defunct Stanley Park Zoo rather frequently. It was usually with either my grandma or grandpa. In fact, I still have a rather vivid memory of the main layout.

Walk past the whale fountain in front of Vancouver Aquarium to see the sea otters. Behind that were a series of park benches where I’d feed the pigeons and the squirrels. Turn to one side and you’d see the monkeys in their cages; the open “tunnel” of the same structure housed snakes and tarantulas. Down the way was the somewhat sad-looking polar bear habitat. And if you continued following this path, you’d find the portrait artists.

And while I’d feed the squirrels and mosey down near the water park to eat my packed lunch on the grassy field, the only time I’d ever visit the Vancouver Aquarium was on school field trips. It was a treat to see the belugas and the orcas, and to try and spot the sloth in the rainforest.

What About Marine Mammals?

This was the first time at the Vancouver Aquarium for Addie, but it wasn’t her first time at an aquarium. She’d been to the Montreal’s Biodome a couple years ago, as well as Ripley’s Aquarium in Toronto just last month. She was disappointed by the lack of “marine mammals” at Ripley’s, and yet she wasn’t all that interested in the sea otters and sea lions here. Go figure. Preschoolers are strange. And fickle. And strangely fickle.

Do you have a favorite part of the aquarium? We missed out on the walruses at the Research Outpost and the sea lion trainer talk at Steller’s Bay, but there’s always next time, right? Let’s just hope it doesn’t take another ten years.

Vancouver Aquarium

Vancouver Aquarium

Vancouver Aquarium