The sun fish Vasco da Gama

Lisbon Travel Blog

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Watery decorations for hot days.
During the last few days, we had all been pretty much separated. So, to do something together, with my parents and brother and sister and her friend, I proposed to visit the Lisbon aquarium.

The Oceanarium of Lisbon is a big one, the second largest in the world! And it is located in the so called Nations Park, which was the exhibition ground of the Expo '98 World Exhibition. It is still called the Expo, to keep it simple. In this area there are all sorts of interesting sites, and feels completely separated from the rest of Lisbon.

There is an enormous shopping mall, the Vasco da Gama mall (I was quickly told that it is forbidden to photograph the interior of the mall, but I did it anyway, hehe). By the way, Portugal loves Vasco da Gama.
Mola mola, I love you.
He is like the national hero. All sorts of roads and squares and buildings and malls are named after him. A few hundred meters from the Vasco da Gama mall you can see the distinctive Vasco da Gama tower (which is always closed), and if you're in a silly mood, you can take a cable car along the promenade to the oceanarium.

Once you enter the oceanarium, it is easy to see why it is the second largest of the world. There is basically an enormous tank in the middle of the cube-like building, and all the smaller aquariums are connected with it. Still, most schools of fish keep to their own parts and don't wander around. In the middle tank, various schools circle clockwise and counterclockwise past, every species has his own level, so to speak. But on top, there is the star of the show! An ocean sun fish (Mola mola)!

What a magnificent fish, this Mola mola! He is huuge, weighing many pounds, but somehow looks like he's missing his behind; like the tail is just chopped right off. Also, he has the most dumb expression you can image, with his big, glassy eyes and open mouth. Whahah! What a great fish! Definately the star of the oceanarium.

The Expo terrain is further adorned with all sorts of watery decorations, such as volcano fountains and artificial waterfalls. Very nice on a hot day!
ctcsherry says:
I love Vasco da Gama too (history buff crossing, beware!). Yes and I love Mola mola just as much :).
This is exciting, I'll be visiting Portugal soon too! Nice to get a preview of it.
Posted on: Feb 02, 2009
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Watery decorations for hot days.
Watery decorations for hot days.
Mola mola, I love you.
Mola mola, I love you.
Welcome to the Oceanarium
Welcome to the Oceanarium
The big middle tank.
The big middle tank.
Beautiful.
Beautiful.
Beautiful but deadly.
Beautiful but deadly.
Organic architecture around the Ex…
Organic architecture around the E…
Inside Vasco da Gamas Mall (a for…
Inside Vasco da Gama's Mall (a fo…
On the Expo grounds.
On the Expo grounds.
Organic art in the Lisbon subway.
Organic art in the Lisbon subway.
Lisbon
photo by: Johnpro