GENOA FOR VISITORS: AQUARIUM

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The Aquarium is an eloquent tribute to Genoa's link with the sea and surrounding coastal waters.
Designed by the Genoese architect Renzo Piano and by Peter Chermayeff, it is located on a quay jutting out into the waters of the Porto Antico area.
From the outside it resembles a series of freight containers placed atop a cargo ship, and while one might question the beauty of the building, it fits in perfectly with the characteristics of the port area.
Opened in 1992, completed in 1993, it was enlarged in 1998 with the addition of a 100 m long ship moored at the far end and connected to the main building by a walkway.
Inside, the huge tanks form virtual walls of water among which visitors can wander accompanied by the sound of waves, currents and echoes from the deep.
Some tanks of the Aquarium reproduce natural environments from different areas as the Antarctic, the Mediterranean, the Red Sea, the Amazon and the Indian Ocean.
The most spectacular ones are those housing the sharks, the dolphins and the seals, which are the most fun to watch. Very impressive is the reproduction of a coral reef from the Caribbean with an incredible variety of coral, plants, peculiar sea creatures and brightly coloured fish.
During the summer and on weekends you might find the Aquarium pretty crowded; nevertheless, visits are made easier by long-opening hours and no lunch-time closings.

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