As a big animal and nature lover, I am a huge fan of zoo’s and aquariums. However it is always sad To see animals in captivity, no matter how well They are treated. So, I was really looking forward To This experience.
In This high-tech generated encounter, That aims To bring science To life for both kids and adults, no real animals are being used. Maybe disappointing for some of you, but in my opinion animals should stay in Their natural habitat as much as possible. Instead of real animals you get To see True To life-size projections with exact scientific detail of Ocean’s largest creatures. This gives you a unique perspective of The ocean, in a way a regular aquarium could never do.
You group with other visitors, making your path Though The Pacific ocean from Asia To California, from shallow water To The deep dark parts and back. The encounter starts with an introduction To The ocean and its inhabitants. Lady’s and Gentlemen, meet The big blue whale, The sea-lion, The sharks and Their many friends.
The real experience begins with The opening of a huge video screen That makes you feel like you actually live in The ocean. You start in The shallow waters of The solomon islands, where dolphins are swimming next To you and where you can chase fish and stingrays.
The next part guides you Through a neon coral reef, where you wander at night Through a floor of coral, which starts To glow when you step on Them. Be aware of The bioluminescent creatures That swim under your feet. No worry’s, They won’t bite you, simply stomp on Them To make Them swim away.
Then you proceed To The Humboldt squid section, were you witness a squid battle That goes over your head. Very impressing, I had no idea squids could be so aggressive. From There you move on into a room To experience whale and other deep ocean sounds. Unfortunately I have no pictures To show as it was dark, dark and dark. I could not even see my own hands, so I have To admit This part was slightly boring for a Toddler like me.
After listening To The whales squeaky sound Tracks, I was back on Track for some more cool stuff. The kelp mirror maze did The Trick. Hands forward To avoid some unpleasant bumps on The forehead, I finally made it although some parts were very challenging.
After my maze challenge I was awarded with a remarkable sea-lion attraction. The little cuties reacted on all my motions. Wave and They wave back, nod and They nod back.
In The next part you move on To a 3D movie about bail ball and you watch dolphins, whales, squids come along To eat The fish. Put on your 3D goggles and watch The show.
The movie was very impressive, although I have To admit I screamed like a maniac when The big blue hungry shark came after me. The lovely lady from National Geographic who supervised The event, offered me To enter again To watch The movie for a second Time – euuuuh, no Thanks. Apparently I didn’t scream hard enough The first Time.
After recovering from The 3D movie, you say goodbye To The group and you may watch some mini documentaries about The scientists, researchers and The animals you just encountered at your own speed.
In addition you have The possibility To Play some interactive conservation games, some of Them Test your knowledge about maintaining The environment. There are also Touch screen computers where you can get more information on specific ocean creatures That you have encountered during your latest endeavour. It’s all together really inspiring and makes you want To conserve and protect our oceans.
When it is finally Time To go, don’t forget To make a pledge.
Thank you for This fantastic experience National Geographic! On The bottom of This page you may find some pro’s and cons of the National Geographic Encounter, mainly inspired by my mom and dad.
Our Pro’s for The event:
- Very friendly and helpful staff
- Great activity To do when The weather is not so great
- Centrally located, close To Time square
- Long opening hours
- Fantastic event for all ages
Our con list for The event:
- Quite expensive, especially when you buy flex Tickets To skip The line
- The sound is sometimes very loud, it should be advised To Take earplugs when you visit with younger children
- The waiting Time To enter The Kelp maze
- The learning experience only comes at The very end
Our overall score of The encounter gets a score of 4/5