Malta National Aquarium: tips, opening hours and tickets

Last Updated on July 25, 2023 by Dina

Malta’s National Aquarium is one of the best tourist attractions on the island. This starfish-shaped building represents an excellent opportunity to discover Malta’s marine life and of course…have fun!

This unique aquarium in Malta is located in the north of the island in Qawra: you can catch a bus from Valletta (bus 45, 48 or 31) or Sliema (bus 212) but keep in mind that is a long ride and it can take up to 1h! The best option is to drive there or take the tourist bus hop-on hop-off that goes around the island. The parking of the aquarium in Malta is free.

Malta National Aquarium Opening Hours and tickets

malta aquarium tickets

*** It is highly recommended to purchase the tickets online in advance from here ***

These are the opening hours of the aquarium:

  • 10:00 – 18:00 from Monday to Sunday. The last entry is at 17:30

The Malta national aquarium tickets are not very cheap but they totally worth it as the experience is unique and unforgettable!

  • 14.90€: Adult ticket
  • 11.90€: Senior ticket, for everyone over 60 years old
  • 7.00€: Child ticket, only for ages between 4 and 12
  • FREE: children under 4 years old

You can buy the tickets for the Aquarium online from here. They also offer free cancellation.

 

Why visit the Maltese national aquarium?

If you are wondering if you should visit the aquarium in Malta, you should consider some things such as the days that you have available, the means of transport, weather and other activities planned. This is a great activity if you are coming to Malta with kids, or if you are looking at how to spend a rainy day in Malta. To the point now!

I had an excellent experience and I would return to experience more of Malta’s underwater life.  The place is very structured and there are many different tanks with common and less-common fish.

  • The rare white albino stingray was one of the cutest and extra friendly! It was coming all the time next to the glass!
  • The seahorses were so tiny and still! There were just as long as my tiny finger.
  • The tank with the jellyfish in the Malta aquarium was so impressive. It is so common to see jellyfish in Malta, but this time you can admire them with no fear. They really look from outer space!
  • If you have watched Finding Nemo you can’t leave the aquarium without taking pictures of the tiny clownfishes.

The majority of the tanks replicate the Maltese coastline, so there are many common fishes like seabass but they do have some exotic fishes as well.

red belly piranha

One example is the red-belly piranha from Brazil. Who’s not afraid of their famous strong jaws and teeth? In the tank, they looked quite cute until I realized that some were missing an eye! I scanned the QR code and the information provided was very enlightening: in their way to Malta somehow (I guess due to a crazy piranha-fight) some of them lost one of their eyes.

I felt bad for these Cyclop guys but…that’s life! The piranhas are known also for the characteristic sound that they make before attacking, but unfortunately, I did not hear this sound this time!

You can even admire a replica of the bronze submerged Christ of the Abyss statue. The original one can be found in Portofino, Italy but this one is pretty cool too!

christ of the abyss malta
A replica of the italian Christ of the Abyss statue

The reptile collection of the Malta Aquarium is stunning. You watch sleepy amphibians and reptiles from all over the world.  Beetles. tarantulas, snakes, lizard…so many different creatures!

reptile malta aquarium

I have to admit that reptiles and insects are not my favorite so I skipped this section very quickly!

Last but not least don’t forget to take a photo in the 12m long underwater tunnel. There are a couple of sharks swimming around there but unfortunately, I didn’t capture them in this shot.

Just before the exit, on your right, you can find the “baby station”. These two tanks are full of tiny baby fish and other sea creatures. I have never seen such a tiny lobster in my life! I guess that they are just breeding them but it is indeed one of the cutest places in the aquarium.

Many people are wondering “Can I swim with dolphins in the Malta Aquarium?” The answer is No. This activity is provided by the Marine Park not the Aquarium. But you can have a really good time and enjoy also lunch in the restaurant. I had just a coffee at the “La Nave Bistro” but the view was breathtaking! But as mentioned in the beginning, remember to purchase online in advance your tickets for the aquarium and do not waste your time in the queue for the ticket office.

What do after the Aquarium? You can stay and enjoy the beach at the nearby Cafè del Mar, or explore other unique places in Malta such as this traditional fishing village.

Lastly, if you have several days at your disposal, don’t forget to explore my article highlighting the best things to do in Gozo. It will provide you with valuable insights on how to make the most of your time on the island.

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why visit the malta national aquarium

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