Deciding on where to take your baby when you want a day out together as a family can be tricky. You need answers to all the pressing questions first. Will there be changing facilities? Will there be highchairs in the cafe? Will it be pram friendly? As it turns out, your local aquarium has it all, here’s why…

Parenting on Female First

Parenting on Female First

The lighting: Babies are fascinated by lights- that is why so many classes promise ‘sensory play’- they love to look at lights, to touch them and point at them too. The lighting in an aquarium is perfect to capture their attention and their curiosity as you wander around the tanks.

The tunnel: A good quality aquarium will have a tunnel that you can walk beneath to see the fishes swimming overhead. Babies have a keen interest in watching the marine life swim by and try to grab them as they pass. It is an immersive part of the attraction that you will end up spending most of your time in because it’s such a hit with the little ones.

The music: Aquariums are renowned for playing soothing music and sounds of the sea in the background so if your baby is a little uneasy at first as it’s all new territory, this will help to calm them down and settle them into the experience.

Pram friendly: Most aquariums are on the flat and on one level making them ideal for prams and pushchairs. As it’s so accessible, you can take the tour with your baby in or out of their pram. They will get just as much enjoyment from both as there are things to see at all heights. The large ray pool is just one example of something that is the perfect pram height if your arms are tired.

Aquariums aren’t weather dependent: It’s somewhere to go if it’s pouring down outside. You and your baby can stay dry while enjoying a day out together that doesn’t involve the usual haunts like the supermarket or the shopping centre (yawn). If it’s warm outside, it’s always a cool place to retreat if the sun is too strong for delicate new-born skin.

Gift shop: Aquariums generally have a gift shop right at the end so you can get your little one something to remember the day by. We couldn’t possibly leave without a baby pink seahorse for our daughter. It was just the right size to fit in her little hand. The shop caters for all ages- big and small so there is always a memento to be had.

They are designed with kids in mind: Aquariums are geared up for kids, including babies. The SEA LIFE Manchester has a play area in the middle of the attraction for little ones to run around in and break up the tour. If you have a family with both a baby and an older child- there is a feeding station within this area to cater for the whole family.

Thank you to all the staff at SEA LIFE Manchester for letting us review the centre and for helping us to make memories with our little girl.

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