Celebrate our 20th Birthday with us!

5th May 2018

The National Marine Aquarium’s 20th Birthday is soon upon us and we’ve got loads of incredible events coming up to celebrate!

During May half term, we’ll be showcasing the Aquarium’s history over the past 20 years. This all started when the National Marine Aquarium was ‘soft launched’ and opened to the public, on the 8th of May 1998. A few months later, on the 24th of July, the NMA was opened officially by the Duke of Edinburgh himself (below).

So like the Queen having two birthdays, we’ll be extending our birthday from May to July to make the most out of this special anniversary!

Celebrations will commence on the 8th of May, when we’ll offer some special rewards to some lucky visitors! We’ll be offering a free Back of House Tour to the first 10 guests to sign up to the tour before 11:00.
We’ll be running our toddler morning as usual too, except this one will be extra special, with a birthday theme in our Waves Café.

We’ll have decorations around the building too so look out for those!

Our May Half-Term theme – 20 Years of the NMA

This Half Term (May 26th – June 3rd) we’ll be celebrating in the building with a family trail showcasing the history of the NMA. We’ll have birthday crafts, shows throughout the day and stories from the last 20 years scattered around the building. Plus, our Back of House Tours, which give an insight into how we care for all 4,000 of our animals, will be running every day at 11:00.

We’ll also be celebrating throughout May with some of our most popular events:

Pilates at the Aquarium

Pilates at the Aquarium with Nuffield Health is our next Wellbeing event on Monday the 14th of May. Focus your posture, strength and flexibility whilst relaxing and unwinding in front of our Eddystone Reef. Tickets are £5 and the event runs from 18:00 to 19:00. Click here to book tickets.


NMA Boat Trips

The NMA has been working hard over the past 20 years to connect people with their Oceans. What better way to connect us with our Oceans than to go out on them! Join the NMA on a boat trip exploring the famous Plymouth Sound. Our 20th Birthday Celebratory Boat Trip is running on Saturday the 19th of May from 14:45 – 16:30.
Discover the wonders of the Ocean, learn about its habitat and the animals that live and visit it. Come with our team of Marine Biologists and Ocean Conservationists to explore the history and nature of Plymouth’s stunning natural harbour. Spaces are limited so click here to book your place!

*Pre-sailing weather checks apply

If you can’t make our Birthday Boat Trip, not to worry! We’re running trips throughout the year. Check our website for dates and details on bookings.

Birthday Family Night

On Saturday the 30th of June the NMA is running a Birthday Family Night! Our Birthday Party welcomes families to enjoy face painting, party games, and a big NMA cake! Best of all, it’s totally free! The party starts at 6pm. Watch this space or keep an eye out on our social media for more details on bookings.

Sleeping with Sharks

Last but definitely not least, we’re running a special Sleeping with Sharks Sleepover on the 1st of June. Our famous sleepovers are for ideal family memories, parties, and group bookings. We provide engaging experiences that are not only unforgettable fun, but also let you know what you can do to help preserve the fantastic marine environment and how we all have a part in keeping it safe.

This sleepover will be an extra special one, the only one of its kind! Click here for more information.

Thank you for reading and we hope you celebrate our 20th Birthday with us! Here’s to many more years of inspiration, events, and marine conservation.



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