One of France’s most important aquariums, Oceanopolis (Océanopolis), in Brest, is both a traditional aquarium and a center for oceanography. The site is made up of three main pavilions divided into tropical, polar, and temperate exhibition areas, each of which hosts a variety of sea life, from anemones to seals.
Located on the coast in Brest, Brittany—long a hub of France’s oceanography research—Oceanopolis (Océanopolis) is an entertaining educational center designed to bring visitors of all ages closer to aquatic life. Get up close and personal with the aquariums’ 1,000 animal species, and visit European otters and sea otters in a special habitat.
In addition to general admission (which will let you explore the giant aquarium at your leisure), Oceanopolis offers behind-the-scenes tours and other special events. Discounted end-of-day tickets are available online; some Brest tours combine visits to city sights with entry to the aquarium.
Things to Know Before You Go
Pre-book tickets online for special deals and to reserve space on behind-the-scenes tours.
Oceanopolis has a number of on-site eateries, including a self-service buffet, a cafe, and a full-service brasserie.
An on-site shop offers plush toys, books, and other souvenirs.
Oceanopolis is wheelchair accessible, and wheelchairs and strollers can be rented from the front desk.
The aquarium also offers an outdoor picnic area and a playground.
How to Get There
Oceanopolis is located in Brest, right on the Atlantic coast. The site is about 10 minutes from Gare de Brest (the city’s main train station) by taxi and can also be reached on the 3 bus. The aquarium offers free on-site parking.
When to Get There
Oceanopolis’ hours vary from month to month, and last admission is one hour prior to closing. You’ll want to give yourself at least three hours to fully explore the aquarium.
Events at Oceanopolis
In addition to its regular seal- and penguin-feeding sessions, scientist meet-and-greets, and other presentations, Oceanopolis also hosts special events commemorating World Ocean Day, Christmas break, and other holidays throughout the year. To really get involved, you can even book a day working with the animal trainers and learn how to care for some of the animals and their habitats.
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