Up close and personal with sharks and stingrays!

Den Blå Planet, National Aquarium Denmark has just opened their tropical touch pool where you can get up close and personal with species like cownose rays and bamboo sharks. So up close, that we can almost guarantee wet sleeves and hands!

At Den Blå Planet, we have to chosen to remove the glass walls surrounding our usual aquariums and have created a beautiful touch pool with tropical species. You are now welcome to interact with these elegant animals, who glide by while you can lay on your belly on our floating bridge in the middle of the pool. High five with a stingray, or feel the rough skin of a bamboo shark as you stroke it gently. The warm water and yellow sand will transport you to the mangroves of the tropics, and allow you to get to know the animals in a new and exciting way.

A sting ray-controlled touch pool

The touch pool is designed to look like the natural habitat of the stingrays and sharks, and gives you a unique opportunity to learn about the animals who live in the environments, that are a space between land, coral reef, and oceans.

A constant current activates the waters and allows for the stingrays to glide naturally through the pool, in the same way they would in nature. The touch pool also ensures that the animals can control how much contact they want with our guests, with a hide-away area attached and lots of space for them to avoid curious hands. This allows the animals to avoid getting stressed, and meet our guests with mutual curiosity.

The mangroves have an important part of the oceans ecosystem, as they stabilize the coastlines and protect against storms and waves. In Den Blå Planets mangrove we have cownose rays, coral red sharks, starfish and many more. These animals are chosen because they do not get stressed when touched, and they are not dangerous to humans.

Are sharks dangerous?

At Den Blå Planet you are welcome to go on an interactive adventure with our digital storytelling guides, which not only inform you about the different species displayed, but show you how to best interact with the animals in a safe and gentle way. The tropical touch pool will also become a part of the daily activity schedule, as one of our storytellers will be there to feed the animals and tell you all about them, and the mangrove they come from.

We hope that this chance to come up close and personal with sharks and stingrays will help remove the unfair and often incorrect prejudices there are about these species.

“An important part of our guests’ experience, is coming close to the animals. It’s an experience that makes a huge impression on both children and adults, and awakens a deep respect for the animals that live in the oceans” says Jon Diderichsen, director of Den Blå Planet. “Our most important job here is to inspire our guests to leave our aquarium as active caretakers of nature”.