Visiting Trieste with children: the Marine Aquarium

One way to spend a different afternoon than usual for children in Trieste is to go to the aquarium.

The Marine Aquarium of Trieste is located on the quayside a few minutes walk from Piazza Unità. The walk is a pleasant one, so we decide to take a stroll and admire the sea.

The Aquarium of Trieste is one of the oldest in Italy: it exists in its present form since 1933, and when you enter you immediately realise this. This is no state-of-the-art facility, but it does not matter because children always have fun when they come here. I know this full well because when I was little it was one of my favorite places to visit. At that time the aquarium still had two penguins and these were really an attraction. Their pool is today occupied by some large fish, and if you are curious next to it you will find the story of Marco the penguin and his successors Zigo and Zago.

The lower floor houses fish and crustaceans: gilthead bream, sea bass, white sea bream, mussels, lobsters, all of then Mediterranean species.

Upstairs, there is a vivarium where reptiles and amphibians live: karst vipers, but also toads, turtles and some tropical species, including a bearded dragon and giant albino python.

When we finish the tour we stop in the educational room where there are games, books, felt-tip pens and pencils to colour with. In this room, there is also a tub with some tropical marine species. Here, tiny colourful fish swim among the sea anemones and amongst these children will have no difficulty in identifying the clownfish as they happily cry out, “Look, it’s Nemo!”

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