Cattolica is home to the largest aquarium in the Adriatic, and the second largest in Italy. With an area of 110,000 square metres, the Aquarium of Cattolica includes an exhibition space with aquariums and display tanks that host 3,000 specimens from over 400 different species, and a large outdoor park.
Take a visit to the Aquarium of Cattolica and you will find yourself face-to-face with animals you have only seen before in documentaries or perhaps only ever imagined: sharks, penguins, otters, stingrays, jellyfish, and many others. The most impressive specimens are undoubtedly the bull sharks that swim in the aquarium’s central tank. Up to 3 metres long and a weighing up to 150 kg, these sharks are the largest in Italy.
The shark tank is located in the part of the aquarium that also houses several specimens of jellyfish and Humboldt penguins from the coasts of Peru and Chile. Another attraction in this area is the tactile tank: under the guidance of an expert, in this area, adults and children can enjoy the incredible experience of petting the violet pelagic stingray, a type of stingray that is particularly docile with a brown-violet colour that also lives in the Adriatic Sea and can reach a length of 190 cm.
At the Aquarium of Cattolica, you can also meet the smallest otter in the world, the Asian small-clawed otter, a mammal with a playful temperament found in the marshes of Bangladesh and other Asian countries. It is kept company by the dwarf caiman from South America, perhaps the smallest specimen of alligator in existence.
A specific section of the aquarium is dedicated to the species that live between land and water. In these display tanks, there are reptiles, insects and exotic amphibians, such as colourful chameleons, geckos and iguanas.
Do not miss the opportunity to attend the daily feeding of the sharks, penguins, otters and pelagic stingrays, accompanied by the aquarium’s biologists, or spend a whole night face-to-face with the bull sharks, sleeping in front of their tank.
The park is open daily, but only at certain times of the year, generally from mid-April to mid-September, and on special occasions, such as Halloween and Christmastime. In addition to reductions and free admission for children, the Aquarium of Cattolica also offers combined tickets in conjunction with Italy in miniature in Rimini and Oltremare in Riccione.