Coral World Ocean Park
St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands
Located in Coki Point Beach, the peninsula on the northeast shore of St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands emerges Coral World Ocean Park with a wide range of attractions including the Deep Reef Tank, a circular 50,000 gallon tank hosting sharks, moray eels, tarpon and other amazing predatory carnivores of the deep ocean. Visitors to the park have the unique opportunity to watch the divers in their regular scheduled feeding routines dressed in a suit of armor hand while feed the predators.
Caribbean Reef Encounter is another tank holding an 80,000 gallon aquarium and open at the top to receive the natural light and air in an effort of the Coral World's park staff to reconstruct the natural living coral reef in this exhibit and filled with a wide array of corals, sponges, shells, tropical fishes, newborn seahorses, lobsters, sea anemones, conchs and other marine creatures.
The Undersea Observatory at Coral World is air conditioned and located in the middle of a living coral reef about 100 feet offshore and 15 feet beneath the sea offering the view of non captive fishes and other marine creatures passing through as they go on the reef unaware of the human presence in the bottom level.
The Marine Gardens is a gallery of 21 aquariums providing intimate and stunning views of seahorses, jaw fish, scorpion fish, exotic looking fishes that can change from male to female or shaped for defense among dozens of many other sea specimens and sponges in their unique habitats. Coral World's Marine Gardens offers a night exhibit where visitors can see nocturnal fishes, octopus and the fluorescence in corals.
For those tourists who enjoy the sun activities Coral World Ocean Park offers a wide variety of pools each one with their own attractions. The Turtle Pool rescues green sea turtles eggs and hatchlings and introduces them to the water. Besides of caring for the parks own turtles, Coral World serves as rehabilitation center for other sick or injured turtles.
Continue with the pool activities at Coral World, the outdoor Touch Pool exhibits sea stars, conchs, sea cucumbers, West Indian sea eggs among many other of marine animals that live on sandy bottoms while the Stingray Pool is the home of southern stingrays that glide around the pool to later bury themselves in the sand for camouflage.
One of the most popular exhibits at Coral World Ocean Park is the Shark Shallows Pool, a large pool offering views from above and through a large underwater viewing window of those juvenile sharks that live in and the pool and where guests can pet a baby nurse shark during the visit with the assistance of the personnel.
The Coral World Ocean Park has it all for a pleasant visit at any time of the year, from the marine wildlife's close up to the nature observation through the Iguana Alley, a walk through corridor where wild iguanas are gathered sometimes among trees or camouflaged on the branches and some others just catching the sun's rays along the stone path but also at the Tropical Nature Trail running from Mangrove Lagoon to Coral World with plants and trees in both, the wet and dry zones of the Caribbean and native ducks, red-footed tortoises, iguanas, parrots, hummingbirds, herons and other birds.
Transportation by public bus to the park is available but generally unreliable however, if you decide to take a bus, the fare is $1 USD and the nearest stopover to Coral World is within 10 minutes walking distance taking the bus that reads "Red Hook", although the easiest way to get to Coral World Ocean Park is by taxi either downtown shopping district or from ship docks and hotels; taxi fares vary depending on the origin location; in average a taxi ride from downtown or a ship dock is about 20 to 25 minutes long and the cost is approximately $7 to $8 USD per person for two or more passengers running from downtown, Havensight or Crown Bay cruise ship docks.
An alternative way to reach Coral World is by car driving on Route 38 and following the blue Tommy Starfish road signs along the blue route on your driving guide or by boat anchoring at Water Bay in Coki Point to the Coral World dock which is on the right as you enter the bay.
Accessibility to Coral World Ocean Park include wheelchair ramps and facilities for most exhibits except the Nature Trail, the Deep Reef Tank and the Undersea Observatory but videos of the undersea activities are available on the top level of the Observatory Tower.
Further information: Coral World Ocean Park 6450 Estate Smith Bay St. Thomas, VI 00802 Telephone: 340-775-1555 Toll Free: 888-695-2073 Fax: 340-775-9068
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