I had the opportunity to visit Seaquest Aquarium in Layton, Utah in March. One of the first unique things about the aquarium is that it is located in a shopping mall. They converted an old Sports Authority with 2,000 square feet into an amazing aquarium experience. I definitely did not feel like I was at the mall once I entered the aquarium. There are many different exhibits filled with over 300 species and 1500 animals.
Seaquest has the philosophy of “please touch”. If the barriers are low enough for you to reach, they want you to touch (2 fingers only!). My children loved being able to interact with the animals. The very first exhibit has iguanas where I learned that iguanas have three different pigments in their skin. Usually the combination of the three pigments makes them appear green to the eye, but sometimes if one pigment is lacking they can be blue or orange. We were able to meet this humongous orange iguana.
Because I am always careful about hand washing and germs, especially after touching lizards, I appreciated that Seaquest had hand washing stations available in each exhibit area. It was nice to be able to allow my children to touch the animals but then wash our hands right after.
Although there were so many unique sea creatures, my kids’ favorite exhibit by far was the birds. We were able to hold parakeets and lorikeets. We learned that lorikeets love to eat nectar, while parakeets eat seeds. I loved how kind and knowledgable each of the staff members were at each exhibit. We took away tidbits of information about each animal from each employee we talked with.
One of the many fun experiences I had was the fish spa. You get to get a fish pedicure by doctor fish who gently exfoliate dead skin cells. It was certainly a very different sensation. It almost felt like tiny little buzzers on my feet! I thought it was so much fun to try. You can also schedule a time to swim with the sting rays which I think would be so awesome!