Living Coasts, Torquay’s award-winning coastal zoo and aquarium, is an all-weather attraction, located on Torquay seafront in South Devon and is open every day (except Christmas Day).
Living Coasts is home to a magnificent array of marine life from around the world. Set in a naturalistic environment, you can journey from the South African coastline to a mangrove forest and then onto a sunken wreck. Whatever the weather there is always plenty to do! Mingle with the playful African and macaroni penguins, get up close with the otters and come face to face with our family of fur seals. In the aquarium, there are a selection of over 20 species of fish, including archer fish, lionfish, four-eyed fish and stingrays. The Wader’s Estuary exhibit on the top deck has a variety of birds and a fantastic back drop. You will see the wading birds, such as avocets, ruffs and oystercatchers, foraging in the grass and the shallow waters for insects. Also see the playful puffins and kittiwakes bobbing in the water or resting on the rocks at Auk Cliff.
Living Coasts offers visitors the chance to get closer to and learn more about the animals than ever before, with many entertaining daily talks or feeding times from the keepers and Education presenters. Join the keepers at the twice daily penguin feed at Penguin beach to see these incredible birds waddle around your feet while they enjoy their fish. Other interesting talks include otter, seal and stingray feeds. The full schedule of daily talks can be found on the Living Coasts website.
In addition to the wide variety of animals, daily talks and feeding times to enjoy, there are some added attractions around Living Coasts that will keep children (and adults!) entertained in all weathers. It’s playing and learning at the same time! Our interactive sandpits and Draw Alive wall were installed in 2018 and the amazing technology to allow you to interact with marine creatures that you create. There is also a small soft play area for young visitors (under 5’s).
Play with the seals in the viewing windows – wave paper fish against the glass and the seals will interact and follow your movements. There are also underwater viewing windows for the penguins, puffins and kittiwakes. With a host of different events and activities throughout the year, including children’s trails, animal enrichment and Easter and Christmas events, you are sure for a visit full of fun and adventure all year round.
Living Coasts also hosts organised beach cleans during the summer months on local beaches around Torbay. These beach cleans are FREE to attend and aim give you the chance to help the environment and learn more about local species, biodiversity and the shores around us.
Open to all the Terrace Café is free to visit for non-visitors too, with panoramic sea views overlooking the Bay. On offer is a wide selection of freshly prepared food, from paninis and baguettes baked on the premises to a choice of chef’s daily specials. It is the perfect place to have morning coffee, a freshly made lunch or a Devon cream tea in the afternoon. Well behaved dogs on leads are also welcomed on the terrace.
Finish off your visit with a stop by the Tradewinds gift shop. The shop offers a wide selection of unique gifts and branded souvenirs. This includes a large range of toys, jewellery, musical instruments, books and home products as well as bags, accessories and, of course, lots of cuddly penguins and their friends. You can also adopt an animal from a selection including a penguin, seal and octopus with a variety of different packages. All purchases help to fund Living Coast’s vital conservation work around the world.
Did you know that at Living Coasts you can also have a once in a lifetime experience with one of the marine animal experiences? These hands on experiences allow you will get up close with your favourite animal, meet and chat with their keepers and have a great opportunity to learn more about them. The experiences are very popular and must be booked in advance. You can find out full information on the Living Coasts website.