Phuket Aquarium to get giant face-lift
AO MAKHAM: The Phuket Aquarium has received 81 million baht from the Department of Fisheries to renovate and expand to include a glass tunnel that will allow visitors to walk through a fish tank. The improvements, it is estimated, could bring as many as half a million visitors to the aquarium a year. Potchana Boonyanate, a marine biologist at the Phuket Marine Biology Center, which runs the aquarium, said today, “Right now we have about 40 fish tanks made of cement [with glass fronts]. After renovation we will have 70 to 80 tanks, all made of glass fiber. “We will also build a 10-meter-long glass tunnel similar to the famous one in Singapore. People will be able to walk through it as if they were walking underwater.” He added, “Each year about 300,000 people visit the aquarium. Of these, 70% are Thais and 30% are foreigners. “The glass tunnel will be a major new attraction, which we hope will boost the number of visitors to 500,000. After the renovation is complete, I think the Phuket Aquarium will be able to compete with the one in Bali.” Asked whether the renovated aquarium could be compared with the one in Singapore, K. Potchana said this would be unlikely. “That would cost much more,” he said. The aquarium will be closed from Thursday next week (August 1) to allow the work to be done. It is expected to take about a year to complete.
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