Planning & Logistics
Arrival at AQWA
- Bus parking is available directly in front of AQWA’s entrance. Free car parking is also available for any parent helpers joining your group
- Assemble students on grassed area or on the paved area at the base of the stairs. (Teachers please note: in wet weather, please keep your students on the bus. Our Ocean Guide will greet your group onboard.)
- While one teacher organises the class(es) into their small groups, the teacher in charge can proceed to our front counter to organise payment, collect AQWA Guide Maps and Kids Passes. Our staff will page the Ocean Guide who will greet your group on the grassed/paved area. If your parent helpers are paying separately, please instruct them to proceed to Reception at this time.
- The Ocean Guide will greet your group and provide an insight into the underwater journey your group is about to experience, as well as unusual attraction to look out for on the way.
- Our Ocean Guide will then assist you to enter one small group at a time. Your group will no doubt be excited and ready to enter all at once, but in the interest of your parent helpers, their voices, and their ability to identify their groups, please take the opportunity to ask our Ocean Guide some questions and create a gap between the entry of individual groups as they enter the facility and explore the exhibits.
- The AQWA exhibits are divided into 5 distinct zones, each displaying the characteristic marine life and habitats of a unique part of our WA coastline. Each area you walk through contains signage and is colour coded so that you can easily identify which part of the coastline you are exploring. The contrasting marine life found in each zone enables us to showcase the diverse range of marine life found in WA.
- Each of our aquariums is named after a particular destination along our coastline (eg Augusta, Mindarie). Look for these names when completing activity sheets or using our “Follow Sweep” app to create a souvenir story book for your group.
- Go down the stairs first. This leads to our main attraction. Your awesome underwater journey begins in the cold waters of our Great Southern Coast. Please take your time at each exhibit as AQWA is designed as a continuous and sequential journey.
- Blue and white signs as well as arrows on the ground help direct you throughout the facility on your journey.
- Discover More! In each region you will notice a board that displays the times when an Ocean Guide will be in the region. Please take note of these signs as you explore AQWA – if your group is interested in a particular region you can return later to enjoy the presentation. Suggested presentations include: 10.45am Shipwreck Coast – Meet the sharks; 11.15am Great Southern; 11.45am Coral Reef – Storytime; 12.00 Perth Coast -Moon Jellyfish; 12.30pm DANGERzone guided tour; 12.45pm Stingray Bay; 1.15pm Shipwreck Coast; 1.30pm Coral Reef Guided Tour; 2.15pm Far North – Crocodiles. There is also an Ocean Guide at the Discovery Pool from 10.30am -2.30pm
- Please note, Ocean Guides are strategically located throughout the facility and are there to interact with the public as well as your group.
- Toilets are located adjacent to the entrance to AQWA and also next to the Discovery Pool. All toilets include disabled access and baby change facilities. The toilets next to the Discovery Pool are larger unisex facilities.
- A water fountain (bubbler) is located near the Discovery Pool.
- Shade – Four out of the five designated AQWA coastline zones are located inside the main building, in climate controlled comfort. Our Marmion Marine Park is located outdoors, and while it is shaded, it is exposed to wind and rain.
- Coffee! Parent helpers will be glad to hear that we have a Café, located near the Discovery Pool that serves barista style coffee right throughout the day (large take away cups are also available).
- Picnic Areas – AQWA provides several areas for groups to eat. Large groups eating together are invited to use our large grassed area outside AQWA. Smaller groups can eat at the picnic tables overlooking our Coral Reef or at Stingray Bay. At present AQWA does not have the facility to store lunches, eskies or provide all weather locations for school lunches. In the event of adverse weather, it is requested that teachers arrange for groups to be able to eat on their bus.
Shark Mascot Class Photo and Ordered Lunches
- Your excursion includes the opportunity to take a picture with our popular shark mascot. This is at 11.15am in front of the Whale Tail outside by the Discovery Pool.
- Gather your class in the large paved area and have your group ready. Remember there might be multiple schools and classes awaiting a turn on the day.
- AQWA does not provide a camera or print photos. Teachers will need to bring a camera and distribute the images they take to their class.
- If you have pre-ordered lunch for your students from the AQWA Cafe, please seat your students in the designated area and have adults collect the meals only at your allocated time. This will be provided in your confirmation paperwork.
- The ‘Whale Tail’ area, located next to the Discovery Pool, is provided as a regrouping and final head count area before your departure through the AQWA Gift Shop. In the interests of our other visitors, please do not use the AQWA Café for this purpose.
- Lead your students through the AQWA Gift Shop (single file or in pairs for K/PP is preferred) to exit.
- School students are also asked not to enter the AQWA Gift Shop except to exit.