THE newest tourism and educational attraction on South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninula has arrived in Victor Harbor.
The 74-tonne Oceanic Victor in-sea aquarium has been securely tethered in the lee of Granite Island.
Its operators topped up the giant pen with stocks of indigenous marine life awaiting visitors for the opening last month.
The aquarium allows you to get in the water and up close with southern bluefin tuna and a range of other indigenous marine species. Once there you will be fitted out in a warm wetsuit with mask, booties and gloves, and then it’s into the water to swim with the “Ferraris of the ocean”, as the tuna species is known.
Strict landlubbers can still feed the tuna or venture below the surface in the glass-sided underwater viewing area. There is also a touch tank for children to enjoy.
There will be educational programs for schoolkids and study and research opportunities in conjunction with universities.
More than 10,000 people are expected to flock to the attraction in the first year.
Granite Island, which had been in decline for some years, has also been revitalised. You can take a guided tour to visit the rare, wild little penguins as they return from the ocean at sunset.
The Oceanic Victor has a sausage sizzle with hot and cool drinks on the platform. Plans are also afoot to restore and reopen the Granite Island Cafe.
Tickets for the 45-minute aquarium swim/underwater observatory are $85/$75/$60, while the guided nature penguin tour is $25/ $15 (no concessions).