Ocean Park, situated on the southern side of Hong Kong Island, is one
of the world's premier sea life and animal theme parks, covering more
than 87 hectares of land. Operated by the Ocean Park Corporation —
a statutory board — it is a not-for-profit organisation providing
elements of entertainment and education.
Over three million people visit Ocean Park each year.
Residents of Hong Kong as well as tourists enjoy the park's facilities
and services. With 26 years of history, Ocean Park has established itself
as one of the major tourist attractions in Hong Kong and Asia. Apart from
entertainment through thrill rides and a wide variety of shows, the park
prides itself on its education and conservation programmes. Over 30 000
school children in Hong Kong visit the park each year and learn about
animals through structured programmes and behind-the-scenes tours.
The park's research activities on marine mammals and
artificial insemination have also produced the world's first successful
births of two Pacific Bottle Nose dolphins conceived through artificial
insemination in May and June 2001. Among the animals at the park are two
giant pandas, An An and Jia Jia, which the Central People's
Government presented to Hong Kong in 1999. Both have adapted well in their
Giant Panda Habitat. The park was awarded an accreditation by the American
Zoo and Aquarium Association in 2002, making it the first animal facility
in Asia to achieve a world-class status among an elite group of internationally
acclaimed zoos and aquariums.
Ocean Park comprises two sections — the Headland
and the Lowland — connected by a 1.5-kilometre cable car system
which offers spectacular panoramic views of the southern side of Hong
Kong and the South China Sea. At the Headland, the park has many of its
many thrill rides including the Abyss Turbo Drop, Mine Train, Dragon,
Eagle, Crazy Galleon and Flying Swing. Complementing the rides is the
Ocean Theatre where performances by dolphins and sea lions both entertain
and educate visitors. Providing more enjoyment and education are the Atoll
Reef Aquarium, Shark Aquarium, and the Pacific Pier that features California
sea lions and harbour seals. At the park's Tai Shue Wan site, there is
the entrance to the Middle Kingdom and a 225-metre outdoor escalator leading
to the Headland.
A prime exhibit at the Lowland is the Goldfish Pagoda
that has more than 100 goldfish of various species. It is located adjacent
to the Giant Panda Habitat. Other major attractions include the Kid's
World, a dedicated area for junior visitors and the Dolphin University
where visitors are able to have a closer encounter with the park's dolphin
Ocean Park continues to provide new attractions for
visitors. These include the Amazing Birds Show at the newly developed
Amazon Birds Theatre, which has more than 18 colourful and rare species,
and the Dinosaurs Now and Then exhibit showing the endangered Chinese
alligator, salamander and Chinese sucker fish from the Chang Jiang (Yangtze
River). Another new attraction is the Whiskers' Wild Ride, located near
the cable car station at the Lowland, which provides a thrilling and innovative
simulation ride with special multi-sensory elements.
Apart from the mechanical rides and marine mammal
attractions, Ocean Park also presents special events during the year,
such as the Halloween Bash, Summer Daze, Christmas Sensation, Chinese
New Year programme and Easter Education Week.