I've lived in China for 5 years, and this place has lots of awesome things to see if you can bear the crowds and their behavior.
Dolphin/Beluga show in the Sea pavilion is average and super crowded.
The Walrus/Seal show is amazing and I don't want to spoil it for what you'll see.
The Beluga show in the Polar pavilion is epic if you appreciate those beautiful creatures.
Coral World is calm and easy going with tons of great creatures to see.
The Deep Sea 3D pavilion is weird and should be avoided - most things don't work and there's a weird walk-through Kaleidoscope that will give most of you vertigo and possibly a heart attack if you're old.
You need to get the 4 pavilion pass to get value for money. It's currently (November 2013) priced at 220 CNY per person, but insist to pay 190 and you'll get it. A little ability in speaking in Chinese numbers helps here. 5 dollars saved is 5 dollars earned.
Taxi should only take about 20 minutes from Zhongshan district and once you experience the ups, downs, wacky of this place you'll be glad you've checked it off. Quite a laugh.
We were two 34 year olds (one Can-American and one English).
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