The seaside town of Baan Phe in Thailand’s Rayong province is less than an hour’s drive south of the lively resort town of Pattaya, making it a perfect destination for a day’s trip for those who would like to experience Thailand’s peaceful southeastern countryside along the Eastern Seaboard. In addition to its seafood restaurants and markets, Baan Phe also houses the Rayong Aquarium which offers an impressive glimpse into Thailand’s colorful tropical sea life.
The Rayong Aquarium is a favorite place among families and children looking for a cool exhibition with significant educational value.
Visitors are greeted with a lively pool exhibiting colorful tropical sea life right before entering the museum.
Visitors are greeted with a plethora of live undersea exhibitions as soon as they enter the Rayong Aquarium.
Children and adults are provided with educational exhibitions about undersea life in Thailand’s waters.
But by far the highlight of Rayong Aquarium is its plethora live exhibitions of Thailand’s colorful tropical marine life! Here, visitors are greeted with a giant pool with several Giant Sea Turtles whose species grace the waters of the Gulf of Thailand to the east and the Andaman Sea to the west.
Another scene of giant sea turtles in the Rayong Aquarium.
Visitors enjoy viewing the giant sea turtles and large schools of fish through these underwater glass windows.
A very cute scene of giant sea turtles pairing up!
A shallow exhibition pool at the entrance to the aquarium shows off baby sea turtles for visitors to view up close.
The Rayong Aquarium is full of lively exhibitions displaying Thailand’s colorful tropical marine life.
Beautiful and cute yet lethal! Here are some views of the cute, adorable ‘Small Nosed Boxfish‘ (ปลาปักเป้าสี่เหลี่ยม, Octracion Nasus). They are found along the sea floors along Thailand’s coast.
Another view of the cute Small Nosed Boxfish, a relative of the puffer fish.
So cute but lethal! These small adorable, colorful fish are the ‘Porcupine Fish‘ (ปลาปักเป้าหนามทุเรียน, Diodon Liturosus) which can be found along the seafloors near the coasts of the Gulf of Thailand. These fish have hidden spines which point outwards once their bodies are inflated during times of danger. A close relative of these fish is the ‘Blacked-Spotted Puffer‘ (ปลาปักเป้าหน้าหมา, Tetrodon Nigropunctatus) which can be found in the coral reefs along Thailand’s southwestern Andaman coast.
Here’s another view of the ‘Porcupine Fish‘ which are found along seafloors in the Gulf of Thailand, or their close relative, the ‘Black-Spotted Puffer‘, which can be found in the coral reefs along Thailand’s southwestern Andaman coast.
Looking for some lobster? This lobster is considered very lucky to be in the aquarium!
In Thailand’s upper-scale supermarkets or restaurants this colorful tropical lobster would definitely fetch a price of over 2,000 Baht! They can be found throughout much of Thailand’s tropical seas.
Thailand’s waters abound with the ‘Blue Spotted Grouper‘ (ปลากะรังเหลืองจุดฟ้า, Plectropomus Maculutus) which can be found near islands and along undersea rock formations.
The ‘Blue Spotted Grouper’ can grow to be quite large, such a this one in a large marine pool behind this glass wall.
Here’s a school of giant sea groupers in the aquarium’s large marine pool.
Scenes of colorful tropical marine life abound in the Rayong Aquarium, making for a very cheerful and relaxing atmosphere.
One of the most awesome moments in the Rayong Aquarium especially for children is the during passage through the glass tunnel which provides an awesome view of the giant pool with multiple schools of giant fish.
Visitors are in awe of the cool, relaxed undersea atmosphere beneath the aquarium’s glass tunnel without having to dive undersea.
The ‘Giant Mud Crab‘ (ปูทะเล ปูดำ, Scylly Serrata) is popularly featured in Thailand’s seafood cuisine, and can be found in the mangroves and off the shores throughout the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman Sea. These are usually very aggressive creatures with powerful claws and must be handed be handled with care. They can be found in virtually all of Thailand’s fresh seafood markets. Here’s a live (and lucky) one in the aquarium.
The ‘Giant Mud Crab’ is carnivorous and feeds on fish and other sea creatures.
It seems that the aquarium staff has decided feed these ‘Giant Mud Crabs’ with live sea fish such as this white one hiding anxiously beneath a broken jar from 2 scary mud crabs inside the same tank. One has to question such a practice on ethical grounds.
The ‘Grey Bamboo Shark‘ (ปลาฉลามกบ ฉลามหิน, Chiloscyllium Griseum) can be found along sandy and muddy seafloors off Thailand’s coastline, or along undersea rock formations.
These ‘Grey Bamboo Sharks’ are presumably harmless to humans and seem pretty cute indeed!
The ‘Giant Tiger Prawn‘ (กุ้งกุลาดำ, Penaeus Monodon) is another staple in Thai seafood cuisine and can be widely found in most seafood fresh markets in Thailand. They can be found on muddy seafloors in the Gulf of Thailand. Nowadays these prawns are also widely cultivated in aquatic farms along Thailand’s coastline and river deltas.
Lethal beauty! The colorful ‘Rockfish‘ can be found in Thailand’s tropical coral reefs and seas. Despite their attractive and beautiful appearance, tropical ‘Rockfish’ possess venomous spines and therefore should be left alone when encountered by divers under the sea.
The ‘Round Tail Horse Shoe Crab‘ (แมงดาถ้วย แมงดาหางกลม, Carcinoscorpius Rotundicauda) can be found near the coast especially along the seafloors of mangroves in Thailand.
Another view of several live ‘Round Tail Horse Shoe Crabs’ in the Rayong Aquarium.
Another favorite in Thailand’s modern seafood cuisine is the ‘Locust Lobster‘ (กั้งกระดาน, Thenus Orientalis), which can be seen in many seafood markets and restaurants along Thailand’s Eastern Seaboard.
‘Locust Lobsters’ can be found along sandy or muddy seafloors off Thailand’s coastline.
Masters of disguise! The ‘Stone Fish‘ (ปลากะรังหัวโขน, Synanceia Horrida) are usually found lying still on seafloors near coral reefs. The ‘Grunting Toad Fish‘ (ปลาอุบปลาคางคก, Allenbatrachus Grunniens) thrives along muddy seafloors and mangroves.
‘Swimming Crabs‘ (ปูม้า, Portunus Pelagicus) have always been an all-time favorite in Thailand’s seafood cuisine. They are widely found along the seafloors off Thailand’s entire coastline.
It is believed that swimming crabs can be found throughout all the world’s oceans.
Colorful live marine exhibitions inside the Rayong Aquarium provide a glimpse into the diversity and vibrancy of tropical marine life, especially near coral reefs and coastal areas.
In addition to its live exhibition of Thailand’s awesome tropical marine life, the Rayong Aquarium also contains a colorful exhibition of seashells belonging to both bivalves and gastropods that thrive in Thailand’s warm tropical waters, many of which are edible and are a popular part of Thailand’s seafood cuisine.
Some more shells of gastropods that thrive in Thailand’s warm tropical waters.
The Rayong Aquarium is located right beside the sea in Baan Phe town of Rayong Province, Thailand. Here, visitors can enjoy the cool atmosphere whilst getting a glimpse of Thailand’s awesome tropical marine life without having to dive undersea. It’s an ideal getaway for some cool respite whilst getting new valuable knowledge!
Happy traveling, wherever you are in Thailand, and around the world!
Lat (Ratasit C.)