The Tropen- Aquarium is located right by the main entrance of Tierpark Hagenbeck in Hamburg. The building itself, modelled on a derelict Asian monastery complex, sets the mood for the extraordinary landscape on the inside. With 8,000 square metres, it is the biggest aquarium for tropical habitats in Germany, and even one of the largest in Northern Europe. The circuit through the habitats of more than 14,300 exotic animals is designed like an expedition. There are three theme areas to explore.
Tropical and Subtropical Rainforest
The path begins at the tropical jungles of Africa, South America and Asia. On Madagascar town square, you meet free-running lemurs, and when you look up you see colourful African bird species and lories. At the biotope enclosures, you meet eye to eye with the biggest giant serpents of the world, such as the reticulated python. A bit further down, dwarf mongooses live inside the African hut. The large crocodile lake is a particular highlight. Four Nile crocodiles can be watched either through an underwater window, or from the crocodile platform.
Cave World and Serpent Village
Wooden stairs lead you into the historic tunnel. Brightly coloured frogs and quirky insects live here. Furthermore, you gain insight into the retreat cave of the giant serpents. After the bat grotto, you get into a dripstone cave, where blind cave fishes as well as endangered Zagros newts can be seen. After the cave world, you enter the serpent village, which is home to the most poisonous serpents in the world as well as to Indian ornamental tarantulas.
Accompanied by whale song, you dive down into the tropical underwater world through the submarine tunnel. Looking through the scuttles, you can spot morays, before gettin to the biodiverse coral reef. Hundreds of shoal fish bustle at the Amazon exhibit, while the tropical lagoon is home to spined pygmy sharks and porcupine fishes. Moreover, a number of smaller aquariums showcase well-camouflaged beings like seahorses or scorpionfishes. From the clown fishes' anemone rock, you walk past the drift basin with its fascinating dotted upside-down jellyfish to the Red Sea biosphere. Finally, you get to the big shark atoll, which takes you down to the ocean floor. Behind the large panoramic window, you can watch various shark and ray species.
The tropical aquarium was built for the 100-year anniversary of Tierpark Hagenbeck, and was opened in 2007 after two years of construction. It is an attraction of superlatives. Not only is the Amazon river course one of the biggest planted freshwater basins in Europe, the large shark atoll also has no peer in Europe, containing 1.8 mio litres of fresh water.
Although the aquarium is located on the premises of the zoo, it can also be visited individually.
How to get there
Tropen-Aquarium is located at the main entrance of Tierpark Hagenbeck at the Hamburg district of Stellingen. From motorway A7, take exit HH-Stellingen, then turn right onto Kieler Straße. After 350 metres, turn left onto Sportplatzring. Then go straight onto Koppelstraße and turn left onto Lokstedter Grenzstraße to get to the car park by the main entrance (€ 4 per day). A free P+R is located next to the car park.
Subway line U2 takes you to Hagenbecks Tierpark. The station is only a few steps away from the main entrance of the Tierpark. Bus lines 39, 181 and 391 stop at the station Tierpark at Koppelstraße.