Though only half the size of the Shanghai Ocean Aquarium across the river in Pudong, this South American-themed waterworld remains one of the more impressive animal-based attractions in the city, with all kinds of marine life on display; including penguins, sealions, beluga whales, and sharks. (At least they stay true to their name, which is more than can be said for the Shanghai Wild Insect Kingdom.)
Immersive experiences are their strong suit, with glass-bottom boat rides, a “touch pool” for the kids, and regular opportunities for school groups (or other interested parties) to camp out overnight in the underwater tunnels. Just like at Beijing’s Blue Zoo, you can even jump in the shark tank: Big Blue Scuba (021 6291-2110) offer hour-long sessions for 800 RMB, in a tank containing more than 100 of the big beasts. Note that you must book in advance.