Bayworld, formerly the Port Elizabeth Museum, offers a variety of live animal displays, including dolphins, seals, penguins, fish, snakes and crocodiles.
Historical exhibits include shipwrecks, dinosaurs, Xhosa beadwork, historical costumes and local fossils.
Bayworld offers the visitor a museum, oceanarium and a snake park.
A small colony of Cape fur and Subantarctic seals became resident at Bayworld following stranding due to separation from their mothers in high seas, illness or injury. Entertaining demonstrations of their adaptations to the aquatic environment through interactions with their trainers and related explanations and stories are presented.
African penguins, currently raising chicks or tending eggs, also provide entertaining moments as they demonstrate their exceptional agility in the water as supposed/ opposed to their rather awkward and cumbersome movements on land.
The two fully grown raggedtooth sharks allow ample time to count their truly ragged jawfuls of cutting tools and study their pulsing gill-slits as they slowly cruise around the round fish tank. In contrast the shy leopard and tiger cat sharks display their less threatening and more peaceful style of life.
Probably one of the most intriguing aquatic animals at the aquarium is the large octopus who, at times, flashes out its full size and extent of its eight sucker lined legs and does a form of dance across the length and breadth of the tank. Or marvel at the tiny Knysna seahorses as they coil around the furniture in their tank or gallop in slow motion across the window.
The Tropical tank holds a kaleidoscope of colourful fish representing more than 60 species. The aquarists pride in this tank is the large shoal of Moorish Idols with their striking colour and long trailing filamentous fins. The tank also houses a number of sea turtles that are being rehabilitated before release.
Port Elizabeth Museum
The Port Elizabeth Museum, which blends cultural with natural history, is the third oldest in South Africa and is the parent unit of Bayworld.
The ground and first floors contain the Dinosaur, Marine, Bird, Maritime History, Costume and Local History Halls, a Curiosity Corner, as well as a Xhosa Beadwork display. Other diverse exhibits in the fields of natural science, archaeology and geology are also regularly on display in the Museum.
The Maritime History Hall recreates the romance and drama of a bygone era, displaying bronze cannons, copper ingots, porcelain and other treasures. Fully rigged models of sailing ships complement the artifacts on display. Models and skeletons of whales, dolphins, sharks and bony fish provide the interested visitor with an opportunity for close up study before or after viewing the live animals in the Oceanarium.
Models of some of the dinosaurs that populated the prehistoric landscape, as well as the birds of Algoa Bay, are presented in life-like settings.
Bayworld has reopened a section of the Snake Park. A number of snakes and other reptiles, as well as interesting informational material in a more compact fashion, are on display.
Reptiles on display include snakes, geckos, lizards, juvenile crocodiles, tortoises and terrapins.
From the N2, take the Settlers Way (M4) off ramp. Stay in the Summerstrand Lane which becomes Humewood Lane. Follow Beach Road for approximately 2km. You will see Bayworld on your right hand side.
Tel: +27 (0) 41 584 0650