A magnificent, sail-shaped building located in Salmiya, Kuwait, the Scientific Center focuses on environmental education for the entire gulf region. In addition to being home to the largest aquarium in the Middle East, the Scientific Center boasts a number of other fascinating attractions, from their collection of historic dhows to their interactive Discovery Place for children.
The Scientific Center’s Aquarium features three different environments; the Desert Zone, the Coastal Zone, and the Sea Zone. The Desert Zone showcases desert animals that have unique abilities when it comes to keeping themselves cool in the harsh desert heat, many of which are endangered, or on the verge of being so, due to illegal hunting. The aquarium’s Coastal Zone is home to animals that live near both land and water, from penguins to pythons to otters, and portrays how important these animals are for ecological diversity. The Sea Zone is most definitely the star of the aquarium, taking visitors on a journey through the depths of the deep blue sea. There are over 100 different species of marine animals here, some which were collected from the Arabian Gulf, while others were imported from South Africa and the Red Sea. From ferocious sharks to delicate sea horses, the diversity here is truly incredible.
While Discovery Place is primarily aimed at children, adults receive immense enjoyment from it too. Filled with entertaining and educational exhibits, each relating in some way to science, Discovery Place will teach you about the world in new ways. A large section of Discovery Place has been devoted to traveling exhibits, which bring new and never-seen-before displays to the Scientific Center, from other world-renowned science centers around the globe.
The focal point of Dhow Harbour is the Fateh-el-Khair, which is the only surviving Kuwait sailing ship from the pre-oil era, showcasing a part of Kuwait’s heritage that many would not have otherwise had the opportunity to see. The ship is a deep sea ship that was built by 18 carpenters, who had to work around the clock for 60 days to complete it. Dhow Harbour is situated right on the waterfront, and also contains examples of other smaller vessels that would have been used in this time.
The Scientific Center is also home to a giant IMAX screen, which shows 3D educational documentaries in both English and Arabic. Some of the films currently being screened include Humpback Whales 3D, which show visitors what life would be like from the perspective of a humpback whale, Kenya: Animal Kingdom, where two young Masai warriors take you through the heart of Kenya, and Journey to Space, which makes use of some incredible footage from the International Space Station.
In this day and age, environmental education, for both adults and children, is extremely important. With the planet being in the fragile state that it is, Kuwait’s Scientific Center is a great way for people to learn more about, so that they can better appreciate, the world that we live in today.