Europe’s First Underwater Museum Has Opened Off the Coast of Spain

Jan 25, 2017

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Art lovers who don’t mind getting a little wet now have a new destination to add to their travel bucket lists: Europe’s first underwater museum, Museo Atlántico, (the Atlantic Museum), located just off the coast of Lanzarote Island in Spain’s Canary Islands.

Image courtesy of Museo Atlántico's <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook page.</a>
Image courtesy of Museo Atlántico’s Facebook page.

The brainchild of British sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor, the museum officially opened to the public last March, but only reached completion earlier this month — altogether, it took about two years to create. As the name suggests (and you’d probably expect), the only way to see it is to go underwater, so snorkelers and divers are in for a real treat — the museum hosts daily diving tours from several location on Lanzarote, with prices starting at about $49. It’s comprised of more than 300 sculptures, which sit on the seafloor about 40-50 feet below the waters of Las Coloradas Bay. The pieces are all made of eco-friendly concrete, all of which were created by deCaires Taylor.

Image courtesy of Museo Atlántico's <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook page.</a>
Image courtesy of Museo Atlántico’s Facebook page.

For deCaires Taylor, the museum is as much about education as it is about art; the sculptures are meant to form part of an artificial reef as time passes, creating a breeding ground for species native to its waters. “I want it to inspire people to understand more about our oceans and the threats facing it,” he told CNN. The artist — who has created similar pieces for underwater installations in the Bahamas, Mexico and Grenada — views the museum as a chance for visitors to see the world in a whole new way. “The whole idea was for it to become a portal to another world,” he explained. From the photos we’ve seen, he has certainly achieved that. Take a look at how the museum was created in the video below.


Image courtesy of Museo Atlántico’s Facebook page.

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