Sea fair

Nickelodeon plans underwater park in the Philippines

Ohhhhhhh, what lives in a pineapple under the sea ...

That would be Nickelodeon's new underwater theme park in the Philippines — on the island of Palawan, according to a press release sent from the network to Agence France-Presse.

The family tourist attraction — built around the network's iconic characters, including SpongeBob SquarePants, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Dora the Explorer — is set to open in 2020 in Coron in a deal with Coral World Park Undersea Resorts.

The entire resort will cover about 400 hectares over several tropical islands, with Nickelodeon's theme park taking up about 30 of those. (wtf is a hectare?)

"We're thrilled to be partnering with Coral World Park to open the world's first undersea attraction and Nickelodeon's first resort in Southeast Asia, as we continue to expand on our theme-based attractions in Asia and across the world," said Gerald Raines, senior vice president of global recreation for Viacom International Media Networks, which owns the Nickelodeon brand.

"This is yet another important step in boosting the Nickelodeon entertainment experience as we continue to give our fans, kids and their families, new ways to interact with the brand and the iconic characters they love."

The resort will also include restaurants and lounges 20 feet below sea level.

However, Palawan island is considered the Philippines' last ecological frontier, so environmentalists aren't too keen on the idea.

In a statement, Viacom International Media Networks said it chose Palawan because it "is known to have some of the most beautiful beaches in the world today," adding that the development would "advocate ocean protection."

Greenpeace disagrees.

"It's sad and alarming because a theme park that big will not promote environmental protection by building those structures," Vince Cinches of Greenpeace Southeast Asia told AFP.

Palawan is home to two UNESCO World Heritage-listed sites, a subterranean river and the Tubbataha coral reefs.

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