Monterey Bay Aquarium Monterey
Where is it at?
Monterey Bay Aquarium
886 Cannery Row
Where are we going today?
Oh where to start!? Monterey Bay Aquarium has been ranked as one of the worlds top aquariums, and more importantly, one of the best places for kids! There are so many weird and wonderful species that you would rarely come across because they are enjoying life under the sea.
There is a fun “Splash Zone” which is great for those aged 0-12 - there are interactive exhibits, plus penguins, seahorses, and lots of other fun sea creatures.
There are also “touch pools” where kids can really explore with their senses - can you guess what a slimy sea cucumber feels like? Or a prickly anemone? Here you can find out.
There are always new and fascinating exhibits to explore, so make sure you ask what it on show during your visit to avoid missing out. There are also daily shows and feedings so check times for those too, including the feeding of the sea otters, learning how they car for the adorable penguin colony and the important Whales to Windmills which shows off inventions to help our planet, inspired by these beautiful creatures of the ocean.
Fancy falling asleep next to the sounds of the water and the colors of the fish? You can! The aquarium also offer various sleep overs which provide you with some late night snacks, movies, as you see the ocean from a whole different light. Get your toothbruses ready!
How much does it cost?
- Free Under: Children under 3 admitted free
When can we go?
Open: 10am, Close: 6pm Summer: 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m., Summer Weekends Sat. & Sun. 9:30 a.m.-8:00 p.m.
Open every day except Christmas Day.
The Aquarium is a great tool for education outside of the classroom. Each year they have thousands of students and teachers come and learn about the marine animals and the California coastal region. They can also cater for home schoolers..
Don't fancy eating what the otters would eat? (Neither would we!) Within the Aquarium you are spoilt for choice, with a casual cafe, full service bar or table service restaurant. You can eat whilst enjoying spectacular views of the bay so don't let your food go cold while you're trying to spot seals and whales!.
All menu options at Cindys Waterfront use sustainable seafood and organic produce providers. There are also great healthy options at Portola Cafe and Restaurant.
Any Top Tips?
Allow about 3 hours to see everything in the museum, there is lots to learn and do! You can also buy tickets online before you arrive to save time. .
Doing our bit
The Aquarium support and run a number of research projects, as well as doing their best to educate all visitors on the importance of conservation and looking after our oceans. .
Need a little extra help?
The aquarium ensure that all areas of the building and its exhibitions are available for wheelchairs. .
Strollers have special parking areas so keep an eye out for those, or ask if you have trouble. .
Can I get one of those?
Books, toys, apparel, games, beautiful jewelry....you can find it all at the giftshop and bookstore. .
What people are saying?
by Mark Patterson
Great experience, much better than that pier aquarium in San Francisco. Sea otters were amazing, feedings were a must, open sea is great. Recommend seeing sea otter feeding or kelp harvest first then seeing open sea. Each location will be a unique viewing experience. And a great restaurant near by is seamarket or seaharvest. leave for lunch and come back for the rest of the day.
by Mike Wilson
The Aquarium has so many fun things to do. They have a great section for children to learn and play. There is a really cool observation area outside too (we even saw a whale!). It seems a little expensive but they use the admission funds to actually help the areas wildlife. Overall it was a really fun experience.
by Matthew Adjemian
What a great place! Our friends gave us their guest passes to go see this place and we had a great time. We spent about 4 hours there and managed to see all the animals and a couple of feedings, although the "Open Sea" feeding is supposed to be quite interesting and we got there too late to see it. The exhibits are very informative and there are many interactive exhibits for kids and adults alike. Great way to spend a day.
by Libby Chang
This is a VERY well run aquarium. It is a great place for kids of all ages. The tanks appear to be clean and well maintained. The staff and volunteers are very friendly and will take the time to answer questions. There are a lot of shows for the kids and adults. The aquarium can get crowded on the weekends. The food court is a bit expensive, and the quality isn't great. I would suggest eating at the many restaurants within walking distance.
by tori holder
Amazing aquarium with a large focus on teaching sustainabiltiy and conservation, Has one of the biggest open water tanks in the world as well as interesting rotating exhibits. Extremely clean and totally family friendly (though you don't need kids to go there). Lots of area hotels also offer discount tickets to the aquarium, and if you go a lot a membership gets you annual access. If you're hoping to see a particular creature, call in first, they'll be able to tell you if they have one in residence (for awhile last year the mola was MIA). Another...Read More
by tori holder
Amazing aquarium with a large focus on teaching sustainabiltiy and conservation, Has one of the biggest open water tanks in the world as well as interesting rotating exhibits. Extremely clean and totally family friendly (though you don't need kids to go there). Lots of area hotels also offer discount tickets to the aquarium, and if you go a lot a membership gets you annual access. If you're hoping to see a particular creature, call in first, they'll be able to tell you if they have one in residence (for awhile last year the mola was MIA). Another great thing, all the employees really know their marine biology and can answer questions.