Activities & Resources
New England Aquarium050in Boston, MA 02110
about New England Aquarium:
As you walk toward the building, take a look to your left. You'll spy playful seals putting on a water dance just for you. It's a wonderful greeting. Inside the aquarium you'll come upon a large rocky outpost that is home to dozens of tiny penguins. You can watch them shake their tail feathers and immediately share their delight. Naturally, you'll find lots of tank type exhibits, with many varieties of fish.
As you wind your way up a spiral ramp, you may have visions of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. The Aquarium is home to a Giant Ocean Tank; a floor to ceiling fish tank that holds a whopping 187,000 gallons of sea water. You'll see a wide range of aquatic life - from the most delicate angelfish to the gnarliest blow fish. But it's the sharks that keep kids' tiny noses pressed to the glass. There are several in there and the kids go wild when they swim by. If you're lucky, you'll see one of the aquarium's divers in the tank, feeding the fish. As far as we know, none have become fish food... yet.
Also, kids and their parents can find the stars of Disney's "Finding Nemo" in the tropical gallery. And don't miss the exhibit of graceful, otherworldly seadragons, featuring both the leafy and weedy species. These ornate cousins of seahorses from Down Under are mesmerizing to watch and tell a captivating conservation story.
The top floor has a supervised hands-on exhibit that invites kids to touch and examine starfish, snails, and mussels. When you're ready to move on, consider visiting the fur seals, on display in an outdoor exhibit behind the Aquarium.
The Aquarium is more than a tourist stop; it's an institution dedicated to education. It runs a summer program called "Summer Discoveries" for kids in grades 4-9. It also offers two-week programs for high school students.
Aqua Kids Family Day: On Fridays, the Aquarium offers a variety of activities created especially for families with young children. Throughout the day, you will find stories, art projects, music and live animal exploration at the Aquarium. No registration required.
The aquarium offers behind-the-scenes tours - available on a reservation-only basis - during which participants learn what the animals eat, how their tanks are maintained, how sick animals are cared for and many other insider tidbits. Adults must accompany children. Please book two weeks in advance.
Memberships begin at $75/year.
The New England Aquarium is a participant in City Pass, a convenient way to visit six Boston attractions. Other participating attractions include: Museum of Fine Arts, Museum of Science, John F. Kennedy Library and Museum, and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum.