Santa Monica Pier Aquarium - Santa Monica, CA
Posted by: silverquill
N 34° 00.626 W 118° 29.764
11S E 361852 N 3764321
Quick Description: Located beneath the historic Santa Monica Pier, this aquarium is dedicated to education through interactive exhibits and programs with over 100 species of local sea life on display.
Location: California, United States
Date Posted: 10/4/2011 12:07:14 AM
Waymark Code: WMCQQ1
This is less, and so much more, than the usual tourist attraction. Each year millions of people throng to the historic Santa Monica Pier with its classic Looff Carousel
, Pacific Land with its giant ferris wheel and roller coaster, restaurants and shops, and, of course, the beach itself. Brightly decorated with murals of marine scenes, this small aquarium is tucked under the pier and the Looff Hippodrome
at the entrance.
Instead of tank after tank of fish and aquatic life, one will find here interactive exhibits and educational activities for all ages. Beyond mere entertainment, the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium has the goal of preservation of the delicate ecosystems of the seashore through education and experience.
From the Healthy Bay website:
"Heal the Bay’s Santa Monica Pier Aquarium is located beach level at the historic Santa Monica Pier and attracts more than 85,000 visitors annually, including 15,000 students visiting for school and group field trips. The center serves as an educational resource for the community and attracts a portion of the estimated 4 million annual visitors to the Santa Monica Pier.
The Aquarium’s vision is to inspire understanding and conservation of the Santa Monica Bay and its watersheds through hands-on education, environmental stewardship and discovery. To that end, visitors find engaging education programs, activities and special events dedicated to pollution prevention, marine conservation, biodiversity and environmental education.
A visit to the Aquarium is uniquely interactive – the 4,500-square-foot marine center is loaded with hands-on exhibits; staff, trained volunteers, and interns are stationed throughout, ready to help identify animals on display, answer questions, and engage in conversation about the ocean environment.
During public hours, visitors have the opportunity to engage in hands-on exploration at the touch tanks - which are home to dozens of species of marine animals - from the commonly seen purple sea urchins, hermit crabs, sea stars and sea cucumbers to the unique California sea hares, brittle stars, abalone, kelp crabs and tube worms."