Boston, Massachusetts has the privilege of being home to one of the most amazing aquatic attractions in the world, the New England Aquarium. Founded in 1969, it was one of the first modern public aquariums ever. Today, the aquarium brings in more than 1.3 million visitors every year. Families, students, and anyone interested in life under the sea will find the New England Aquarium to be worth a visit or two. There’s even a 3-D IMAX theatre!
With more than 70 exhibits, the aquarium hosts a wide variety of aquatic creatures from every climate. From seals, penguins and sea turtles, to octopi, sharks and even whales, there is a representative from almost all marine life present somewhere. New England Aquarium also offers classes and lectures, catering to schools and children in their effort to learn more about the ocean and the importance of conservation.
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Some of the more unique exhibits include the Trust Family Foundation Shark and Ray Touch Tank, where a low-rimmed tank allows visitors to touch the rays and sharks within. The Giant Ocean Tank stands four stories tall and is home to a massive coral reef exhibit featuring the star attraction, Myrtle the green sea turtle, who has been a resident of the aquarium since 1970. More than 600 other animals inhabit the Ocean Tank, including sharks, stingrays, barracuda, eels, and many varieties of reef fish. Aquarium guests follow the cylinder tank throughout the aquarium through the circular path that leads to the third level. On the third level aquarium staff have daily feedings at the very top of this massive central tank. Guests will be entertained and amazed as all of the tropical fish go into a speedy, jumping, feeding frenzy.
Many sections of the aquarium allow for interactive play and learning. The Penguin exhibit allows guests to hold a fish-shaped flashlight in which the penguins intriguingly follow around. The Penguins have enormous personality and are entertaining to watch especially during feeding times. There is a thinking gallery with interactive displays to engage your senses. Younger guests love the Curious George discovery corner designed with inviting kid-sized chairs, as well as enticing hands on presentations.
The aquarium’s 3-D IMAX theatre offers no short supply of thrills for members of the audience. Bee transported to the underwater world without leaving your seat. Walking into the enormous, dimly lit theatre, patrons sense a buzz of excitement. As the audience grows in number, the feeling of anticipation is palpable on the air; all present know, collectively, that they are about to experience something phenomenal. The screen’s enormous size – it’s 65 ft high by 85 ft wide – looms over the audience as a portal to other more fantastic worlds. As the lights go dark and the film begins to cue, the audience goes silent, as its journey commences.
The New England Aquarium is great for the family or anyone that wants to learn more about aquatic life. The staff also encourages educational and community outings, making this the perfect field trip.