The Aquarium of the Pacific

April 3, 2017

Southern California is full of various tourist attractions such as Universal Studios, Disney Land, the Los Angeles Zoo, and so forth. One of the most interesting of these tourist attractions is the Aquarium of the Pacific, located in Long Beach, California. The aquarium is situated across the water from the Long Beach Convention Center and the Queen Mary. Come and explore different sea creatures, both common and exotic, right here at the aquarium. First opened in 1998, the aquarium holds over 11,000 animals representing over 500 different species in exhibits that range in size and capacity from about 5,000 to 350,000 gallons.

When first coming into the entrance, behold a life-size blue whale model and its calf, as it majestically hangs from the ceiling for guests to view. Currently, guests can enter an educational gallery displaying the many species that have gone extinct or risk going extinct as well as the causes for extinction. This exhibit, called the “Vanishing Animals” exhibit, is only temporary, so visit as soon as possible before another exhibition replaces it.

The aquarium contains two areas with sofas and a view of small aquarium tanks. Guests can simply indulge themselves with the comfort and the view while enjoying refreshments from the coffee bar located near these two areas. The Aquarium fun starts from the Southern California and Baja Gallery. It all starts with the Blue Cavern exhibit, a three story, 142,000-US-gallon tank that houses animals that live in the waters of the Catalina Island. The gallery displays much of the coastal California wildlife including seals and sea lions.

Then, go outside to view the lorikeet forest and shark lagoon. Here, guests can interact with the animals by feeding nectar to lorikeets and even petting sharks and rays. A bigger tank displays larger sharks and rays such as the sand tiger shark, black tip reef shark, and the reticulate whip-tale ray. Other galleries to view are the Northern Pacific Gallery and the Southern Pacific Gallery. The Northern Pacific Gallery displays and educates on the sea-life of the Bering Sea. Be amazed at the giant pacific octopus, Japanese spider crabs, different species of jellies, and the intelligent southern sea otters. Finally, at the Tropical Pacific Gallery, explore the beauty and color of the coral reefs, many of which are vanishing in the wild. This gallery contains the aquarium’s largest tank, which is a 350,000 gallon tropical reef habitat, representing the Blue Corner dive site off the coast of Palau. This gallery displays olive ridley sea turtles, the gentle zebra shark, and numerous fish of the coral reefs, and various sea horses and sea dragons.

Overall, the aquarium is a great tourist site and an educational site for the whole family. Guests can learn so much about the world’s oceans and the current state of these beautiful animals and habitats.