Virginia Aquarium Sea Adventures Has Some Family Summer Fun.

Virginia Aquarium Sea Adventures Has Some Family Summer Fun.
Since 1989, Virginia Aquarium boat trips have engaged adults, families, and student groups in coastal marine ecology by providing opportunities to observe dolphins, whales, and other marine life in their natural habitat.

Ocean Collections Sea Adventure

The Atlantic Explorer, a 65-foot catamaran, departs from the Aquarium dock every Wednesday, June 24 – September 2 at 1p.m. This 75 minute cruise, led by Aquarium educators, allows participants to collect and observe a variety of local fish and invertebrates up close and personal. Trips cost $20 for adults and $15 for children. Value added Aquarium and Sea Adventure admissions are available.

Dolphin Discoveries Sea Adventure

The Atlantic Explorer, a 65-foot catamaran, departs from the Aquarium dock daily at 10:30 a.m., and 1, 3:30, and 6:30 p.m. daily.  Take an unforgettable 90-minute excursion exploring for Virginia’s most common and charismatic marine mammal, bottlenose dolphins! Trips cost $20 for adults and $15 for children. Value added Aquarium and Sea Adventure admissions are available.

New! July 4th Fireworks Sea Adventure

View fireworks from a unique vantage point and without the crowds: onboard the Atlantic Explorer, a 65-foot catamaran! This special cruise departs the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center at 8:30 p.m. and returns to the dock after the show is over, around 10:15 p.m. Avoid the oceanfront traffic by taking Birdneck Road to General Booth Boulevard.  Don’t worry about parking fees; parking at the Virginia Aquarium is always free! The July 4th Fireworks Sea Adventure costs $30 for adults and $25 for children. Tickets available at http://tickets.virginiaaquarium.com/.

CHANGING EXHIBIT

Dinosaurs!

Dinosaurs may have roamed the earth around 215 million years ago (mya) but humans are still fascinated by them. The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center will give you the chance to get close to these incredible creatures as the changing exhibit gallery is transformed by sight, sound and touch into Dinosaurs! The exhibit opens to the public June 14 and remains through January 3, 2016.

Featured in the exhibit are eight dinosaur species that conquered the earth by land, air and sea during the Jurassic (200-140 mya) and the Cretaceous (140 – 65 mya) periods. The dinosaurs are surrounded by scenes of their natural environment but even more impressive is the realistic animatronic movements and sounds they emit! One kind of dinosaur you wouldn’t find from that time period is a remote control T.rex! Guests will have an opportunity to see how the robotic dinosaurs were built by Kokoro Exhibits and actually operate it. Other components of the Dinosaurs! exhibit include a Paleo Discover

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC 3D THEATERy Dig station, a Fossil Rubbing Interactive, and a Create Your Own Dinosaurs and Hide the Dinosaurs in Camouflage challenge.

Four films are available for viewing in the Aquarium’s newly refurbished and rebranded National Geographic 3D Theater. The films are James Cameron’s DeepSea Challenge 3D, Turtle Vision 3D, Secret Ocean and Walking with Dinosaurs.Movie admission is $8 each. Value added tickets for movie and Aquarium admission are available. For a quick reference of our movie schedules, movie descriptions, and online ticket purchases, visit VirginiaAquarium.com.

NEW! Big Screen Saturdays                                                                                                                                

Every Saturday night for the summer and beyond, guests can relax and rewind with classic movies shown on Virginia’s largest movie screen! Show time begins at 7:50 p.m. Tickets are $5 each. Tickets can be purchased online or on site. Visit VirginiaAquarium.com to see scheduled movie titles.

EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS

Discovery Days, ages 4 - 6

Ever wonder who’s eating who for dinner?  Discover what it means to be part of a food web.

Hide and Seek. Can’t Find Me!, September 17,  2 - 3:15 p.m.

Are you good at playing hide and seek?  Come learn about a few animals that could teach you a thing or two about hiding and camouflage.

BONUS EXPERIENCES, free with Aquarium admission

Shark Shenanigans, July 6 - 10, 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Join us in the Bay and Ocean Pavilion as we celebrate one of the oceans most mysterious residents…sharks! Guests will have the opportunity to learn interesting facts about sharks, discover the shark sixth sense, make a shark hat, and attend educational programs throughout the day.

Programs include age appropriate discussions, activities and crafts. All programs are from 2 - 3:15 p.m. in the Marsh Pavilion Discovery Room unless otherwise noted. Fee: $7 members, $10 non-members

Pre-registration is strongly recommended: call 385-0278 or mail programs@VirginiaAquarium.com.

Life on a Piling, July 2,  2 - 3:15 p.m.

Look closely at an underwater piling and you'll see a creeping, crawling, clinging menagerie of animals. We'll bring a collection of creatures from the Aquarium pilings into the classroom for hands-on exploration.

BAY AND OCEAN PAVILION

Around the World, August 6,  2 - 3:15 p.m.

Join us on a plane ride as we travel around the world visiting different habitats. These habitats represent what Virginia used to look like many years ago. BAY AND OCEAN PAVILION

Hungry, Hungry Predators, September 3, 2 - 3:15 p.m.

Vulture Awareness Day, September 5, 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.   

In celebration of International Vulture Awareness day, Birds of Prey (vultures, owls, hawks) will be featured in our Critter Close Ups throughout the day at the Marsh Pavilion.

Wildflower Wednesdays, June 17 - August 26                                                                                                                                          

Each Wednesday guests are invited to tour the Wildflower Garden at the Bay & Ocean Pavilion  with members of the horticulture team at 10:30 and 11:30 a.m., as well as 12:30 and 1:30 p.m. Crafts and activities will be available for our younger guests between 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

JUST FOR TODDLERS, free with Aquarium admission

Toddler Programs

Sponsored by Whole Foods, these weekly programs are created just for the little ones. Included with membership and admission. Programs last about 30 minutes. Adults must accompany child during program.

Toddler Tuesdays, 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., Marsh Pavilion                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Bring your preschoolers on Tuesdays for this age-appropriate program that includes stories, songs, and an adventure in the Aquarium.  On the third Tuesday of the month, June 16, July 21, August 18 and September 15, the

Toddler Trek, Thursdays, 11 a.m. staff features a puppet show. 

Join us for Toddler Trek Thursdays, an outdoor exploration session for early learners and their parents. Every Thursday, take an easy 30-minute stroll along the Nature Trail to discover a new animal, color, or shape through fun outdoor activities. This program meets in the Marsh Pavilion and takes place inside during inclement weather.

NATURE PLAY PLACE

Open Daily (weather permitting)| 11a.m. - 3 p.m.

Located near the Marsh Pavilion, Nature Play Place is a fun outdoor area for children 8 and under to use their imagination and explore nature.

Nature Play Day at the Virginia Aquarium, June 19, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.                                                                                                        

Visit anytime from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for Nature Play Day to celebrate the summer opening of Nature Play Place. This outdoor children’s activity area is located on the Nature Path near the Marsh Pavilion. Enjoy extra games and activities in addition to the fun you’ll always find in Nature Play Place.

As part of our celebration, the first 40 families to arrive will receive a nature play kit to take home. Aquarium educators will be on hand to engage your children in Nature Play Place’s variety of activities.

  • Use your imagination to make up stories in Fairy Forest.
  • Play with sand and water.
  • Make music in the woods.
  • Search for worms and insects.
  • Pretend to avoid gators while crossing Gator Gully obstacle course.
  • Build in the Construction Zone.
  • Take the tree walk to meet species common to our area.
  • Nature Play Day is free to Aquarium members and included with admission for non-members. No registration is necessary, and you are welcome to bring a snack or lunch to enjoy while you play.

The Adventure Park at Virginia Aquarium

With the new addition of The Adventure Park at Virginia Aquarium there is high flying fun with guests climbing, making their way through ropes courses, and zipping through its Owls Creek green marshlands.

With varying degrees of difficulty, guests ages 5 and up, can find their trail either in the Adventure Forest or in the Labyrinth. The Aquarium and The Adventure Park are separately ticketed activities. For more details and summer hours visit http://www.virginiaaquarium.com/visit/the-adventure-park. Call (757) 385-4947 (385-IZIP) for further information or group reservations.

The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, and the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums whose mission is conservation through education. The Aquarium is located at 717 General Booth Boulevard, just south of Rudee Inlet in Virginia Beach.  For more information on exhibits, movies, boat rides and special events, call (757) 385-FISH (3474), (TDD 385-4305) or visit www.VirginiaAquarium.com.

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