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From Wonder to Conservation: THe Benefits of Visiting your local Aquarium

Updated: Jan 26


People in front of the Giant Aquarium looking at the fish
Academy of Sciences Philippine Coral Reef

Benefits for visiting the Aquarium

You get to explore marine life, take part in educational programs and dip into hands-on experiences with wildlife.

  • Join a passionate community: Connect with experts, nature, and fellow enthusiasts

  • Break free from screen time: Boost mental health and become an ocean ambassador

  • Learn about environmental threats: Understand conservation efforts and how to contribute

  • Engage with others: Embark on mini-adventures, ask questions, and create lasting memories

  • Aquariums: Where education meets adventure, fostering a commitment to ocean preservation.

For more than 150 years, people have been loving a trip to the aquarium since the first one opened in London in 1853. This new world experience fills one with wonder and awe, allowing both kids and adults to learn about our underwater bff’s through educational programs from conservation, hands-on learning and observation. The first marine education to the public of its kind.  Creating a strong community with an oceans-depth understanding and appreciation for our environment preserving it for future generations. Sea…op SEE why it’s important for you to explore and learn about all the benefits for visiting the aquarium. It is highly encouraged for you to get but if you don’t have an aquarium nearby there are many aquariums that have online educational programs, from lectures to live feedings that bringing the ocean to you!

The Aquarium Has Serious Education Value

You don’t need to jump into the ocean to see these amazing creatures, you get to check them out face to face without getting your feet wet. Learn about marine life, ecosystems and conservation. Explore the many different species and see how they live in their underwater habitats and why it’s important to protect them! Talk to a pro at the aquarium! These volunteers and often in house marine biologists are there to answer your questions. Ask anything! Can fish smell? How do they breathe underwater? When you have the courage to ask questions, you’re not only engaging with others,  but also taking the lead in your learning journey. Now that’s empowering!

Embracing Nature is Good For Your Health

These days more and more people are staying home. With technology at our fingertips it makes it easy to stay inside and zombie-out at on the computer or TV. All this screen time has ill effects on our youth. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), on average, children aged 8 to 10 spend six hours daily in front of a screen, those aged 11 to 14 spend nine hours, and youth aged 15 to 18 spend around seven-and-a-half hours daily engaging with screens. That’s a lot of screen time! Studies including that of Yale School of medicine links those who spend two years of screen time were more prone to long term mental health challenges like, depression, anxiety, social anxiety, and other related issues. What’s the answer? Snap-out-of-it and get out of the house! Dive into an underwater world, engage with  your community and join in hands-on learning experiences. Mental health improves when you connect with nature, becoming happier, more calm and even creative! So take your time and soak in the good vibrations! Your brain will thank you for it.

You're making a connection

Aquariums are a great way to connect with one another. Studies have found more people are happier in the long term when they have more experiences versus physical things. The aquarium is an ultimate experiential destination! Take on this underwater expedition as a mini adventure. Do some super-bonding by planning out the experience you want, talk about what you hope to see and even touch–what expectations do you have? Play a game of finding Nemo! Again, our most favorite thing to do is ask questions! Be curious and enjoy learning!  You might leave surprised and excited about your conclusions. Hey, you might find yourself looking to be a marine biologist, scuba diver, environmentalist…ah, you’re definitely on your way to be an Ocean Ambassador! This is one experience that you can continue to talk about even when you get home. And all of those warm fuzzy, exciting, and bonding feelings will be with you forever.  


LEARNING BY DOING IS WAY MORE IMPACTFUL

Think of the aquarium as a giant laboratory. In fact, it is! The aquarium is home to many marine biologists who are able to study sea creatures in this enclosed habitat. It saves them from being out in the field potentially many thousands of miles away. Luckily for you, the aquarium is a place that you too can study, we mean…check-out, these super cool, amazing sea creatures. Who knew touch pools were so educational?! This is a unique experience where you have the opportunity to gently touch creatures that live in the shallow waters. Amazingly there are nearby ocean-pros who are keeping a close eye and can answer any of your QUESTIONS! I’ve got one…Will this anemone sting me if I touch it? Will the round-ray bite me? Ask away, and if you’re brave enough, which you must be after all you’re already there, go for it! Take one finger and gently touch the creature. Remember it's a living being which means don’t poke or grab, it won’t like that. Why is this learning? Not only are you facing your fears (if you have a little hesitation) you are also experiencing what it is like to feel the skin of a stingray, the sleekness of a sea cucumber, the rough outer skin of a starfish and the stickiness of the tentacles of an anemone. Not to mention the temperature of the water! Burrrr! Additionally there are feedings too! Want to see how these creatures eat? It’s a mouth-full to describe BUT to experience it for yourselves is one of a kind!

You're also supporting conservation efforts

As mentioned before Aquariums are the home base to many marine biologists who are able to study sea creatures in an enclosed environment. They also create educational programs as well as take part in conservation projects including habitat restoration, animal rehabilitation as well as maintaining sustainable business practices! Practicing what they preach!It’s important to note that not all aquariums are created equal. There is a list of notable aquariums under the Association of Aquariums and Zoos that take part in best practices, when acquiring wildlife, to quality of life under captivity.

You're also supporting conservation efforts

We can thank many aquariums for partnering up with schools. How many times has the aquarium been your first visit when it was done as a field trip? You can imagine the conversations that follow upon the return home. The excitement and thrill of getting out of the classroom and to be apart of an underworld expedition. I remember the excitement of it as though it were yesterday!  The aquarium has a magical way of bringing people together. We can all relate with the sense of wonder when we’re looking at the same amazing creature. It doesn’t matter how old you are, looking at a 200lb Giant Sea Bass as it stares back at you is as thrilling for an adult as it is for a young child. A conversation is opened up on how we can do better for the environment to protect these creatures, as an individual as well as a community. Inspiring others to do better, like volunteering for beach cleanups, or picking up trash on your own, to better recycling practices and hazardous waste disposal. Ultimately the choice is yours! Having seen and made some salty bff’s at your local aquarium, don’t you want to do more to protect them? And don’t you too, want to live in a cleaner environment? It starts with you!  

Diving into the world of aquariums isn't just a visit—it's an adventure, an education, and a connection. For over 150 years, people have found wonder and community within these underwater realms. It's more than looking at creatures; it's about asking questions, taking the lead in your learning journey, and inspiring others to care for the environment.

In a world where screen time dominates, aquariums offer an escape. Connecting with nature improves mental health, making you happier, calmer, and more creative. The environmental awareness gained at aquariums goes beyond the glass walls; it becomes a call to action to protect our oceans. 

So, next time you step into an aquarium, remember you're not just observing; you're on a mini adventure, contributing to conservation, and connecting with the wonders of the ocean. Become an Ocean Ambassador, and let the warm, fuzzy, and exciting feelings stay with you forever! 


Sylvia Earle Quote


 

Our Color-it-in Sea Creature Pocket book is a the perfect companion to bring with you to the aquarium. – it's great for little explorers 7-10 who are curious about the ocean and love to color! See if you can spot the creatures from the book at your local aquarium and make it a fun activity to create lasting memories together!




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