Visit the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center

Thing To Do Visit the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center

In Virginia Beach, the sun-kissed shores meet the enchanting world beneath the waves, and a visit to the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center is a perfect way to learn more about our underwater ecosystem. Just a short drive away from Sandbridge Beach, this world-class facility offers a captivating journey into marine life and conservation. It's a perfect activity for marine enthusiasts, rainy days, or those that are just looking to get a break from the beach.

Immersive Exhibits

Step inside the Virginia Aquarium and prepare to be mesmerized by its diverse array of exhibits contained in over 800,000 gallons of fresh and saltwater. From the majestic creatures of the Chesapeake Bay to the vibrant ecosystems of the Atlantic Ocean, each display offers a glimpse into the wonders of marine life. Marvel at the graceful movements of stingrays in the Ray Touch Pool, or come face-to-face with a loggerhead sea turtle in the Coastal Cove exhibit.

Interactive Experiences

For those seeking a hands-on adventure, the Virginia Aquarium delivers with a range of interactive experiences. Join a guided boat tour through the scenic waters of Owls Creek, where you'll have the chance to spot dolphins, ospreys, and other coastal wildlife in their natural habitat. Dive deeper into marine science with behind-the-scenes tours and educational programs led by knowledgeable staff.

Conservation Initiatives

More than just a place of entertainment, the Virginia Aquarium is committed to marine conservation and environmental stewardship. Learn about ongoing research projects aimed at protecting endangered species and preserving fragile ecosystems. Discover what you can do to help safeguard our oceans for future generations through interactive exhibits and educational outreach programs.

Plan Your Visit

  • Before embarking on your aquatic adventure, be sure to check the Virginia Aquarium's website for current hours of operation, ticket prices, and any special events or exhibits coming up. Tickets can be purchased in advance online or over the phone, which is strongly recommended.
  • Convenient parking ($5 from April - October) and amenities make it easy to spend a full day exploring all that the aquarium has to offer. Plan to spend an hour and a half in the North Building, and around 45 minutes in the newly renovated South Building. You can spend as long as you'd like on the Nature Trail.
  • The Aquarium offers 2 cafes - Mermaid Cafe and Otter Bay Cafe - which are open from 10am to 3pm daily. Enjoy salads, sandwiches, pizzas, pretzels, and sweets!
  • There are 2 fun stores in the North and South buildings, which are perfect for picking up a science-themed gift or bringing home a souvenir. Make sure to leave some time to browse!
  • If you're trying to avoid the crowds, weekends and rainy days are the most popular
  • The Aquarium is wheelchair accessible, and wheelchairs can be borrowed on a first-come first-serve basis.
  • Consider adding a boat tour to your visit!

Whether you're a nature enthusiast, a curious traveler, or a family seeking a memorable outing, the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center offers something for everyone. Soak up the beauty and wonder of Virginia's underwater world and leave inspired to protect and preserve our oceans for years to come. A must-visit destination during your stay in beautiful Sandbridge Beach!