Oregon Coast Aquarium
Oregon Coast Aquarium
2820 SE Ferry Slip Rd.
Newport, OR 97365
Oregon Coast Aquarium Description
Not a standard aquarium with typical fish tanks, the Oregon Coast Aquarium has many exhibits outside where visitors walk between massive cave-like boulders to view everything from a shy Pacific octopus to bold otters who float on their backs, scratch themselves, and contemplate YOU. Friendly volunteers help kids brave the two "please touch" tanks filled with skates, anemones, sea cucumbers, starfish, and other marine life. Animal feedings through the day and the sparkling handblown glass in the tanks leave kids alive with wonder (and questions) about the fish. All the marine life is native to the Oregon coast except in one impressive exhibit that changes every two years.
Toddlers & Pre-K: If kids are getting antsy, spend some time in the play area outside near the cafeteria's tables. It has huge statues of turtles, seals, and whales to climb on, slide down, and jump off of.
School-Age Kids: Be forewarned, they'll want to spend lots of time at the stingray touch tank (where they can pet southern stingrays and California skates) and tidal pool touch tank (where they can hold sea cucumbers and deep water starfish).
- Check animal feeding times. Watching what and how different sea creatures eat is fascinating for kids and adults, and the question-and-answer sessions are truly engaging. The schedule is posted near the entrance.
- No outside food or drink allowed. The aquarium cafeteria serves decent but standard fare. Or pack a lunch and eat in the picnic area in the parking lot on the south side, near S1 (get your hand stamped on the way out for easy re-entry).
- Follow the rules. No gum chewing or smoking is allowed inside the aquarium.
- Skip the stroller. The gravel on the walkways for the outside exhibits is hard to plow through with a stroller. Toddlers won't mind watching, though they may get frustrated by the "Do Not Climb" signs on many of the rocks.
Just the Facts
Hours: Open every day except December 25. Summer Hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Winter Hours: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Recommended Time: 1 - 2 hours