The Aquarium by the bay is an entertaining and informative way to learn about the marine life that lives in the San Francisco Bay.
LocationThe Aquarium is located on Pier 39, which is one of the most frequented areas in the city. The aquarium is in the area on Pier 39 with all of the shops/restaurants, and is next to the Blue and Gold fleet area. The ticket window and entrance to the museum is located at the front of the pier, so finding it is easy.
Getting thereThe easiest way to get here is by public transportation. The streetcars will drop you off right at the pier, or if you are riding on the Powell St. or Hyde St. cable cars, it is a few blocks on flat ground to get to the aquarium. The aquarium offers discounts to those who use public transportation, so keep your ticket stub.
PricesStandard tickets prices are $13.95 Adult$7.50 Senior$7.50 Child$33.95 (Family Pak, two adults and two children)
Prepaying for tickets online and showing your public transport ticket stub will save you around $2 per ticket. There are often discount coupons that you can get from your hotel or the staff at the aquarium. It is rare that you need to pay full price to get in. They also have a combo tour that includes a 1-hour bay cruise and aquarium admission, which is economical.
Inside the MuseumThe museum has three main areas. The first two areas have a moving walkway through a 150-foot clear tunnel. This allows you to see the marine life from all angles. The first tunnel has marine life from inside the San Francisco bay and the second tunnel has the marine that frequents outside the bay. There are a variety of species, including schools of fish, sharks, and starfish. The moving walkway in the tunnels will move you slowly through the exhibits, but you can step off the walkway at any point to view the fish more closely. In the last area, several touch tanks have been installed and guests are encouraged to handle the marine life. Staff members are on hand in all areas to ask questions.
How long should I plan to spend here?Most people would spend 2 to 3 hours in the museum, particularly if you have children. Take your time through the aquarium and enjoy it.
RecommendationDefinitely a good way to spend a few hours learning more about the marine life in San Francisco. If you have been to the Monterrey aquarium, it might be more of the same. If you plan to do a bay cruise as well, consider getting the package, as it will save you a good amount of cash.
Editor's Note: This property was formerly Underwater World.
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