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New York, New York
November 3, 2005
Planning a trip to Mystic Aquarium from New York City requires special attention – how do we get there? When do we go? What else will be do? Mystic is about a 2.5-hour drive from Manhattan.
The aquarium is rather small – it only took us 2 tours to completely tour the place. It is best to plan your itinerary ahead of time to schedule more activities in the nearby area. Fall is a great time to go because the semi-long drive can be laborious, but being able to see different colors on the leaves made the trip a little more pleasant. Although we went on a Saturday, the crowd was thin and there was plenty of personal space.
One of the most unique things about Mystic Aquarium is their white beluga whale; it’s an amazing creature, and the confirmation of its home made viewing the beast up close and personal very easy. There are also “experiences” at Mystic, such as the Beluga Experience or Penguin Experience, where you can actually get in the water with the animals. The fares are in the $100+ range, but on the day we went, employees were shouting out discounts due to the lack of visitors.
When moving from one exhibit to another, I felt like I was on a nature trail. The design of the campus was such that their trees, paths, and streams were all strategically aligned to provoke a feeling of adventure, tranquility, and awareness of the natural world. Every step I took felt like a photo opportunity. The main building, which houses spiders, fish and eels, and divers, was cool. Diver Jim and I splayed patty cakes. Then he pulled out his underwater notepad and scribbled me messages. The "dark room," as I call it, was kinda scary, with bats, tarantulas, and other spooky creatures. While admiring the sea lions playing, one snuck up on me from the bottom and made me scream! Overall, it was a great adventure, and I felt like a kid again!
From journal Mystic, CT
by Mary Porcher
New Haven, Connecticut
June 4, 2004
Shortly after our visit to this aquarium, I went to Ripley's Aquarium in Myrtle Beach, SC. I was shocked that they charged about the same fee and had much more to see. We traveled through a glass cave with great whites over our heads and saw massive aquariums full of incredibly colorful fish. That experience seemed much more worth the money. But as far as aquariums in Connecticut, Mystic is the place to go.
Visit their website for more information.
From journal Things to Do in New Haven
Yonkers, New York
April 27, 2003
From journal The Cape Cod Spring Break
by Eve Carr
June 25, 2001
Well, he is the president of the Institute for Exploration at Mystic Aquarium located in Mystic, Connecticut. And, under his direction, there’s plenty of exploration going on. To learn more about it, just come here for a visit and see the Challenge of the Deep exhibit, created as part of Mystic Aquarium’s $54 million expansion.
At other exhibits such as Where Rivers Meet the Sea, you’ll learn the secrets of the shoreline where "kid-friendly" exhibits encourage young visitors to get at eye-level with marsh species including seahorses, green crabs, and silversides. The centerpiece of the Coral Reef gallery is a dramatic 30,000-gallon exhibit featuring different species of fish against a backdrop of brightly colored artificial coral. Graceful rays and other tropical species, including butterfly fishes, goat fishes, and trigger fishes, swim among green moray eels, puffer fish a guitarfish.
Our favorite was not only watching the giant Beluga whales swim by only a Plexiglas distance away, but watching the excitement of children as they did. They would squeal with excitement whenever the whale came closer and were fascinated by its movement. At the "kids cave," children can crawl underneath the Offshore Banks exhibit and get a fish-eye view through a 36-inch acrylic bubble. It’s enough to make you want to be a kid again so you can experience it.
Plan to spend some time here because there’s plenty to see and appreciate. You’ll come away from this fun experience with a much deeper appreciation for the vast Oceans and life that lives in them.
The Mystic Aquarium and Institute for Exploration is located at 55 Coogan Boulevard, Mystic, Connecticut. It is at Exit 90 off Interstate 95. For more information, visit link.
From journal Mystic is Magical
by unorthodox traveler
March 1, 2001
From journal Mystic...So Many Choices