Public Aquariums in Northeast USA

Public aquariums make an ideal vacation destination or educational outing. This list covers public aquariums and exhibits located in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont.

  • 01 of 15
    The Maritime Aquarium in Connecticut
    John W Barber

    The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk is unique in that it focuses solely on one body of water, Long Island Sound. The Aquarium features over a thousand marine animals that are native to the Sound and its watershed. They offer a number of special exhibits, some of which are non-aquatic, such as a Meerkat exhibit. The facility also features an IMAX theater and study cruises for the public as well as schools.

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  • 02 of 15
    Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut
    Grondemar

    Mystic Aquarium offers a variety of interesting exhibits, that include everything from birds to penguins to beluga whales. They also offer educational programs geared for specific age groups, and include lots of hands-on opportunities in their programs. A great resource for teaching and vacationing alike. Open year round, closing only on Thanksgiving and Christmas.

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  • 03 of 15
    Maine State Aquarium, lobster
    Steven G. Johnson

    The Maine State Aquarium is relatively new public aquarium, having been completed in 1995. It focuses on education, and is patterened after the rocky cost of the state of Maine. Exhibits include fish and inverts from the local area, including a fascinating exhibit featuring various color morphs of lobsters. Tide pooling classes as well as sport fishing clinics are offered, along with special events throughout the year. Teachers have a number of options to utilize the facilities for classroom and...MORE field trips.

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  • 04 of 15
    The Berkshire Museum
    Daderot

    The Berkshire Museum Aquarium features over two dozen species of live corals, as well as a number of other exhibits that are geared towards education. Located in downtown Pittsfield, Massachusetts, the aquarium is housed in the lower level of the museum. There are a number of educational programs offered, and the facility is open year round.

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    Continue to 5 of 15 below.
  • 05 of 15
    Maria Mitchell Association Aquarium
    Maria Mitchell Association
    Located on the shores of Nantucket Harbor, the Maria Mitchell Association was founded over one hundred years ago to honor Maria Mitchell and further her love of "learning by doing". Open only seasonally, the aquarium exhibits change regularly and to teach visitors about the animals living on the beaches of Nantucket and the surrounding harbor. Definitely worth a visit if you are in the area.
  • 06 of 15
    New England Aquarium
    Robert Stern

    Located in Boston, the New England Aquarium is home to well over a million visitors annually. Open year round they focus on ocean exploration and marine conservation, offering a large variety of exhibits, including an IMAX theater. The website is just as good, with webcams, virtual tours, and educational information.

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  • 07 of 15
    Woods Hole Science Aquarium
    Woods Hole Science Aquarium

    A small, public aquarium that is free to the public. Although many aquariums in the United States lay claim to being the oldest, Woods Hole has the best claim, dating back to 1875. Their exhibits include approximately 140 species of marine animals found in Northeast and Middle Atlantic waters. They have some excellent activity sheets on their site that are a great resource for teachers.

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  • 08 of 15
    Seacoast Science Center logo
    Seacoast Science Center

    The Seacoast Science Center is located in beautiful Odiorne Point State Park in Rye, New Hampshire. The focus of the center is on personal learning experiences in the natural sciences. The Gregg Interactive Learning Studio opened in 2007, offering distance learning across the country, something well worth considering if you are a teacher. The Center is particularly committed to ocean literacy, which shows in the program offerings.

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    Continue to 9 of 15 below.
  • 09 of 15
    Adventure Aquarium
    Laya Gerlock

    Open 365 days a year, Adventure Aquarium prides itself on being the most touchable aquarium in the United States. Located on the Camden, New Jersey waterfront, they have over 2 million gallons of water and 8,500 animals. They are the only aquarium in the world to exhibit hippos and one of only two aquariums in the country to exhibit a Hammerhead Shark.

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  • 10 of 15
    Jenkinson's Aquarium
    Jenkinson's Aquarium

    Located on the boardwalk in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey, Jenkinson’s Aquarium exhibits include Atlantic sharks, Pacific sharks, coral reefs, penguins, alligators and seals. Open year round, except for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. They offer group rates for schools, scouts, churches, camps and other organizations. Summer camps are offered each year, in addition to monthly family educational programs.

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  • 11 of 15
    Aquarium of Niagara
    Aquarium of Niagara

    The Aquarium of Niagara Falls was founded by a small group of chemists and scientists to introduce an artificial seawater. In creating the aquarium, their focus was education and recreation, and the facility was built to allow for that. They offer a variety of events, from storytelling to magicians to Easter egg hunts. The facility also can be rented for personal events.

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  • 12 of 15
    Cold Spring Harbor Fish Hatchery & Aquarium
    CSH

    Don't be put off by the word "hatchery", this facility has a lot to offer visitors who love aquariums and fish. Originally a fish hatchery for nearly a hundred years, in 1982 they decided to offer an environmental education center and public aquarium, which continuing to function as a hatchery. Visitors can see traditional aquariums that house local fish, as well as hatching and rearing pools and ponds. Few places offer the opportunity to view aquarium exhibits as well as see an...MORE operating fish hatchery. Don't miss this one if you are in the area. Educators should check the education section on the website, where they have programs by age groups.

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    Continue to 13 of 15 below.
  • 13 of 15
    Long Island Aquarium
    Long Island Aquarium & Exhibition Center

    Formerly known as Atlantis Marine World, Long Island Aquarium is Main Street in Riverhead, along the Peconic River in Long Island, New York. They area also home to New York State’s only authorized marine mammal and sea turtle rescue and rehabilitation center. Indoor exhibits include the Amazon Rainforest, Africa’s Lake Malawi, and the Long Island coast, and outdoor exhibits are likewise themed to specific habitats. They also offer a number of education programs, including lesson plans for grades...MORE K through 12.

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  • 14 of 15
    New York Aquarium
    David Shankbone

    Situated by the sea in Coney Island, the New York Aquarium is home to thousands of fish and a multitude of marine creatures, including beluga whales, sharks, walruses and dolphins. Open 365 days a year, the Aquarium is the longest operating facility of its kind in the country. Be sure to check their events calendar, as there are unique events happening every month. 

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  • 15 of 15
    Pittsburgh Zoo & RPG Aquarium
    Ryan E. Poplin

    Just completed in 2000, this modern aquarium features exhibits that cover all water habitats, from the Amazon to the Antartic. The website features profiles of many of the fish and animals at the aquarium. Edcuators should browse the education section, where they even have programs that qualify for homeschool credit.

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