Gulf Coast Aquariums: A Tour of the 8 Best Facilities OF Alabama

Aquariums have a special appeal because they give you a closer look at the ocean in a more accessible setting.

You don’t need to dive or snorkel to watch schools of fish, coral reefs, and starfish, as aquariums bring everything together at once. 

These Gulf Coast aquariums are your portal into the underwater world without visiting the ocean or reefs.

gulf coast aquariums

Mississippi Aquarium

Mississippi Aquarium is a premier institution making one of the most significant contributions to conserving and researching the aquatic world.

It is an excellent place for entertainment, education, and experience, as they feature over 200 aquatic wonders. 

If you are a member, you can access food discounts, events, and unlimited visits to have better ocean adventures. 

This indoor and outdoor aquarium is home to fresh and saltwater creatures like river otters, stingrays, sharks, and more. 

When you go to the Mississippi Aquarium, you’ll understand the wildlife better and have the motivation to conserve the environment. 

Furthermore, visiting the aquarium also contributes to the research funds that help conserve and provide a positive environmental impact. 

Visit: 2100 E Beach Blvd, Gulfport, MS 39501

Call: 228-241-1300

Gulf World Marine Park

Gulf World Marine Park is open to the public whether it rains or shines, and its indoor park features various animal species. 

While it is home to aquatic friends like sea lions, penguins, stingrays, and more, it is also an educational facility. 

They also have rare rough-toothed dolphins, and the park takes good care of them in North America.

The Gulf World Marine Park supports animal research in the marine world because of its rehabilitation and rescue programs. 

When you drop into this park, you can watch their daily shows and explore their exhibits to learn more about water creatures. 

They have interactive programs that allow you to get close to dolphins, sea lions, seals, penguins, and stingrays. 

By exploring their zoo, you are also helping their mission to protect the environment and learn about its importance. 

Gulf World offers many programs if you want to experience an educational and memorable dolphin encounter. 

You can also access their free parking provided by the Coast Transit Authority just adjacent to the aquarium.

Visit: 15412 Front Beach Rd, Panama City Beach, FL 32413

Call: 850-234-5271

The Alabama Aquarium – Dauphin Island Sea Lab

Alabama Aquarium highlights the critical habitats in coastal Alabama: the Northern Gulf of Mexico, Mobile Bay, the Tensaw River Delta, and the Barrier Islands. 

The Alabama Aquarium  – Dauphin Island Sea Lab, or Estuarium, is home to more than 100 animal species on display.

You are free to explore their 10,000-square-foot Exhibit Hall, 30,000-gallon aquarium, and 7,000-stingray touch pool.

The 31 aquariums are large enough to cater to various creatures and plants that you can find on Dauphin Island and nearby habitats. 

It also has a Living Marsh Boardwalk where you can walk and find more creatures on land and water. 

Alabama Aquarium’s beautiful exhibits that are both visual and interactive will create a broader understanding of the estuary system. 

Visit: 102 Bienville Boulevard, Dauphin Island, AL 36528

Call: 251-861-7500

Related Reading: The Alabama Aquarium – Learn More Here.

Gulf Specimen Aquarium

Gulf Specimen Aquarium is an independent institution that provides marine life resources for school and research facilities.

They also study endangered species and mariculture to find more sea farming advantages. 

Their aquarium and research facility significantly contribute to different US, Europe, and Canadian research programs.

The Gulf Specimen Aquarium features touch tanks and visual exhibits to provide students and adults with a unique and enlightening experience. 

You can encounter the creatures on display by touching, smelling, and hearing them while learning how to protect them.

This aquarium specializes in smaller creatures, unlike the usual gigantic marine animals so you can meet even the most fragile ones. 

Some of their creatures are clams, starfish, algae, turtles, invertebrates, and sharks from the local Gulf Coast. 

Their exhibits are also unique, encouraging more people to explore and participate in conserving aquatic wildlife. 

Visit: 222 Clark Dr, Panacea, FL 32346

Call: 850-984-5297

Gulf Coast Aquarium, Inc

Gulf Coast Aquarium, Inc is a heaven for all aquatic creatures and coral lovers because they not only feature marine friends but also find homes forever for them.

It is more than an aquarium because they help people who love sea creatures take care of their pets. 

Their knowledge of caring for fish and reptiles makes them a go-to place for aquatic animal services.

Their large selection of ethically acquired creatures includes fish, coral, invertebrates, and reptiles. 

They ensure that their animals are well-taken and get the best nutrition, so they are healthy before and after release. 

If you are starting this hobby, you can find maintenance and installation services. 

The Gulf Coast Aquarium is more than a business because it puts animals first with its research and services. 

Visit: 469 Harrison Ave, Panama City, FL 32401

Call: 850-769-4111

Key West Aquarium

Key West Aquarium is the best family destination where everyone can find something interesting in the underwater world.

Their outdoor and indoor museums offer so much fun to unravel and interact with to keep you entertained. 

Their zoo includes tropical fish, sea cucumbers, barracuda, grouper, and eels, while their guides narrate their information.

They also have jellyfish, conchs, sharks, and more marine friends, with some available for feeding and encounters. 

Key West’s famous attractions make this family activity a must-visit for people of all ages on the island. 

If you want to get up close with different marine creatures with an interactive tour, Key West Aquarium gives you this unforgettable trip. 

The children cost $12.24 while the adult admission is only $21.44 when you avail online, which is cheaper than their regular prices.

Visit: 1 Whitehead St, Key West, FL 33040

Call: 305-296-2051

Related Reading: Dinner Cruises in Mobile, Alabama – Explore Them Here.

Mote Marine Laboratory And Aquarium

Mote Marine Laboratory And Aquarium is an Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited aquarium that proves its care for wildlife conservation and research.

Inside, you’ll meet many aquatic creatures like turtles, jellyfish, sharks, manatees, and otters.

They also have touch pools and hands-on exhibits so you can meet the creatures up close and personal in the aquarium.

You can look inside their Mote Marine Laboratory through windows and exhibits and understand how science and animal conservation works. 

Their 135,000-gallon tank features diverse aquatic creatures like freshwater fish, crustaceans, reefs, and more as they interact in their ecosystem.

They also have river otters and alligators that you’ll find exciting and intimidating, but they are all charming creatures.

Visit: 1600 Ken Thompson Pkwy, Sarasota, FL 34236

Call: 941-388-4441

Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park

Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park has a lot in store for all animal lovers, especially those who want to experience animal encounters. 

Their unique setting gives an excellent place for anyone who wants an awe-inspiring entertainment experience with ocean creatures.

Their adventure park features dolphins, sea lions, sting rays, reptiles, penguins, turtles, and more.

Their sea lions and dolphins star in amazing shows that show their adorable talents and interact with the audience during their program. 

You can also swim with stingrays as they offer a snorkeling activity that lets you meet bamboo sharks, tropical vertebrates, and stingrays.

Their penguins are also something to look forward to because these cute friends are ready for a feeding and touching encounter.

With many aquatic friends to discover and meet, the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park is a jam-packed family activity you’ll never forget. 

Visit: 1010 Miracle Strip Pkwy SE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548

Call: 850-243-9046

Related Reading: Museums In Alabama – Learn More Here.

Wrapping Up: Best Aquariums on The Gulf Coast

Wrapping Up: Best Aquariums on The Gulf Coast

The Gulf Coast is famous for its pristine waters and sandy beaches, but aren’t you curious about what’s underneath these magnificent views?

When you think that the sun kissing the water is beautiful, you’ll want to see what it is like underwater. 

The ocean is a beautiful place to delve into despite its danger, so visiting an aquarium can help you discover this new world. 

With these spectacular aquariums, you’ll be able to dive into the deep waters and look into the fascinating realm under the ocean.

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