Visit Boston Massachusetts
Visit Boston Massachusetts
Diver Feeding Blue Fish at the New England Aquarium in Boston

The New England Aquarium in Boston

Central Wharf

Boston, Massachusetts 02110-3399


Written by Julie Greiner
The New England Aquarium has a reputation as being one of the best whale watches in the world. The Aquarium is located at Central Wharf, Boston. You may take a ride out to Stellwagen Bank on the only boats in Boston that were designed specifically for whale watching with their
wrap around exterior decks. There's a full service galley and souvenir shop on board as well. The New England Aquarium is a non-profit organization dedicated to presenting, promoting and protecting the world of water. The Aquarium has come a long way from the Boston Aquarial Gardens on Broomfield Street in 1859.

New England Aquarium Medical Center

This Center is a live and working animal hospital, where veterinarians and staff care for Aquarium sick and stranded animals that were rescued from local beaches. A critical care unit is set up to care for
Diver with Fish at the New England Aquarium in Boston
animals like a cold-stunned kemp's ridley turtle that needs round-the-clock attention. Since 1969, the Aquarium has been a neighbor to sick and injured marine animals in New England by rescuing them from beaches and nursing them back to health at the Aquarium. Fully recovered animals are released back into the ocean.

200,000 Gallon Tank

The 200,000 gallon Giant Ocean Tank rises four stories from the Penguin Pool. As one of the world's largest cylindrical saltwater tanks, it offers a multi-level view of the sea turtles, moray eels, sharks, and other tropical fishes that live inside. The tank's center structure represents a Caribbean coral
reef. Constructed of fiberglass and polyester resin, this 23-feet- deep reef is one of the most detailed and scientifically accurate re-creations of its kind. Three thousand individual corals and sponges represent the 35 major species found in the Caribbean. Myrtle, the over 45-year-old green sea turtle, feels so much at home, you can find her asleep at the bottom for an hour at a time.

Penguins from Africa, South America, Australia and New Zealand

African penguins have been on exhibit at the New England Aquarium since we opened in 1969. Our current colony of 35 African
Rockhopper Penguins at the New England Aquarium in Boston
penguins has grown tremendously from our early years. Since 1969, 38 African chicks have been hatched and raised at the Aquarium. The African penguin's scientific name, Spheniscus dermersus, means wedge-shaped plunger. African penguins are also called "jackass" penguins because they make sounds that sound like a donkey braying. Their braying can sometimes make the Aquarium sound more like a barnyard than a window on the sea. The rockhopper colony consists of 15 birds. Rockhoppers get their common name from their tremendous ability to jump around rocks. The little blues came from the Melbourne Zoo in Australia, where they were offspring of penguins at the Melbourne Zoo which had been rescued and were not able to release. Little blues are the smallest of all penguin species, only growing to a height of approximately 8 inches and weighing a little over 2 pounds. Their scientific name, Eudyptula minor, means "good little diver."

The mission of the New England Aquarium is "to increase the understanding of aquatic life and environments, to enable people to act to conserve the world of water and to provide leadership for the preservation and sustainable use of aquatic resources." For more information on visiting the Aquarium and tours call: (617) 973-5200.

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Last Updated: September 23, 2015