Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, San Diego

4.2
#3 of 42 in Museums in San Diego
Aquarium · Hidden Gem · Natural History Museum
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A public outreach center for the world renowned Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography remains more than a place to see beautiful fish and spectacular ocean views. The venue brings guests into the exciting world of cutting-edge research and world-class scientific discovery through interactive exhibits and more than 60 habitats from the cold waters of the Pacific Northwest, to local kelp forests, and tropical coral reefs. Surround yourself with spectacular seahorses and come nose to nose with a rescued loggerhead sea turtle. Don’t miss the outdoor touch pools and enjoy some of the best ocean views in Southern California. To visit Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography and other attractions in San Diego, use our San Diego trip planner.
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Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
1,925 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • The view from the deck alone was worth the price of admission. Wonderful exhibits that are very kid friendly. Great staff and overall, a wonderful experience. 
    The view from the deck alone was worth the price of admission. Wonderful exhibits that are very kid friendly. Great staff and overall, a wonderful experience.  more »
  • Leaving our trip to San Diego, we stopped here on the way home. Its a cute small aquarium in a wonderful location. A bit pricy, but fun to visit if you havent been there before. Better for younger... 
    Leaving our trip to San Diego, we stopped here on the way home. Its a cute small aquarium in a wonderful location. A bit pricy, but fun to visit if you havent been there before. Better for younger...  more »
Google
  • It was very clean and well-maintained but really there wasn't a ton to see. Several of the displays are just video but there are around 50 different tanks plus there's an area outside that mimics a tide pool with live creatures in it. See my pictures for a good sampling of the available tanks. The giant kelp, the sea horse and the jellyfish tanks were the most impressive. Overall if you're in the area it's a 2 hour stop. Personally would have been happier if they had a stingray or manta ray petting area. Just know there are better aquariums in the area.
  • This aquarium is really cute. We enjoyed our visit. Reading the reviews, a lot of people spoke about how spectacular the seahorse exhibit is, but we were not impressed by this at all. It was tiny and only a few animals inside. Not sure what the hype was over that. Overall it was a fun visit. Lots of reviewers complained about it being too small, but really it was quite impressive for being a smaller aquarium. Staff is friendly. Facility is clean. Nice place to take the kids.

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