The re-energized focus on Long Island Sound's story is obvious in the colorfully redesigned main hall, which has been renamed Newman's Own Hall in celebration of a $1.2 million grant from Newman's Own Foundation."

–  The Norwalk Citizen

Exhibits & Animals

Blue Crab Fun Fact

Blue crabs are good swimmers. Their specially adapted pair of back legs are "swimmerets" that help move them effectively through the water.



Your Aquarium Journey
Your Aquarium Journey
The Sound and Beyond
Hokin Family Sound Voyage galleries
Rivers to the Sound
Depths of the Sound
The Ocean Beyond the Sound
Jellyfish Encounter
Sea Turtles

Shark and Ray Touch Pool

Shark-Ray-Touch-PoolPull yourself away from the seals to enter The Sound & Beyond, beginning with the new Sharks & Rays Gallery. Centerpiece of the gallery is a large supervised "Shark & Ray Touch Pool," where you can gently stroke the backs of several species of sharks and a variety of rays.Plus, see baby sharks before (and after) they're born, touch shark teeth, pose in a dive cage and explore why we're so fascinated with sharks – plus learn the troubling consequences of our misguided fears about sharks.

Then enter ...

Go Fish! Exhibit

codfish"Go Fish! Long Island Sound & Beyond" explores our important cultural connections to fish and includes one of the Aquarium’s largest tanks, full of cod, salmon, pollock, halibut and other game fish that have been historically important in New England. There’s also a fishing boat for children to play in, a Wii fishing game, and a “Sustainable Seafood” café that offers tips on being a smart seafood consumer. Be sure to pick up a Seafood Watch pocket guide to help you make smart choices when you're at restaurants and markets.  Exit left out of "Go Fish" to ...

Marine Care & Culture Lab

These displays bring some of the aquarium operations that formerly were behind-the-scenes out into the open for visitors to witness. These include the jellyfish and seahorse “nurseries,” where our year-round supply of these delicate animals are raised. You'll also sometimes see treatment tanks, where fish new to the aquarium stay until their health is assured for the exhibit population.  Adjacent to the lab is ...

Jiggle a Jelly

Touch-a-jellyfish exhibit open on weekends and holidays. Daily in July & August.

jiggle jelly copyThis new exhibit invites you to do something you've tried to NOT do all your life:  touch jellyfish!

Gently touch the tops of live moon jellies as they pulse in our new exhibit, which is open on weekends & holidays. (Daily in July & August.)

How is this possible without being stung? The stinging cells of moon jellyfish hang on tentacles below their bodies. Also, their sting is known to be relatively benign for most people.






Have questions about moon jellies? We've got answers! Watch our Q&A below.



From "Jiggle A Jelly," turn around and enter ...



"They're so cuuuuute!"  Meet a family of meerkats, one of Africa’s most entertaining species.

meerkats-photoFirst popularized by the comical sidekick Timon in Disney’s “The Lion King” and then celebrated in the Animal Planet television series “Meerkat Manor," meerkats are members of the mongoose family that live in social “mobs” or “gangs” in burrows in the Kalahari Desert, in the southern African nations of Botswana and South Africa.

No mere cats, meerkats (Suricata suricatta) are fascinating for living in structured but cooperative societies, including a foraging strategy where adults take turns standing guard upright on their hind feet, watching for predators, while the others eat.

The exhibit features six sibling meerkats – three males, three females – born in the Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City, Utah.  Their Maritime Aquarium habitat offers windows into their underground burrows, so all meerkat activity is within view. A viewing bubble even lets young visitors stand up right among the meerkats.

Can't make it out to the Aquarium to see them today? You're in luck! You can watch them on our live webcam.

pdfMeerkat Activity Sheet

"Meerkats" is within ...

Africa: From the Desert to the Sea

Explore the aquatic wonders of Africa and be home by dinner.

longfin bannerfish copySee amazing fish from the Nile River, Red Sea, and lakes of Africa’s Great Rift Valley in this exhibit featuring some of the lesser-known but equally fascinating aquatic animals from the African continent. Species highlighted include air-breathing lungfish, catfish that use bioelectricity to sense their surroundings, colorful cichlid fish, and dazzling coral reef fish. Plus, bonus species are giant day geckos, black mud turtles and an enormous ground boa snake.

VIDEO: See our ground boa slithering around the Aquarium outside her exhibit.

Interspersed throughout are important messages about animal adaptation, the importance of habitat preservation and conservation, stories that show how fish from the other side of the world face challenges similar to those in Long Island Sound.

Exit left from "Meerkats"/"Africa: From the Desert to the Sea" and go up the stairs. Down the hall on the second floor is ...


tomato-frogOne of our coolest exhibits. We feature dozens of species of frogs, toad and other amphibians from around the world – including some of our native examples but also tomato frogs (pictured), colorful poison dart frogs, the bizarre Surinam toad that looks more like ... well, like flattened roadkill, and more. Learn why amphibians are so special, but also the alarming facts behind why their numbers are dramatically decreasing worldwide.

pdfFrogs Activity Sheet.pdf

VIDEO: Check out an up close look at our poison dart frogs. 



Table of contents below


The Maritime Aquarium inspires people of all ages to appreciate Long Island Sound
and protect it for future generations. A vibrant and entertaining learning environment,
it achieves this goal through living exhibits, marine science, and environmental education.

10 North Water Street          Norwalk, CT 06854          Phone: 203.852.0700         Fax: 203.838.5416

The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) corporation


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