We've taken a few educational boat trips over the years but yours was by far the best all-around experience. The highlight had to be the breadth of sea life we pulled up and got a chance to investigate, interact with and, of course, learn about."

– Rockland County, NY, camp director

Kids and Families

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Sand Tiger Shark Fun Fact

Looks closely at the sand tiger sharks in the "Ocean Beyond the Sound" exhibit. Their snout and jaws are covered in tiny holes. These are receptors for the sharks' "sixth sense" – their ability to detect bioelectric fields emitted by other animals (including potential prey).



Public Programs

NOTE:  The first six programs below require advance registration. Please call (203) 852-0700, ext. 2206, to reserve your spot.  Aquarium admission is included for all registered program participants.

 pdfPublic Programs Form 2015.pdf


New!   Marine Animal Illustration (ages 16+)

Series meets for five Thursdays – March 12, 19 & 26 & April 2 & 9, each from 2-4 p.m.
With sharks, anemones, jellies and sea turtles, The Maritime Aquarium presents diverse and inspiring subjects for artists of every level. Award-winning artist and naturalist Patricia Wynne will lead this intensive course; a great introduction for beginners and an opportunity to hone your skills if you're more advanced. Sessions will include: the basics of drawing marine animals, gesture drawing fast-moving animals, countershading, composing an inhabited setting, and drawing anatomical details of fish, invertebrates and mammals. Art materials are not included; each registrant will receive a materials list before the program.
Cost: $200 per person for the series ($180 for members) NOTE: This program requires that you call for advance registration. Please call (203) 852-0700, ext. 2206, to reserve your spot. Aquarium admission is included for all registered program participants.

New!  Seal Pups (ages 3-4)

Series 1: five Wednesdays, April 1-29, from 2-2:45 p.m.
Series 2: five Thursdays, April 2-30, from 9:30-10:15 a.m.
Aquar.PreschoolersSeries 4webParents and caregivers participate together with children in this five-part series, which consists of age-appropriate activities, an up-close meeting with a live animal, and a storybook that relates to the week’s topics. We’ll also give parents and caregivers tips on how to foster scientific inquiry in young children.
Cost: $150 for a child and caregiver, $135 for Aquarium members. Each additional child, $100 (with same caregiver), $90 for members. Maximum 4 children per caregiver. NOTE: This program requires that you call for advance registration. Please call (203) 852-0700, ext. 2206, to reserve your spot. Aquarium admission is included for all registered program participants.

New!  Feeding Time! (program for families)

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Sat, April 18 from 8-10 a.m.
Sun., May 30 from 8-10 a.m.
Join The Maritime Aquarium for a family breakfast you’ll always remember! After a sumptuous buffet in the Cascade Café, your family will make the rounds as Aquarium staff feeds an amazing assortment of hungry animals. Take a turn feeding the diamondback terrapins, horseshoe crabs and rays. Get up close and personal with the harbor seals at a private feeding. Best of all, watch behind-the-scenes as the aquarists feed the big sharks in the Aquarium’s Ocean Beyond the Sound exhibit.
Cost: $45 per adult & $25 per child 12 & under; $40 & $20 for members. Children must be age 5 or older.

New!  Turtle Town (ages 5-7)

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Sun, April 19 from 10:30-11:30 a.m.
Sat., May 9 from 10-11 a.m.
Budding herpetologists will compare turtles of land and sea to discover how they’re adapted to their different lifestyles. They’ll examine the look and feel of real turtle shells, learn how baby sea turtles get to the ocean and, best of all, meet and touch a live terrapin. (Parents or caregivers do not participate.)
Cost: $25 per child, $20 for members.

New!  Shark Safari! (ages 8-10)

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Sun, April 19 from 1-2:15 p.m.
Sat., May 9 from 1-2:15 p.m.
Young adventurers will start off examining shark jaws, skin and other artifacts, and learn how superb adaptations have allowed sharks to survive for millions of years. They’ll journey to the Aquarium’s Ocean Beyond the Sound exhibit for a close look at the large sand tiger sharks, and then move to the Shark & Ray Touch Pool to get a true feel for sharks and their cousins, the rays.
Cost: $25 per child, $20 for members.

New!  “A House for Hermit Crab” (ages 3-4)

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Sun, April 26 from 10-10:45 a.m.
Sat., May 9 from 10-10:45 a.m.
Using the popular title story as motivation, children will meet and touch a variety of live crabs and mollusks. They’ll examine how the animals look and feel and classify them according to size, shape, movement styles and other attributes that promote early-childhood science skills. Each child must be accompanied by an adult.
Cost: $25 per child, $20 for members.


Study Cruises on Long Island Sound

Starting in spring 2015 ...  Be among the first to cruise out aboard the new research vessel R/V Spirit of the Sound™ as she begins her life of service with The Maritime Aquarium. Our study cruises offer memorable hands-on explorations of Long Island Sound's marine life: with a variety of animals brought up right onto the boat (May-October 2015) or to look for some of the seals & waterfowl that winter in the Sound (December 2015-April 2016).  

Details ...


PLEASE NOTE:  The programs below may be canceled or substituted with little or no notice. Check our "Today's Events" page at on your smart phone when you arrive.

Shark Dives

Offered most Thursdays, Saturdays & Sundays.
Upcoming Dates:  March 28 and April 3, 9, 11, 16, 18, 23 & 30
Times: 12:15 & 2:15 p.m.
No dives or presentations on April 4 nor on Sundays in April.
NOTE: Our Aquarium dive team is an all-volunteer crew. Dives may sometimes be cancelled with short or no notice due to availability. Where possible, they will substitute a "meet the diver" experience.

Would you jump into a tank of water filled with 6- and 7-foot sharks? Actually, it can be done – bloodlessly – because sharks aren't really the aggressive man-eaters of popular myth. Come see for yourself when The Maritime Aquarium's dive team spends some quality time among the sand tiger sharks, lemon shark and other creatures of the 110,000-gallon "Ocean Beyond the Sound" exhibit. Thanks to a cool communication link, you can even talk with the divers while they're in the exhibit with the sharks! They'll tell you that sharks should be respected ... but not feared.

Free with Aquarium admission. Please Note: the audio system that lets you hear the divers talk also carries the sounds of the divers' SCUBA respiration. Some young children may find this loud and unnatural.

See what our volunteer divers see in this video:


Marine Debris Station

11 a.m. - 3 p.m.
April 4 & 5, 14, 16, 18 & 19
Stop by the station to learn about the serious issue of marine debris (especially plastic bags and plastic water bottles), take a pledge to do your part to use re-usable water bottles and shopping bags, and then (optional; $5) make a re-usable shopping bag out of our old IMAX and exhibit banners. 

Water Quality Station

11 a.m. - 3 p.m.
March 28 & 29 and April 11-13, 15, 17, 25 & 26
Rain can wash excess fertilizer, dog feces and other pollutants off our lawns. But where does it all end up? Yes, in Long Island Sound. Stop by our Water Quality Station to watch this happen in a tabletop demonstration, and to learn the best place to wash your car and the best way to maintain a healthy lawn and a healthy Sound. Plus, touch a live diamondback terrapin, and purchase a soil testing kit ($1) that will give you an analysis of your lawn from the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station. 


Toy Boat-Making Workshop

11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays & Sundays
Visit the Toy Boat-Making area on weekends for a fun 20-minute boat-building project. Build and decorate a toy sailboat to take home as a special keepsake of your Maritime Aquarium visit. Cost: $5 per child (in addition to Aquarium admission).




Mission: 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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