Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center

#4 in Best Things To Do in Virginia Beach
Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center picture1 of 3
Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center2 of 3
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Key Info

717 General Booth Blvd.

Details

Zoos and Aquariums Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
4.0scorecard
  • 3.5Value
  • 4.5Facilities
  • 4.0Atmosphere

The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center, located a mile south of the downtown resort area, offers more than 300 hands-on marine exhibits, including two animal touch pools with stingrays and horseshoe crabs. The property also features the Bay & Ocean Pavilion (where turtles, sharks, Komodo dragons and more are housed), the Marsh Pavilion (which has otters, seahorses and more), a ropes course and a 3-D theater that screens educational films and Hollywood movies.

According to recent visitors, families will love exploring this fun attraction, although a few said that the property's admissions are high given its small size. Some also cautioned that older children may lose interest in the aquarium's exhibits.

Standard tickets cost $24.95 per adult, $22.95 per senior (ages 62 and older), and $19.95 for each child between 3 and 11. Visitors can also purchase upgraded tickets (which include one movie) for $24.95 to $29.95 per person, and dolphin- and whale watching excursions are available for $16 to $28 per person. All tickets cover access to the aquarium's exhibits, restrooms, gift shops, cafe and snack stands, plus daily activities like animal feedings and staff Q&A sessions. Use of the on-site ropes course is not included in basic admissions.

Free parking is available on-site, or travelers can get to and from the aquarium via the VB Wave trolley system during the summer months. The property is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets can be purchased in advance on the attraction's ticket page; additional information is available on the Virginia Aquarium's website.

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More Best Things To Do in Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach Boardwalk and Beachfront1 of 5
First Landing State Park2 of 5
Type
Time to Spend
#1 Virginia Beach Boardwalk and Beachfront

Rather than your traditional wooden planks, Virginia Beach's famous boardwalk is concrete. The 3-mile thoroughfare is lined with quaint benches, Colonial-style street lamps and biking and walking paths. The boardwalk also hosts various events and festivals at different points throughout the year, though street performers can be found entertaining passersby on most days. And similar to other East Coast beach destinations, you will find various restaurants and hotels along the boardwalk, as well as a white sand beach.

Travelers enjoy walking along this beautiful boardwalk year-round, citing it's less crowded atmosphere and well-maintained paths as highlights. Several visitors recommend checking out the 24-foot-tall King Neptune statue, which sits by the beach at the Neptune Festival Park entrance on 31st Street. And if you visit in winter, some say you can't miss the attraction's holiday light display.

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