One of my favorite places to visit with my kiddos are aquariums. The kids (and I) always learn something new and we always have a good time. We love learning about our beautiful oceans and the sea life that is found on our shoreline.Rachel had the opportunity to visit Sea Lab in Redondo Beach and shares about this great little place.
My kids love the ocean, so we often make trips to the beach and aquariums. With three kids under the age of four, I sometimes enjoy small, more intimate aquariums the most. One of our favorite places is the SEA Lab in Redondo Beach. Since we live nearby, we’ve been there many times. We were sad to hear last month that some bleach from a nearby plant had leaked into some tanks, killing leopard sharks and fish at the lab. But fortunately, the SEA Lab was able to get back on its feet quickly. The Cabrillo Aquarium donated three new leopard sharks to replace the two that had been lost. The touch tanks are back up and running. When we headed there one Friday afternoon last month, we found it as enjoyable as ever.
When we visited the SEA Lab, we arrived just in time for the first touch tank tour of the afternoon at 1:00 p.m. Volunteers give guided tours of touch tanks every Tuesday-Sunday. The tours are offered on the hour from 1-3 on weekdays, and 10-3 on weekends. The tour and museum are always free (though there is a recommended donation of $2 per person or $4 per family).Our tour lasted a little over half an hour, and we touched sea stars and anemones, looked at big spiny lobsters, searched for camouflaged halibut, touched shark eggs, and more. Our tour guide was well-informed and was able to answer all of our questions. After the tour, we explored a small one-room museum with a few other creatures in tanks. I especially loved the tanks that showed the life cycle of a jellyfish.
In addition to the tour, you can also feed the sharks if you visit on a Saturday at noon. On a previous visit, we did this. We fed the leopard sharks in a big outdoor tank. We paid $2 for a good-sized container of food (raw fish!) to feed the sharks. When we did this, my kids were too squeamish to touch the raw fish themselves, but they liked watching their daddy throw the fish to the sharks!
The SEA Lab is located near King Harbor at 1021 N. Harbor Drive in Redondo Beach. A metered parking lot is adjacent to the SEA Lab. The parking is $1 an hour, and we usually are able to see everything in the SEA Lab in under an hour. Sometimes after we visit the SEA Lab, we drive down the road and enjoy some time at the pier or the beach.
If you are in the area, I definitely wouldn’t pass up this little gem of a place! For more information on the Redondo Beach SEA Lab, you can visit their website here.
Rachel Hoggan is a former English teacher who is now a full-time mom of three children who are all under the age four. Her number one hobby is her children. When she’s not out daytripping, she’s at home crafting, reading books, and playing make believe with her children. You can read more from her at Mommy Lessons 101.