The Seymour Marine Discovery Center is a hidden treasure in Santa Cruz. Open Tues-Sunday from 10am-5pm. Admission is $8 for adults and $6 for children 3 and older. They have community free days throughout the year. The upcoming community days in 2017 are: January 6, February 3, March 3, September 8, October 6, and November 3. You can also get free discover and go passes from your library before you visit. The pass is good for one free adult and one free child.
When you first walk into the museum make sure to grab your scavenger hunt paper. With it you can mark off the animals you see and get a free picture of an animal at the end. Also make sure to get your pass for a free tour. They only do it certain times of the day so it’s best to see what times are available when you first arrive.
On the tour a volunteer will take you around the outside of the museum and talk about the Monterey bay and it’s history. They will also give quite a bit of information on whales in the area and they have a fun presentation where you can touch some whale bones as you stand under the largest blue whale skeleton in the world right in front of their museum. Then they will even take you behind the scenes of one of their research facilities where you can see a dolphin and a sea lion.
Back inside you are ready to explore the many aquariums they offer with jellyfish, crabs, eels, octopus, and more. They also have touch pools where you and your toddler can have a chance to touch a sea cucumber, starfish, anemone, and sea urchin. They also have a Swell Shark in an exhibit they open to touching as well.
There are other hand on exhibits throughout the building and a few cute photo ops. This is a very fun place for our family. We can usually spend 1-2 hours whenever we go.