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Central Coast Aquariums & Zoos

Aquariums & Zoos Overview

Central Coast

Central Coast aquariums and zoos include the Monterey Bay Aquarium, Seymour Aquarium, Charles Paddock Zoo, Central Coast Aquarium, Santa Barbara Zoo and Ty Warner Sea Center. From the small Charles Paddock Zoo to the world-renowned aquarium in Monterey, the Central Coast has some of the best exhibits in the country. See venomous snakes, exotic insects, flamingos, elephants, sharks, sea otters and more from Santa Cruz to Santa Barbara. Zoos and aquariums are always one of the best choices for fun things to do with kids.

Monterey Bay

The Seymour Marine Discovery Center is located off Highway 1 at Natural Bridges Drive. Situated on the bluffs next to Natural Bridges State Beach, the Seymour Aquarium is a small-scale sea aquarium that's actually a marine laboratory for U.C. Santa Cruz. Exhibits include a sea aquarium, touch tanks, an Ocean Discovery Shop and more.

Seymour Marine Discovery Center
100 Shaffer Road
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
(831) 459-3800

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Monterey Bay Aquarium

The Monterey Bay Aquarium is located off PCH (Highway 1 - Pacific Coast Highway) in beautiful Monterey. This is a large-scale sea aquarium featuring local fish species. Exhibits include sea otters, octopus, tuna, sharks, wolf eels and more. One of the deepest sections of ocean is just a few miles off the Monterey coast and provides the aquarium with unusual deep sea creatures.

Monterey Bay Aquarium
886 Cannery Row
Monterey, California 93940
(831) 648-4800

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San Luis Obispo

The Charles Paddock Zoo is located off Highway 101 between Portola and Santa Rosa Roads at Morro Road. The Charles Paddock Zoo is a small-scale zoo with over 100 wild animals on display. Zoo animals list includes mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and farm animals. See pandas, tigers, alpaca, pythons, turtles, owls, birds of prey and other endangered animals.

Charles Paddock Zoo
9305 Pismo Avenue
Atascadero, CA 93422
(805) 461-5080

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Morro Bay Aquarium

The Morro Bay Aquarium is located off Highway 1 at the Morro Bay Boulevard exit. This is a small-scale sea aquarium with mostly local species. Exhibits include a seal feeding area and several salt water fish tanks with eels, lobsters, sheepsheads, horseshoe crabs, leopard sharks, sea bass and more. Entrance is in the back of the gift shop.

Morro Bay Aquarium
595 Embarcadero Road
Morro Bay, California 93442
(805) 772-7647

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Central Coast Aquarium is located off Highway 1 from the Avila Beach Drive exit. Situated at the north end of Front Street, the Central Coast Aquarium is a small-scale sea aquarium with mostly local fish species. They feature several small salt water fish tanks and a Discovery Lab for more in-depth learning of the marine environment.

Central Coast Aquarium
50 San Juan Street
Avila Beach, CA 93424
(805) 595-7280

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Santa Barbara

The Sea Center, Stearns Wharf

The Sea Center is located off Highway 101 between the Castillo and Garden Street exits in Santa Barbara. The Sea Center is situated on Stearns Wharf along with restaurants and touristy shops. Look for the triple dolphin fountain at the end of State Street and you've found Stearns Wharf. The Sea Center features sea aquarium displays of local salt water fish, interactive exhibits of ocean science, touch tanks, a theatre and much more.

The Sea Center
211 Stearns Wharf
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
(805) 962-2526

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Santa Barbara Zoo is located off Highway 101 in Santa Barbara. The Santa Barbara Zoo is a moderate-sized city zoo with over 500 wild animals on display. Santa Barbara Zoo animals list includes mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and more. See gorillas, giraffe, lions, pandas, birds of prey, poison dart frogs, snakes, rainforest animals, African animals and other endangered animals.

Santa Barbara Zoo
500 Ninos Drive
Santa Barbara, California 93103
(805)962-6310

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