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Save up to 55% on Birch Aquarium and 45 other San Diego attractions with the Go San Diego Card.

Birch Aquarium

A $17.00 value, FREE with your Go San Diego Card!

Birch Aquarium at Scripps

From its unforgettable view of the Pacific Ocean to its memorable marine life exhibits, the Birch Aquarium is a must-see for every landlubber. Learn about living coral reefs, watch baby seahorses play, and listen to whale songs. You can even pet some starfish!

Discover a stunning variety of marine habitats at the Birch Aquarium, along with an unforgettable view overlooking La Jolla and the Pacific Ocean! Dive into exhibits that showcase the mysteries of ocean, air, and life through interactive displays and multimedia.

Hours

Daily, 9:00 am-5:00 pm
Please note, Go San Diego Card holders may enter this attraction until closing or 5:30pm, whichever comes first.

Closings

Thanksgiving Day
Christmas Day
New Year's Day.
All holiday hours are subject to change without notice.

Redemption Instructions

Present your Go San Diego Card at the admissions counter.

Included Extra(s)

10% savings on Splash Cafe and bookshop with the Go San Diego Card.

Address

2300 Expedition Way
La Jolla, CA 92037

Driving Directions

I-5 to La Jolla Village Drive exit, head west. La Jolla Village Drive becomes North Torrey Pines Road (approx. 1 mile). Turn left on Expedition Way. Parking is to your left, at the bottom of the hill. Three hour parking is included with admission.

Public Transportation

By Bus: Bus #34 to Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Get off at Downwind Way and La Jolla Shores. Walk up Downwind Way to aquarium.

Birch Aquarium is the public exploration center for world-renowned Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California at San Diego. For more than a century, this aquarium-museum has delighted San Diego's residents and visitors with the wonders of the ocean.

Each of the exhibits at Birch Aquarium brings to life a unique aspect of ocean life. Here are the ongoing exhibits you won't want to miss:

  • Boundless Energy: Get charged up about the future of energy in Boundless Energy, Birch Aquarium at Scripps' newest interactive exhibit that celebrates the innovative ways we can use natural forces to power our lives.  Discover how we can harness the renewable energy of the wind, sun and waves to assure a bright future for everyone: a future with clear skies, clean water, and healthy oceans.
  • Feeling the Heat: The Climate Challenge: Birch Aquarium presents the science of global climate change, backed by 50 years of research from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Check out a futuristic news report showing what the weather may look like in 2050, and test your knowledge of the extent to which everyday items impact the environment.
  • There’s Something About Seahorses: Did you know male seahorses can become pregnant? Visit their babies in the seahorse nursery!
  • Whales: Voices in the Sea: The coast of California is home to a variety of migrating whale species. This exhibit features an interactive display showing how whales use sound to communicate. You can even try recording your own whale calls.
  • Wonders of Water: Birch Aquarium even has a special place for young mariners to roll up their sleeves and play (while learning, of course)!
  • Coral Displays: Coral reefs are not just collections of dead rocks. They are living, breathing ecosystems with some very surprising benefits for humans and fish alike. This exhibit will teach you why they are disappearing and what's being done about it.
  • Hall of Fishes & Shark Reef: More than 60 habitats are housed here, including a 70,000-gallon kelp forest tank, as well as creatures found from the Pacific Northwest to the tropical waters of Mexico. What aquarium visit would be complete without a visit to the shark reef? Some of the world's most beautiful species are housed here, including whitetip and blacktip reef sharks. If you're lucky, you might even catch a live shark-feeding!
  • Living Tide Pools: Get your hands wet and take an up-close look at "life on the edge" of the ocean. Check out the habitats of seastars, lobsters, and sea cucumbers—all natives of San Diego's coastal waters.

The Birch Aquarium gives children and adults alike a fascinating look at marine life, while allowing for hands-on science education, with lessons they're not likely to forget. Thanks to the research and dedication of Scripps Institution of Oceanography, thousands of visitors leave each year feeling inspired to respect and preserve marine life.

Save on admission to the Birch Aquarium, plus San Diego's top museums, sights, and tours all for one low price with the Go San Diego Card!

Review Snapshot® by PowerReviews Express
 5 out of 5 stars (based on 3 customer ratings)
Average Rating for Birch Aquarium at Scripps
0% of respondents would recommend this to a friend.
Tried it? Write a Review
Reviewed by 3 Customers Sort by:
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[1 of 2 customers found this review helpful]

Definitely worth the time
By amylynna Verified Reviewer from Gilbert, Az on
Pros:
Beautiful exhibits, Great visit with family
Bottom Line:
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Comments about Smart Destinations Birch Aquarium at Scripps:

The view from the building over looking the ocean is absolutely breath-taking. We loved the tidepool on the outside where the children had hands on access to various sea-life. They also had an outdoor play area that was educational for the children.I was very impressed with the selection of marine life. This is a great little trip to start out your day while visiting La Jolla.

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[2 of 4 customers found this review helpful]

Lots of fun, even for our toddler!
By OCmommie Verified Reviewer from Laguna Niguel, CA on
Bottom Line:
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Comments about Smart Destinations Birch Aquarium at Scripps:

We LOVED this aquarium! I wish there was something like this near where we lived. My 18 month-old had so much fun watching all the fish & sea life. It was easier for him to see and engage here than even the Zoo (animals are still hard for him to find when they are hiding) or Sea World. It's North in La Jolla, so you have to drive to the aquarium... but it's worth it. There is a large deck with fantastic ocean views.

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[5 of 5 customers found this review helpful]

Beautiful location at sunset!
By Wade C. Verified Reviewer from Anaheim, CA on
Pros:
Silver school of sardines
Bottom Line:
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Comments about Smart Destinations Birch Aquarium at Scripps:

Best to visit in late afternoon, just before sunset. Sardine tank not to be missed, take a picture outside of the beautiful beaches below, while the sun is setting behind the ocean!

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  • Good for families
  • Parking available
  • Restaurant or snack bar
  • Restrooms
  • Disabled access
  • Reservations not required

Go San Diego Card

At a Glance

Address

2300 Expedition Way
La Jolla, CA 92037

Phone: 858-534-FISH (3474)

Website: www.aquarium.ucsd.edu

Adult Gate PriceChild Gate Price
$17.00 $12.50
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