New England Aquarium

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New England Aquarium: Our most recommended tours and activities

Boston: New England Aquarium Entry Ticket

1. Boston: New England Aquarium Entry Ticket

Start your visit to the New England Aquarium at the charming penguin colony, before experiencing 360-degree views of the spectacular new 4-story Caribbean coral reef teeming with more animals than ever before. Take a stroll on the spiral walkway around the reef as sea turtles, sharks, moray eels, and tropical fish glide through their vibrant habitat. From sea jellies to sea dragons, you will explore the planet without leaving downtown Boston. The Aquarium is a treasure trove ready for exploration by families and ocean lovers. Your admission ticket includes entrance to the following exhibits: Amazon Rainforest Head to the Amazon rainforest without leaving Boston. The New England Aquarium’s 6 Amazon exhibits allow you to dive into the Amazon River and climb through the dense forest without getting wet or needing bug spray. Several of the exhibits feature large windows that reach nearly to the floor, providing perfect viewing opportunities for small children. Atlantic Harbor Seals The harbor seals exhibit is the only one you can actually visit before buying your Aquarium ticket. Watch the seals swim, play, and sleep, and learn more about them during a free training session. The 42,000-gallon harbor seal exhibit is located outside on the Front Plaza, to the left of the Aquarium’s front doors. The exhibit is open to the New England weather, which suits these New England creatures perfectly. Blue Planet Action Center This dynamic exhibit presents the serious challenges facing the oceans and showcases the Aquarium's global leadership in searching for solutions, through its interactive displays, interpretive presentations, and small live animal exhibits. Coral Reef Center At the top of the Giant Ocean Tank, a glass railing maximizes your view of many of the predators swimming high in the water column. You can now easily recognize creatures resting on the tank’s bottom more than 24 feet below. That exceptional viewing is enhanced by a theatrical-quality lighting system that is built into a beautiful blue reflective ceiling dome. A new exhibit gallery on the same level showcases reef biodiversity and gives visitors a closer look at a hidden world populated by unique coral reef animals. The Giant Ocean Tank The 4-story Giant Ocean Tank features a brand new coral reef, an underwater communications system, large windows, and hundreds of Caribbean reef animals, including sea turtles, stingrays, eels, and fish. At its deepest point, the exhibit goes down 26 feet, is 40 feet wide, and holds 200,000 gallons of salt water. The water is heated to between 72 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit, which is the perfect temperature range for this tropical exhibit. The exhibit is so big that it was built first and then the rest of the Aquarium was constructed around it. Gulf of Maine The Gulf of Maine stretches from Cape Cod to Canada and includes Boston Harbor and the Stellwagen Bank. The water is cold but bursting with life. As you explore exhibits ranging from shore to deep-water boulder reefs and sandy sea floors, you will encounter lobsters, cod, goosefish, and giant sea stars. The 6 Gulf of Maine exhibits cover more than half of the Aquarium’s third level. Pacific Community Reef Dive into the tropical waters of a Pacific coral reef and get to know some of the rainbow-colored fish that call it home. This 5,100-gallon exhibit houses nearly 70 different kinds of tropical reef fish. Marine Mammal Center Watch California sea lions dart through the water and limber northern fur seals lope in this beautiful open-air exhibit space. Learn about the challenges marine mammals face in the wild, and get a new perspective on these fascinating marine mammals. Penguins The Aquarium is home to more than 80 penguins who live in a bustling colony found on Level 1 surrounding the Giant Ocean Tank. The Aquarium breeds African penguins as part of a Species Survival Plan and promotes educational programs about penguins. Seadragons Every visit to the New England Aquarium should include a stop at the seadragon exhibit. There are only 2 seadragon species in the world, and this stunning exhibit displays both of them. The leafy seadragon and the weedy seadragon both use their exceptional camouflage to hide from hungry predators. Challenge yourself and see how many seadragons you can find during your visit.

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Boston: Hop-on Hop-off Trolley Tour

2. Boston: Hop-on Hop-off Trolley Tour

Climb aboard Boston’s charming orange and green Old Town Trolley and visit more than 100 points of interest in the city at your own pace. Enjoy the freedom to hop on or off all day and discover the Cradle of Liberty’s many sights and attractions. From December to March, choose between the 1-day (silver), 2-day (gold), or 3-day (platinum) ticket options. From April until November, choose between the 1-day (silver), 1-day with harbor tour (gold) or 2-day with harbor tour (platinum) options. What better way to see Boston than by both land and sea? The Boston Trolley tour covers all the major areas including downtown, Beacon Hill, Back Bay, the theater district, and the waterfront. Friendly conductors narrate the tour, offering a fun mix of trivia and humorous stories. There are 18 stops conveniently located close to over 100 points of interest in Boston, these are: • New England Aquarium/Faneuil Hall Marketplace • Historic North End • USS Constitution/Charlestown Navy Yard • North Station/TD Banknorth Garden • Trolley Stop Store/ Theater District • Cheers 'The Original' • Copley Square/ Newbury St. Boutiques • Christian Science Plaza/ Symphony Hall • Copley Place Shopping Galleries • Back Bay and Hynes Convention Center • Charles Street/ Antique Row • Boston State House/ Boston Common • South Station/Boston Tea Party • Boston Convention and Exposition Center • Liberty Wharf • Seaport District All ticket options include discounted admission to the Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum.

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Boston: Go City All-Inclusive Pass with 40+ Attractions

3. Boston: Go City All-Inclusive Pass with 40+ Attractions

The Boston All-Inclusive Pass by Go City provides you access to over 40 of the area’s top activities, attractions, and tours for a single low price. Enjoy the freedom to do and see what you want while saving up to 45 percent compared to the cost of individual tickets. Choose a 1, 2, 3, 5, or 7-day pass at a low, pre-paid price. Take a Trolley Tour, visit the New England Aquarium, explore the Museum of Science, and get your thrills at Six Flags. These and many other options are included in the cost of your Boston All-Inclusive Pass. A free digital guide helps you decide what to do, where to go, and how to get there. Included Attractions: Boston Duck TourHistoric Sightseeing CruiseCityView Hop-On Hop-Off Boston Trolley Sightseeing Tour: 2-Day TicketNew England AquariumOld State House Museum & Old South Meeting House Combo TicketFenway Park TourUSS Constitution MuseumMuseum of ScienceFreedom Trail Foundation Walk Into History TourPaul Revere HouseMuseum of Fine ArtsSalem Witch MuseumSam Adams Brewery Tour with Complimentary GlasswareBoston Children's MuseumSwan Boats of BostonHarvard Walking TourHarvard Museum of Natural HistoryJFK Presidential Library and MuseumEdward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States SenateBoston Movile Mile Walking TourPlimoth Patuxet plus Mayflower II or Grist Mill ComboCharles River CruiseLEGOLAND Discovery Center BostonSix Flags New EnglandFranklin Park ZooIsabella Stewart Gardner MuseumInstitute of Contemporary ArtPeabody Essex MuseumHouse of the Seven GablesMary Baker Eddy Library & MappariumBoston Bike RentalBattle Green TourBuckman TavernPeabody Museum of Archaeology & EthnologyOtis House MuseumLouisa May Alcott HouseConcord MuseumOld Sturbridge VillageHyannisport Harbor CruiseJohn F. Kennedy Hyannis MuseumCape Cod Canal CruiseHighFlyer Zipline at Foxwoods Resort CasinoBoch Center Wang Theatre ToursThe MIT Tour

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Boston: Go City Explorer Pass including 3 to 5 Attractions

4. Boston: Go City Explorer Pass including 3 to 5 Attractions

Marvel at the wonders of the sea with a visit to the Boston favorite New England Aquarium, explore the city aboard a hop-on-hop-off trolley, or choose a Boston Sunset Cruise. Purchase the Boston Explorer pass to save time and money, compared to general admission prices. Take the stress out of sightseeing with a multi-attraction pass that is accessible straight from your mobile phone (also available to print-at-home) and is valid for 60 days from your first visit. Simply browse your digital guidebook for where to go next, show your pass to be scanned at the entrance or ticket office, and you're in! Choose any 3, 4, or 5 attractions or tours from the following: - Boston Duck Tours- New England Aquarium- Historic Sightseeing Cruise (seasonal)- CityView Hop-On Hop-Off Boston Trolley Sightseeing Tour: 1-Day Ticket- Old State House Museum & Old South Meeting House Combo Ticket- Boston Sunset Cruise (seasonal)- Museum of Science (skip the ticket line privileges)- Freedom Trail Foundation Walk Into History Tour- Fenway Park Tour- Harvard Museum of Natural History- Boston Children's Museum- LEGOLAND Discovery Center Boston- Museum of Fine Arts- Salem Witch Museum- USS Constitution Museum- Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum- JFK Presidential Library and Museum- Franklin Park Zoo- Peabody Essex Museum- Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology- Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate- Boston Bike Rental- Boch Center Wang Theatre Tours

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Boston CityPASS®: Save 45% at 3 Top Attractions

5. Boston CityPASS®: Save 45% at 3 Top Attractions

Boston CityPASS has collected the top must-see, must-do attractions and priced them 45% less than the same tickets purchased separately.   Boston CityPASS includes admission to: 1. New England Aquarium- Let your imagination swim wild! Marvel at the bustling penguin colony and soak in views of the spectacular four-story Caribbean coral reef teeming with more than 1,000 animals. Plus, don’t miss seals, sea lions, and the hands-on shark and ray touch tank during your unforgettable Aquarium adventure! 2. Museum of Science- Just imagine getting up close and personal with a 65-million-year-old Triceratops fossil, witnessing an indoor lightning storm and taking a journey inside the human body. With 700 interactive exhibits, exciting temporary exhibitions, daily presentations, and live animals, there is something for everyone! Create, experiment and have fun at the Museum of Science! Plus your choice of admission to 2 of the following: 1. Franklin Park Zoo - Explore 72 acres of wildlife habitat in Boston’s historic Franklin Park. See wild faces from wild places—from fuzzy forest dwellers to winged wonders. Visit Serengeti Crossing to see zebras and ostrich, experience farm life, and visit the tropics with ring-tailed lemur and gorillas. Be inspired by the Zoo’s mission to protect and sustain the natural world and learn how you can contribute to wildlife conservation. 2. Boston Harbor City CruiseEnjoy the sea breeze, spectacular skyline, and ocean views. Discover the historic and contemporary sites and nuances of Boston Harbor during this fun, informative, and fully-narrated 90-minute boat cruise. 3. Harvard Museum of Natural History Spark your curiosity in the natural world at the Harvard Museum of Natural History, located on the campus of the oldest institution of higher learning in the U.S., steps from the picturesque Harvard Yard. See dinosaurs, whales, and hundreds of wildlife specimens from around the world.

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Boston: Hop-On, Hop-Off Trolley 1-Day Ticket

6. Boston: Hop-On, Hop-Off Trolley 1-Day Ticket

Tour Boston on board an enchanting hop-on and hop-off trolley to see all the historic sights at your own pace. The 1-day hop-on hop-off open-air trolley ticket gives you access to 9 stops, all conveniently located close to the city’s premiere attractions. Friendly tour guides are on board, ready to narrate your tour, and you can join and end the tour at any of the stops along the route. Jump off in neighborhoods such as North End and Beacon Hill to explore further. Take the full 1-hour circuit non-stop to get a great orientation of downtown Boston, or spend the day exploring in your own time. Trolleys run from 9:30 AM to 4:30 PM, every 10-30 minutes, depending on the season. So you’ll never have long to wait when you are ready to continue your journey. Hop-on and hop-off trolley stops: • New England Aquarium - Shuttle and Ferry - Quincy Market – Faneuil Hall • Paul Revere House - Little Italy • North End - Old North Church • USS Constitution - Old Ironsides • North Station - TD Bank Garden Sports Museum • Old State House - Faneuil Hall – Boston Massacre - Government Center • Boston Common - Public Garden • State House - Beacon Hill • South Station - Convention Center - Children’s Museum

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Boston, Harvard & Cape Cod Self-Guided Audio/Driving Tour

7. Boston, Harvard & Cape Cod Self-Guided Audio/Driving Tour

Start in the city of Boston and walk in the footsteps of Revolutionary War heroes. Hear the story of Paul Revere’s Midnight Ride and relive the fight for American Independence with a self-guided walking tour of Boston’s Freedom Trail. Immerse yourself in the stories of the American Revolution, the Boston Tea Party, and the Sons of Liberty as you stroll along Boston’s scenic Harborwalk. Uncover Boston's historic and storied past while enjoying its beautiful harbor views between South Station and Long Wharf. Then, travel to the city of Cambridge outside Boston and explore the heart of Harvard University's campus at Harvard Square. Use the app to take a self-guided walking tour that covers must-see campus sights like the John Harvard Statue, Widener Library, and former dorm rooms of famous alumni like Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Natalie Portman, and more. Next, discover Cape Ann with a self-guided driving tour along the scenic waterfront. Enjoy the vistas, beaches, and natural beauty of the New England coastline at your own pace. Visit the famous Fisherman's Memorial, beautiful Beauport, all while diving into the stories of Massachusetts of days past. Continue to Cape Cod and see its quintessential lighthouses and sandy beaches. As you drive, learn more about the Cape’s seafaring traditions, Pilgrim history, and miles of beautiful beaches. From Barnstable to Provincetown, visit Nauset Lighthouse, First Encounter Beach, Marconi Station, and more.

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Boston: Self-Guided Audio Tour

8. Boston: Self-Guided Audio Tour

Download a vibrant MP3 self-guided audio tour combined with a fully detailed map of the area of your tour. Enjoy the historical city of Boston in the beautiful state of Massachusetts and learn about its long and rich history on a self-guided audio tour. This incredible audio tour will show you sights such as the famous Boston Tea Party Museum and the historical John Adams Courthouse. You will also see the Old State House, the Massachusetts State House, the City Hall, New England Aquarium, and the Market. Educational and informative, this tour delves behind the scenes of old Boston allowing you to discover the city and travel back in time at your own pace. Soak up the atmosphere and enjoy the sights. 

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Other Sightseeing Options in New England Aquarium

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What people are saying about New England Aquarium

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 1,249 reviews

We decided to stay on the bus for the whole tour to get a better sense of the city and then once we’d seen it all, decide what we would want to investigate further. We went back to tour the USS Constitution and the Tea Party Museum and they were great.

Crafty was an amazing tour guide with loads of knowledge, courtesy, and entertainment! He did an excellent job of sharing all kinds of interesting information about our most historical city!

Great way to see key sites and get the historical background in a day. Also recommend the harbor cruise.

It was an amazing experience with the convenience of visiting the places of your choice in Boston!!!

Magoo was our favorite driver, super knowledgeable and very personable.