Tuesday, March 20, 2018
A no-frills educational aquarium with a good assortment of shore and aquatic specimens. A favorite with everyone is the touch tank which opens periodically, with a docent explaining what is in the tank and who is available to answer any questions people have. There is also a an educational lab in a separate building, occasional lectures and movies are shown, and there are student volunteers available in the aquarium to demonstrate specific life processes for some of the sea creatures. The gift shop offers a wide range of gifts and mementos, some geared towards the many school children who visit, some geared toward tourists who want a simple reminder of their visit, and others for people who are genuinely artistic and appreciate fine things. There are even some beautiful educational charts and other items that would be quite useful to a teacher. The buyer does an excellent job of providing something for everyone. If you come on your own, and not as part of a tour group, you will have to pay for parking which is $1 per hour. Two hours will be sufficient to visit the aquarium, possibly even 1 hour if you are short on time. If you have the time and feel like taking a walk, the aquarium is right next to Cabrillo Beach, and next to the Cabrillo Marina, and fairly close to the entrance to the Los Angeles Harbor at San Pedro. A very nice walk is to take the Cabrillo Pier out to the end from where you can see the entrance to the harbor straight ahead, the marina on the left, breakwater on the right, and Cabrillo Beach on the right as well. It gives excellent views of cargo ships coming in and out of the harbor, a lighthouse at the entrance to the harbor, working oil platforms in the distance, and pleasure boaters of all kinds. An occasional whale has been spotted in the harbor, lots of pelicans fly around and sea gulls pigeons and other birds are often seen.