Here in NH, we have what’s called February vacation. During this vacation, I wanted to take my trio out somewhere for a day trip and New England Aquarium Boston was the best option. I knew this family day would be an excellent way to rekindle the bond between my trio and me. As I start to live the single mom life again, I am ever so thankful the trio and I got this trip in during February vacation. Not only did I face my fear of driving in the “big city” of Boston, MA, but I enjoyed a wonderful day with my trio away from the drama that my life had become at home.
Many photos were taken and many memories were made during our trip to the New England Aquarium in Boston, MA. I am excited to share our venture with you and hope that this inspires you to plan a trip to the aquarium over summer break or perhaps spring break.
Parking at New England Aquarium
Upon arrival we were so excited to see the ocean, there were such beautiful views even from the parking garage. The buildings look majestic and we couldn’t help capture a few photos. There are multiple parking options when you arrive in Boston, MA. One tip my girlfriend gave me was to hop on a transit type transportation as soon as you hit Boston, it’s an exit off of the highway. I decided to park as close as possible which meant a fee of just under $40 or so for the parking garage. This was more convenient for me when I have a child on the spectrum because a two-hour drive to begin with isn’t usually easy for him. We parked at The Harbor Garage which is the closest parking option when visiting the New England Aquarium in Boston, MA. Just to let you know, we had to park many levels up, so if you fear parking garages or don’t like parking WAY up in one, then you may want to park in other options around Boston, click here to see parking options.
About New England Aquarium
There are over 1.3 million visitors to this location in Boston, MA every year. New England Aquarium is committed to remaining the global leader in marine conservation and ocean exploration. Open for nearly 50 years, the New England Aquarium prides itself in being an educational resource for families, children and people of all ages. With their amazing educational signs throughout your visit to the aquarium, you’ll surely learn a thing or two. The large tank in the middle of the building can be enjoyed by walking up a few levels of stairs that spiral around the tank. You will see little sharks, stingrays, sea turtles and even a large eel. This location offers such a diverse number of ocean life that you can even pet when you visit the shark and stingray touch tank. We enjoyed an educational presentation with the seals and also loved reading all about penguins as that’s the display that kept my trio entertained most.
Our Visit to New England Aquarium
Tickets and Admission Info
The trip didn’t cost as much as I had thought. For a family of four, this was two adults and two kids, since the teenager is considered an adult now, cost about $93. I was truly anticipating a $150 trip cost just for tickets, so that was a pleasant surprise. You may visit New England Aquarium site to purchase tickets in advance. You may purchase combo tickets to get both New England Aquarium admission as well as IMAX theater tickets. This location also has Whale Watch ships that go out, you can click here to see more about admission prices for all options offered at New England Aquarium Boston, MA.
I think our favorite area was the penguins but the second best was the top of the big tank in the middle of the aquarium. We enjoyed watching the penguins swim around and even dance. At times we saw a couple of penguins that reminded us of Happy Feet. The trio and I took many photos of the penguins and we were often found looking over the stairs just to watch them swim around.
The Sea Turtles
I was in shock when we hit the top of the tank in the middle of New England Aquarium, this turtle was huge! There are two sea turtles at New England Aquarium and one is named Myrtle the green sea turtle. He is a beauty, I must say and I can’t even begin to express how large this sea turtle is. I was in shock once I realized this was a real-life sea turtle.
The cool thing about this aquarium is that you can visit the seals without entering the aquarium. There is an outdoor viewing area where the seals will gladly swim up and say hello. We were able to catch a show about the seals and listen to their history. These seals were simply adorable and I could watch them for hours.
The Shark and Sting Ray Touch Tank
Lastly, we scoured high and low to try to find the touch tank. The trio and I knew it existed but had a difficult time figuring out where it was. Come to find out, ti was on the other side of where we were. I would highly advise visiting the touch tank before leaving. We were able to touch stingrays and it was such a soft, yet slimy feeling. The sharks weren’t close enough for us to touch this time. There is also a touch tank in the middle of New England Aquarium where you can touch sea urchins and star fish.
Places to Dine
I didn’t plan well in the food department, usually I would pack some snacks, drinks and lunch from home to bring along on any family day trip with my trio. I didn’t plan ahead, but we enjoyed a reasonably priced meal in the Harbor View Cafe. The food was delicious and yes, I had New England Clam Chowder, yum!
Visit the Gift Shop
What family day trip isn’t complete without a visit to the gift shop? Well, usually I don’t venture into a gift shop when traveling but the trio was able to pick up one souvenir each without going outside of the budget allotted for this trip.
The trio has requested that we go to Boston, MA again and spend a weekend there. They want to walk around the city and enjoy the buildings. They want to visit the New England Aquarium again as we simply didn’t see everything that they offer there. The trio has begged and pleaded for me to make a weekend trip to Boston, MA possible. So as their Mama who enjoys that the trio wants to actually go somewhere, I will be working hard to get us back to Boston, MA. I enjoyed the drive, which was shocking. I am not one to enjoy driving at all but I especially have been known to have anxiety when driving in an unknown place, especially a city. I had no issues with anxiety during this trip and it made me feel self-pride. I know that my trio did amazing because I was doing amazing. I look forward to visiting New England Aquarium again and perhaps experiencing more of their IMAX educational theater shows and their presentations.
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Leaving New England Aquarium Boston, MA
I must give a shout out to this facility for offering us 4 free tickets to Simon IMAX theater were the trio and I enjoyed a show about sharks. It was wonderful to learn more about the great white shark, I do feel the New England Aquarium wants to educate the average person about ocean life. The ocean isn’t our enemy, this is home to many creatures both large and small.While the IMAX show was extremely educational, we had to rush off afterward to beat the work hour traffic out of Boston, MA. We left around 4 pm, for our two-hour drive home. If you are traveling out of Boston, MA to go home after your trip, I would advise you leave before 4 pm Eastern. We didn’t get stuck in a ton of traffic, but there certainly was a decent amount of back up and we slowly got out of Boston, MA without any anxiety or mishaps.