We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Santa Monica Pier Aquarium

1600 Ocean Front Walk, Santa Monica, CA 90401
310 393 6149
Improve this listing
Book ahead on Viator
Special Offer
$58*
and up
Hollywood Highlights and LA Beaches Tour from...
Top Rated
$159*
and up
California Beach Cities Day Trip from Los...
68%
Ranked #15 of 37 Attractions in Santa Monica
Type: Science Museums, Zoos & Aquariums
Attraction details
Type: Science Museums, Zoos & Aquariums
Hours:
Tue - Fri 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Sat - Sun 12:30 pm - 5:00 pm
Write a Review

93 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    23
    41
    22
    5
    2
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Mount Shasta, California
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
7 attraction reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 25, 2014 NEW

Always fun to see these colorful fish up close and personal. Clean and birght setting. Easy access and fun for all ages.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Santa Monica, CA
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
11 attraction reviews
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 15, 2014

Yes it is nowhere the size and scope of the Long Beach aquarium. However, if you are at the pier and you have kids, it is a good place to come to see local sea life. If you join Heal the Bay, then you get in free, so we visit quite a bit. They have small sharks you can see... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Belleville, Michigan
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
17 attraction reviews
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2014

This aquarium is very small and not really what you would think of when you normally go to an aquarium. There are some touching tanks that allow you to check out some of the ocean life that you would find around the area. Most of the aquarium is filled with conservation information and teaches you on how to do your... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
12 attraction reviews
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2014

Really needs work. Creepy looking and dirty. Day I was there a line of 50 kids were waiting. Hope they had fun but I thought it looked dirty.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Los Angeles, California
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
5 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2014

This is a small aquarium under the Santa Monica Pier. It's run by Heal the Bay, a non-profit and it has a large volunteer base. If you're expecting marine mammal shows with over-the-top trainers then this isn't your place. Come here to learn what is in the water just off our coast and take the time to soak in all... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Gatineau, Canada
Top Contributor
173 reviews 173 reviews
61 attraction reviews
112 helpful votes 112 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2014

Good little aquarium made excellent by staff that supervise it. We learned about the areas biology. My daughters could touch star fish, crabs, sponge,and many other little sea creatures. You can observe the fauna that lives under the pier, a sea horse and a jelly fish. Kids can play and read and color. A nice break from the heat and... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Bayville, New Jersey
Top Contributor
212 reviews 212 reviews
60 attraction reviews
102 helpful votes 102 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 16, 2014

A great intro into Marine Biology for young children. Its small, but interesting. Lots of touch tanks and the staff are friendly, informative, and helpful. I think they are volunteers. Most of the exhibits are local specimens, not a lot of exotic species. Small but again, great for a young persons attention span. Adults who have had limited exposure to... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Salinas
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
5 attraction reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2014

I took my grand-daughter to the Santa Monica Pier for 1 on 1 time for her 3rd birthday. I've been there several times before and it's always beautiful. We went to the aquarium (tiny, so not overwhelming) We then rode the carousel and finally the Pacific Ferris Wheel. All in all, it was a perfect way to spend time with... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Doncaster, Australia
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
9 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2014

Our second visit to the pier saw it with different eyes, a trip back in time. The walk ways have been replaced which was a step towards a facelift. School holidays, very busy, however was good to see the kids enjoying themselves. Love that wheel and its illuminations.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
california
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
6 attraction reviews
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2014

It has a lot of variety, but it is not overwhelming for young children. You can visit in less than an hour. The volunteers and staff are knowledgeable and friendly.

Was this review helpful? Yes 2

Travelers who viewed Santa Monica Pier Aquarium also viewed

 
Santa Monica, CA
 

Been to Santa Monica Pier Aquarium? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Register now for free — and start getting automatic notification of new reviews, responding to traveler feedback, adding new photos to your listing and much more.

Manage your listing

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Santa Monica Pier Aquarium staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?