Right down the street from The Clement Hotel, where we stayed, was the fantastic Monterey Bay Aquarium. For us, that was the perfect location, just walked to the aquarium itself, which is a beautiful usage of the old cannery buildings and has incredible displays of the wonderful sea life of Monterey Bay. The Aquarium is clean, beautiful, and spacious with light filled halls and gorgeous views of the bay.
We made sure to see the sea horse exhibit first, which was awesome. Other aquarium highlights are the kelp forest, the otters, the jellyfish exhibit, the open ocean exhibit with 50 year-old sea turtles, oceanic sunfish, and huge full size tuna.
The vastness of the large open sea kelp forest exhibits is amazing and the jellyfish exhibit is almost unbelievable with the beautiful jellyfish looking like they're from another dimension.
Of course, the sea otters are as entertaining as you’d think and a definite favorite for everyone. It does get crowded at feeding times, so it’s good to arrive early to stake out a place to see them in action.
It helps to plan your trip carefully, such as which hotel to stay at, parking and dealing with the crowds. Parking can be a expensive and a bit of a hassle. The Aquarium can get super crowded with tons of people milling about and taking pictures on their smart phones at the exhibits. It’s good idea to plan your visits around these issues if you can.
This is easily one of the best aquariums in the country. Along with the history of old Cannery Row, the Monterey Bay Aquarium is a very a interesting part of Monterey to to visit and enjoy. It’s a must see when in Monterey.