Panama City Beach Florida is a popular tourist destination in the United States. In fact, the beach is gorgeous, the waters inviting, and plenty of scenery to enjoy. You can listen to live music, sport fishing, or swim adventure. Aside from that, it is a great destination for the whole family too. After all, it is the perfect place for people to learn more about sea creatures and see nesting osprey in their natural habitat. That said, let’s take a look at the best aquariums that you can find in and around Panama City Beach.
The BEST 10 Aquariums in Panama City Beach, FL
Best Places to See Wild Animal and Marine Life in Panama City Beach, FL
Gulf World Marine Park
Gulf World Marine Park is not your usual aquarium. Aside from being the home of Master Illusionist, Noah Wells, it has plenty of adventures waiting for you. It has a front beach road that will take you to the sandy beaches. Aside from their interactive programs, expect daily shows too. Among the animals that you will see here are bottlenose dolphins, African penguins, harbor seals, and California sea lions. In fact, you can get up close and personal with them.
First, they have dolphin swims where you can join bottlenose dolphins in the water. In fact, you can take a hold of their pectoral fins and get ready for a swim. Their bottlenose dolphin show is one of the most popular shows. Second, get up close to stingrays at Stingray Bay. Third, the Royal Swim is where dolphins will push you upwards from the soles of your feet. In fact, this is an unforgettable experience that you can enjoy in this water park. In addition, you can bring home a souvenir from their gift shop.
Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park
Meanwhile, Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park plays host to dolphin encounter programs. Aside from that, they also have shows involving stingrays and sharks too. Audience participation is possible here as long as you check their schedule.
Gulf Specimen Marine Laboratories
This is a non-profit organization that studies endangered species. Also, they provide marine life not just in schools but in laboratories as well. In addition, you can tour their aquarium and lab or go on field trips too. In fact, the best way to learn more about the animals in the area is to see them in their natural habitat. From touch tanks to hands-on experiences, you’ll see what animals live in the Gulf of Mexico.
Shell Island is a protected reserve that is part of the St. Andrews State Park. In fact, this beautiful beach lies between St. Andrews Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Aside from that, the best way to reach it is by joining a boat tour. Or booking a pontoon. There is no general admission to pay here, but you do need to book or rent a boat.
Along the way, you will encounter wild dolphins that can accompany you as you travel here. If you want to see them up close, there are blue dolphin tours that you can join. Aside from that, head to the beach and see plenty of sand dollars, starfish, and conch shells along the Gulf coast. You can also head to Rosemary beach to go snorkeling on the water surface.
SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium
There are more than 5,000 marine animals in this aquarium in Orlando. Among these are sea turtles, sharks, and clownfish. Aside from that, the main attraction here is their 360-degree tunnel that gives you the best view of marine life. This is a great place to take your kids. In fact, if you want a new experience for them, introducing them to aquatic animals is a good start. This is a unique way for them not only to learn about fish and other sea creatures, but they will also to have a good time too. There is a snack bar on the property to grab some food as you go exploring the area.
Meanwhile, Florida Aquarium houses more than 8,000 animals and plants. In addition, they have dolphins programs where you can have a fun experience with these smart creatures. In fact, you will have a great experience here with the dolphins. Admission tickets are available online or on-site. Make sure that you wear your face mask here as part of their health protocols.
Water Planet will take you to where the wonderful dolphins are. Their boat rentals will take you and the whole family where the action is. This beats having to see the dolphins in an enclosure! Also, even small children will see the denizens of the sea in a safe manner as the divemaster makes sure everyone knows what to do. In fact, this is a great learning experience for them as they swim with sea creatures.
Another aquarium that you should consider is Miami Seaquarium. This is a 38-acre oceanarium where you can enjoy dolphin discovery and sea lion shows. Aside from that, the fun thing to do here is to immerse yourself in the various shows held here.
The South Florida Science Center and Aquarium
Aside from its laser shows, special effects, and nights at the museum, this science center and aquarium boasts a 3,500-gallon predator tank. It is home to sharks, barracudas, and eels just to name a few.
Marine Science Center
If you want to do more than the dolphin experience, why not learn how to handle sea creatures properly? Aside from the stingrays and hermit crabs swimming in their tanks, you can have much fun touching animal life here too. Also, this science center also takes care of injured tropical birds before they return to the wild.
Wrapping Up the 10 Aquariums in Panama City Beach, FL
If you are looking for an experience of a lifetime, Panama City Beach is a good place to start. Aside from the nature trails nearby, you can also have a great time learning a thing or two about marine life and sea creatures. If you have plenty of time on your hands, the aquariums in and around Panama are worth checking out. This stunning adventure is one of the perks that you will enjoy in North America.