Saturday, September 18, 2010

Aquarium of the Pacific

Jellies! I'm not talking donuts this time, or those colorful rubbery-plastic '80s shoes. (I had blue fisherman sandals, so it's somewhat relevant to mention them here.) I'm talking Aquarium of the Pacific and their wonderful collection of wacky water creatures. These sea jellies, and their milky-white cousins the moon jellies, are just a few of the features that keep me coming back. My other faves include "petting" the wet-velvety-soft bat rays in the touchpool, and checking out the seahorses and the drag-queen-esque sea dragons.

Here's an insider tip: plan to have your lunch inside Café Scuba during one of the seal and sea lion shows. Since most people are outside, pick one of the booths near the windows to get a view of the show without baking in the sun. My food from the café was tasty, too: grilled cheese panini with bacon, brie, Granny Smith apples and apricot jam with a huge green salad. Yum!!

After a couple hours of aquatic stimulation overload, it was also nice to walk along the path to the little seaport village - I'm usually running this route as part of the Long Beach Half Marathon - watching the little boats and the humungous Queen Mary. And just try to get the Aquarium's theme song out of your head, because it is terrific!

Click here to to the the Aquarium of the Pacific's Web site.

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