Aquarium of the Bay in San Francisco, CA

Embarcadero at Beach Street San Francisco, CA 94133
View on Map
Starting at
$27.45 $19.45
You Save: $8.00
Book Now
INSTANT CONFIRMATION

Overview

From adorable river otters to green moray eels, you’ll discover the natural wonders of marine life at Aquarium of the Bay. With over 1000 aquatic animal species to see and learn about, this aquarium is ideal for all ages. Dive deep into the bay (without the diving, of course) to see the octopus, jellyfish, and more. A touch exhibit is available but remember to respect the marine life!

Good To Know

from Ashley, one of our San Francisco Travel Experts
  • The aquarium is closed on Christmas Day.
  • Aquarium of the Bay does not validate parking.
  • Exhibits feature thousands of aquatic animals and plants.
  • Interactive exhibits provide visitors with hands-on learning opportunities.

Description

from Aquarium of the Bay
Explore the magic, beauty, and wonder of San Francisco Bay at Aquarium of the Bay. Your visit will take you through three main habitat areas that display the amazing riches that lie beneath the surface of the San Francisco Bay and surrounding waters.

DISCOVER THE BAY
Your exploration begins in Discover the Bay, which features eight exhibits holding over 1,000 aquatic animals. Exhibit highlights include the bright orange Garibaldi (the California State Marine Fish), green moray eels, rockfish, swirling schools of anchovies and newly hatched skates, baby perch, and other fish.

UNDER THE BAY
Continue your journey and see mesmerizing jellies before entering our two tunnels with leopard shark, giant sea bass, bat rays, giant Pacific octopuses, eight-foot seven-gill sharks San Francisco's Bay’s largest predators, and five other locals species of sharks.

TOUCH THE BAY
Get ready for an unforgettable experience with the change to touch bay rays, sharks, sea stars, sea cucumbers and more.

At the interactive PG&E Bay Lab, learn from our naturalist how climate change is affecting the Bay’s animals on land in the water.

NORTH AMERICAN RIVER OTTERS: WATERSHED AMBASSADORS
These active and engaging wildlife ambassadors help to teach us how important it is to have a healthy environment to live and swim in. Watch their antics as they romp, wrestle and tumble around in cascading waterfalls, two pools, and naturalistic climbing logs.

Your ticket also includes admission to the Sea Lion Center – PIER 39, Eco Center at Heron Park – South end of San Francisco and the Bay Model – in Sausalito. The Sea Lion Center features interactive displays, educational videos, fascinating presentations, and one-on-one interactions with Naturalists. Visitors can touch real sea lion artifacts, including pelts and skulls, or size themselves up next to a life-sized sea lion skeleton.

The EcoCenter at Heron’s Head Park is an education community center that uses sustainable on-site power, water, and wastewater systems. Nearly every feature of this facility is designed to educating the public about
renewable energy, pollution and greenhouse gas reduction, wastewater treatment, sustainable building materials, rainwater harvesting, and the green economy. Features Solar Photovoltaic Energy System, Living Roof, and Native Only Landscaping.

The Bay Model shows the effect of the water flow of the San Francisco Bay and the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. This allows scientists, educations, and visitors the chance to view the complete bay-delta system complete with working tides and currents.

Closed on Christmas Day.


Reserve San Francisco Customer Reviews

153 Reviews
Wasif Saddique
Sacramento , CA
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"Honeymoon"
April, 2019 NEW
It was a great experience
Read More

Was this review helpful? Yes

Kristynn Aquino
Pittsburg, CA
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"A bite size aquarium"
April, 2019 NEW
Good, little experience
Read More

Was this review helpful? Yes

Alyssa Valdes
Reno, NV
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"Mother and daughter vacay"
April, 2019 NEW
This was the perfect place to explore and enjoy each other's company. There were so many different things to look at. It's a fun experience for both children and adults of all ages. Already planning our next trip!
Read More
Tip: Parking is limited. If you park in the garage across from the aquarium, (Pier 39 garage), it makes your life much easier!

Was this review helpful? Yes

ELMAY G.
Mililani, HI
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"Great exhibits"
March, 2019 NEW
My family enjoyed visiting Aquarium of the Bay! My son (3) enjoyed petting the manta rays and was so intrigued entering the tunnel (like walking through the ocean) and watching sea life swim all around him). My daughter (12) loved watching the otter and shopping at the gift shop. I would recommend anyone to visit as well!
Read More

Was this review helpful? Yes

Melanie Tucker
Maspeth, NY
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"Small but still great!"
March, 2019 NEW
The aquarium is located right next to Pier 39 so it was a great place to spend the day. It’s quite small but the best part about it is the tunnel, definitely kid friendly as well! They let you pet manta rays and other small creatures. A great place to visit in San Fran.
Read More
Tip: It’s quite small but there are two floors with elevators to get between them. Parking is quite hard around there unless you pay to park in a lot.

Was this review helpful? Yes

Nicole Mcfadden
Modesto, CA
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"First Time"
March, 2019 NEW
It was a ultimate experience.Money well spent.
Read More
Tip: Its a memory

Was this review helpful? Yes

Patricia C.
CA
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"Excellent!"
March, 2019
Easy, fast and convenient! And you can save some money too!
Read More

Was this review helpful? Yes

ivy bridge
1 Review
"I love this tiny aquarium"
March, 2019
Beautiful, small and very special. go when few people are there for the best experience. I go every time I come to SF
Read More
Tip: Make sure to check out the amazing jelly fish!

Was this review helpful? Yes

TripAdvisor Reviews
TripAdvisor user image
Christine R
Logan, Utah
"Okay but small"
TripAdvisor user rating 3 out of 5
Reviewed April 18, 2019 NEW
I love aquariums and have been to many. This one wasn't great but it wasn't awful. I do not think it is worth the admission price though -we had city passes so it was worth it for us to go. We spent about an hour here. Two great underwater tunnels, but those were the biggest highlight of the place. The "petting" area had hardly anything to do, only sea urchins really. It was fine but don't pay full price
Read More
TripAdvisor user image
StephanieB6477
United States
"Animals looked uncared for"
TripAdvisor user rating 1 out of 5
Reviewed April 18, 2019 NEW
Atlanta is my hometown, so I grew up a stone's throw from the Georgia Aquarium, the 2nd largest in the world. This aquarium is a living nightmare compared to that one. First of all, the crowds are impossible. The aquarium is way to small to support so many people, most of whom are active children. Second of all, you spend half your visit just waiting for the elevators which are the only way to navigate around the different floors of the facility. The moving sidewalks in the tunnels were not operating so there was no flow through the exihibits. Worst of all, these animals look completely uncared for. MANY of the fish were not swimming which is very unusual. They were just suspended in the water looking very ... Sad. The tanks and displays were visibly dirty. Round tanks are utilized throughout the facility which are notoriously cruel to fish. Animals were often alone in enclosures (including the otter which I would think really need friends and stimulation). There were two small stingrays being petted by every single person in the place. It was a horror show to watch. If you love aquariums, there are WAY better ones in Myrtle Beach, Charleston, Chattanooga, and Atlanta. Literally ANY aquarium would be better than this one.
Read More
TripAdvisor user image
yabutravels
Hoboken, New Jersey
"Ok way to kill some time by Fisherman’s Wharf"
TripAdvisor user rating 3 out of 5
Reviewed April 17, 2019 NEW
Price tag was steep for the experience but it’s SF so everything is expensive. Niece and nephew enjoyed it but it’s more for little kids. You can get through the whole thing in under 30 min. Too many strollers.
Read More
TripAdvisor user image
1SimonK
London, United Kingdom
"Otters had little room"
TripAdvisor user rating 3 out of 5
Reviewed April 17, 2019 NEW
I'm hoping someone will come here to tell me that I missed a giant pool where the 3 Otters that I saw with not much more water than I have in my bath usually spend their day. We had this as part of a city ticket linked with other things but I think it would have ben expensive as a one of for its size. The Underwater walk through bit was good.
Read More
TripAdvisor user image
Brian L
"Confirms Aquariums"
TripAdvisor user rating 2 out of 5
Reviewed April 15, 2019 NEW
At the outset, I must admit that I have a fundamental opposition to aquariums. I fully appreciate the hard work and dedication of most organizations towards conservation and research, but feel that marine life is meant to be free. The Aquarium of the Bay only confirms my opinion. It is a quaint space, but the animals are housed in tiny shelters/tanks and it breaks my heart to view them. Even the otters, while having a large enclosure, seem to be in tight quarters. In addition, the interactive aspect of the aquarium, where visitors can "touch" the animals, seems to be uncontrolled. Children can easily reach in and disrupt the animals and cause injury or worse.
Read More
Star Map Pin Icon
Aquarium of the Bay is located at Embarcadero at Beach Street San Francisco, CA 94133
Attraction Map Pin IconAttractions Hotel Map Pin IconHotels & Lodging

Frequently Asked Questions about Aquarium of the Bay

Is parking available?
Parking facilities are available at Pier 35 or across from the main entrance at the PIER 39 garage. The garage is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Aquarium of the Bay does not validate parking, but many PIER 39 restaurants do.

What is the best way to get to Aquarium of the Bay?
Utilizing public transportation is highly recommended. Present a valid Bay Area public transportation pass and receive $2 off adult admission, and $1 off child/senior admission (cannot be combined with any other offer).

What programs are available to ticket holders?
Aquarium of the Bay hosts several daily programs for guests, including Shark Station, Sharks of Alcatraz, Meet Our Otters, California touch pools, and many “up close and personal” opportunities with several animals.

Can I bring my service dog?
Yes. Guests may bring service dogs into the aquarium.