As the weather begins to get warmer, parents will be looking for family-friendly events to frequent. In the Baltimore area, the National Aquarium is a world-class venue which is specifically geared to all members of the family. Here is a sampling of some of the exhibits  which will appeal to all family members, no matter the age.
The National Aquarium In Baltimore
501 W. Pratt St.
Baltimore, MD 21202
(410) 727-3022

The National Aquarium, located in Baltimore’s picturesque Inner Harbor at Pier 3, offers a variety of programs geared towards the family. Opened in August 1981, the Aquarium is located next to historic battleships, which provide history lessons in themselves. This tourist attraction touts more than 17,000 animals and over 750 species. According to the website, the mission of the National Aquarium in Baltimore is to “inspire conservation of the world’s aquatic treasures.” Guided tours are available. The hours of operation are Mondays-Sundays from 9AM – 5PM. Here are a few of the permanent exhibits and special events on display at The National Aquarium

Amazon River Forest

Visitors will think they have been transported to the Amazon as they view the various species which make its home there. Some of the animals one can expect to see are piranha, emerald tree boas, and white-blotched river stingrays. Visitors can learn about the special features of the different animals as well as their habitat. The exhibit also features the dry and rainy seasons of the river forest so visitors can experience both extremes of the climate.

The Upland Tropical Rain Forest 

The Blue Poison-Dart Frog and sloths are some of the animals which make their home in the Upland Tropical Rain Forest. This exhibit contains many of the species and animals peculiar only to this habitat. Visitors even experience the climate of the Tropical Rain Forest as they learn about the animals, plants and importance of the Rain Forest. Visitors get an understanding of how valuable the rain forest is to the existence of mankind.

Dolphin Discovery / Encounter

Learn how Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins interact and play with each other. The Dolphin Discovery, the largest of all the aquarium’s exhibits, is a huge favorite as the public watch them  and learn about their social habits. The Aquarium staffers who care for the dolphins are also available to discuss how they care for these friendly animals of the deep.
Saturday, June 27, 2015  and Sunday, June 28, 2015 @ 9 AM

Related: Family Fun Guide To Baltimore’s Inner Harbor

Shark Alley

Have you ever come face to face with a  shark? In the Shark Alley, you can. Visitors can learn about the different species of sharks and their characteristics as they watch them swimming around and interacting with each other in the huge, circular tank. The public can walk the catwalk, located right next to the live sharks. Visitors can also enjoy a behind-the-scenes, up close and personal tour.  Friday, June 26, 2015  and Monday, June 29, 2015 @ 1:30PM

Wetlands Planting

This is a conservation effort. The Aquarium Conservation Team has lots of initiatives to help clean up the environment. One strategy involves planting wetland grasses at the Masonville Cove Environmental Education Center. Participants not only learn about the species which depend upon the habitat, but also the importance and impact of wetlands planting. Another conservation effort, which has cross-generational appeal, is the clean-up and restoration of the Chesapeake Bay. Participants, once having been engaged in these hands-on activities, leave with a feeling of accomplishment as well as the knowledge and skill of how to better help and conserve the environment at home.

Related: Family Fun Guide To Baltimore’s Port Discovery Children’s Museum

Vickie Lawson is a freelance writer whose work can be found on