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|Whales Up Close: $60 non-members, $54 members|
For young children or those who don’t want to get waist-deep in the water during the Beluga Encounter program, Mystic Aquarium offers a way to have an up close visit with a beluga whale without getting wet. During our Whales Up Close program, witness a beluga feeding and learn more about these magnificent animals’ special behaviors with only a three-foot-high window separating you from the whale.
Whales Up Close begins in the Beluga Encounter Room where guests meet a whale trainer and learn about the belugas at the aquarium and in the wild, as well as training concepts and current conservation issues. From there, they are led to the Arctic Coast exhibit, home to New England’s only beluga whales and one of the largest beluga whale exhibits in North America. The program takes place on the exhibit’s "beach," an area typically only accessed by staff.
After coming face to face with a beluga whale, you will learn how the trainers interact with these graceful creatures and about their special behaviors, which are taught for regular close interaction that includes daily physical examinations, research, exercise, playtime and learning with the whales – all within arms reach. You may even get a chance to touch the whale!*
Mystic Aquarium is a leader in beluga research, care and training. Through long-standing animal care and research relationships with other institutions across the nation, Mystic Aquarium has been selected to house belugas from other leading facilities for various reasons, including breeding initiatives, exhibit renovations and research. Your participation in this program helps Mystic Aquarium researchers who are trying to better understand belugas’ health and how they respond to environmental change, including human-related factors, ultimately contributing to the long-term survival of the species.
The Whales Up Close program is approximately 45 minutes long and takes place daily May through October, with a limit of six people per session. Participants must be 6 years of age or older, and those under 16 years of age must be accompanied by an adult who has paid to participate in the encounter.
Sessions will begin again in May; tickets will be available in April. If you wish you purchase a gift card, please call (860) 572-5955, x222. Otherwise, check back in April for the link to the reservations page!
*Depends on participant’s height and number of participants in the session.
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