Encounters

Mystic Aquarium is a pioneer in offering guests a variety of up close animal encounters.

In an effort to inspire people to care for and protect our ocean planet, our encounter programs offer guests a unique experience that fosters a deeper appreciation for animals here at the Aquarium and in the wild.

Please note: General admission not included in encounter pricing unless otherwise noted.

 

Seals up Close

$119 Non-Members, $109 Members

During this up close and personal encounter, guests will experience exclusive access to one of Mystic Aquarium’s resident harbor seals. The 40-minute program allows for interaction with these captivating creatures and the animal care experts who care for them. Get to know more about our beloved harbor seals including their natural history and adaptations, animal care and enrichment training, and current conservation issues.

Restrictions: Must be at least six years old; ages 6-12 must be accompanied by paying, participating adult.  Guests are required to wear a personal flotation device during the duration of their program.  To ensure guest safety during the animal encounter, Mystic Aquarium staff will first discuss safety protocols with program participants. An Aquarium staff member will at all times be responsible for monitoring guest conduct and behavior.

Seals up Close Interactive Program Conditions of Participation

Encounter occurs rain or shine and is available May through October. Online sales begin in April.

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Penguin Encounter

$79 non-members, $69 members

In this 60-minute program, one of our African penguin trainers will describe these remarkable birds, their care here at the Aquarium and the special bond they form with their trainers. Participants learn about the history of the species and conservation issues affecting these intriguing animals.

Restrictions: Must be at least six years old; ages 6-12 must be accompanied by a paying participating, adult. 

Penguin Encounter Interactive Program Conditions of Participation

Encounter occurs rain or shine and is available year round.

 

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Penguins up Close

$119 non-members, $109 for members

Enjoy an exclusive opportunity to meet a penguin and learn about animal care from our Penguin Trainers! The Roger Tory Peterson Penguin Pavilion is among the most popular exhibits here at Mystic Aquarium – take this opportunity to go behind the scenes and get up close to our colony of African penguins.

Restrictions: Must be at least six years old; ages 6-12 must be accompanied by paying, participating adult; must be able to climb stairs.

Penguins Up Close Interactive Program Conditions of Participation

Encounter occurs rain or shine and is available year round.

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Paint with a Whale

$139 non-members, $129 members

As part of our commitment to enriching the lives of our animals, the animal care staff at Mystic Aquarium has taught the belugas to paint. Just like humans, animals benefit from various types of stimuli. Painting can help ensure an enriching and stimulating environment! We are inviting our guests to be a part of this experience. During a beluga painting session, trainers will introduce you to the whales. It is a great opportunity to learn more about them, their habitat and conservation of the species.

Restrictions: Must be at least 13 years old to participate in program.  Guests are required to wear a personal flotation device for the duration of their program.

Paint with a Whale Interactive Program Conditions of Participation

Encounter occurs rain or shine and is available May through October. Online sales begin in April.

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Beluga Encounter

$179 non-members, $169 members

Enjoy a classroom introduction and preparation (approx. 20 min.) followed by a 20 minute in-water experience where you’ll pull on waterproof waders and go waist-deep in the Arctic Coast exhibit to meet a beluga. Learn about the species and try your hand at directing a behavior. Feel the whale’s melon and finish with a posed photo with a beluga. A question and answer session is available to conclude the program.

Restrictions: Must be at least 5 ft tall and be able to stand unassisted for the duration of the program; children under 16 must be accompanied by paying, participating, adult.  Guests are required to wear a personal flotation device for the duration of their program.  To ensure guest safety during the animal encounter, Mystic Aquarium staff will first discuss safety protocols with program participants. An Aquarium staff member will at all times be responsible for monitoring guest conduct and behavior.

Beluga Encounter Interactive Program Conditions of Participation

Encounter occurs rain or shine and is available May through October. Online sales begin in April.

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Whales up Close

$99 non-members, $89 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 this 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.

Restrictions: Must be at least six years old; ages 6-12 must be accompanied by paying, participating, adult.  Guests are required to wear a personal flotation device for the duration of their program.

Whales up Close Interactive Program Conditions of Participation

Encounter occurs rain or shine and is available May through October. Online sales begin in April.

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Paint with a Stingray

$50 non-members, $40 members

Step into the Ray Touch Tent and help our staff during a private feeding and enrichment session. This interactive experience allows you to work side-by-side with our Aquarists to provide enrichment for our stingrays. You’ll achieve a better understanding of stingrays and their natural behaviors all while providing them with various stimuli.

Restrictions: Must be at least six years old to participate in the painting portion of encounter; ages 6-12 must be accompanied by paying, participating adult.  Children six years old and under can enter and watch the program but cannot participate in the painting portion.

Paint with a Stingray Interactive Program Conditions of Participation

Encounter occurs rain or shine and is available year round.

 

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Marine Theater Guest Star

$79 non-members, $69 members

Want to be more than a member of the audience? Join us for a theatrical experience in the Foxwoods Marine Theater featuring our California Sea lion show. In this special appearance you will join the trainers and a California sea lion on the stage in a select scene as part of our show and help our team shine a spotlight on marine mammal conservation and education. As the Celebrity guest you will have the opportunity to give the sea lions two hand signals and pose with the sea lion for a photo opportunity!

Restrictions: Children must be at least 8 years old to participate.  Guests are required to wear a personal flotation device during the duration of their program.  To ensure guest safety during the animal encounter, Mystic Aquarium staff will first discuss safety protocols with program participants. An Aquarium staff member will at all times be responsible for monitoring guest conduct and behavior.

Marine Theater Guest Star Program Conditions of Participation

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Trainer for a Day

$389 non-members, $379 members (includes Aquarium admission)

Ever wonder what it takes to train marine animals? Now you can find out! From 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., you will enjoy the company of our animal care team as you explore behind the scenes and learn what it takes to be a marine animal trainer. You will interact with African penguins, beluga whales, seals or sea lions through hands-on, side-by-side training sessions.

Restrictions: Must be at least 13 years old to participate.  Guests are required to wear a personal flotation device for the duration of their program.  To ensure guest safety during the animal encounter, Mystic Aquarium staff will first discuss safety protocols with program participants. An Aquarium staff member will at all times be responsible for monitoring guest conduct and behavior.

Trainer for a Day Interactive Program Conditions of Participation

Encounter occurs rain or shine and is available May through October. Online sales begin in April.

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Proposing?

Surprise your true love with a memorable marriage proposal at Mystic Aquarium. There are several packages to choose from; all tailor-made to create a memory to treasure for a lifetime.

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