Check out the Aquarium before or after visiting Mallory Square. The building is from the 1930’s, which gives it an interesting and distinct exterior. Also, it’s right next to the Shipwreck Museum, which is always a must see when you’re in Key West.
The first thing you’ll notice is how kid-friendly the Aquarium is and the spacious touch tank with tons of marine life that you can feel. The tank houses Queen Conchs, Horse Conchs, Hermit Crabs, Slate Pencil Sea Urchins, Starfish, Horseshoe Crabs, and even Sea Cucumbers. Parents love this feature of the Aquarium because it can entertain their children for quite some time (parents also like to experience the marine life themselves).
In addition to the touch tank, guests like to hear about the conservation efforts from the staff. Most of the animals housed at the Aquarium are either endangered, near endangered, or injured and are being rehabilitated by the Aquarium staff. When visiting larger aquariums or Sea World you’re never able to really engage with the animals or experience the extent that the staff is giving back to marine life.
As one of the first Key West Attractions for tourists, it’s no wonder how they know what kinds of marine life to house and how to properly care for their animals. The tanks are beautiful and allow for close up views of all kinds of creatures, like Moray Eels, Lane Snappers, French Grunts, and so many more. The tanks even have vivid descriptions and pictures of each fish so onlookers know what kinds of fish they were observing. You’ll get to see a couple of familiar faces, like Nemo (the clownfish), and George (the octopus), and Crush (the sea turtle). And after seeing all these friendly faces, it ‘s especially comforting to learn about how the Aquarium teaches guests about the importance of coral reefs, not only in the Key West community, but to the earth as a whole. So next time you’re in Key West, make the Aquarium a top priority on your checklist of things to do!
For more information visit the Key West Aquarium website.