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Birch Aquarium

Heading to Southern California in the name of a well-deserved vacation is always an exciting choice for travelers. While the gorgeous shorelines, amazing dining, and endless shopping are sure to inspire, this is a locale that’s loved just as much for its water. If you happen to be an adventurer with a heart for the ocean and all things marine conservation, you’ll want to be sure to set aside time for a visit to the Birch Aquarium when your trip takes you to La Jolla. As inspiring as it is informative, this stop might just end up being the highlight of your getaway!

An Incredible Underwater Experience

The Birch Aquarium is located at 2300 Expedition Way in La Jolla and works as the public outreach center for the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego. Here, visitors will discover groundbreaking work being done by UC San Diego scientists through a collection of captivating events and exhibits on-site. The Birch Aquarium is far from your traditional aquarium experience as its designed with hands-on learning opportunities in mind at every turn. It’s also built on a foundation of climate-based programming that reaches more than 40,000 k-12 students each year from local schools and those studying oceanography.

The Aquarium’s Core Values and Mission

The Birch Aquarium in San Diego is designed as a space to engage, inspire, and empower scientists and visitors alike. It’s also a destination with a firm focus on sustainability and innovation. All of the aquarium’s net revenue is put back towards its greater environmental purposes while creative research teams on-site continue to make breakthroughs in marine conservation and oceanography. Finally, the Birch Aquarium is designed to be a place where community and experts can collaborate for the greater good of the ocean.

What You’ll See During Your Visit

When you make time to enjoy a visit to the Birch Aquarium in San diego, you’ll find everything from Loggerhead Sea Turtles and Leopard Shards at your fingertips. While many of the marine species on-site call Southern California home, the aquarium also houses species that hail from across the globe. The exhibits here are set up to reflect authentic underwater ecosystems and habitats that are vital to keeping oceans thriving. You’ll be able to discover the world of Giant Kelp while you’re here which offers seahorses a safe haven within a vast ocean. There are also opportunities to learn more about the aquarium’s take on climate action during a visit with a closer look at their environmental initiative and how you can get involved.

Plan Your Experience

The Birch Aquarium is open from 9:00 am until 5:00 pm January through February and October through December. Hours are 9:00 am until 7:00 pm from March 1 through Labor Day. The aquarium is always closed on major holidays. You’ll need a reservation in order to enjoy visiting this aquarium and tickets for adults begin at $24.95 while children 3-17 can enjoy a visit for $19.95. Guests can also enjoy free three-hour parking on-site and if you’re interested in full-day parking options, passes can be purchased at Guest Services.

Book Your Stay Today

When you’re making plans to enjoy a trip to San Diego and you know you’re going to want amazing accommodations in place to top off your stay in style, the team at Vacation Rentals by Kimberly has you covered. Reach out today to learn more about our exciting, luxurious, and inviting vacation rental options available as well as those that keep you closest to the Birch Aquarium while you’re in town. We’re happy to handle the details while our guests focus on the well-deserved fun ahead. We look forward to seeing you in sunny California soon!


  • Are there options to book behind-the-scenes tours at Birch Aquarium?

    The work being done at the Birch Aquarium is extremely important to ocean and marine line conservation. Visitors are often excited to see more beyond the traditional on-site displays and exhibits and the aquarium is happy to accommodate. Behind-the-scenes tours are available to book at select times throughout the week with either a focus on seahorses or octopus depending on preference. These tours need to be booked in advance at the time of ticket purchase in order to secure your spot.

  • How long should I set aside when planning to visit the Birch Aquarium?

    Guests are encouraged to spend as long as they’d like at the Birch Aquarium once they’ve purchased their tickets and arrived to take a look around. On average, guests will find that about an hour and a half is sufficient to see the major displays and exhibits you won’t want to miss.

  • Are there any on-site dining options to enjoy during my visit?

    When cravings come calling at Birch Aquarium, guests can enjoy a delicious moment or two at the Splash! Café. It’s open daily for dining between 9:30 am and 3:30 pm but do be sure to check the calendar before you arrive as seasonal hours may affect when the café is open for business.

  • Will my vacation rental near the Birch Aquarium come with pet-friendly options?

    At Vacation Rentals by Kimberly, all of our property options are unique and if the rental you’re looking at is pet-friendly, it will be clearly noted on the listing. If you have questions about booking a specific pet-friendly rental in town, our team is here and more than happy to answer your inquiries!

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