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Family / Children

Family and Children

If you're travelling with children, you've come to the right place! Monterey offers a wealth of kid-friendly activities and attractions. Whether it's outdoor activities like biking, hiking or boating, or indoor exploration into the ocean world, early California history or local wildlife, Monterey has much to choose from. Kid-friendly sites in Monterey give families a chance to interact while having fun together. Keep reading for a world of opportunities for families and children of all ages.

Tide Pools

Tide-pooling is a wonderful way to introduce children to the some of Monterey County's tiniest residents. Tide pools are created when the high tide recedes, depositing thousands of tiny animals, including hermit crabs, snails, sea urchins, and star fish in "pools" along the rocky shoreline. Kids can hop from rock to rock, peering into the cold, clear water looking for various critters. Animals in the near-shore environment should not be mistreated, and taking them home is forbidden as well. But youngsters will surely enjoy the experience and learning more about the ebb and flow of the marine ecosystem.

A word of caution: never go tide-pooling in a heavy surf, and don't ever turn your back on the ocean. A large wave could easily knock down a small child. Parents should always supervise their children near the ocean.

Did You Know?
The Monterey Bay Aquarium's exhibit "Splash Zone" is a special, hands-on interactive exhibit just for kids. There are penguins to wave at, a giant tidepool to play in (with soft stuffed creatures and make-believe water), and dozens of unusual creatures to touch and learn about. And don't forget to visit Mae, the youngest addition to the lively sea otter tank! See Museums & Attractions for more information.

News & Events
You really "otter" come and see them… When better than the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Otter Days, September 7 and 8.

Experts from the Aquarium’s Sea Otter Center and aquarists who train the exhibit otters will give special presentations in the auditorium, while activities for kids include face painting and a craft room. A few lucky visitors will win the chance to go behind the scenes for a feeding at the sea otter exhibit or to see the nursery where staff care for orphaned sea otter pups. You might also win a trip with an aquarium biologist to track tagged otters in Elkhorn Slough.

All activities are included in the price of admission; visit the Aquarium website for more information.

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