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Oregon Coast Aquarium: A Must-Visit Attraction on Your Oregon Coast Trip

I can attest that the Oregon Coast is a must-see destination for anyone visiting this beautiful state. With miles of rugged coastline, stunning ocean views, and charming coastal towns, there’s something for everyone here. But if you’re looking for a truly unforgettable experience, you absolutely must visit the Oregon Coast Aquarium. Here’s everything you need to know about this amazing attraction.

Introduction to the Oregon Coast

Before we dive into the specifics of the Oregon Coast Aquarium, let’s take a moment to talk about the Oregon Coast itself. This stretch of coastline spans over 300 miles, from the northern border with Washington all the way down to the California state line. Along the way, you’ll find a variety of landscapes, from rocky cliffs to wide sandy beaches to quaint fishing villages.

One of the most popular destinations on the Oregon Coast is the town of Newport. Located roughly in the middle of the coast, Newport is home to a variety of attractions, including the Yaquina Bay Lighthouse, the Hatfield Marine Science Center, and of course, the Oregon Coast Aquarium.

Oregon Coast Aquarium – a must-visit attraction

For anyone visiting the Oregon Coast, the Oregon Coast Aquarium is an absolute must-see attraction. Opened in 1992, this world-class facility has been delighting visitors with its stunning exhibits and educational programs for nearly three decades.

Located on Yaquina Bay in Newport, the Oregon Coast Aquarium offers visitors a chance to discover the incredible marine life that’s native to this region. From playful sea otters to mysterious octopuses to massive sharks, there’s so much to see and learn about here.

History and features of the Oregon Coast Aquarium

The Oregon Coast Aquarium was founded in the late 1980s, with the goal of creating a world-class marine education and research facility. The aquarium’s founders wanted to create a space where visitors could learn about the rich variety of marine life that’s found off the Oregon Coast, while also promoting conservation efforts to protect these animals and their habitats.

Today, the Oregon Coast Aquarium is one of the most popular attractions on the Oregon Coast, drawing visitors from around the world. The aquarium is home to a range of exhibits, each designed to showcase a different aspect of the marine ecosystem. Some of the most popular features of the aquarium include:

Passages of the Deep

In this exhibit, visitors can journey through a 200-foot-long acrylic tunnel that runs through a massive tank filled with sharks, rays, and other sea creatures. This is a truly breathtaking experience, as you get an up-close look at these incredible animals swimming all around you.

Sea Otters

The playful and charismatic sea otters are always a crowd favorite. Watch as they swim, play, and groom themselves, and learn about the important role they play in maintaining the health of the kelp forests off the Oregon Coast.

Rocky Shores

This exhibit showcases the rugged, rocky coastline that’s so iconic to the Oregon Coast. Here, you’ll see a variety of creatures that call the intertidal zone home, from sea stars and anemones to crabs and snails.

Exhibits at the Oregon Coast Aquarium

There are so many incredible exhibits to explore at the Oregon Coast Aquarium, it’s hard to know where to begin. Here are just a few of the highlights:

Halibut Flats

This exhibit features massive halibut swimming in a tank that recreates the sandy ocean floor where they’re typically found. Visitors can learn about the unique adaptations that allow these fish to thrive in their environment, and even watch as they’re fed by aquarium staff.


The mesmerizing and otherworldly jellyfish are always a crowd favorite. In this exhibit, you can watch as these delicate creatures pulsate and float through the water, and learn about the important role they play in the marine ecosystem.

Coastal Waters

This exhibit showcases the incredible variety of marine life that’s found in the coastal waters off the Oregon Coast. From colorful rockfish to playful seals to massive sea turtles, there’s so much to discover here.

Tips for visiting the Oregon Coast Aquarium

If you’re planning a visit to the Oregon Coast Aquarium, there are a few things you should keep in mind to make the most of your experience:

Plan your trip today!

If you’re planning a trip to the Oregon Coast, be sure to add the Oregon Coast Aquarium to your itinerary. With its stunning exhibits, engaging educational programs, and commitment to conservation, it’s a must-visit attraction for anyone interested in marine life and the natural world. From the playful sea otters to the massive sharks swimming overhead, you’re sure to leave the aquarium with a newfound appreciation for the incredible creatures that call the Oregon Coast home.


  • Greyson Shore

    Greyson Shore is a writer and photographer who lives along the beautiful Oregon Coast among the ancient Sitka Spruce forests, the misty mountains, and the soothing waves of the Pacific Ocean. Shore Greyson

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