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Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History Sea Center

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: 211 Stearns Wharf, Santa Barbara, CA
Phone Number:
+1 805-962-2526
Today
10:00 - 17:00
Closed now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 10:00 - 17:00
Description:

The Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History Sea Center is located on...

The Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History Sea Center is located on Stearns Wharf and fulfills the mission of the Museum to inspire a passion for the natural world.

At the Sea Center visitors of all ages can enjoy interactive exhibits, opportunities to work like scientists, a theater showcasing the wonders of the Santa Barbara Channel, hands-on close encounters with sea creatures, and a live shark touch pool. Children can crawl through a 1,500-gallon tidepool tank to see ocean life from a different perspective. The Sea Center is an engaging, interactive marine education facility that allows visitors to discover the fun in science and the wonders of the natural world.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 114 reviews
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  • 39
    Excellent
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    Very good
  • 20
    Average
  • 7
    Poor
  • 1
    Terrible
Nice but small sea center.

I took my 1 year old and my 4 year old here during my last visit. I think it is definitely a 4 and up place, not so great for babies. THE GOOD You can touch sea stars and sea... read more

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 17 July 2016
nkbduckie
,
Panama City, Florida
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114 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 109: English reviews
Fall River, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
52 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 August 2016

I was traveling down the coast from San Fran heading to the LA with my 5 yr old granddaughter. We decided to stop in Santa barbara and since I have a Boston Science Museum pass I knew I could get into this museum for free. I am glad I had it because I wouldnt have been happy paying to go... More 

Helpful?
Thank pastelebony
Santa Clarita, California
Level Contributor
45 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 August 2016 via mobile

We spent about 45 minutes here. Touch tanks and the preserved dolphin were cool. We parked in the city lot nearby and also did the carousel at Chase Palm. Good afternoon

Helpful?
Thank SCVerMF
Panama City, Florida
Level Contributor
9 reviews
7 attraction reviews
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 July 2016

I took my 1 year old and my 4 year old here during my last visit. I think it is definitely a 4 and up place, not so great for babies. THE GOOD You can touch sea stars and sea cucumbers. You get to look at some fish. Then you head upstairs which is where their special exhibit is. Last... More 

Helpful?
Thank nkbduckie
Blackpool, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
75 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 July 2016

I took my 3yr old grandson here late one afternoon & the best thing about it was being able to touch a couple of the creatures i.e. a Sea Cucumber & Starfish. Some quite interesting facts around the place & there was a little theatre showing a film about sharks which was quite interesting but that's about it

Helpful?
Thank ManchesterFoxylady
Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
28 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 July 2016

This is a smaller aquarium-like facility at Stearns Wharf. The kids enjoyed seeing the sea life close-up and being able to touch some of it.

Helpful?
Thank jco14
California
Level Contributor
114 reviews
35 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 June 2016

To an adult, the Sea Center was interesting but seemed limited in its displays; but the children were so engaged that they never wanted to leave! The swell sharks were vastly entertaining in a touch tank; they are little show-offs and quite engaging. The crab pot was a huge hit, and the children were allowed to pull it up out... More 

Helpful?
Thank HistoryNutCalifornia
United States
Level Contributor
24 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 June 2016

If you like natural history, this is one of the better museums out there. The sea creature exhibit on the 2nd floor was good and all the jelly fish that is presented. You can feel like a kid again but touching all the sea creatures - just make sure you have your hand sanitizers. The museum is a bit small,... More 

Helpful?
Thank Jermaine D
Level Contributor
30 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 June 2016

The grand kids liked looking at the sea life. The volunteers are very knowledgeable about sea life. We enjoyed the jelly fish upstairs. They also enjoyed the cave aquarium.

Helpful?
Thank Rhonda C
Los Angeles, United States
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 May 2016

We went and had a fun time learning about what's in the local waters. There are some hands on exhibits and some activities you can participate in. It's worth going, especially if you have kids.

Helpful?
Thank Andrea F
Ocean City, Maryland
Level Contributor
36 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 May 2016

You won't need more than one hour to visit it, but if you are a sea lover you'll surely enjoy it. You can pet leopard sharks, touch anemone and star fish. Beautiful Pacific jellyfish and an interesting movie about a diver's experience from Alaska to Equator.

Helpful?
1 Thank Equis I

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