The Tampa Bay Area Sights

Mote Aquarium

  • 1600 Ken Thompson Pkwy. Map It
  • Sarasota
  • Zoo/Aquarium

Published 07/06/2017

Fodor's Review

A renowned research facility, the Mote is also a popular tourist attraction that draws families and others interested in its international array of ocean creatures. Its newest draw is a large outdoor habitat featuring a family of frolicking river otters. In the main building, 135,000-gallon shark tank lets you view various types of sharks from above and below the surface. Other tanks show off eels, rays, and other marine creatures native to the area. Touch tanks abound here for the little ones, and the not-so faint of heart can scope out a preserved giant squid; a rare find out in the wild. The expanded Seahorse Conservation Lab offers a glimpse into the unusual creatures' lives and how the aquarium is working to help them survive and thrive. Hugh and Buffett are the resident manatees and, though not as venerable as Snooty at the Parker Manatee Aquarium, they have lived here since 1996 as part of a research program. There's also a permanent sea-turtle exhibit. For an extra fee, Sarasota Bay Explorers offers boat tours from the museum's dock (reservations required), guided kayak tours through the mangroves, private tours, and a "Nature Safari."

Sight Information


City Island, 1600 Ken Thompson Pkwy., Sarasota, Florida, 34236, USA

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Sight Details:

  • $19.75

Published 07/06/2017


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