Into the Deep: Exploring Our Undiscovered Ocean is a must-see new exhibition happening now at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. We’re lucky to live just a couple hours north of the world-famous aquarium, and this rare opportunity to see live deep-sea creatures in person is not to be missed! Visitors will see species never-before-displayed to the public, some of which have yet to be named.
The experience begins with a deep dive through the Monterey Bay’s underwater canyon via an immersive 4K video experience. The exhibition takes you deeper and deeper into the ocean’s depths, starting with the Midwater, which features an amazing bioluminescence room with a collection of glowing creatures such as angler fish, siphonophores, and red crown jellies. The descent continues to the Sea Floor, where you can marvel at massive spider crabs, bone-eating worms, giant isopods, and a hydrothermal vent.
For over 5 years, the Monterey Bay Aquarium has been developing this 10,000-square-foot exhibition in collaboration with Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI). MBARI is the aquarium’s research and technology partner, which has been studying the deep sea for over 3 decades. The Grainger Family Fund contributed a generous $15 million donation to fund Into the Deep, which allowed the team to continue working during the Aquarium’s 14-month pandemic closure.
The Monterey Bay’s underwater canyon is a mile deep, and its proximity has led to several advancements in aquarium care and research. Into the Deep features the Aquarium’s most sophisticated water treatment system to date, which replicates deep-sea conditions by regulating oxygen levels, pH, and temperature.
Into the Deep teaches visitors about these creatures with an emphasis on the deep sea’s role in sustaining a healthy ocean and climate. It delves into the risks faced by deep-sea habitats from fishing pressure, habitat destruction, plastic pollution, and climate change. The deep sea is the largest living space on Earth, and its conservation is fundamental to keeping our planet healthy.
“For most people, this is the first time they’ve ever seen a living deep-sea animal,” said Beth Redmond-Jones, vice president of exhibitions and facilities. “We want visitors to understand that these habitats, seemingly so distant from our lives and so different from the ocean we’re familiar with, are critically important to the health of our planet. We’re confident that Into the Deep makes that connection and inspires people to learn more about the deep sea and support its conservation.”
The Monterey Bay Aquarium opened in 1984 and was the first to exhibit a living kelp forest. It’s known for displaying animals native to the Monterey Bay and beyond, including jellies, octopuses, sea otters, penguins, sharks, and more. The Aquarium has over 80,000 animals and plants representing more than 1,700 species. They also support many initiatives to decrease plastic pollution, promote sustainable seafood, fight climate change, and preserve California’s ocean ecosystems.
Into the Deep is happening now at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Single-day tickets are on sale now, or you can become a member for unlimited Aquarium access and exclusive sneak peeks. Tickets cost $49.95 for adults, $39.95 for youth and seniors, $34.95 for children 12 and under, and there’s free entrance for children 4 and under.
Find the Monterey Bay Aquarium at 886 Cannery Row in Monterey. It’s open from 10am-5pm daily.