Jellies At the Monterey Bay Aquarium

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Our Favourite – The Jellies At the Monterey Bay Aquarium

As we travelled along the west coast for 4 weeks, we knew we would find aquariums of various sizes along the way.  We were told that the one we couldn’t miss was the Monterey Bay Aquarium.  We were generally interested in all the exhibits.  But I most wanted to see the Jellies at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.  Even though I squirmed at the thought of getting real close to a Jellyfish.  While I know that many are not dangerous, much like bats, I have a very visceral reaction to the thought of Jellies.

The Jellyfish Exhibit (The Jellies)

The ticket for Jellies at the Monterey Bay Aquarium combined both a back stage pass to see how Jellies were bred and cared for as well as an on-floor tour with commentary.

Behind the scenes I was pushed forward to stroke the upper side of a Jelly (after the young boy did it), while the tour director let the Jelly continue to sting his hand.  Apparently it is not toxic enough to prohibit his doing this a few times a day.  Better him than me.  We got the details of how to recognize a Jelly from a hydra.  And we learned about the beginning polyp state that spits off the baby Jellies.

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I was a bit squeamish about touching the jellyfish or the thought of swimming within them.  But I was not at all hesitant about putting my face and camera to the glass to get some great shots.  There was such a variety of colours and shapes for the jellyfish.

Jellies at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.jpg

Jellies at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.jpg

Jellies at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.jpg

Jellies at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.jpg

Lots To See at the Monterey Bay Aquarium

While we spent most of our time with the Jellies, we did explore the rest of the aquarium – as a teaser for return visit.  The exhibits covered a broad selection of ocean life, both local and more remote.  It was easy and informative to wander through the exhibits.

We saw aquariums filled with bright coloured fish and corals.  David went eye to eye with the Cuddle Fish and I was not sure who was watching who.

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Aquarium Coral.jpg

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We saw a massive tank with larger fish.  With the rest of the crowd, we stared fascinated to see the sharks as they glided past.  They seemed uninterested in the other fish.  The Mola mola fish (aka Ocean Sunfish) in the tank was quite small (maybe 36” across) but we heard tales of them growing to be 5’ across.

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A Great Visit To See Jellies at the Monterey Bay Aquarium

It was a great day trip from Carmel to see the jellies at Monterey Bay Aquarium.  And we saw so much more! This aquarium visit did get us excited for our coming trip to Moss Landing in search of whales!

We wandered around Cannery Row before and after we visited the aquarium.  And then it was time to head back to Carmel.

What was your favourite exhibit at the Monterey Aquarium?  Did you see the Jellies at the Monterey Bay Aquarium? Do you have another favourite  aquarium?  Send us your suggestions!

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Travel blogger and photographer! Scuba diving, luxury cruising, chocoholic, sea and sunshine addicts, camera attached and just generally curious! Join us on our adventures!


  1. Oh, the Monterey Aquarium – to me, a legend. First I visited Monterey from San Francisco because of the movie Alice doesn’t live here anymore – if you haven’t seen it, you absolutely should. She doesn’t even make it to Monterey, but the name stuck in my hade 😀 Once there, I visited the Aquarium because, quite honestly, there isn’t that much to do there, and was mesmerized. What a place! Therefore, years later, I took my daughter there – of course, on a public bus which is kind of an adventure of its own.
    My favorite where those otters….or the larger than life fish….or the turtles…thank god I don’t have to pick just one 😉

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