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Aquarium of the Pacific opens exhibit tank to divers

July 2, 2010 | 10:32 am
A child waves to a diver inside the Tropical Reef Habitat.For the first time, general certified divers are invited into the Aquarium of the Pacific’s largest exhibit tank, the 350,000-gallon Tropical Reef Habitat.  With the new pay-to-dive program, guests will have the opportunity to interact with more than 2,000 tropical fish and animals, including an olive ridley sea turtle, bonnethead and zebra sharks, cownose rays and a queensland grouper.

In this 2 1/2-hour experience, divers will also get a behind-the-scenes tour of the Aquarium’s dive program, including a look at what it takes to manage one of the largest aquariums in the United States. As part of their dive inside the Tropical Reef Habitat, participants will have full use of an underwater camera and will receive a certificate of completion, souvenir towel and a data stick with their photos. All equipment is provided (though divers are welcome to bring their own mask, booties and underwater camera).

Open to divers age 15 and older, the cost is $299 per person ($279 for members) and includes Aquarium admission. Dives take place from 3 to 5:30 p.m. daily, with a limit of four participants per session. A valid diver certification and driver's license or other form of I.D. is required. Divers who are 15 to 17 years old must be accompanied by an adult who also signs up to dive.

For more information and reservations, call (562) 590-3100, ext. 0, or visit the Aquarium of the Pacific website.

-- Kelly Burgess

Photo: A child waves to a diver inside the Tropical Reef Habitat. Credit: Aquarium of the Pacific

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