Thursday, March 27, 2014

TRAVEL: Texas State Aquarium | @TXStateAquarium #BlogSwap #Texas

Texas State Aquarium
This week, I’m lucky enough to be guest-blogging for Kirstin here at SoCal Kids Outdoor Adventures. Being part of SoCal Lady Bloggers, I was able to sign up and be a part of “Walk a Mile in Another Blogger’s Shoes;” created and organized by the one and only AJ Feuerman who blogs at Confessions of a Fat Girl. Thank you Kirstin and AJ for this fun opportunity!

With spring holidays and summer breaks coming up, many families are traveling all over the country—visiting relatives, seeing sights, and looking for things to do and see. If you happen to be in South Texas—specifically, Corpus Christi—I have a great suggestion for you.

The Texas State Aquarium is a premier non-profit aquarium that showcases the habitats of the Gulf of Mexico. First opening in 1990, it became a federally permitted animal rehab facility in 1993.

I’ve visited the Aquarium several times when I’ve been in the area; and it has grown into a wonderful place to spend the day seeing wildlife and their habitats, while learning how we can protect them.

The day starts with a tour through tanks, showcasing fish, undersea “flower gardens” and the wildlife of the Gulf of Mexico and surrounding areas. There’s even a great display about the Amazon—with poison dart frogs, boas, spiders and piranhas.

The highlight of the indoor tour is the Islands of Steel tank—125,000 gallons of sea life habitat formed around what looks like an oil platform. It’s full of nurse and tiger sharks, fish, sea turtles and other wildlife that might naturally be found in this type of environment.

Leaving the tank exhibits, you will walk out onto Corpus Christi Bay; out here you can see other sites of the city, including the beautiful skyline, the Bay Bridge and the USS Lexington. There are also some great interactive exhibits and shows at the Aquarium.

From Otter Creek to Eagle Pass, Stingray Flats to Tortuga Cay, you can get up close and personal with almost all the residents. You may even be offered the opportunity to hand feed Atlantic and Cownose stingrays (ask for this opportunity when you purchase your entry tickets).

If you like dolphins, you’ll have to hurry up and wait for a seat for the Dolphin show. This was the most popular part of the aquarium; watching Shadow and Kai, two Atlantic bottle nose dolphins interact with their trainers. Or you can catch a variety of trained birds at the Hawn Wild Flight Theater.

If you’re going to be in town a few days, you may be able to make arrangements to Sleep with the Sharks. Or you can run down the gangway and visit the U.S.S. Lexington; I haven’t had a chance to get over there yet myself.

You can find more information about The Texas State Aquarium here. You can also like them on Facebook, and follow them on Instagram and Twitter. Anyway you look at it, you’re sure to have a fun day at the Texas State Aquarium.

Ann Odle writes at Ann About Town, where she talks about her life, her trips around the Southwest, product, event and restaurant reviews, and her personal observations on life. She lives in Southern California with a roommate and a house-full of pets; doing her best to keep “all the plates spinning at the same time” and enjoy each and every moment life throws her way.

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