Starting Labor Day Weekend, OdySea Aquarium is bringing back in-person Animal Encounters and Tours as it connects guests in memorable ways with the fascinating animal world. OdySea Aquarium will offer Penguin and Sloth Encounters, Behind-the-Scenes Shark Tours, and Stingray Feeds on weekends and select weekdays beginning Saturday, September 3.  Through these unique experiences, guests can spend quality time with African penguins or a two-toed sloth, feed several species of stingrays, or go behind-the-scenes of the Aquarium to see the extensive shark habitat from a rare vantage point. Visitors can check the availability and pricing of these amazing sessions and book online at

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“We are so happy to bring back our popular Animal Encounters and Tours, giving guests a unique, small-group setting where they can get up-close and learn about their favorite animals,” said OdySea Aquarium President, Greg Charbeneau. “We are really giving guests a peek into our Animal Care world through these experiences. Participants will be close-enough to see an animal’s adaptations, learn what it takes to care for these incredible creatures, and ask important questions of our experts—and there is nothing more rewarding for our team than to share their love and knowledge of the animal world with our guests!”

Behind-the-Scenes Shark Tour

See the inner-workings of OdySea Aquarium on this behind-the-scenes tour that focuses on one of the ocean’s most dynamic and misunderstood predators – sharks. The tour kicks off in the Aquarium’s food prep area where aquarists make daily meals of restaurant-quality seafood for these behemoths! Guests move on to one of the coolest views in the Valley: a rare look from atop the massive Shark Waters exhibit! Experience what it feels like to stand above this 450,000-gallon shark habitat as numerous lemon, nurse, sandbar, and sand tiger sharks swim below!

Penguin Encounter

During this extraordinary experience, a small group of participants will have the luxury of entering the African penguin exhibit and interacting with some of nature’s sweetest and most captivating birds! Watch as the penguins waddle, explore, preen, and play in this close-up adventure. Learn about the penguins’ various personalities, the anatomy of this flightless bird, and what is involved in caring for a large colony of penguins. Don’t miss the opportunity to come nose-to-beak with the charming African penguin in this unforgettable private experience.

Sloth Encounter

Rendezvous with a sloth at OdySea Aquarium and prepare for cuteness-overload! Learn about one of the rainforest’s slowest—and most popular—animals in this fun and educational encounter! Guests will “hang-out” with either Squidney, a loveable female, or Barnacle – aka Barny, a wide-eyed, adorable male, in an open-air setting designed to enhance the natural behaviors of the sloth.  Guests will learn about sloth diet, care, personality, exercise, and learn how much of their day is really spent sleeping! Lucky participants may even get a #selfie—er, #slothie with one of these charismatic cuties as a keepsake of the best day ever!

Stingray Feeds

Want to treat a stingray to lunch? It’s possible at OdySea Aquarium! Feed the friendly stingrays at Stingray Bay and Stingray Shores during special weekend feeding times by purchasing tickets for the experience at the Ticket Box Office onsite (along with admission tickets), at the Concierge’s Desk in the lobby, or at the Discovery Desk near Penguin Point inside the Aquarium.  Animal Care Specialists will be on hand at feeding time to pass-out individual cups of fish to participants, guide guests in proper feeding technique, answer questions, and share valuable information about the stingrays.


NOTE: SeaTREK has been operating on weekends since 2021; it rounds out the extraordinary in-person Encounters and Tour options at OdySea Aquarium.

SeaTREK is an award-winning guest experience at OdySea Aquarium and is perfect for those looking for that ‘next-level’ adventure.  SeaTREK has visitors donning wetsuits and state-of-the-art dive helmets that allow them to breathe freely and walk upright while underwater on this guided tour of the SeaTREK exhibit. Slipping beneath the water’s surface into the immersive oceanic surroundings below, SeaTREKers can touch and hand-feed dozens of cownose rays and Indo-Pacific tropical fish, and visit a honeycomb moray eel and a beautiful zebra shark while submerged on this astounding journey.

Animal Encounters, Tours, and Feedings at OdySea Aquarium resume Labor Day Weekend beginning Saturday, Sept. 3 and run through Monday, Sept. 5.  These experiences will continue on weekends and select weekdays this fall. Dates and times are subject to change. Guests can review dates, times, prices, and restrictions for these experiences at where they can also book their Encounter or Tour. Stingray feedings can only be purchased onsite.