Untravel, Take a Staycation at the New England Aquarium
screen capture of staycation at NEAq Insider
The Boston-located New England Aquarium is suggesting that you unravel this holiday break by untraveling to their fish-filled halls. The New England Aquarium has opened its virtual doors to staycationers who are looking for family entertainment over the winter. The best part is you don't have to leave your home, and you don't have to spend any money.A Virtual VacationNEAq Insider was designed as a tour guide for those who wanted to learn more about the aquarium and the creatures within. Visitors are able to download or stream the tour. There are ten main exhibits highlighted. Each one gives you a behind-the-scenes view of a different sea creature: Eels, groupers, seals, penguins and more.
Untraveling the AquariumI took the tour to see what it was like. The guides are young, hip and casual without being overly so. The scientists impart knowledge that could be hard to come by or skimmed over during an actual visit. Everyone in the mini-flims really seems to care about the animals. In one featurette an octopus specialist talks about the mental well-being of one of his octopi. I always knew octopi were intelligent, but I never even considered that they could get stressed out.
Staycationing Part 2The shots of the animal exhibits are interesting and vibrant. They have angles and close-ups that wouldn't be seen by the naked eye of a go-cationer. One exhibit features harbor seals that have been trained to speak. Hoover, the grandfather of a modern-day talking seal, can be heard in a recording chatting with a Boston accent, or a seal-approximation of one. Personally, I would have liked to have seen a live-feed camera on a fish tank or two. Overall, it is a fun and very informative effort by the New England Aquarium.
Conservation and The AquariumThe New England Aquarium does more than just suggest people save their gas money this holiday season, they've also undertaken several conservation projects. One successful lobbying campaign moved shipping lanes out of whale habitats. They also played a key role in setting aside the world's largest Marine Protected Area.