Come behind the scenes and get to know a Northern fur seal or California sea lion!

Join marine mammal trainers in the open-air New Balance Foundation Marine Mammal Center exhibit and you will have a variety of opportunities to interact with the seals.

Interactions vary from day to day. You could touch a seal’s thick fur, get a flipper shake, or even play a game of “copy cat.”

How it works

  • Check in at the Aquarium’s Information Desk in the Main Lobby by 10 a.m. A trainer will meet you in the main lobby to escort you behind the scenes of the marine mammal center.
  • You will get information on how to safely interact with the seals, then head out onto the flat deck of the fur seal exhibit with a trainer to meet one of these charismatic animals during the training session at 10:30 a.m.
  • While you are on deck, a trainer will introduce the fur seal, explaining the fur seal’s unique traits and teaching the participant about how the fur seals learn new skills.
  • Participants will have the unique opportunity to interact and possibly feed the seal. Hands-on activities vary depending upon which fur seal is involved and how comfortable the participant and the seal are interacting with each other. Throughout the program, participants will gain a strong appreciation for marine animals and learn how to help protect these animals and our blue planet.
  • Feeding, hand signals, or getting splashed are examples of behaviors you might see, they vary day to day at the trainer’s discretion. Any particular behavior is not guaranteed.
  • After the program, the trainer will escort the guests off the exhibit and they will be free to explore the rest of the Aquarium.

Program Details

  • Offered weekends at 10:15 a.m.
  • Lasts approximately 30 minutes
  • $90 plus Aquarium admission ($80 for Members), Aquarium admission is required
  • 2 participants
  • Ages: 7 and older (children ages 7 to 9 must be accompanied by an adult, who is a paid participant.)

Program Guidelines

  • Wear closed-toe shoes with traction. High heels are not allowed. The exhibit is outdoors so please dress accordingly. Please note that you may get saltwater on your shoes and clothing, and the deck can be slippery.
  • Cameras with a neck or wrist strap are allowed. A professional photographer will be in the exhibit taking photographs, which will be available for purchase at the Sharpshooter counter for an additional fee. Friends and family are invited to take photos from outside the exhibit if they are Aquarium members or have bought Aquarium admission.
  • The program occurs during a scheduled training session. If participants do not arrive before 10:30 a.m., they will miss the program. There will be no refund for participants who do not show up or arrive late.

How to Book

Reservations are required. Call 617-973-5206 and ask about the Meet and Greet a Fur Seal or Sea Lion program.

* A note about our marine mammal programs: Your preferred date may not be available due to the seals’ molting season. Seals molt once every year, and the molting phase can last about a month. Please call Central Reservations at 617-973-5206 to check availability for all programs involving the marine mammals.