The Aquarium of the Pacific (formerly the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific) is a public aquarium on a 5-acre (20,000 sq m) site on Rainbow Harbor in Long Beach, California, United States. It is situated across the water from the Long Beach Convention Center, Shoreline Village, and the Queen Mary Hotel and Attraction.
The Aquarium sees 1.5 million visitors a year and has a total staff of over 900 people including more than 300 employees and about 650 volunteers. It is a 501(c)(3) non-profit aquarium. The Aquarium is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).
The Aquarium features a collection of over 11,000 animals representing over 500 different species in exhibits ranging in size and capacity from about 5,000 to 350,000 gallons. Exhibits introduce the inhabitants and seascapes of the Pacific, while also focusing on specific conservation messages associated with each region. The Pacific Ocean is the focus of three major permanent galleries, sunny Southern California and Baja, the frigid waters of the Northern Pacific and the colorful reefs of the Tropical Pacific.
Activities of the Aquarium of the Pacific employees and volunteers extend far beyond exhibits. The diverse marine science and conservation ventures include: breeding and conservation programs for endangered marine animals and habitats; housing of unreleasable seals, sea lions, and sea otters from local care centers and marine parks; beach and habitat cleanups; a variety of green business practices; and continuing efforts to educate visitors on the importance the ocean, its threats, and conservation, including the hazards of marine pollution, over-harvesting, habitat destruction and global climate change.
The Aquarium of the Pacific is also home to many cultural events throughout the year, such as the Pacific Islander Festival in the summer, the Moompetam Festival in the fall, special treats for the animals at Christmas, the Festival of Human Abilities in January, and the African Heritage Festival in February.