Welcome To Cannery Row!
Yes, it’s a real place, immortalized in John Steinbeck’s book about the lives of workers along this famous fish canning district in Monterey Bay, California – and that town has one of the world’s best Aquariums – that yes, used to be a cannery!
When you enter, you are actually inside an old canning operation, where all sorts of fish – and famously sardines – were canned here for decades…and while the canned fish business went away, they still have some inventory left…
The Aquarium was built on the site of Hodven Cannery, opened in 1916. It finally closed in 1973, and eleven years later, this amazing Aquarium opened – with lots and lots of sardines on display!
Tinned sardines were instrumental in helping win World War 2 – as these could be eaten by soldiers in battle without going bad. There is a room where you are literally surrounded by the sardines.
These silvery fish are just the tip of the iceberg here.
As the Aquarium website states:
“More than 35,000 creatures representing over 550 species fill 34 major galleries. With nearly 200 exhibits in all, the Aquarium is a window to the wonders of the ocean.”
Need more proof? How about a stunning Jellyfish exhibit. Yes, Jellyfish – like you’ve never seen before!
You enter a darkened room, which is filled with jellyfish of all shapes, sizes and colors…here are some examples:
There are so many amazing things to see at this place – they have everything from Penguins to Sea Otters…
Rise Up, Sea Otter, Rise UP!
This Sea Otter was happily chowing down on some food – but what I only got a partial shot of was this amazing sight – the Sea Otter came out of the water and stood completely up and stretched out to get his meal!
It happened so quickly I didn’t get all of him, but that was an amazing sight to see – they have public feedings and lectures and we were told he’d been trained to do this!
“See Food” Indeed!
I love squid, and I will be honest, I felt a pang of guilt as I looked at his fellow, because I knew that he tasted great – some other time, for now I’ll watch these two play in the water…
Because you are under water for most of the exhibits, I noticed an interesting occurrence: the fish had a reflection at times, when they were close to the top of the water…like this dolphin:
And that is a Giant Octopus clinging to a rock underwater, while its reflection stares back…and finally, I got a shot of us with what was the largest fish we’d ever seen!
Folks, that’s one large fish! The Aquarium has a HUGE tank filled with a variety of fish – and a school performed a cyclone dance for us:
The Monterey Aquarium on Cannery Row at Monterey Bay is so fascinating – read more about it here:
Two hours north, you can see more sea life – at Pier 39 in San Francisco!
You can walk right up and watch them splash around and make lots and lots of noise…click here for more pictures and video:
Just a half hour south of Monterey Bay is a California state park that has a Calla Lily valley that opens up to the Pacific Ocean:
You can see more pictures and video of this amazing sight as well by clicking here:
Let me know if you’ve seen this Jellyfish exhibit!