Last updated: 5/15/2022
St. Petersburg, Florida
Street Address
PO Box 528
St. Petersburg, FL 33731
Mailing Address
PO Box 528
St. Petersburg, FL 33731
phone: 727-209-7115
The Pier Aquarium
A community marine education center and private, non-profit aquarium located on the waterfront in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida. Closed on Christmas Day,Dec. 25.
Sunday12 PM - 6 PM
Monday - Saturday10 AM - 8 PM
Our Touch Tank Experience and Fish Feeding (guests are invited to help) is from 1-4pm daily.
Daily: $5 adult, $4 student (7+) and senior(65+)
Children 6 and under are free at all times.
Museum Type(s)
Gift Shop
E. Howard Rutherford, President/CEO
phone: 727-803-9799
Butch Ringelspaugh, Curator of Exhibits
phone: 727-895-7437 x215
Patty Zimmermann, Office Adminstrator
phone: 727-803-9799 x201

Partnering with Marine Exploration Center means more than beautiful aquariums, your support contributes to our educational initiatives and outreach programs. With our customized educational displays, materials, and programs, your location becomes another avenue for public education!


To enhance the public's understanding of the value and fragility of the local and global marine environment through research, education and personal experiences.


Marine Exploration Center, formerly Pier Aquarium Inc., was founded in 1988 at The Pier in downtown St. Petersburg to highlight and showcase the major marine research being conducted by local scientists. It existed as a 2,000 sq. ft. facility housed on the second floor and was bursting at the seams with live fish exhibits, displays and award winning family programming. Since the closure of the old pier in 2013, Pier Aquarium Inc. sought a new direction. As the St. Petersburg Marine Exploration Center, we now partner with local organizations and businesses to provide inspiring aquarium displays and marine science education. We combine beautiful aquaria and custom educational content to engage and inspire.

Artifact Collections

Living exhibits: Atlantic Ocean tank, Invertebrates Tank, Pacific Ocean Tank, Pacific Coral Tank, Touch Tanks (echinoderms, sharks, lobsters), Sea horse tank plus three cylindrical tanks in the first floor lobby of The Pier.

Research Collections

We have more than 200 books and magazines about marine life. Many are for children and are books of fiction. Visitors can read books at our quarterly Book Nook by the Bay events.


Private Non-Profit


  • Fresh Fish Quarterly Newsletter
  • ADA

    Metered and valet parking is available on The Pier approach and in two city parking lots, Pelican and Dolphin, located 1/4 mile away from the building. Red trolleys pick up visitors to The Pier. The aquarium has created a "deaf docent" guide that will provide a "tour" in American Sign Language for guests who are deaf or hard of hearing in the fall 2009. The program uses a split screen media tablet that will display a signed "script" with corresponding high-resolution photos of animals in our Touch Tank. Restrooms for the aquarium are located on the first floor of The Pier.

    Wheelchair Accessible




    Gift Shop

    This information, including business hours, addresses and contact information is provided for general reference purposes only. No representation is made or warranty is given as to its content or the reliability thereof. User assumes all risk of use. Stories USA, Inc. and its content suppliers assume no responsibility for any loss or delay resulting from such use. Please call ahead to verify the dates, the location and directions.
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    Established in 1996, iondesign is an award winning design firm that has developed a niche in producing interpretive exhibits for sites nationwide. We are positioned to help clients communicate brand value and interpret history to engage visitors. We bring together a team of high-level professionals for every project to create a strategic partnership with you to support your mission.

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