Venture out onto Long Island Sound in June to meet marine animals, or see lighthouses, sunsets and even fireworks, during public cruises with The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk.
— an announcement from The Maritime Aquarium
These cruises are available in June aboard The Maritime Aquarium’s R/V Spirit of the Sound, the only research vessel in the country with quiet “green” hybrid-electric propulsion:
• Marine Life Study Cruises — Examine fish, crabs, mollusks and other creatures brought up out of the Sound right before your eyes during these memorable 2.5-hour cruises. Participants also help find crabs, worms and other animals hidden in the muddy bottom, and view plankton using a videomicroscope linked to the boat’s giant-screen monitor. “Marine Life Study Cruises” will occur most Saturdays & Sundays through June 19, and then run daily June 25 through Labor Day. Most cruises depart at 1 p.m., but some outings at 10 a.m. and 2 and 4 p.m. will occur. See the Aquarium’s website for specific dates and times. Tickets are $29.95 ($24.95 for members).
• Adults-Only Sunset Cruise on Saturday, June 18 — Enjoy a fun relaxing tour out to the Norwalk islands timed to include the setting sun. Aquarium educators will point out sights and wildlife, but this cruise stresses de-stressing while twilight paints the western sky. The 2.5-hour cruise departs at 6:30 p.m. and is for ages 21 and older. Tickets are $49.95 and include a signature cocktail. Additional drinks will be available for purchase. Light fare is available by pre-order by noon on Wed., June 15.
• Family-Friendly Sunset Cruise on Friday, June 24 — Bring the kids for a fun relaxing tour out to the Norwalk islands timed to include the setting sun. (Height minimum of 42 inches.) Aquarium educators will point out sights and wildlife, but this cruise stresses de-stressing while twilight paints the western sky. The 2.5-hour cruise departs at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $29.95 ($19.95 for Aquarium members).
• Western Long Island Sound Lighthouse Cruise on Saturday, June 25 — This cruise will make close passes by Greens Ledge and Sheffield Island lighthouses in Norwalk, Harbor Ledge in Stamford, Great Captain Island of Greenwich, Execution Rocks off New Rochelle, and Long Island’s Stepping Stones, Sands Point and Eatons Neck lights. All but the Sands Point Lighthouse are on the National Register of Historic Places. The 6.5-hour cruise departs at 9 a.m. Tickets are $75 (or $65 for Aquarium members).
• Fireworks Cruise on Thursday, June 30 — Enjoy a unique water view of municipal holiday displays — times two, thanks to reflections on the surface — and avoid the crowds and traffic. The June 30 outing, which departs from the aquarium dock at 7 p.m., will view the fireworks display off Westport’s Compo Beach. Small soft-sided coolers are allowed, but alcoholic beverages and glass bottles are prohibited. Tickets are $50 per person. (Other “Fireworks Cruises” are planned for July 2 to Fairfield’s Penfield/Jennings Beach, July 3 for Stamford’s Cummings Beach Park, and July 4 to Norwalk’s Calf Pasture Beach.)
On all cruises, binoculars will be provided. But bring your camera!
All participants must be at least 42 inches [that’s 3 feet, 6 inches] tall to board. Those under age 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
R/V Spirit of the Sound has a climate-controlled cabin but participants should dress for time outside on deck, where the best viewing occurs.
Capacity is limited so advance reservations are strongly suggested for all Aquarium cruises. Reserve your tickets online — and see the full spring and summer schedule for R/V Spirit of the Sound on the Maritime Aquarium website. You can also call (203) 852-0700, ext. 2206.