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Public Programs

Upcoming Programs


Headlands and Beyond: A Hands-On Exploration
Open to the public 7 days a week!
We are proud to present Headlands and Beyond: A Hands-On Exploration, a new exhibit that is open to the public seven days a week. These hands-on exhibits complete the Maddie James Seaside Learning Center project and highlight the underwater world just beneath the Dana Point Headlands.

Explore our marine-themed atrium and whale court while participating in fun, family activities designed to indulge your ocean curiosity. On weekends, we continue to offer a site-wide, immersive journey into the mysteries of the Pacific Ocean.
Click here for complete info.

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31st Annual Toshiba Tall Ships Festival

Sunset Parade Sail – Sept. 11
Tall Ships Festival – Sept. 12 & 13

Join us in celebrating our 31st year hosting the Toshiba Tall Ships Festival. Explore the majesty and wonder of life at sea through the sights and sounds of working tall ships. Interactive living-history encampments, including blacksmiths, scrimshaw artists, knot tiers, and the infamous Port Royal Privateers, are sure to entertain and amaze guests of all ages.

Cannon Battle and Sunset Sail ticket sales are now open for Members. Ticket sales to the general public open June 15th. Click here for complete information and to purchase tickets.

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Coastal Cleanup Day

Saturday, September 19; 9am – 12pm

Participate in California's annual Coastal Cleanup Day at the Ocean Institute and receive half price admission for the day. We will clean the Dana Point Marine Conservation Area, the west jetty and the west end of the harbor.

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Special Presentation with Chris Welsh, chief pilot of Deep Sub LLC
Wednesday, September 30 at 7pm
Chris Welsh from Deep Sub LLC will discuss his deep diving submersible and mothership. Learn about the sub design, dive locations to the deepest places in the five ocean basins, planned exploration, and scientific goals. Reservations are required.

Cost: $5 for Members / $10 for General Public

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Ocean Education Center Exhibits and Visiting
Public Hours
Weekdays: 10:00am to 4:00pm
Weekends: 10:00am to 3:00pm
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Ongoing Programs

Sailing Tallships and Sailing
Join the crew or simply sit-back and enjoy the majesty of sailing the seas aboard a tallship.

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R/V Sea Explorer R/V Sea Explorer and Cruising
Cruise with our experienced and knowledgeable staff on a variety of programs.

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ABTS Kids Members-Only Events
Unique events just for our members including Parade of Lights Viewing Party, Cruises and more!

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Sailing Toshiba Tall Ships Festival
This year, the Ocean Institute is celebrating its 30th year hosting the Toshiba Tall Ships Festival! Come and explore the majesty and wonder of tall ships through the smells, sounds and sights of real working tall ships.
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At Sea

Educational Programs for Schools/Small Groups

On weekdays, students participate in our innovative and award-winning educational programs.

Ocean Institute Representatives will come to your school and meet with you.

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Birthday parties & Special Occasions
Celebrate a birthday in our ocean-themed facility. For events of 40 – 60 people during our Weekend Program hours, we offer several packages to help
you host a memorable event.

Basic Birthday – Starting at $350
Includes a private room, admission to the Ocean Institute during our public visitation hours, and a personal guide.

Deluxe Birthday – Starting at $450
Includes the Basic Birthday package, plus themed crafts and activities (select one):
Under the Sea • Fantasy • Nautical

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General Information

Contact Information

Ocean Institute
24200 Dana Point Harbor Dr.
Dana Point, CA 92629
Phone:(949) 496-2274
Fax: (949) 496-4296
email: oi@ocean-institute.org

Office and Registration Hours

8:00am to 5:00pm

9:00am to 4:00pm

Gift Shop Hours

9:00am to 5:00pm

Public Hours

10:00am to 4:00pm

10:00am to 3:00pm

Admission Fees

Members & children under 2: FREE
Guests: $5.00

Members & children under 2: FREE
Adults (13-64): $10.00
Seniors (65+) & Youth (2-12 years): $7.50