Field Trip & Camp Information
Let us help you plan your next field trip or camp!


Ocean Institute welcomes field trip reservations anytime, from one month to one full school year in advance. To book your field trip you may call during our normal business hours and speak to one of our sales reservation coordinators.

Plan Your Field Trip

We are here to help with your field trip planning!

Our staff will come to your school to help you with any parent or administrator meetings you may have to give a complimentary presentation. We also welcome you to come to us for a tour or to shadow any programs you are interested in.

Each program has a prep-packet designed specifically for the program you choose. Each packet contains the recommended steps to prepare your students to gain the most out of their experience with us.

You can access all of our field trip information online. To view our catalog of programs please click here. We offer a wide array of programs varying in subject matter and length year round. Field trips can be as short as a one-hour lab or can be as involved as a seven-day Catalina Island adventure aboard a tall ship. We host over 115,000 students annually ranging in grade level from pre-K to college. We also host home schools, special needs, community and senior citizen groups. All of our programs are based on California state standards.

Once you have selected the field trip you are interested in, you must call to make a reservation at least one month in advance. Many of our most popular field trips fill up fast; please have at least three dates in mind for your field trip. After you have scheduled your field trip, you will have a window of 30 days to complete and return your contract(s) with a non-refundable deposit.

The Next Steps

Immediately upon receiving your prep-pack…

  • Carefully review the Teacher Preparation Package
  • Arrange your transportation

Two months prior to your trip…

  • Confirm student and adult numbers with the Ocean Institute
  • Arrange for parent chaperones – please refer to your contract or prep pack for exact adult to student ratio requirements

One month prior to your trip…

  • Begin student preparation
  • Copy and distribute Acknowledgement of Risk and Waiver to each student as well as any other required forms in your prep-pack

Two weeks prior to your trip…

  • Mail program payment to the Ocean Institute – full payment must be received a minimum of 10 days before your program
  • Collect Acknowledgement of Risk and Waiver from each student
  • Contact parents to remind them to sign and return the Acknowledgement of Risk and Waiver
  • Call the Ocean Institute with any changes in the number of participants. We cannot guarantee that changes in numbers of students or adults can be accommodated if requested within 2 weeks of your program date

One week prior to your trip…

  • Review behavioral expectations with students
  • Contact the Ocean Institute with any last minute questions or changes

24 hours to go…

  • If inclement weather is expected, contact the Ocean Institute for status of the program
  • Prepare name tags for students and adults
  • Complete ship manifest listing ALL students and adults if you are participating in a cruise

When you arrive for your field trip…

  • Please send one teacher to check inside the Ocean Education Center building*. When checking in please provide all of the Acknowledgement of Risk forms, manifest (if necessary), and complete teacher, student, and adult counts. At check-in you will receive a field trip boarding pass listing the pertinent information and answers to frequently asked questions and an invoice for your program

*If you are participating in a field trip that takes place at the Lazy W Ranch, Mission of San Juan, or before our normal business hours, you will check in at the facility with Ocean Institute instructional staff.