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Marine Discovery Tours, the official cruise company for the Oregon Coast Aquarium, is a shining example of an Oregon attraction. This family owned cruise company, located on Newport's bustling Bayfront, has a track record of warm and friendly customer service that starts with the reservations and continues with a team of enthusiastic naturalists who lead an aquarium-style program called a Sea Life Cruise aboard the Discovery, a custom built passenger vessel with deluxe accomodations and equipment.
The program includes behind the scenes information about all things coastal - whales & other marine life, fisheries, early day pioneers, to modern day Newport oyster farming. It's delivered in a user-friendly style that is lively and fun with activities that all are welcomed to volunteer for - crabbing demonstrations, touch tanks, navigation lessons "driving with the captain" and video-microscopes. A very reassuring part of the operation is the constant focus on safety with an everchanging route between the ocean, 4,000 acres of saltwater bay and 12 miles of river system. This company sticks with it's belief that it is wonderful to be out on the ocean looking at whales, but not when everyone on board is feeling seasick!
The tickets are a very good value with rates available for schools and organized groups. They cruise daily from March through October with 1 - 3 departures - reservations are recommended.