How Can I Explore The Mote Marine Laboratory?

Are you ready to embark on a fascinating aquatic adventure? Look no further than the Mote Marine Laboratory! Wondering how you can dive into this incredible marine world? Whether you’re seeking hands-on experiences, breathtaking exhibits, or the chance to interact with fascinating marine creatures, the Mote Marine Laboratory offers it all. Get ready to explore this one-of-a-kind laboratory and discover the wonders of the ocean like never before.

Mote Marine Laboratory Overview


Located in beautiful Sarasota, Florida, Mote Marine Laboratory is a renowned research institution dedicated to advancing marine science and conservation. Situated on a stunning 10.5-acre waterfront campus, the laboratory offers visitors a unique opportunity to explore the wonders of the ocean and learn about its diverse inhabitants.


Founded in 1955 by Dr. Eugenie Clark, Mote Marine Laboratory has a rich history of groundbreaking research and impactful conservation efforts. Dr. Clark, widely known as the “Shark Lady,” was a pioneer in the field of marine biology and her legacy continues to shape the laboratory’s mission and work to this day.

Mission and Purpose

The mission of Mote Marine Laboratory is to advance marine science and inspire conservation of our oceans through education, research, and outreach. By studying and protecting marine life and ecosystems, Mote aims to create a sustainable future for our planet and promote responsible stewardship of our oceans.


Mote Marine Laboratory boasts state-of-the-art facilities that support its cutting-edge research and conservation efforts. From laboratories equipped with the latest scientific equipment to specialized tanks and habitats for marine animals, the laboratory provides a dynamic and conducive environment for scientists and visitors alike.

Marine Education and Outreach Programs

Education Options

Mote Marine Laboratory offers a wide range of educational programs designed to engage learners of all ages and interests. Whether you’re a student looking to deepen your understanding of marine science or simply someone who wants to learn more about the ocean, there is an educational option that suits your needs. From field trips and summer camps to workshops and internships, Mote provides hands-on opportunities to explore marine biology and learn from experts in the field.

Public Exhibits

Immerse yourself in the wonders of the ocean at Mote Marine Laboratory’s public exhibits. The laboratory’s educational displays combine stunning visuals with interactive elements to provide an engaging experience for visitors of all ages. From learning about the remarkable adaptations of sharks and rays to getting up close and personal with gentle manatees, the exhibits at Mote offer a unique opportunity to learn about the marine world and the importance of conservation.

Research Training

For aspiring marine scientists, Mote Marine Laboratory offers research training programs that provide valuable hands-on experience in the field. Participants have the opportunity to work alongside world-class researchers and contribute to ongoing research projects that address critical marine issues. These programs not only offer a chance to gain practical skills and knowledge but also provide a glimpse into the thrilling world of marine research.

Virtual Learning

In addition to its on-site programs, Mote Marine Laboratory also offers virtual learning opportunities for those unable to visit in person. Through interactive webinars, live-streamed events, and virtual tours, the laboratory brings the wonders of the ocean right to your screen. Whether you’re a student attending a virtual class or a curious individual looking to expand your knowledge, Mote’s virtual learning options provide a convenient and engaging way to explore marine science.

Marine Animal Exhibits

Sharks and Rays

Step into the world of these fascinating creatures at Mote Marine Laboratory’s shark and ray exhibits. Get an up-close view of various species, from the graceful stingrays to the awe-inspiring sharks. Learn about their unique adaptations, life cycles, and the critical role they play in maintaining a healthy marine ecosystem. This exhibit offers a rare opportunity to see these majestic animals in a safe and controlled environment.


The manatee exhibit at Mote Marine Laboratory offers visitors a chance to get acquainted with these gentle giants of the ocean. Through educational displays and interactive presentations, learn about the biology, behavior, and conservation status of manatees. Watch as they gracefully glide through the water and gain a deeper appreciation for these beloved marine mammals.

Sea Turtles

Sea turtles hold a special place in the hearts of many, and at Mote Marine Laboratory, you can learn all about these ancient creatures. Discover the different species that inhabit our oceans, their nesting habits, and the challenges they face in the wild. Through engaging exhibits and educational programs, Mote aims to raise awareness about the importance of protecting sea turtles and their habitats.


Delight in the playful antics of otters at Mote Marine Laboratory’s otter exhibit. These charismatic creatures are sure to bring a smile to your face as you observe their energetic behavior and adorable interactions. Learn about their natural history, conservation status, and the various projects aimed at protecting their habitats. The otter exhibit is a must-visit for anyone who appreciates the wonders of marine life.


Discover the mesmerizing world of jellyfish at Mote Marine Laboratory’s jellyfish exhibit. With their delicate and graceful movements, these ethereal creatures captivate visitors of all ages. Learn about their diverse species, unique adaptations, and the important role they play in marine ecosystems. The jellyfish exhibit at Mote offers a captivating experience that highlights the beauty and complexity of our oceans.

Coral Reefs

Mote Marine Laboratory’s coral reef exhibits transport visitors to the vibrant and colorful world beneath the waves. Learn about the intricate relationships between corals and the myriad of organisms that call coral reefs home. Gain an understanding of the challenges facing these fragile ecosystems and the innovative solutions being developed to restore and conserve them. The coral reef exhibits at Mote are not only visually stunning but also serve as a reminder of the pressing need to protect these invaluable underwater habitats.

Research and Conservation

Marine Animal Research

At the heart of Mote Marine Laboratory’s mission is its commitment to conducting groundbreaking research on marine animals. From studying the behavior and life cycles of sharks to investigating the impact of pollutant exposure on sea turtles, Mote’s research provides invaluable insights into marine life and informs conservation efforts. By studying these animals in their natural habitats, researchers at Mote work towards a better understanding of their needs and how to protect them.

Ocean Health Initiatives

Mote Marine Laboratory is at the forefront of efforts to promote ocean health and combat the numerous challenges facing our seas. Through research initiatives and partnerships, Mote works to address issues such as harmful algal blooms, plastic pollution, and the impacts of climate change on marine ecosystems. By raising awareness and advocating for sustainable practices, Mote aims to create a future where our oceans thrive.

Sustainable Aquaculture

Recognizing the importance of sustainable food production, Mote Marine Laboratory has pioneered research in the field of aquaculture. By developing innovative techniques for breeding and raising fish and other marine organisms, Mote aims to reduce the strain on natural populations and provide a sustainable source of seafood. Through responsible aquaculture practices, Mote is leading the way towards a more sustainable and resilient future for our oceans.

Coral Restoration

As coral reefs face unprecedented threats, Mote Marine Laboratory is actively involved in research and restoration efforts aimed at saving these vital ecosystems. Through its Coral Reef Restoration Program, Mote is pioneering innovative techniques for growing and transplanting corals. By restoring damaged reefs and researching the factors that contribute to coral resilience, Mote is working towards a future where coral reefs can thrive despite mounting challenges.

Boat Tours and Cruises

Dolphin and Whale Watching

Embark on a memorable adventure with Mote Marine Laboratory’s dolphin and whale watching excursions. Set sail on the crystal clear waters off the coast of Sarasota and witness these magnificent marine mammals in their natural habitat. With expert guides and researchers on board, you’ll learn about the behavior, migration patterns, and conservation efforts aimed at protecting dolphins and whales.

Sunset Cruises

Experience the breathtaking beauty of a Florida sunset as you cruise along the coast with Mote Marine Laboratory’s sunset tours. Relax and unwind as you watch the sun dip below the horizon, casting a golden glow across the water. These leisurely cruises offer the perfect opportunity to appreciate the natural wonders of the ocean while enjoying the tranquility of the evening.


For those seeking a more immersive and educational experience, Mote Marine Laboratory offers eco-tours that provide a deeper understanding of the coastal ecosystems. Explore mangrove forests, seagrass beds, and tidal flats as you learn about the fascinating plants and animals that call these habitats home. Led by knowledgeable guides, these eco-tours offer a unique perspective on the delicate balance of life along the coast.

Interactive Experiences

Touch Tanks

Get hands-on with marine life at Mote Marine Laboratory’s touch tanks. These interactive exhibits allow visitors to touch and observe a variety of marine organisms, from stingrays and starfish to sea cucumbers and horseshoe crabs. Through these tactile experiences, Mote aims to foster a sense of connection and appreciation for these fascinating creatures and their habitats.

Feedings and Demonstrations

Witness the feeding habits and behaviors of marine animals up close in Mote Marine Laboratory’s feeding and demonstration sessions. From the impressive strength of sharks during mealtime to the acrobatics of dolphins, these demonstrations provide a unique opportunity to learn about the biology and natural history of these remarkable creatures. Led by experienced staff members, these sessions offer an engaging and educational experience for visitors.

Behind-the-Scenes Tours

Take a peek behind the curtain and go on a behind-the-scenes tour of Mote Marine Laboratory. These exclusive tours provide a rare glimpse into the inner workings of the laboratory and offer insights into the complexities of marine research and conservation. From visiting the research facilities to meeting the dedicated scientists and technicians, these behind-the-scenes tours provide a deeper appreciation for the important work being done at Mote.

Special Events and Programs

Educational Workshops

Mote Marine Laboratory regularly hosts educational workshops that delve into various aspects of marine science and conservation. Whether it’s learning about the intricacies of shark behavior or understanding the importance of coral reef ecosystems, these workshops offer a deeper dive into specific topics. Led by experts in the field, these interactive sessions provide an opportunity to learn from the best and gain a deeper understanding of marine science.

Lectures and Presentations

Expand your knowledge and engage with the latest research in marine science through Mote Marine Laboratory’s lectures and presentations. Renowned scientists and experts from around the world come to Mote to share their findings and insights. From the impacts of climate change on marine ecosystems to the latest breakthroughs in marine technology, these lectures provide a platform for intellectual exchange and encourage thought-provoking discussions.

Conservation Events

Mote Marine Laboratory is dedicated to raising awareness about marine conservation through various events and initiatives. From beach cleanups to community outreach programs, these conservation events aim to mobilize individuals and communities towards positive change. By actively involving the public in these efforts, Mote promotes a sense of ownership and responsibility for our oceans and inspires a collective commitment to their protection.

Dining and Shopping

Mote of Food

Take a break from exploring and enjoy a delicious meal at Mote of Food, the on-site dining facility at Mote Marine Laboratory. With a menu inspired by the flavors of the sea, Mote of Food offers a range of options to satisfy every palate. From freshly caught seafood to vegetarian dishes made with locally sourced ingredients, this dining experience is a treat for both your taste buds and the environment.

Gift Shops

Bring home a piece of the ocean with a visit to the gift shops at Mote Marine Laboratory. Browse through a wide selection of marine-themed souvenirs, books, clothing, and artwork. Whether you’re looking for a unique gift or a memento of your visit, the gift shops at Mote offer an array of treasures that capture the beauty and wonder of our oceans.

Visitor Information

Hours and Admission

Mote Marine Laboratory is open to the public seven days a week, from 10 am to 5 pm. Admission rates vary depending on age and membership status, with discounts available for children, seniors, and members. It is recommended to check the laboratory’s website or contact them directly for the most up-to-date information on hours and admission prices.

Location and Directions

Mote Marine Laboratory is conveniently located at 1600 Ken Thompson Parkway, Sarasota, FL 34236. Situated on City Island, the laboratory offers easy access and ample parking for visitors. Detailed directions are available on Mote’s website, along with information on public transportation options for those who prefer not to drive.


Mote Marine Laboratory is committed to providing an inclusive and accessible experience for all visitors. The facility is wheelchair accessible, with ramps and elevators available throughout the premises. Visitors with special needs or inquiries are encouraged to contact Mote’s Visitor Services team in advance to ensure that their visit is tailored to their specific requirements.

Parking and Transportation

Ample parking is available at Mote Marine Laboratory, with designated areas for cars, motorcycles, and bicycles. There are also electric vehicle charging stations for those driving eco-friendly vehicles. For those using public transportation, Mote is accessible via several bus routes, and information on schedules and routes can be found on the laboratory’s website.

Supporting Mote Marine Laboratory

Donations and Sponsorship

If you are passionate about marine science and conservation, consider making a donation or becoming a sponsor of Mote Marine Laboratory. Your support allows Mote to continue conducting critical research, educating the public, and advocating for the health of our oceans. Donations of any size are greatly appreciated and make a tangible impact on Mote’s mission.


Mote Marine Laboratory offers various volunteer opportunities for individuals who wish to contribute their time and expertise. Whether assisting with educational programs, supporting research efforts, or helping with administrative tasks, volunteers play a crucial role in Mote’s daily operations. Volunteering at Mote is not only a rewarding experience but also an opportunity to make a difference in the conservation of our oceans.

Membership Benefits

Consider becoming a member of Mote Marine Laboratory and enjoy exclusive benefits while supporting their important work. Members receive free admission to the laboratory, discounts on activities and events, invitations to member-only programs, and much more. By becoming a member, you join a community of individuals dedicated to the preservation and understanding of our oceans.

In conclusion, Mote Marine Laboratory offers a comprehensive and immersive experience for those interested in marine science and conservation. With its diverse range of exhibits, educational programs, research initiatives, and interactive experiences, Mote provides visitors with a unique opportunity to explore the wonders of the ocean and gain a deeper understanding of its importance. Whether you’re a student, a nature enthusiast, or simply someone wanting to learn more about marine life, a visit to Mote Marine Laboratory is a journey worth embarking on.