Get Into Your

Join us in August for Get Into Your Sanctuary days!


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John Armor, Director

Message from the Director

As director of NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, I'm pleased to welcome you to "Get Into Your Sanctuary - Memories Happen Here," a publication that shares the ways recreation can be enjoyed in your national marine sanctuaries.

Recreation Activities map

Recreation Activities

Planning an adventure or dreaming of your next vacation? Look no further than your national marine sanctuaries! These jewels of the ocean and Great Lakes hold possibilities for everyone.

Elephant seal laying pn someone

Don't be that Guy

National marine sanctuaries are some of the best places in the world to see wildlife. From birdwatching to whale watching, these special places have something for everyone. But what are the best ways to watch wildlife without disturbing the animals or putting yourself in harm’s way?

A diver swiming through the National Marine Sanctuary of American Samoa

Diving Happens Here

Some of the best diving in the world can be found in your national marine sanctuaries.

Child runs into the water to surf

Catch a Wave

From beginner waves to expert tubes, national marine sanctuaries provide opportunities for surfers of all skill levels.

Young people conencting with their naitonal marine sanctuaries

Fishing Happens Here

Recreational fishing is one of the most popular pastimes in the United States—and 98 percent of national marine sanctuary waters are open to recreational anglers.

A Kayaker paddling

Paddle Away

Canoeing and kayaking provide participants with a unique, interactive avenue to experience all that national marine sanctuaries have to offer.

volunteers watching for humpback whales

Amazing Wildlife Lives Here

In your national marine sanctuaries, you can see whales, dolphins, seals, sea lions, birds, sea otters, manta rays, and more. Before you go, take a moment to educate yourself on the responsible way to watch wildlife.

beginner snorkelers

Snorkeling Happens Here

Sometimes a snorkel and fins are all you need to experience the beauty of our national marine sanctuaries.

A paddleboarder explores the shipwrecks of Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary

Stand Up and Paddle

Paddleboarding can transport you to the past while you investigate shipwrecks just beneath the surface, or can be the perfect way to watch wildlife from a distance.

jumping for joy from the top of a rock

Splash, Explore, and Relax

Dip your toes in! The waters and coastline of national marine sanctuaries are waiting for you.

Fishermen enjoys the water in Flower Garden Banks

Boating Happens Here

Visitors to national marine sanctuaries interested in staying above the waterline can enjoy the scenic surroundings, wildlife viewing opportunities, and fishing spots accessible by boat.


Memories Happen Here

Planning an adventure or dreaming of your next vacation? Look no further than your national marine sanctuaries!

Diver aproaching the tarpon shipwreck

Where Will Your Next Adventure Take You?

National marine sanctuaries work with tour operators to promote responsible and sustainable diving, snorkeling, fishing, and boating practices to reduce the impact of these activities on ecosystems.