5 Things to Do at FAU Harbor Branch

From pontoon boat tours to lectures with scientists, enjoy weekly public programming at FAU Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute

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The 144-acre campus of Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute in Fort Pierce. Photo courtesy FAU Harbor Branch
The 144-acre campus of Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute in Fort Pierce. Photo courtesy FAU Harbor Branch

The Florida Atlantic University (FAU) Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute in Fort Pierce is welcoming locals and visitors alike to experience the world class research organization through public programming initiatives, including campus and boat tours, lectures with esteemed scientists, workshops, and more.

Stop by the Ocean Discovery Visitors Center

The Ocean Discovery Visitors Center showcases the ongoing efforts of the FAU Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute’s marine scientists and engineers. The research-themed exhibits provide an up-close look at nearly 50 years of discoveries from around the world. Explore the center’s more than 1,000 gallons of aquaria, home to more than 80 species of plants and animals.

The center is open Tuesday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is a $5 suggested donation.

FAU Harbor Branch Campus Tours

Go behind the scenes with an FAU Harbor Branch outreach scientist to learn more about the research being conducted at the institute. During this 1.5-hour tram tour, guests will explore the 144-acre waterfront campus, learn about the institute’s history, and discover the impacts that the work has on everyday life.

Campus tram tours are available Tuesday through Saturday at 1 p.m. Tours are $25 per person and advanced registration is required.

FAU Harbor Branch Indian River Lagoon Boat Tours

Hop aboard the Discovery pontoon boat for a 1.5-hour excursion on the lagoon. Activities include interpreting real-time water quality data from the Indian River Lagoon Observatory Network, surveying underwater habitats with a remotely operated vehicle, and identifying wildlife of all sizes, from microscopic plankton to sharks, rays, manatees, and dolphins.

Discovery pontoon boat tours are available on Fridays and Saturdays at 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. Tours are $40 per person and advanced registration is required.

Exploring Florida Aquaculture Public Workshops

Join FAU Harbor Branch researchers and industry partners as they share their expertise and demonstrate everything sustainable aquaculture, including where seafood is sourced from, restoring coastal ecosystems, and more.

Workshops take place on the second Saturday of each month from February to March, from 9 a.m. to noon. Admission is free and advanced registration is required.

2024 John & Barbara Ferrera Ocean Science Lecture Series

Each week, learn about FAU Harbor Branch’s most recent discoveries directly from the scientists and engineers who make them, featuring a different topic and lecturer each time.

Lectures take place on Wednesdays through February at 4 p.m. Admission is free and advanced registration is required.

For more information, visit fau.edu/hboi or call 772-242-2293. The Florida Atlantic University (FAU) Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute is located at 5600 N US Highway 1, Fort Pierce, FL 34946.

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