Newport Aquarium Announces All-New Exhibit with Octopuses and Deep-Sea Creatures Newport Aquarium Announces All-New Exhibit with Octopuses and Deep-Sea Creatures

Newport Aquarium Announces All-New Exhibit with Octopuses and Deep-Sea Creatures

March 20, 2024

Meet new animals and explore new depths of the ocean starting March 22

Newport, Ky. (March 20, 2024) — As part of its 25th anniversary celebration, Newport Aquarium has announced an intriguing new exhibit with opening weekend kicking off on Friday, March 22. The all-new Ring of Fire: World of the Octopus contains seven different displays focused on the bizarre and fascinating creatures that live between towering volcanos and deep ocean trenches in this part of the world that boasts the most earthquakes of any region on the planet. The extreme conditions make for some highly unusual animals which visitors to the aquarium will be able to experience up close.

As part of the full gallery renovation, the popular giant pacific octopus is getting a large new habitat located in the Octopus Den. Visitors will enter the cave, which is just the type of spot these animals love to call home, and find a new floor-to-ceiling display where the animal can explore and exhibit its natural color-changing, shape-shifting behaviors. The exhibit will also include a new rotating collection of other octopuses and strange fish, allowing visitors to experience something new with each visit. The first visitors will get to meet the new wunderpus, an unusual striped octopus that mimics the appearance and behaviors of venomous animals, like sea snakes and lionfish, as their way to scare off predators.

One of the most compelling new displays showcases a cluster of hydrothermal vents and the animals that live on them. These towering structures form in the deep sea where molten lava meets near-freezing seawater. In the wild they can reach up to 18 stories tall. Just like in the wild, Newport Aquarium’s new 360-degree display bubbles and fizzes to show the chemical soup that’s constantly spewed from these vents. In otherwise pitch black, those chemicals form the basis for a full ecosystem of strange animals including fish, anemones, crabs and lobsters. Visitors will also get eye-to-eye with the ghostly-pale giant isopods that lurk in the deep sea and have adapted to living in the darkness and harshest of conditions.

Other new animals include some of the strangest residents of Puget Sound like the painted greenling, which lives among the venomous tentacles of sea anemones, and the penpoint gunnel, an eel-like fish that can mimic the colors of its surroundings and breath air. The new peacock mantis shrimp is also sure to draw attention with its iridescent body that resembles a peacock feather and its ability to punch its prey at speeds as fast as a bullet.

“I’m so proud of the hard work the team puts in to bring unusual animals that our guests would otherwise never have a chance to see,” said Rebecca Foster, Executive Director for Newport Aquarium. “It’s our hope that by being able to connect with these animals in such a special, memorable environment that they’ll want to join us in protecting them and their habitats in the wild.”

Opening weekend for the all-new Ring of Fire: World of the Octopus begins on Friday, March 22. Newport Aquarium offers reduced ticket prices with advance purchase online. Find additional information on the new exhibit, tickets and membership options at


Newport Aquarium, named one of the top ten U.S. aquariums in USA Today’s and one of the top U.S. aquariums by Leisure Group Travel, has showcased thousands of animals from around the world in a million gallons of water since 1999. Named a top U.S. aquarium by US City Traveler and Destinations Travel Magazine, and also by Travel Channel, Newport Aquarium is part of Herschend and an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Newport Aquarium is located across the Ohio River from downtown Cincinnati at Newport on the Levee.


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