Review: Marine Mammal Center

2000 Bunker Road
Fort Cronkhite
Sausalito, CA 94965-2619
(415) 289-7336

A visit to the Sausalito’s Marine Mammal Center is likely to trigger both outrage and inspiration. In that order. Since 1975, the nonprofit veterinary research hospital has been working to undo human carelessness, one marine mammal at a time.

Devoted to rescuing and rehabilitating ill or injured elephant seals, sea lions, and others, the Center also strives to educate and facilitate change, through a variety of programs as well as public visits. Set in the Marin Headlands on Rodeo Beach, just north of the Golden Gate Bridge and west of Sausalito, the state-of-the-art facility offers visitors the opportunity to witness everything from food preparation (fish shake anyone?) to feedings and cleanings. The brave of heart might even peek into the necropsy suite, where scientists perform autopsies to learn how to save future lives.

Visitors can wander the halls on their own (admission is free), peering into labs, meeting former patients whose photos and stories like the walls, and hanging out on the observation deck to watch staff tend to current patients. The facility also offers one-hour docent-led tours ($7 adults, $5 students and seniors), allowing visitors a more in-depth glimpse into the world of animal saving, replete with stories and insights.

The Center also welcomes volunteers of all kinds (visit the website to see the various volunteer opportunities) and is involved with a variety of education and activism programs. Need we say more?

Read about more “wild” adventures in the Bay Area and more things to do in Sausalito.

Take Muni bus 76 to Mitchell Road & Bunker Road. The Center is a 10-minute walk from there.