You can go "under the sea" in the Florida Keys all while donning your pj's. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) offers free virtual tours of some of its most amazing marine sanctuaries, like the Aquarius Reef Base. Take a digital deep dive into the only underwater research lab in the world and see what you uncover.
The Aquarius Reef Base is hidden away in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, sunken about 50 feet below the water's surface.
The virtual tours are interactive, compiling 360-degree images to create an immersive visual experience.
There are two perspectives of the base that you can choose from for your digital dive — both providing a stunningly clear look at the lab.
What purpose does this spot serve? The unique lab is used for research on oceans and climate change. NASA has even trained its astronauts here. The "aquanauts" conduct these NEEMO missions to prepare for deep space.
Professors and students at Florida International University can also participate in Aquarius Academy, which gives them a chance to learn about and actually visit the base.
After exploring the lab, you can also take a look around other sanctuaries on the NOAA site such as Christ of the Abyss, Cheeca Rocks Sanctuary Preservation Area, Coral Nursery, and Benwood Wreck that will whisk you away to underwater worlds.
Digitally dip your toes on an amazing adventure deep beneath the Florida Keys. Embark on this online expedition and spend your time exploring beneath the waves in the Sunshine State — without actually getting wet.
Aquarius Reef Base Virtual Dive
Dive Location: 85932 Overseas Hwy., Islamorada, FL
Why You Need To Do It: You can immerse yourself in a stunning underwater world on this virtual tour without getting wet.