Guest Diver

Guest Diver Program

Experience the wonders of diving in a coral reef—right here at the National Aquarium. This once in a lifetime adventure takes you into one of the Aquarium’s most popular exhibits, Atlantic Coral Reef.

Led by professional dive staff from the Atlantic Edge Dive Center, participants learn the basics before diving into a world of exotic reef fish.

As you swim among these incredible creatures, you’ll learn the role divers play in reef conservation and how you can help protect these precious ocean habitats.

The Basics

18+; Guest must be PADI Open Water Diver certified or equivalent

1 hour orientation/prep; 30-45 minute dive


Book your adventure through the Atlantic Edge Dive Center by phone at 301-519-9283 or online

What to Bring

  • Wetsuit
  • Mask and snorkel
  • Booties and SCUBA fins

Getting Ready for Your Tour

  • Check in 15 minutes prior to your scheduled dive at our staff entrance, just around from the Aquarium’s main entrance and across from the USS Torsk submarine.
  • Gear can’t be stored at the Aquarium prior to check-in
  • For information on nearby parking, please check
  • When booking your tour, please notify Central Reservations of any guests with special needs
  • Friends or family members who want to watch your dive must purchase a ticket to the Aquarium

Frequently Asked Questions

Does my tour go behind-the-scenes?

Yes! You’ll visit behind-the-scenes areas during your tour.

How old do I have to be to go on this tour?

For the safety of both our guests and our animals while diving, you must be at least 18 years old and PADI Open Water certified (or equivalent) to participate in this program. Participants must present a photo ID and PADI card upon arrival. No refunds will be given for guests who don’t meet the minimum age and certification requirements to participate.

Can my child participate without a parent or guardians?

No. You must be at least 18 years old to participate in this program.

Can My Family and Friends Watch?

If your dive takes place during regular operating hours, your family and friends can purchase general admission tickets to the Aquarium to observe your dive.

What should I wear?

Comfortable clothing is encouraged. You’ll need to bring your own wet suit, mask, snorkel, fins, and booties. Locker will be provided, but we recommend leaving valuables and non-essential items at home.

Is admission included with my tour?

No. Aquarium admission is not included with your program. If you wish to tour the Aquarium prior to your dive, you must purchase a general admission ticket. We are unable to store your dive gear prior to your scheduled check-in time.

If I arrive early to tour the Aquarium before my program, will there be a place to store my dive gear?

No. We will not be able to store your gear prior to your scheduled check-in time. If you plan on touring the Aquarium before your dive, a separate admission ticket is required, and you are responsible for storing your dive gear until your check-in time.

Will someone take photos of my dive?

We are working on a photo opportunity for this program. For now, if you would like photos of your dive, you’ll need to make your own arrangements.

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