When visiting Washington, D.C, there is not a shortage of fantastic museums to visit. There are practically museums for every interest imaginable. But, some of those museums can be a bit daunting for younger kids. It can become easy to lose their attention, if they aren’t really engaged in what they are seeing.
As a little girl, I remember seeing National Geographic in our mail. I would always grab the latest issue and sit down with it, totally engrossed in the photographs. I remember an issue about the Titanic so vividly, the photographs seared into my memory. Pictures speak to me and those images have helped me learn about other cultures, places to visit, and nature. With that connotation in mind, I was excited to be invited* to explore the National Geographic Museum in Washington, D.C. recently.
Exhibits frequently change at the National Geographic Museum, with the museum being divided into two different topics, but on the day I visited, I was thrilled to find that the main exhibit was about one of my favorite topics–sharks! I’ve always been fascinated by these magnificient creatures, so much so that at one point in time, I wanted to be a marine biologist (although, I think a lot of girls my age wanted that, too!) I was pleasantly surprised to see that the exhibit was all about photographs of four different kinds of sharks (the whale, great white, mako and tiger) around the world by photographer Brian Skerry.
I learned a wealth of information from reading the captions of all of the stunningly beautiful photographs of sharks in their habitat all around the world. I was instantly drawn into the photographs and exhibition.
While at the museum, I had the opportunity to step inside a underwater cage to see what it would be like to be in the water with these creatures, with only metal bars between us. Upon stepping into the cage, I could see blue azure water. I could not see much else, until all of a sudden, I was being approached by this not-so-friendly face!
I tell you, that is a sight to see! Out of no where this creature was coming to inspect the cage that had been placed deep within the ocean waters, invading his space. Before long, lots of other sharks were swimming around the cage, a little too close to comfort. Or at least, that is how it appeared. You see, I was in an actual cage, with a virtual screen projecting the appearance of sharks in the water next to me. I loved this interactive portion of the exhibit, because chances are good I will never be brave enough to actually sit in a cage in the ocean with sharks swimming around me. But, the sensation is one that is pretty incredible and helps you appreciate the work involved in capturing these remarkable and captivating photographs that make up this exhibit.
I went to the exhibit by myself, without kids, actually, and thoroughly enjoyed my experience there. However, lots of kids were present with me and I loved hearing their reactions to their surroundings. They loved the experience of being surrounded by these intimidating and awe-inspiring creatures.
I would definitely come back with my own family to check out the next exhibit they have at National Geographic Museum! You can go and visit the museum for yourself and take in this special feature Sharks: On Assignment With Brian Skerry now until October 15, 2017.
*I was invited to visit the museum to facilitate a feature, all opinions are my own.