National Marine Sanctuary Day

A national day of celebration of our protected waters in the ocean and Great Lakes that hold America’s shared maritime and ecological heritage. Sanctuaries are solutions against existential threats of climate change, biodiversity loss, and systemic inequity. They are drivers of sustainable economic development in coastal communities, and are living laboratories for ecological protection and restoration and cultural preservation. They are for everyone as public waters, increasing access to nature and its benefits. And, it will take all of us working together to conserve these amazing wonders.


Whale Conservation

The Foundation works with the National Large Whale Entanglement Response Network and our national marine sanctuaries to support whale disentanglement trainings, facilitate access to vessels, provide equipment, and test new technologies.


Coral Heatwave Response

The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation is working with conservationists and concerned citizens to monitor, research, report on, and respond to coral bleaching and mortality in the Florida Keys due to the marine heat wave.

Support a New Sanctuary Designation

The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation supports the designation of the Chumash Heritage National Marine Sanctuary.

National Marine Sanctuary Day Press Release


“The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation joined national and community leaders, policymakers, Indigenous and Tribal leaders, scientists, educators, explorers and people who make their living on the water in celebrating the first National Marine Sanctuary Day.”



The Hill Op-Ed by President & CEO Joel R. Johnson

“Members of the Congressional Sanctuaries Caucus have introduced a resolution to make Oct. 23 the first ever National Marine Sanctuary Day. By drawing attention to our national marine sanctuaries, the nation can see them for what they are:  special places where conservation, economic prosperity, and human well being not only come together, but are deeply woven together in our national character and identity.”


Six Reasons to Love National Marine Sanctuaries



Celebrate National Marine Sanctuary Day with six reasons to love National Marine Sanctuaries!





Take action for sanctuaries

Be the voice for national marine sanctuaries, marine monuments and protecting America’s waters.

Become an Ocean Protector

Show your commitment to safeguarding our ocean.

Donate To Support Sanctuaries

Find out what makes these spectacular places worth saving. 

Photos: Brad Ka‘aleleo Wong/Office of Hawaiian Affairs; Ryan Tabata/NOAA; Claire Fackler/NOAA

National Marine Sanctuary Day launches a campaign of sanctuary stories inspiring solutions. Voices of people brought together through sanctuaries over our shared maritime heritage, discoveries, pursuits, livelihoods, and future. Voices from coastal communities and local economies about discovering, enjoying, and forming lifelong connections with these spectacular places. The stories from throughout the National Marine Sanctuary System show that conservation, economic prosperity, and human well-being are deeply woven together in our national character..


Our waters bring us together. Our national marine sanctuaries tell the stories. Celebrate these stories with us on National Marine Sanctuary Day.

Support sanctuaries

Help us protect and expand the spectacular places in our ocean and Great Lakes.