Stellwagen Bank is the central geographic feature of an 842-square-mile open ocean National Marine Sanctuary, the only such site in New England. The area is rated one of the world's premier whale watching destinations and has a long history as a productive fishing ground. Visitors can access the sanctuary as ticketed passengers on a whale watch boat, as a participant on a charter or party fishing boat, or via private boat. Headquarters offices are located in Scituate; exhibits at Maritime Gloucester, New England Aquarium, Provincetown's MacMillan Wharf, and Cape Cod National Seashore. The sanctuary is administered under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). In 2022 the sanctuary celebrates its 30th anniversary. Watch for special events commemorating this event.