Virginia Beach seems an improbable place to see Komodo dragons, cobras, desert hedgehogs, and other exotic critters. Yet these and nearly 6,400 animals and species are on display in the Virginia Aquarium Marine Science Center's new "Restless Planet'' exhibit. Part of a $25 million renovation project that doubled the aquarium's collection, the exhibit includes 12,000 square feet of habitats and displays and was designed by Boston's Chermayeff; Poole, architects for the New England Aquarium. "Restless Planet'' features four habitats that existed in Virginia millions of years ago: a Malaysian peat swamp, a North African coastal desert, a tropical Red Sea, and an Indonesian volcanic island. 757-385-3474, www.virginiaaquarium.com.
Photo courtesy of the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center
Posted by Kari Bodnarchuk, Globe correspondent