When it comes to amazing aquatic displays of various salt and freshwater marine life. The US has an amazing list of aquariums that will take your breath away. With over 40 amazing Aquariums to visit in the United States alone, how does one pick which to see and which to skip? That’s where we come in, so sit back relax and enjoy our list of the 13 most beautiful aquariums in the US.
Table of Contents
- 1. Georgia Aquarium, Atlanta, GA
- 2. Waikiki Aquarium, Honolulu, HI
- 3. Adventure Aquarium, Camden, NJ
- 4. Monterey Bay Aquarium, Monterey, CA
- 5. Aquarium of the Pacific, Longbeach, CA
- 6. New England Aquarium, Boston, MA
- 7. Shedd Aquarium, Chicago, IL
- 8. Ripley’s Aquarium of Myrtle Beach, Myrtle Beach, SC
- 9. Audubon Aquarium of the Americas, New Orleans, LA
- 10. New York Aquarium, New York City, NY
- 11. Tennessee Aquarium, Chattanooga, TN
- 12. Florida Aquarium, Tampa, FL
- 13. Steinhart Aquarium, San Francisco, CA
1. Georgia Aquarium, Atlanta, GA
Price of admittance: General admission is $39.95 for adults, $31.95 for seniors, and $29.95 for children.
The granddaddy of all aquariums in the world, the Georgia Aquarium. It is not only the largest aquarium in the world but it is also the only aquarium that the whale sharks call home. Outside of Asia, of course. They have over 500,000 square feet of exhibits. And over 100,000 animals for guests to get lost in. They have a dolphin exhibit worth over $110 million US. This impressive exhibit hosts the “Dolphin Tales”. A show in which a theatrical feature plays for guests to enjoy. Along with their animal and trainer performances. They also offer the “Learning Loop” which is an educational experience for guests of all ages. They also create and produce their own underwater productions. All for their guests to enjoy in their iconic 4-D Theatre.
2. Waikiki Aquarium, Honolulu, HI
Price of admittance: General admission is $12 for adults and $5 for children and seniors.
The Waikiki Aquarium is the second oldest aquarium in the United States. Located on the isle of Honolulu in the Hawaiian Island chain. It was first opened in 1904 and has over 3,500 different species most of whom are native to the area. They are home to the Hawaiian monk seal, which is one of the world’s most endangered species. Marvel at the oldest collection of living corals in the US while you are there. They urge guests to see the peppermint angelfish. It is on loan from the Smithsonian and estimated to be worth around 30,00$ US. The Waikiki Aquarium also hosts fun behind-the-scenes tours. Along with several incredible exhibits for their guests to explore.
3. Adventure Aquarium, Camden, NJ
Price of admittance: General admission is $24.95 for adults and $18.95 for children.
Formally known as the New Jersey State Aquarium. The Adventure Aquarium is now one of the most popular aquariums in the Philadelphia area. They are one of the select few aquariums in the United States that allow their guests to touch moon jellyfish. Along with a variety of pink shrimp and lobsters. Guests can call ahead of time to make appointments to snorkel inside the large tanks with the sharks. These are a few of the new features that came with the new and improved North Building. The South Building hosts a large ocean tank with a collection of unusual animals. Some of which guests might have not seen before. The facility also is home to sea dragons, giant Pacific Octopus, and the Nile hippopotamus. Along with several varieties of shark species.
4. Monterey Bay Aquarium, Monterey, CA
Price of admittance: $39.95 for adults, $34.95 for seniors and students, and $24.95 for children
Known as one of America’s favorite aquariums. The Monterey Bay Aquarium is a few minutes away from Pebble Beach on the coast of the Pacific. Not only does this facility offer daily activities and underwater shows. It is also the home to an impressive amount of marine animals. Including the largest and most assorted collection of seahorse species. They also host giant octopi, sea otters, and local fish.
5. Aquarium of the Pacific, Longbeach, CA
Price of admittance: $25.95 for adults, $14.95 for children, and $22.95 for seniors.
Home to over 500 species of marine life. This aquarium introduces guests to the largest ocean in the world. the infinite Pacific ocean. With sea lions, penguins, sharks, and rays this aquarium. They have no shortage of underwater life to bring their visitors to their knees. Not only do they have a variety of fun and interactive exhibits. They recently added a featured NASA show too. It gives guests a fun and educational look at the Earth’s rhythms.
6. New England Aquarium, Boston, MA
Price of admittance: $24.95 for adults and $17.95 for children.
They have a large and diverse collection of marine life from all over the globe. 20,000 animals and 600 different species to explore this aquarium is a fan favorite. From African penguins to Northern fur seals to Australian spotted jellyfish. This aquarium has something for everyone. Children are welcome to enjoy the Edge of Sea touch tank. It features live presentations as well as the trainers with their animals.
7. Shedd Aquarium, Chicago, IL
Price of admittance: General admission is $8 for adults and $6 for children.
This aquarium first opened in 1930. When it was known as the first inland aquarium to permanently host saltwater sea wildlife. Forbes praised it for being “awe-inspiring”. As it treats guests with over 8,000 different marine creatures and animals. With over 2 million visitors it is no wonder why tourists flock to its doors. As they marvel at the different exhibits and species. Such as piranhas, anacondas, the California sea lions. Along with various species of sharks.
8. Ripley’s Aquarium of Myrtle Beach, Myrtle Beach, SC
Price of admittance: General admission costs $21.99 for adults and $11.99 for children.
This aquarium offers a different experience for guests. It lets them see into the amazing history of the ocean. Not only that but they even offer guests the chance to touch a real prehistoric horseshoe crab. With about 85,000 square feet of exhibits to explore guests will experience the ocean in a brand new light. These exhibits include poison draft frogs as well as actual piranhas. They host various poisonous and exotic species. Including several species of shark.
9. Audubon Aquarium of the Americas, New Orleans, LA
Price of admittance: $22.95 for adults, $17 for seniors, and $16 for children.
Even after the devastating events of Hurricane Katrina. The Audubon Aquarium has still remained one of the best sites to visit. Guests are treated to experiences such as touch pools in the Animal Grossology exhibit for children. They will see various sea creatures, a 400,000-gallon tank that hosts tarpon and sharks. As well as their Discover a Caribbean reef walkthrough experience. They have a hurricane simulator that brings awareness to the devastation it can cause. Guests are able to see real-life piranhas and anacondas. Along with freshwater stingrays, and various other specimens in their Amazon Exhibit.
10. New York Aquarium, New York City, NY
Price of admittance: General admission is $9.95.
Originally opened in 1896 the New York Aquarium is the oldest operational Aquarium in the United States. In 1957 it moved from Castel Garden in Battery Park to the boardwalk in Coney Island in Brooklyn. This aquarium is home to over 350 different species of aquatic wildlife. These include the California sea lion, black-footed penguins, sea otters as well as the Pacific walrus. Just to name a few. This is not your average aquarium. They also have a mission of bringing awareness to the public. They do this with unique exhibits, public events, as well as research to the ocean and the, creates that call it home.
11. Tennessee Aquarium, Chattanooga, TN
Price of admittance: $24.95 for adults and $14.95 for children.
Open on May the 1st 1992 this Aquarium was known as the largest in the world for its freshwater life. It is both educational and fun for guests of all ages. There are many buildings to explore. Such as the River Journey and the Ocean Journey. It is home to more than 12,000 different species of fish. It also includes various birds, reptiles, penguins, butterflies, and amphibians. Within the Ocean Journey building, guests can see sharks in their large tanks, along with the opportunity to touch rays.
12. Florida Aquarium, Tampa, FL
Price of admittance: $21.95 for adults, $18.95 for seniors, and $16.95 for children under 12. They also offer reduced online ticket prices.
This aquarium focuses more on its local aquatic life that is native to Florida. Not only do they offer the opportunity to see the various species. They also offer activities such as Explore-A-Shore. This is a 2-acre outdoor water playground complete with animal shows and water cannons and geysers. They also offer a relaxing boat ride eco-tour of Tampa Bay for two hours.
13. Steinhart Aquarium, San Francisco, CA
Price of admittance: 34.95 for adults, $29.95 for seniors, students, and youth, and $24.95 for children.
With over 38,000 animals from across the globe. Guests can be sure that their visit to the Steinhart Aquarium would not only be educational but fun as well. This aquarium boats with all its 900 different species that will surprise you with something you haven’t seen before!