The Georgia Aquarium features many great exhibits that will inspire awe in visitors of all ages. The Aquarium satisfies and then augments the underwater curiosity with unique ocean creatures like beluga whales - a must-see for Raffi listeners - and a giant whale shark.
Last entry is permitted one hour before close.
The Georgia Aquarium really is a fantastic place to visit, if you don't mind the cost and the crowds. Not AZA reciprocal, so look for discounts. Parking in the garage is $10 but you can find cheaper parking in other lots nearby. (http://www.atlantadowntown.com/guide/getting-around/parking)
Also, crowds can be a beast. Try not to take your stroller when it gets busy (summer, school breaks). They are tough to navigate. If you have a baby carrier, use it. Go early. Buy tickets ahead of time if possible. Lines can get very, very long. Food choices can be healthy but expensive. Pack a lunch if you're cheap or picky.
Okay, enough with the negative. There is a lot to do and see at this museum and it is all top-notch. Kids of all ages will enjoy the beautiful displays and spectacular views of many different sea creatures. Ocean Voyager, where you walk through an acrylic tunnel and the fish, whales, and sharks swim OVER you, is incredible.
My kids loved the aquarium. There are the typical fish exhibits, but there are special things for kids, like a huge boat playground (in the Georgia exhibit, like a shrimpboat) and tunnels that are in other exhibits. The kids really enjoyed the dolphin show. The aquarium sometimes runs great deals, like mommy and me packages, or kids get in free in costume on Halloween. The world of Coke shares the same area, so you could do both in one day. Parking at the aquarium is super convenient, and you can buy your pass online when you buy your tickets.
For the fish enthusiast (as most young children are), this aquarium is awesome. You can see huge whale sharks, beautiful huge aquariums with manta rays and fish and coral, etc. There is a place where your kids can touch starfish and shrimp and other critters. I just wish the place were more spaced out. When it is crowded, it is not worth going, you feel like you can't walk and you feel like you are running into people. It's really not a stroller-friendly place, unforfunately, because of the crowds and some steps in random places. I do have to say they have great facilities for the nursing mom, even a private place to nurse and space to change your baby. Definitely worth a trip if you can come when it's less crowded!
I was pleasantly surprised by the Georgia Aquarium when it far exceeded my expectations. That said, avoid holidays and weekends if possible: when it gets crowded, it's hard to navigate. Otherwise, the layout is visitor-friendly: everything is located off a central hub. The tanks are huge and visually impressive: our favorites were the scuba tank where scuba divers swim with sharks and giant rays, and the river exhibit, where you can see fish swimming over you, around you, and sometimes even under you!
Kids love the beluga whales, and the dolphin show is a must. The cafe on-site is fine, but gets crowded. Instead, go outside on nice days and eat at the burger/hot dog joint right next door.
I thought the GA Aquarium would be amazing- and while it is a neat trip and I would always suggest you go at least once-- I wouldn't really make a return trip. It's hard to explain but bigger isn't always better. The Ripley's Aquarium in Gatlinburg has this one beat to me. However, the LARGE LARGE tank that you can see people diving in is pretty neat.
We made the mistake of going to the Georgia Aquarium on a holiday (Memorial Day). It was packed! I will also say that the Aquarium is NOT stroller friendly. Having made those disclaimers I would say that my kids enjoyed it. They enjoyed the hands on area the best. There were also some kid tunnels/play areas that were a hit too. I felt like there was a lot for them to see and do. I think we just need to try again on a non holiday (there was a great deal of tickets that day).
We loved the Georgia Aquarium! It was fantastic! There was lots to do for everyone in our family. Our Boys are still talking about the fun they had over year after they were there. We can't wait tell we can have an excuse to travel back to Georgia and visit the Aquarium again. There was lots of hands on stuff like touch tanks and a slide/jungle gym area for the kids. These were some of our Boys favorite things to do while there.
No water at cafeteria - the cashiers did not have cups to allow you to drink water unless you purchased it. And the soda fountains didn't even have a water option! I've never seen that anywhere. But there were plenty of water fountains - just nothing near the cafeteria.
Go to the exhibit that is to the right of the Dolphin show as soon as a Dolphin show starts - a guard told me that most people exit the show and go right into that so while a show is going on that exhibit is at it's emptiest.
Skip touch tanks at first - see them in the middle of the day -they're the busiest at the beginning and end of the day.
Eat early - we at at 11:30 and an hour later there were huge lines, There is only one place to eat!
See whale shark feeding - it was memorable!
3d not great for older kids - if they love Nemo and are that age, then they'll like it - otherwise with older kids I would skip and use your time elsewhere.
Dolphin show - we went in 20 minutes early and were 3 rows from the very top! So you'll have to waste some time just sitting and holding a good seat if you want one. Still a good view but it would have been awesome to have been closer. Also - just before closing, ask to go to the dolphin shop - views of the dolphins without the crowds!
The 'backstage' tour is only 1/2 hour and a great use of time - go first if you can so that understand the enormity of the place.
We bought the citypass (http://citypass.com) and it was a great deal - I'd recommend highly if you're going to Atlanta...
OH - ONE MORE THING - check your coat for $2 at the Guest Services desk when you enter - what a cheap luxury to not have to carry around coats all day in the winter! There are no signs for this service - just walk up to the desk and ask for it.
Souvenirs - they have many small gift shops - and at the end of the day the one at the entrance is insane. But most things are only at one gift shop - very frustrating!
Our 10 month old loved cruising along and seeing the exhibits. It's so spacious that all the people are spread out, so it didn't feel very crowded. My best advice: buy your tickets in advance to avoid really long lines! I found nursing stations inside, as well as plenty of bathrooms. The variety of animals is fascinating. It's the only aquarium that has the HUGE whale sharks. The beluga whales were very playful. The walk through shark tunnel was super neat for all the kids! It's a must-see in Atlanta.
One negative- we found some areas to be difficult to get a stroller through.
Our family has visited the Georgia Aquarium several times since it opened. We really enjoy the exhibits and do our best to arrive right when the aquarium opens. The large aquarium is a highlight for us all and we particularly enjoy the dive show. Our daughter always begs to go to this site when we visit Atlanta. It can be pricey, so make sure you get your money's worth!
We LOVED this place! So much to see, fabulous exhibits for the kids to check out, so many animals and just all in all a really great place. Plus it's right in the heart of the city with Centennial Park, the CNN center, and Coke World nearby. We definitely want to make a return trip one of these days. I think my favorite was the beluga whales!! Would absolutely recommend checking this place out!
One of the things our family has enjoyed about the Georgia Aquarium are the changing exhibits. They keep the aquarium experience fresh by alternating exhibits in one of the upstairs areas. We've been there to see an exhibit specifically dealing with their penguins, and also to view artifacts from the TItanic. It was fun for my kids to see the Titanic stuff because it tied together historical artifacts with the ocean, obviously the focus of the aquarium.
There is a part of the aquarium that focuses on aquatic life in Georgia, and gives the kids an opportunity to play around, running and jumping through the southern region of the state.....
But there are also so many places in the aquarium where children can put their hands and fingers in the water and touch the different animals. My animal lover thinks that is great!!
Watching the beluga whales and the whale sharks is great, too.
The aquarium itself is stroller friendly but the large crowds make large strollers difficult to manuever. If your child can walk or you can carry them, this works best, otherwise the experience with a stroller can be frustrating.
There is a food court; they prefer you don't bring your own food in. We bring snacks if we intend to be in the aquarium for a long time. We did buy food once for the family but for our family of six, a lean lunch was still in the $40-50 range. OUCH!
We took our little ones to explore the GA aquarium last summer and had a great time seeing all the underwater creatures. The size of the tanks alone were mind-boggling. My favorite was the beluga whale, but we have the cutest videos of the penguins befriending my 3 year old and following him around the corner of their tank. It is in the heart of Atlanta and you don't want to miss it!!
This aquarium is one of the famous places in Atlanta.Specially with kids,its a must see attraction.Kids would love the varieties of colorfull exhibits.This is a big and very colorfull aquarium.They have Deepo's Undersea 3D Wondershow AND Planet Shark:the general admission including these shows is around $33/adult,$25(child 3+).This largest aquarium is worth going.It is close to Olympic park.
This was one of the first places we went to after we moved to Atlanta. My daughter had just turned one. There was quite a crowd that day. I would have preferred it to be a little less crowded, but every hardship we had(eg., jostling crowds) that day was worth seeing the wonder in our little one's face when we entered the tunnel like place in the aquarium. We went there again last year and I have to say that the place hasn't lost its charm for us.
What a fun place! It's gonna cost a lot- budget for that right now- but after the pocketbook hit- relax and enjoy a wonderfully done aquarium. The creators scoured the globe for the best of the best and brought it all to Atlanta! In specific sections you can pet fish, or sit for hours and watch the Beluga whales. This places was really well done. So if you are going to spend the money on an aquarium- definitely come here!
I am a huge fan of aquariums! I live near the Pacific ocean and have been to many great aquariums on the west coast, so when I heard that there was an aquarium in Atlanta, I didn't think it would be great.... was I ever wrong!
This place is AMAZING! There are so many things to see and do and the grand scale of everything is crazy! I went there on a holiday weekend, so there were hundreds of people but I was still able to see all of the exhibits because there is so much room inside.
There are 4 whale sharks currently in the aquarium and when you actually see one swim over your head, it takes your breath away. It is such a massive animal!
If you have the oppurtunity to go, DO IT! You won't regret it!
The Georgia Aquarium is the best place. Our favorite exhibits are petting the Sting Rays and riding on the people mover through the giant fish tank which has sharks, HUGE Sting Rays and the GIANT Whale Sharks. The Aquarium does get crowded so just prepare yourself to be patient. Though it is expensive, we felt it was worth the splurge. Especially, to show your kids how vast the water population is!
Best aquarium ever! And SO huge! The only down side is that it is ALWAYS PACKED & very expensive! I recommend arranging your visit ahead of time to make sure you get in in the unbusier season & use a coupon promo. Its a GREAT place to visit though! And for those who homeschool, I do believe they have a home school day which does cut down on some of the crowd.
We visited the aquarium last spring for the first time. We went with a school group so we got a really good rate. The aquarium is so inviting. I loved the fact that there were so many hands on exhibits. The kids could feel several different types of water animals. My favorite was the jellyfish. They were so beautiful to look at. We paid extra for the shark exhibit. I was a little disappointed in it.