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Aquarium Life picture in Chattanooga
Tennessee Aquarium Jelly picture in Chattanooga
Aquarium Life picture in Chattanooga
Tennessee Aquarium Jelly picture in Chattanooga

Key Info

Details

  • Museums, Natural Wonders, Tours, Zoos and Aquariums Type
  • 2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
4.8
Overall
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Scorecard

  • Value
    5.0
  • Facilities
    4.0
  • Atmosphere
    5.0

Read about how we rank Things to Do.

The Tennessee Aquarium is one of the world's largest freshwater aquariums, and easily Chattanooga's biggest attraction, contributing more than $100 million to the city's economy annually. And for good reason: The Tennessee Aquarium isn't your average fish tank. The aquarium aims to take visitors on a journey, and features eclectic animals that dwell above and below sea level. The theme of the journey is the migration of a raindrop as it makes its way from atop a mountain stream to the bottom of the ocean. Through the "River Journey" exhibit, visitors travel through the Appalachian Cove Forrest to the Tennessee River, meeting many friends along the way, including chirping birds, river otters, alligators, turtles and more. The Ocean Journey follows that same raindrop deep into the ocean, where penguins, jellyfish, sharks and colorful reef fish live. There is also a pool of stingrays, which visitors are allowed to touch, featured along the journey.

The aquarium offers more than two dozen animal programs complimentary to visitors. There are various Keeper Talks and the Secret Reef Dive Show, where divers answer questions from visitors within the tank. There is also the unique Butterfly Release show where patrons can help release new butterflies into the aquarium's Butterfly Garden. Recent travelers loved their visit at the aquarium, with many amazed by the amount of animals housed at the facility. Along with the animals, reviewers were also pleased with the knowledgeable staff members. Some travelers reported being able to spend more than one day at the aquarium, thanks to the fun atmosphere and a variety of things to see and do. Visitors also highly recommend a stop here if you're traveling with children. A few travelers even advised springing for the Backstage Pass, which allows guests to spend time with the keepers to get more up close and personal with the animals.   

The Tennessee Aquarium is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and admission costs $29.95 for adults and $18.95 for children ages 3 to 12; kids 3 and younger can enter for free. Backstage Pass tickets cost an additional $17 on top of admission. Combination tickets for the Backstage Pass, aquarium and on-site IMAX theater are $52.95 for adults and $41.95 for children ages 6 to 12. The Aquarium itself doesn't have any parking lots, but there are paid parking lots near the venue and plenty in downtown Chattanooga. The city's free shuttle also stops next to the aquarium. For more information, visit the aquarium's website.  

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#1 Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park Along with natural attractions and a notable role in history of the rail industry, Chattanooga is very well-known for being a Civil War battleground. The Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military ... Read more » David Brossard / Flickr

#2 Tennessee Aquarium The Tennessee Aquarium is one of the world's largest freshwater aquariums, and easily Chattanooga's biggest attraction, contributing more than $100 million to the city's economy annually. And ... Read more » Charles B. Rich / Getty Images

#3 Bluff View Art District Those who find themselves beat after traversing the city's many natural attractions should consider taking a stroll through the charming Bluff View Art District. Situated atop a bluff overlooking ... Read more » Courtesy of the Chattanooga Convention & Visitors Bureau

#4 Chattanooga Choo Choo To the naked eye, the Chattanooga Choo Choo may look like just another hotel, but what lies within the building's old brick walls is a history so rich it ... Read more » Gillet's Crossing / Flickr

#5 Rock City Gardens This popular 4,100-foot path located on the Georgia side of Lookout Mountain offers attractions to appease many different types of travelers. Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy weaving through the tall ... Read more » Antipunk / Getty Images

#6 Ruby Falls Located along the Tennessee River Gorge just south of downtown Chattanooga, Ruby Falls is one of Lookout Mountain's most popular attractions — and it was discovered completely by accident. In ... Read more » Buburuzaproductions / Getty Images

#7 Lookout Mountain Incline Railway The most practical way to get to Lookout Mountain may be by car, but the most memorable experience is definitely the Incline Railway. Billed as "America's Most Amazing Mile ... Read more » Courtesy of Lookout Mountain Incline Railway

Chickamauga National Battlefield picture in Chattanooga
Aquarium Life picture in Chattanooga
Bluff View Art District picture in Chattanooga
Chattanooga Choo Choo picture in Chattanooga
Rock City Lovers Leap picture in Chattanooga
Ruby Falls picture in Chattanooga
Incline Railway picture in Chattanooga
Chickamauga National Battlefield picture in Chattanooga
Aquarium Life picture in Chattanooga
Bluff View Art District picture in Chattanooga
Chattanooga Choo Choo picture in Chattanooga
Rock City Lovers Leap picture in Chattanooga
Ruby Falls picture in Chattanooga
Incline Railway picture in Chattanooga

David Brossard / Flickr

Charles B. Rich / Getty Images

Courtesy of the Chattanooga Convention & Visitors Bureau

Gillet's Crossing / Flickr

Antipunk / Getty Images

Buburuzaproductions / Getty Images

Courtesy of Lookout Mountain Incline Railway

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