SEA LIFE Minnesota, Bloomington

3.7
#2 of 12 in Zoos & Aquariums in Minnesota
SEA LIFE Minnesota houses more than 10,000 sea creatures, including sharks, sea turtles, stingrays, jellyfish, octopi, lobsters, and freshwater fish. Many are endangered species that have been rescued and cannot be released into the wild or were born and bred as part of a conservation effort. The many different exhibits, such as Seahorse Kingdom, Jellyfish Discovery, and Ray Lagoon, feature one particular species along with interesting facts about each one. Take a walk through the 91 m (300 ft) clear tunnel that leaves you surrounded by aquarium walls and the creatures living within. The tunnel takes you through four exhibits that are home to green sea turtles, sawfish, sand tiger sharks, paddlefish, and other exotic creatures. Don't miss the rockpool filled with shell creatures, sea urchins, and starfish; you are encouraged to touch them. SEA LIFE Minnesota is just one of the many highlights you can arrange to see using our international travel planner, Bloomington Edition.
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SEA LIFE Minnesota Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 3.5
1,398 reviews
Google
3.9
TripAdvisor
  • I️ used to work here through high school as an Aqua Guide. From walkthrough and moving walkway underwater tunnels, to fantastic marine tank exhibits, and friendly, knowledgeable staff, to birthday par...  more »
  • We visited the aquarium on a Saturday. The crowds were not a problem. Never felt rushed going through the exhibits. The rock pool was a great way to start the tour. We also purchased the behind the sc...  more »
  • Sea Life Minnesota at Mall of America is fabulous! My husband and I visited the Aquarium last week and enjoyed it very much. You will be surprised at all the vivid colors. The sharks are spectacular! ...  more »
Google
  • We stood in line for about 30 minutes before entering. It was very crowded from the start, but I kept thinking everyone would spread out soon. It got worse. We saw the petting area and the jellyfish. As we entered the seahorse area, there was a bottleneck. I kept thinking that it would clear shortly. It got progressively worse. People were packed in shoulder to shoulder, and it was dark and hot. Once we got around the corner, I looked down the hall to see the crowding only worsened. My daughter and I turned around and left. I went to the manager to let her know of the hazard. I advised her that if there were a fire or any other emergency, the people downstairs would not be able to get out. Her answer was that there were plenty of fire exits. I told her that the way people were packed in down there, no one would ever make it to an exit. She replied that she would send a staff member down there. She was very nonchalant about the whole thing. My impression was that there is more focus on income than on customer safety. She did not offer a refund of any sort, though we barely got past the entrance before our safety became an issue. I did not ask for a refund because I didn't want her to think that was why I contacted her. I would not recommend this aquarium to anyone.
  • We recently took our 2 year old for her birthday! She had a blast. Be sure to get there before opening as lines start early. We had our tickets, which allows you to bypass will call & ticket purchasing lines- plus it's cheaper than buying there! Its pretty crowded, even in the early hours but its not too bad. The tunnel is very cool, especially if the sharks are awake!
  • I want to preface this by saying that I have always loved the aquarium in the Mall of America, through a progression of names and displays, it has been great every time. My absolute favorite part was the rays and being able to "pet" them (they swim under my finger in the tank, and it's such a cool feeling!). I decided to splurge and order my husband and me the "VIP Experience" which comes with an opportunity to feed the rays. We waited only a short time to grab our tickets from will-call and headed down the escalator. I was devastated when I saw the ropes up around the rays and the do-not-touch signs. I thought the day would surely improve with our VIP Experience, but was disappointed again. We passed around different animal's jaws and listed to a girl talk about them with many "likes" and "ums". She then showed us a prepared tray of all the dead sea creatures that are fed to the creatures. Unimpressive. I can see shrimp at a grocery store. Lastly, we looked into the top of the tanks. Most of the fish are near the bottom of the tank, so they were hard to see. A worker was feeding the fish from the top, but we weren't able to go near that section to watch. The "ray feed" was also a joke. We were each given a tiny metal cup with a shrimp and a small fish and told to throw it out wherever we wanted then waited for the rays to eat the bait. Several other visitors approached the "shrimp shack" while we were watching our bait float to the bottom of the tank untouched amidst uninterested rays, and they were told they could not feed the rays as the bait was "sold out". Overall, I was very unhappy with my experience. We spent nearly $70 for a hot, crowded, half-experience. I will not be back.
  • This was a pleasant surprise inside the mall. With the ticket prices and the fact that it's inside the mall we weren't expecting much. Instead, it turned out to be a nice exhibit with lots of different things to see and the way it finishes up with all of the tunnel you can walk through is a pretty cool experience. Highly recommend doing at least once.
  • I came here with a coupon which meant it was "only" $15 per adult. It still feels over-priced The Jelly fish exhibit had only one type of jelly fish and some plastic bags. No information. Tries to be cool but completely content-less. The tunnels were probably the best bit (hence two stars not one) but over all it was not a great experience. There are many things that could be done with the aquarium to increase its value and interest. Exhibits are fairly sparse in the rest of it. If you're going to spend $30 each on admission (regular price) you will feel severely short-changed.

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Where to stay in Bloomington

Most of the accommodations in Bloomington lie along Interstate 494 with easy access to the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. The Mall of America lies just south of the airport, so most of the hotels around the airport provide convenient access to the mall as well. Consider staying in one of the hotels on Killebrew Drive, which serves as the mall's southern border, to get away from the interstate.
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