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Shedd Aquarium, Chicago

Aquarium · Zoo / Aquarium
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Shedd Aquarium contains over 1,500 different species, including fish, marine mammals, birds, snakes, amphibians, and insects. Opened in 1930, this venue was the first inland aquarium with a permanent saltwater fish collection. Located within walking distance of the city's natural history museum and planetarium, the aquarium draws over 2 million annual visitors. Highlights include an oceanarium designed to replicate the natural conditions of the waters off the northwestern coast of the U.S., containing beluga whales, white-sided dolphins, sea otters, and seals. You can also visit the shark exhibit, a replica of a Philippines reef ecosystem. Exhibits often sell out early in the morning, so ensure your entry by purchasing your tickets well in advance. Make Shedd Aquarium a part of your Chicago vacation plans using our Chicago trip itinerary planning website.
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Shedd Aquarium reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
9,769 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • We love it .I would recommend it if you are going to Chicago. You must see the beluga show.this is a great museum.my son enjoy it so much. 
    We love it .I would recommend it if you are going to Chicago. You must see the beluga show.this is a great museum.my son enjoy it so much.  more »
  • This is the most expensive aquarium I have been to, but it is worth it if you have at least a half of a day. Wow, there are beluga whales, dolphins, sharks, sting rays, penguins, and so much more... 
    This is the most expensive aquarium I have been to, but it is worth it if you have at least a half of a day. Wow, there are beluga whales, dolphins, sharks, sting rays, penguins, and so much more...  more »
  • Unforgettable Wednesday evening listening to live jazz and watching the sunset and fireworks over the skyline and Navy Pier. Food and Bev available for purchase. The Shed does it right. And , yes... 
    Unforgettable Wednesday evening listening to live jazz and watching the sunset and fireworks over the skyline and Navy Pier. Food and Bev available for purchase. The Shed does it right. And , yes...  more »
Google
  • We wanted a fun day in Chicago with a family of five, it was between the shed and the Museum of science and industry.. there are many discounts but none for families very sad. Wound up buying the membership as it was the most economical.. there are many great exhibits to look at. We were able to catch one of the 10 minute main shows,. would've been nice if they were a little longer. We had an enjoyable day. Will have to go back to get use out of our one year annual pass now.
  • I went here with my family during the week and it was timed entry, which helped with the crowds earlier in the day. We spent a little over 3 hours there and by the early afternoon, it was pretty crowded. We saw all the attractions (no movie or shows), ate lunch in the cafeteria and went to the gift shop. There were a lot of great photo opportunities and it looked like all of the exhibits were open. The cafeteria offers awesome views of the Chicago skyline too! My family and I had a great time!
  • A wide collection of species from all over the world. It is a bit smaller than other aquariums I've been to but it's activities really make up for it. There are a lot of interactive activities for families, couples, groups, and people going alone. Best time to go is about May- October which is when most, if not all, interactive touch the animal exhibits are open. Very expensive if you are either not a resident or if you decide to go on a regular price day. Check the calendar before planning your trip so you don't miss out on the discounted/free days. Once you get there definitely check out the animal meet-n-greets (which are often free) or the aquatic mammal shows put on by the trainers. The 4D experience is alright, but to be honest not very much worth the price. It's about 15 min long and plays out like a documentary. You get 3D glasses but they're not very good quality and they also use the same pair on multiple crowds. Not much goes on and if you're expecting to get splashed with water, it's mostly just bubbles. As a chicago native I would always recommend this to someone visiting but just be prepared to spend a good amount.
  • Really awesome aquarium with lots to explore. The dolphin show is fun even for adults. It can take a while to get through if you want to stop for every exhibit. 2-3 hours for casual aquarium goer; 4-5 hours for super aquarium lovers. You will not be able to do the aquarium and museum in one day if you really want to appreciate everything.
  • It's a great place to visit but I feel it has lost its charm from the past. Kids friendly, easy to navigate, great 4D show and the food is good.. Some new additions as well to the residents of the museum in the last few years. Parking and walking into the museum is a hassle but you got to deal with it.

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