Moody Gardens, Galveston

3.7
#1 of 8 in Parks in Galveston
Complete with accommodations, a golf course, and science center, Moody Gardens combines recreation with an extensive collection of zoo and aquarium exhibits. Spread out over 98 hectares (242 acres), the park hosts three attractions in the form of giant pyramids: the Aquarium pyramid, the Rainforest pyramid, and the Discovery pyramid, each focused on a different group of animal residents. You can wander amongst the living displays, home to more than 9,000 individual creatures. Don't miss seeing monkeys roaming free through the jungle habitat. For some outdoor fun, take the paddlewheel boat tour, or spend time on the hotel's white sand beach. If you're planning to golf, book a tee time beforehand, as spots can fill up very quickly. Use our Galveston trip maker to add Moody Gardens and other attractions to your Galveston vacation plans.
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Moody Gardens Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 3.5
1,997 reviews
Google
4.3
TripAdvisor
  • We were there for a Trick or Treat day. It was only $5 for the aquarium per person and $5 for the rain forest per person. This was a great deal, and the facilities were beautiful. Very fun. But if we'...  more »
  • A lingering visit to Moody Gardens’ Aquarium on Galveston Island, Texas, is well worth your time and money. Follow the map that has been painted on the floor to view each of the venues. While my husba...  more »
  • Great place to visit, lots to see and do. Leave plenty of time in your day, go early especially if you want to go on the paddle steamer. The big let down was the food outlet in the visitor centre, the...  more »
Google
  • Let me just say, my family loves Moody Gardens! I would suggest becoming a member. We try to go to Moody Gardens as much as possible. We invested last summer (July 2016) in the family membership package. Best decision I ever made. We have saved so much money! We went for 3 days a couple of weeks ago and never paid dime for entry fees. We were still covered by our passes we purchased last summer. I will be purchasing renewal passes for this year too. There is so much to see and do. Beautiful trees and plants are everywhere. My favorite is the Bird of Paradise blooming flowers. Just breathtaking.
  • Pricey, but our stay was worth it! Excellent rooms, gorgeous grounds and pool. Service was courteous and efficient. We stayed before summer started so the hotel was very quiet and empty which was nice. The restaurants we tried were very good, and happy to accommodate my special dietary needs. Close to the beach, and restaurants (short drive). We had a beautiful view from our room even though our booking said no view. I suggest u request an upper floor 8 or 9, and u will get a view!
  • We visited only the aquarium to see what's new after the renovations. First, I understand that maintaining an aquarium is hard, complex work so I couldn't feel right giving lower than 3 stars. However, I was disappointed. They removed several exhibits such as the seahorses. The fake coral was just too fake. The cold climate penguins were in the dark. (We were told it was to mimic their natural habitat where there is close to no sunlight during the winter months. This is admirable, but honestly if properly displaying an animal is not healthy for them, then just don't place them in captivity to display them.) The new warm weather penguins are an afterthought - literally they are after the gift shop on your way out. One huge touch tank had only a few scattered sea stars and some sad (that's how the volunteer described it) sea urchins. Best parts: the jellyfish and the moon jelly touch tanks by far were the most interesting for the kids. They had some nice models of sea animals and ocean vessels. The big tank is always awe-inspiring (although the highly advertised addition of the shipwreck wad not worth their investment, IMO) Overall, nice aquarium. It doesn't feel as rundown as it did 2 years ago.
  • Loved it. Great place to visit. Kids had a blast even at there age 15 and 11. You know to cool for school stage. But it was a good time. Highly recommended
  • I was disappointed. I was really looking forward to the new aquarium but it was not what I thought. I really liked the old one better it had more to see. They dont even have an exit really. It is just a big circle. When we tried to go out at the entrance, we were stopped and treated rudely. Then told to go out an emergency exit by the ladies taking pictures in the front. The other parts of the park are nice and we still had a good day.

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When choosing accommodations in Galveston, remember that the closer you stay to the water, the more you are likely to pay. Top prices usually get you a spacious room packed with modern amenities plus sweeping views of the Gulf of Mexico. You can save a bundle by staying away from the city's popular beachfront. If your home away from home is on wheels, consider one of Galveston's RV parks and resorts.
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