Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies, Gatlinburg

4.5
#1 of 209 in Parks in Tennessee
Explore the wonders of the underwater world at Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies. The world-class aquarium offers an array of interactive exhibits, with over 10,000 sea creatures of over 350 diverse species. Stand on the moving pathway as it takes you through the aquarium's underwater tunnel to admire giant sea turtles and 3.7 m (12 ft) sharks. Enjoy a hands-on experience in the tide pool exhibit, where you can handle horseshoe crabs and stingrays, or stay for a diving and feeding show with the dolphins. Check the aquarium’s website before your visit, as discount tickets are often available. Make Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies a part of your Gatlinburg vacation plans using our Gatlinburg trip itinerary planner .
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Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
11,608 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • My husband and I very much enjoyed our day at .."The Fish Zoo". It's what we call it now that I couldn't remember it was an Aquarium. It was perfect and relaxing as it was pouring pouring pouring down...  more »
  • I have been to the Atlanta Aquarium, Boston Aquarium, and Cleveland Aquairum. I was extremely impressed by this Aquarium and consider it my favorite. It has a lot of different species I have not seen ...  more »
  • We enjoyed this attraction so much. It was amazing! We plan to go through it again the next visit to Gatlinburg.  more »
Google
  • Went with our 5 yr old grandson for his 5th birthdayπŸ˜† He had so much fun! We decided to keep it simple since we had not been there before, so we just bought regular admission tickets , no extras. We may do extras next time but it was perfect for a 5 yr old.. Staff was friendly and helpful. I was concerned about visiting an aquarium with my leg in a cast but I had no problems. Highly recommend buying tickets online. Walked right in.
  • Our family (me, wife and 2 college age kids) absolutely loved the aquarium here. It was one of the high lights of our trip in the area. We visited on a Tuesday, and after seeing the crowds on the weekend I would strongly encourage visiting on a Monday- Thursday (true of most attractions). Longest shark tunnel I've ever seen, with incredible views in it. A great variety of different animals and exhibits, and several places to get "hands on" with animals like mantas and even jelly fish! They also had what looked like a great climbing/ play area for the kids, but we were a little old for that. Plan a few hours to walk through and see everything. Absolutely a don't miss attraction in the area.
  • Amazing aquarium experience! So happy that I got to visit whilst down in Tennesee! There are so many animals and fish to see here. My favorite part was the penguin exhibit. You can crawl under the penguins and view them up close through a glass dome. The gift shop was touristy, but that's to be expected. They had a lot of cool stuff there. And, of course, I got a stuffed penguin as a souvenir πŸ™„
  • Best aquarium I've ever been to. My family and I all had a really nice time. This place is enormous but fairly easy to navigate. They have a huge McDonald land style play place right in the middle for kids. I could spend hours in there I took my seven month old baby girl. I loved watching her eyes light up as she watched swarms of fish swim over head πŸ˜ŠπŸŸπŸ πŸ‘πŸ¦‘πŸ¦€πŸ¦πŸ™πŸ˜
  • Great experience! Our boys, 1, 4, 6, loved it all. One was a bit scared walking in though as it begins by going through a "tunnel" of some sorts. We had to carry him through. After that, however, it was a great experience. The workers are very knowledgeable and loved teaching us about the horseshoe crabs. The moving walkway under the shark tank is AWESOME.

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Where to stay in Gatlinburg

As gateway to one of the country's major national parks, Gatlinburg offers plenty of economical rooms to satisfy the needs and budgets of most travelers. Good-value motels remain the best option for those looking for adventure in the great outdoors. If you need more than just a decent bed, consider the area's cabin rentals, which provide loads of space and unparalleled privacy. Alternatively, reserve a site at one of many local campgrounds to experience the Great Smoky Mountains at night.
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