Sea-Life Spectacles: Find the Best Aquarium in the US Here!

Aquariums provide travelers with a glimpse into life under the sea. But, the best aquariums in the U.S. offer far more education and entertainment.

If diving into a sea of vibrant marine life sounds thrilling, you’ve hit the jackpot. The U.S. boasts awesome aquariums with stunning exhibits, interactive tanks, and walks among sea creatures.

Grab your gear, embrace your adventurous spirit, and let’s dive into the spectacular underwater realms these famous spots offer. Prepare to be dazzled by the ocean’s wonders, all without getting your feet wet!

The Best Aquariums in the US

SeaLife Orlando

Embark on an educational journey through SeaLife Orlando at 8449 International Dr, Orlando, where you’ll learn about marine conservation. Experience the playful antics of sea lions in their newest exhibit.

Get hands-on at the interactive rockpool by touching a starfish and understanding its habitat. Marvel at the grace of sea turtles and the stealth of sharks in an unforgettable aquatic adventure. It’s a true aquatic oasis!

Shedd Aquarium

Plunge into Shedd Aquarium at 1200 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, a haven where learning meets the deep blue. Witness the wonder of beluga whales and dolphins up close, and gain insights from around the aquatic globe.

Dive deeper with expert-led conservation talks and marvel at the rare and beautiful sea dragon exhibit, a true underwater treasure.

children looking at aquarium at Shedd Aquarium - Chicago, Illinois, USA
photo credit: Shedd Aquarium via Facebook

Aquarium of the Bay

Jump into the wonders of the Aquarium of the Bay at Pier 39, where tunnels bring you face-to-face with local sea life and various marine mammals. Explore touch tanks and exhibits that deepen your love for the ocean and its protection.

Wander through our kelp forest exhibit, a serene underwater forest teeming with life. Don’t miss the jellyfish exhibit, a dazzling display of the bay’s rich underwater community.

Johnny Morris’ Wonders of Wildlife National Museum & Aquarium

Discover the wild at Wonders of Wildlife National Museum & Aquarium, 500 W Sunshine St, Springfield, where nature’s marvels unfold. Dive into a world where immersive aquatic places bring the ocean’s depths to life and interactive galleries highlight the pivotal role of hunting and fishing in conservation.

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Celebrate the intricate bonds between humans and nature, and don’t miss the live penguin exhibit for a heartwarming glimpse of these charismatic creatures in action.

Entrance to the Aquarium of the Bay - San Francisco, California, USA

Aquarium of the Pacific

Head over to 100 Aquarium Way, Long Beach, to dive into the Aquarium of the Pacific, home to over 11,000 creatures. Join in on programs spotlighting ocean conservation and meet everything from grand whales to vibrant clownfish in their simulated natural worlds.

Marvel at the playful sea lions and wander through lush kelp forests, bringing the Pacific closer to you with every step. It’s an immersive journey into the heart of the ocean’s biodiversity.

Clearwater Marine Aquarium

At Clearwater Marine located at 249 Windward Passage, Clearwater, dive into a world where marine rescue and recovery are key.

Discover the journey of rescued dolphins, stars of “Dolphin Tale,” and learn about the aquarium’s mission in marine life conservation. It’s a perfect mix of fun and learning, all about caring for ocean inhabitants.

Dolphin kissing a trainer at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium in Clearwater, Florida
photo credit: Clearwater Marine Aquarium via Facebook

Monterey Bay Aquarium

Leap into the heart of marine exploration at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, nestled at 886 Cannery Row, Monterey California. This sanctuary of the seas lets you wander through a towering kelp forest exhibit, where leopard sharks roam among the seaweed.

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Be spellbound by the jellyfish exhibit, where these ghostly sea creatures float in a ballet of grace, highlighting their critical role in the marine ecosystem.

Key West Aquarium

Step into one of Florida’s original aquariums, Key West Aquarium, located at 1 Whitehead St, Key West. This aquarium is home to unique coral reefs and mangroves of the Keys.

Feel the texture of a starfish and dive into shark conservation firsthand. Don’t skip the sea turtle rescue area for an intimate glimpse at these majestic creatures and their conservation.

San Antonio Aquarium

Jump into the sea’s secrets at San Antonio Aquarium, located at 6320 Bandera Rd, San Antonio. From stingrays’ soft touch to tropical birds’ songs, explore their habitats up close.

Catch the mermaid show, where myth meets marine conservation in a splashy spectacle!

woman looking at sting rays in aquarium at Jewel of the Sea Aquarium at Seaworld in San Antonio, Texas, USA

The Florida Aquarium

Dive into an adventure at The Florida Aquarium, located at 701 Channelside Dr, Tampa, where Florida’s rich ecosystems and global aquatic wonders come alive! Get hands-on with nature on the Wetlands Trail and uncover the secrets of water conservation through interactive fun.

Here, every exhibit, from coral reefs to shark habitats, tells a story of dedication to research, rescue, and the vital role of aquatic life in our world.

Miami Seaquarium

Plunge into the Miami Seaquarium at 4400 Rickenbacker Causeway, Miami, for a splash of conservation in action.

Get up close with the vibrant life of coral reefs and discover how we can save endangered sea turtles through hands-on rescue exhibits. Don’t miss the thrilling dolphin shows and the rare chance to see a manatee rehabilitation center.

close up of sea lion in pool at Miami Seaquarium in Miami, Florida, USA
Miami Seaquarium / Facebook

Georgia Aquarium

The underwater world at Georgia Aquarium, 225 Baker St NW, Atlanta is where you’ll find one of the largest ones globally. It’s arguably the best one in the US, simply for its vastness.

Marvel at whale sharks and manta rays in massive exhibits that highlight oceanic wonders. The aquarium’s dedication to research and conservation educates visitors on the critical importance of aquatic life.

Audubon Aquarium of the Americas

The Audubon Aquarium of the Americas at 1 Canal St, New Orleans is one of the best aquariums in the US. Marvel at the Amazon Rainforest exhibit, teeming with fascinating piranhas and vibrant toucans.

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Don’t miss the Gulf of Mexico exhibit, where sharks and sea turtles glide beneath your feet, showcasing the importance of these creatures to our waterways. It’s a thrilling exploration that brings the river’s edge to life, highlighting the critical need for conservation in every splash and ripple.

Birch Aquarium

Visit the Birch Aquarium at 2300 Expedition Way, San Diego, for a captivating journey into the Pacific Ocean’s heart. Get up-close with seahorses in their elaborate dance within the Seadragons & Seahorses exhibit.

Touch a starfish in the interactive tide pools and marvel at the glowing wonders of bioluminescent fish. It’s your gateway to understanding and protecting the vast, vibrant marine world.

Child up close to a Dolphin in its tank at Birch Aquarium at Scripps - San Diego, California, USA

FAQs About US Aquariums

The Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta, also often believed to be the best aquarium in the US, takes the crown as the largest. It packs a whopping 10 million gallons of water and loads of aquatic critters. It's a real giant in the aquarium world, offering some pretty epic underwater experiences.

Yes, the National Aquarium in Baltimore, Maryland, specifically at 501 E Pratt St. It's a standout spot dedicated to showcasing marine life and promoting conservation efforts.

With exhibits ranging from lush tropical rainforests to vibrant coral reefs, the National Aquarium plays a significant role in educating the public about marine ecosystems and conservation strategies.

Plan Your Aquatic Adventure With Tripster

Kick off your next aquatic adventure and save some cash with Tripster, where you can score great deals on tickets to the best US aquariums, plus hotels and vacation bundles.

Check out our travel guide for tips on the coolest aquariums to explore next. Get ready to plunge into the wonders of the sea, knowing you’ve landed the best deals around!

Did we miss any of the top aquariums in the US?

Let us know what’s the best aquarium in the USA for you in the comments!

5 comments about “Sea-Life Spectacles: Find the Best Aquarium in the US Here!”


February 10, 2022 at 8:43 pm

Shedd Aquarium in Chicago


February 11, 2022 at 10:10 am

Thanks for the suggestion! We couldn’t agree more and have added Shedd Aquarium to our article.


March 30, 2022 at 8:57 pm

Belle isle aquarium in Detroit


April 4, 2022 at 12:59 pm

Hi Katrina, thank you for your suggestion!

Ted Hoff

April 7, 2022 at 9:48 am

how about the aquarium at seaside Oregon? I don’t see it listed.

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