Our Sea Life Aquarium Adventure in MN!

Company Site:www.sealifeus.com
Note:*Aquarium Hours Are Subject To Change Without Notice.
Hours:M - Th - 10am - 7:30pm* Fri - 10am - 8pm* Sat - 9:30am - 8pm* Sun - 10am - 7pm*
Ticket Price:Adults: On-Line Price from $17.99 Kids: On-Line Price from $14.99 Prices vary depending on visit date. On-Line Tickets may not be exchanged for MOA Entertainment Pass.
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By now you know my kids both love animals. My son tends to lean towards the wild animals and my daughter is the aquatics enthusiast so we LOVE aquariums. We were given a chance to visit the Sea Life Aquarium in Minnesota (at the Mall of America) and it was amazing! So many animals to see and a few you can pet!

Sea Life Aquarium has a LOT of locations and not just in the US. In fact the MN location is just one of 8 in the US with other locations in countries including Germany, UK, Australia and even Thailand. Pretty amazing but we only got to visit the one in Minnesota…so far.

The Sea Life Aquarium in Minnesota is located INSIDE the Mall of America. Not next to…INSIDE it. Personally I love that it’s there because after your done you can shop, eat or go on another fun adventure in one of the other areas. I would highly recommend taking a pic or writing down where you park though…the mall is HUGE. 

Not to worry though there are map posts and signs that help you find your way or you can do what we did and sort of just go to the first floor and walk the mall until we found it. That was fun AND we found some stores we don’t have here in IN…and did I mention no tax on clothes in MN? You’re welcome.

There is an information booth on the first floor near a restroom and some lockers (I love places with lockers since we usually take a lunch and a backpack with laptops when we travel) right by where you go downstairs to the actual Aquarium. Take the escalators down and follow the path to purchase tickets and begin your underwater journey.

2015-06-22 11.40.28-10 copyThe price for adult and child tickets are reasonable but I recommend either eating at the food court or buying tickets online as you will save $5 either way. That is really neat because you can go eat lunch and then visit the aquarium OR just get your tickets online ahead of time and go whenever.

Another neat thing about this particular Sea Life Aquarium is you can get tickets for it AND for the rides at the Nickelodeon Universe theme park INSIDE the center of the Mall of America. Yep…two awesome things for a nice price.

Now on to the fun part! We were able to visit with cousins while we were there which made our visit extra fun. The first thing we were able to do when we got inside was to touch sea cucumbers, anemones & starfish! We have touched starfish (my kids call them sea stars) before but never sea cucumbers or anemones so that was awesome!2015-06-22 11.50.55 copy

Then we got to touch Stingrays…my son was in heaven! He has wanted to pet one of those for about 3 years now. He’s 6 remember? Made his year I think and was really cool to experience. So far he has pet sharks and sea stars but I think the only thing that could top the stingrays is petting a dolphin…some day.

I won’t spoil your own experience by detailing everything but aside from petting the various sea life there were some really amazing creatures to see.My personal favorite was CrabZilla! The Japanese Spider Crab is there in the Claws exhibit.

We got to see the underside of a lobster as well but I just loved the 8th Wonder of the World poster with a Spider Crab. They can reach up to 12 feet across when fully grown! I would NOT want to meet one of those up close…but I’ll admire him from outside his tank all day.

2015-06-22 11.47.40 copyThere was an awesome dark lit room that glowed with Jellies in it. We love Jellies…even though they make no sense. I mean what creature has no blood, bones, no nerves, no heart and no brain…and is alive!?! It is the most fascinating creature I have ever heard about or have seen and I love them. Sea Life has a whole room with them and information about them.

While I love Jellies and CrabZilla my most favorite part about Sea Life Aquarium was the Shark Tunnel (it is 300 ft long!)! Ok they call it the Ocean Tunnel but it has sharks!

They swim around and above you and I could spend hours there. I am pretty sure we would have since both my kids were in love with the area as well.2015-06-22 12.03.52 copy

Nurse Sharks, Zebra Sharks, Bamboo Sharks, Cownose Stingrays, Bird Wrasse, Remora, Sohal Tang, and tons of other tropical fish! It was beautiful! The tunnel was continuous but it was split up into 4 types of areas.

The shark area was called Rainbow Reef and then there was Atlantis with Sandtiger Sharks, Brown Sharks, Green Sawfish, Nurse Sharks, Loggerhead Sea Turtles, Guitarfish, Jacks, Cobia and other predators.

The Amazon was represented with turtles and various other creatures and right after that was Sturgeon Lake with animals you might recognize like Lake Sturgeon, Large Mouth Bass, and Paddlefish.

The best part, which I didn’t discover until AFTER we got home, is there is a snorkel opportunity in Rainbow Reef and Dive opportunities in Atlantis and Sturgeon Lake! You need to be certified for the Dives but not for Snorkeling!

2015-06-22 12.00.06 copyIt isn’t exactly cheap but oh what an experience it would be. SO worth it to me and next time we go we will for sure be doing this. You get 20 minute education briefing & tour; 30 minutes snorkeling and a 10 minute shower AND they provide you with mask, fins, snorkel and exposure suit. You also get a souvenir photo and admission is included when you book this.

That is just one of the amazing extras you can get from Sea Life Aquarium (at least in MN). They also offer behind the scenes tours, overnight options, the snorkeling and diving options, and a chance to feed the stingrays! Also, you can have a wedding or a birthday party there…if only we lived closer. How awesome would a birthday party be there!

There were so many creatures there to see and learn about and they had fun talks and feed shows throughout the day. One of my favorite things about Sea Life was all the areas that you could find information at. Random signs, fun informational displays and interactive ones for kids all had information about the animals near by. It was VERY educational…and that makes me happy.

Don’t forget your Souviner photo with the Shark Teeth at the end! You can also get a Souvenir Guidebook and a  fossilized shark tooth! Check out our Minnesota Sea Life Adventure in the video below!

If you are looking for a fun family vacation MN is a great place. With so much to see and do you would barely have to leave the Mall of America. They even have a hotel attached to it! Your first stop should be Sea Life Aquarium at the Mall…unless you do the lunch first route then after that go. It was a fun and educational couple of hours and we cannot wait to go back! Here is a photo gallery of our adventure!

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“If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water.”
~ Loren Eiseley

Author: sandyz