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Shedd Aquarium

Shedd Aquarium

Museum Campus, Chicago
  • Stars
  • Stars
    Has a stamp of approval from Wired and Chicagoist
    • Wired
    • Chicagoist
  • Tips
    Lisa W.
    "The penguin encounter one was a great value and a wonderful time!"(18 Tips)
    Ricardo L.
    "Excellent aquarium, choose the CityPass, great deal!!!"(22 Tips)
    Kristen D.
    "Jazzin' at the Shedd is the best time to visit the aquarium!"(7 Tips)
    Paula A.
    "Spend some time with the cute Beluga whales, they're cute and funny."(13 Tips)
Tips and Reviews icon416 Tips and reviews
  • jazzin
  • penguins
  • beluga whales
  • fish
  • scenic views
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  • Jon S.heart icon on user image
    Jon SuminskiJuly 6, 2015
    A must visit if in Chicago alone or with the family. The Aquarium takes about 3-5 hours to go through the whole thing. Get the VIP pass to see all the shows and definitely get the stingray touch.
    Upvoted Oct 19
  • Ruth M.heart icon on user image
    Ruth MadrigalAugust 18, 2013
    Get the CityPass, the line here can get ridiculous. Also, come in early if you want to see the dolphin show, as by the afternoon its usually sold out. Stingray Touch was the coolest experience ever!
  • Jonathan F.heart icon on user image
    Jonathan FerreraFebruary 15, 2015
    Been here 10+ times
    This is one of those places you must visit in Chicago. The diversity of fish they have here is astounding. Even when it's busy and crowded, the other visitors are very courteous.
    Upvoted Oct 26
  • Debbie W.heart icon on user image
    Debbie WMarch 19, 2018
    Been here 10+ times
    One of the top places to visit in the Chicago area. They have it all! The special exhibits are worth the extra charge. Call up for the free days and it will save you money.
  • Tabatha G.heart icon on user image
    Tabatha GroverSeptember 30, 2014
    Love the aquatic reef tank! So big & colorful. Make sure to check out the aquatic show, they do talk, a lot, but it is still neat; especially if you have never seen anything like that!
  • Navid J.
    Navid JubaerMarch 28, 2021
    We liked seeing the Beluga Whale the most! Under water and Caribbean reef were great as well! The stores are great and have cool but pricey products! We were glad to visit!
  • Sara A.
    Sara AApril 13, 2014
    Try to arrive as early as possible to avoid the rush. Penguins, jellyfish, dolphins, & the beluga whales were great but the museum is way smaller than I imagined
  • Samantha L.heart icon on user image
    Samantha LeeOctober 11, 2016
    It's not on the price list menu, but you can get a general admission pass for $8 that includes most of the aquarium and just excludes the specialty exhibits like stingray petting & the polar playzone.
  • vanessa b.
    vanessa buenrostroMarch 23, 2016
    A very nice aquarium to go to and many cool exhibits to explore. The dolphin show is very nice to see. They have many free days as well for Illinois residents.Check it out! You won't regret it!
  • Lindsey S.
    Lindsey ScottNovember 9, 2013
    Hit up the Soundings Cafe for lunch. Great views of the city, reasonable prices, pretty good food, and BEER! Plus, if you go at 12, everyone else is at the dolphin show, you can get a table easily.
  • Rachel S.heart icon on user image
    Rachel StarksMay 25, 2015
    I liked this place more than The Field Museum! If you have a school ID the tickets are only $5 for general admission. Go early though to bypass the crowds.
  • PH .heart icon on user image
    PH 🇧🇷 🇩🇪February 1, 2015
    It's always a good place to go with friends or family.. I'm from Brazil and had visited twice in different periods already.. High season like Christmas or News Eve must be patient.. Too crowded!
  • Lauren B.heart icon on user image
    Lauren BassJuly 14, 2017
    The beluga whales and penguins are my favorite, but touching the stingrays was very fun, and the jellyfish and octopus were so cool!
  • Kevin M.
    Kevin M. McNally, CMPAugust 21, 2018
    Ever wanna press your nose to the glass and call out "FISHIES" or "TUNA". So much to see and learn. (Beware of the penguins-kidding). Great spot for adults and kids. Wetsuit not required.
    HISTORYApril 7, 2010
    It's the world's largest indoor aquarium with over 8,000 aquatic animals representing over 700 species. The Marine Mammal Presentation features staff interacting with whales & dolphins as they dive.
  • G🐞rkemheart icon on user image
    G🐞rkemNovember 30, 2014
    You should see this aquarium 💗 At holiday times you may be to await one's turn if you don't have city pass card. There are too many types of fishes and it's amazing.
  • Chicagoist
    ChicagoistApril 23, 2015
    For $75 bucks and some change, you get to hang out with an adorable penguin in a small group, and you even get to PET THE PENGUIN! Read more
  • Steven S.heart icon on user image
    Steven SullivanAugust 12, 2016
    Really well put together Aquarium, from petting the stingray to the oceanarium just great attractions. Also, if you get to do jazzing at the Shedd it's a great evening.
  • Krista R.
    Krista RiedAugust 12, 2013
    The line can take up to 2hrs 2get in. Worth it, of course, but be prepared. The Stingray Touch-definitely the highlight! & if u don't need a huge meal, grab a snack by the dolphins!
  • Blanca G.
    Blanca G.February 28, 2017
    This place is mind blowing to any toddler that loves water and colorful fishes. There are many animals there that are about to be extinct. Fishes are being feed and have a home and families.
  • Song Z.heart icon on user image
    Song ZhaoJanuary 1, 2015
    A fun place for all ages. I don't know how often the exhibits change so probably don't want to go on a weekly basis. My daughter loves the place and shows.
  • Will S.heart icon on user image
    Will St MartinSeptember 27, 2015
    That Aquarium is well laid out and staff is friendly. The shark Aquarium is great, will give you goose bumps! I had the CityPass, good value for money!
  • Melay M.heart icon on user image
    Melay MApril 27, 2018
    My husband it’s a huge fan of aquariums so we went to visit the shedd aquarium and we love it there’s a major variety of species I have never seen before.
  • Laura M.heart icon on user image
    Laura M.May 6, 2018
    You will need at least a half day to see everything. They have more than just fish too!
  • Latasha B.
    Latasha BerryNovember 18, 2013
    Great yearly visit, even without the kids. I love the Beluga whales performance. There are thousands of different species of fish here, stingrays, sharks, you name it. Love this place.
  • Todd K.heart icon on user image
    Todd KunaOctober 7, 2018
    Been here 5+ times
    One of the most fun places to visit in Chicago. The new Underwater Beauty is a great exhibit. And make sure to see the Beluga whales.
  • InterContinental Chicago
    InterContinental ChicagoSeptember 8, 2011
    The thing that sets Shedd apart is its inland salt water tank, the largest in North America. It's a unique chance to learn about the varied ecosystems in the surrounding great lakes.
  • Laurasseinheart icon on user image
    LaurasseinJanuary 22, 2016
    Been here 5+ times
    If you have kids, go early and sign on for the show and keep your coats to sit on because it is cement! The Shedd and their shows are full ADA accessible.
  • Sabrina Z.
    Sabrina ZwegoMarch 12, 2013
    Buy tickets ahead of time and pick up here...or just bring a stroller and go through the accessible entrance. If not you will wait in a long line just to get in. Former military members get in free.
  • Skylar A.
    Skylar AlexanderAugust 7, 2013
    Definitely get the the city pass. You get to see everything and pretty much skip the line. Also if you go before October do the sting ray touch experience, its so neat!!
  • Michael B.
    Michael BFebruary 13, 2012
    Bring quarters for the lockers if you don't want to carry your coat around. On busy days the change machines run out of quarters! 3 quarters for a small locker, four quarters for a large locker.
  • Zaptravel I.
    Zaptravel IncAugust 30, 2013
    When it opened in 1930, Shedd Aquarium was the world’s largest aquarium as well as the first inland aquarium to maintain permanent exhibits of both marine and freshwater fishes.
  • Fernando F.heart icon on user image
    Fernando FloresAugust 23, 2013
    For the love of God! Buy tickets online to avoid the 1 hour + line in the blazing sun (specially if you are packing 4 kids)!!
  • Claire E.
    Claire ElizabethOctober 30, 2014
    Go and see a lungfish that has been in the Shedd since 1933! They have amazing exhibits from all over the world with fun shows for kids, 4-D movies, and pretty much every fish you could imagine.
  • John G.heart icon on user image
    John GondaAugust 3, 2016
    Absolutely fun and amazing - my six year old loved it. Especially the playful beluga whales. Get there early!!
  • _
    _February 18, 2015
    One of the first indoor aquarium ever. Originally had the saltwater transported by train from Key West in Florida.
  • Anna M.
    Anna MorrisAugust 2, 2012
    Any weekend year round and midday any day during the summer will be a long wait. Come at 3:30 during the summer and spend the last two hours with a smaller crowd. Jellies exhibit is not worth the $.
  • Social N.
    Social News NetworkAugust 6, 2013
    Great trip for kids and adults alike. Be sure to experience touching the starfish and sting rays, and definitely do not miss the Japanese spider crab.
  • Tracy H.heart icon on user image
    Tracy HixonMarch 4, 2016
    Though I miss the old style displays, the redesign is more informative. Always fun to see the fish in the main tank getting fed by the diver
  • Jessica W.heart icon on user image
    Jessica WeissJune 30, 2015
    Very very crowded on any day in the summer. Make sure to pre-purchase tickets so the wait is shorter. Nice amount of critters to see!
  • Jake S.heart icon on user image
    Jake SmithOctober 21, 2012
    Check out the turtles, especially the huge Alligator Snapping Turtle and the Fly River Turtle, who is extremely friendly.
  • Sweta M.heart icon on user image
    Sweta MohapatraFebruary 26, 2017
    Excellent for kids. The oceanarium is one of the best parts with the dolphin, penguins, and otters - it costs a lot more though
  • Markheart icon on user image
    MarkApril 19, 2016
    Love this museum. Animals are always well cared for and seem happy. Lots to do with kids and easy to see in a day.
  • Nicole Y.heart icon on user image
    Nicole YousefMarch 20, 2014
    Absolutely amazing I loved everything about this Aquarium. The only thing I could say is book ahead best decision I made those lines were so long!
  • Shedd Aquarium
    Shedd AquariumSeptember 7, 2011
    While the weather's still nice, step outside to snap a photo of the view! Our Lakefront Terrace boasts one of the best views of the Chicago skyline without even leaving the aquarium.
  • Lisa Z.heart icon on user image
    Lisa ZielbauerJune 3, 2013
    The organization of the lines today was awful...1 hr wait in the cold outside vs. 1/2 wait if u bought the city pass which I highly recommend: $89 for a book of tickets for several attractions
  • C
    CMarch 11, 2014
    Come early (before Noon) especially on the weekends, otherwise you'll be waiting in line for a while! Also, use the Soldier Field parking lot. ;)
  • Sheart icon on user image
    SSeptember 24, 2013
    Don't miss the view outside the aquarium! Some of the best photos I took were there, looking across the lake to the marina and the cityline.
  • Kim S.heart icon on user image
    Kim SolvesonJanuary 30, 2016
    Shedd Aquarium is the world's largest aquarium. the dolphins and sharks are too amazing and cool . It is a outstanding view
  • Allison K.heart icon on user image
    Allison KaminskiSeptember 9, 2015
    Great views around the shedd. It's one of the best aquariums in the US
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