Confession: I LOVE going to aquariums! They are seriously one of the coolest things to me! So, naturally, when the opportunity came up to visit The Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga, I jumped on it! Living in Knoxville, Chattanooga is just 2 hours away which makes it a great destination for day trips or a nice weekend trip if you want to get away. I’m only focusing on the aquarium today, but I can see a more in depth blog post in the future!
The aquarium itself is split into two buildings: River Journey and Ocean Journey. Each building is multiple levels making this place huge! We let Miah pick what side we started on and he picked River Journey. There was so much to do and see! It was quite overwhelming. The biggest complaint I had was that it was NOT stroller friendly. The layout flows really smooth once you get to the floor it starts on, but they only have one elevator and visiting on a busy day makes for long wait to get the tour started. I highly suggest babywearing if you have one too little to walk.
One of our favorite things was the up close experience you got with most of the exhibits. On the River Journey, you were able to touch freshwater Sturgeons, come face to face with otters, and measure yourself against the biggest turtle shell known to man. Not to mention the giant fish tank with the massive fresh water fish. It’s hard to believe such enormous animals can inhabit the lakes and rivers we like to swim in!
And on the Ocean Journey, there were stingrays.
Also on the ocean side, there was a huge butterfly enclosure! Hundreds of butterflies of all colors, shapes, and sizes were flying around. It was beautiful. I couldn’t capture a picture that did it justice, so I’ll leave that to your imagination. There were also penguins, sharks, and jelly fish that I couldn’t capture because Miah was too busy running around looking at everything!
On almost all the tanks, they had a ledge that I could stand Miah on so he could see the fish and other animals. He loved being able to get face to face with some of the huge sting rays!
The view from the top of the Ocean Journey was incredible! Of course, I jumped on the photo op.
Overall, this place was amazing. We added an IMAX movie and got to learn about the Galapagos Islands in 3D. Totally cool for us, but Miah was less than amused having to sit still for 45 minutes. We can’t wait to plan our next visit to Chattanooga and visit the aquarium again! Maybe you can join us? Enter to win a giveaway for a family of four to the Tennessee Aquarium!
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