The Florida Aquarium

Here you can learn everything about the visit of The Florida Aquarium in Tampa with many tips

The Florida Aquarium
The Florida Aquarium

The largest aquarium in Florida is a popular destination especially for families with children. It is called The Florida Aquarium and is located in Tampa. Visitors can see around 20,000 aquatic plants and animals.

The visit to The Florida Aquarium

Opened in March 1995, it is one of the most visited attractions in Tampa. You should plan enough time for a visit there. There is much to discover and it will certainly not be boring. Furthermore, there is an outdoor area and an indoor area at The Florida Aquarium. One should first look at the fish inside the building.

After that, you can go outdoors where there are also numerous aquariums and pools. The total area of the site is 5,6 acres. So it is very big and you can easily spend half a day there. The aquariums and pools are filled with 1.9 million liters of water. Since most of them are marine animals, they need a lot of water. Of course, this must always be prepared and kept fresh. The expenditure is therefore very large.

When was the aquarium opened:
In March 1995

Total area:
5,6 acres

Sharks at Florida Aquarium
Sharks at Florida Aquarium

Address and location

If you are not familiar with Tampa then you should use the GPS navigation device from your rental car. Just enter the address 701 Channelside Drive in Tampa, Florida 33602. Then you will probably find The Florida Aquarium the fastest. The cruise port of Tampa is right next to it and it is also written everywhere. So it’s usually not a problem to find your way there.

Exact address:
701 Channelside Dr
Tampa, FL 33602

What mode of transportation should you use:
Rental car

Where to park

Of course, you can park your rental car there at The Florida Aquarium. Usually most visitors come with a car. However, you have to pay a fee and parking is not free. But if you still want to see Tampa then you should look for another parking lot where the fees are then a little cheaper.

Address of the parking garage:
1371-1387 E York St
Tampa, FL 33602

Do you have to pay parking fees:
Yes, partly very high

Fish and corals
Fish and corals
Panorama from aquarium
Panorama from aquarium

Opening hours of the Aquarium

The Florida Aquarium is open every day of the week from 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM. But these opening hours can also deviate on holidays like Thanksgiving or events. Therefore, you should ask in advance if the aquarium is open at all. But if it is high season in Florida then it is always open. For a visit you should plan at least two hours so that you can look at everything there. Furthermore, it is also a great destination that you can do in an afternoon.

These are the opening hours:
Monday to Sunday
9:30 AM – 5:00 PM

How much time should you plan for the visit:
At least 2 hours

Ticket prices

Adults pay $30.95 for admission. If you reserve your ticket online in advance, you will pay a little less. So it is a good idea to do it there to save money. Retirees over 60 also get a discount. Children between 3 and 11 years old have to pay $26.45. Free admission is given to infants under two years old.

If you are a group then you can save money again. But if you want to take a tour or swim with sharks then you have to pay more. Our tip is to buy the CityPASS where you can save up to 54 percent of the entrance fee. Certainly you want to see more of Tampa and then this pass is just right.

Entrance fees:
Adults ( $30,95 )
Children ( $26,45 )
Retirees ( reduced )
Infants ( free )

How to save money:
Be sure to purchase the CityPASS

Shows and feedings

To make the visit a highlight, The Florida Aquarium also offers some shows and feedings. You can watch sharks being fed. This is certainly something extraordinary that you don’t get to see every day. But there are not only dangerous animals there, but also smaller ones. As a visitor you can also touch some animals like turtles or penguins. But safety always comes before the show. As a visitor, you are always at a safe distance.

When do the shows take place:
At different times

Can you touch animals:
Yes, for example turtles and penguins

The entrance to the Florida Aquarium
The entrance to the Florida Aquarium
A manatee
A manatee

What animals to see there

You get to see everything from fish to sharks there. The aquariums have been made very beautiful and for these animals it seems as if they are in the sea. You can’t get out of the amazement there. Certainly you get to see fish that you have not seen before. A blacktip reef shark or an octopus you will not see every day.

Of course, as a visitor you will see many animals that are also found in Florida. You can take a guided tour if you don’t feel like walking around The Florida Aquarium yourself. Some tanks have a 42 feet high panorama window and as a visitor you could think you are directly in it.

Spectacular animals in the aquarium:
Blacktip reef shark

Are there also guided tours:
Yes, this is possible

Swimming with dolphins and sharks

At The Florida Aquarium you have the possibility to swim with a shark or dolphins. This is of course a special tour where you have to book in advance. Furthermore, the demand is always very high and therefore this belongs also well prepared. But surely this is only something for very brave visitors. You get very close to the sharks. There is something similar, for example, in the Dubai Mall.

But the staff always make sure that nothing happens. Furthermore, there are tours where you can look behind the scenes. If you are interested in marine life in Florida vacation then that is certainly exactly the right thing. So you can do a lot there and a visit there will certainly not be boring. In our opinion it is the best aquarium in Florida.

Do you have to register in advance:
Yes, it is necessary

Eating and Drinking

If you want to stay longer and you are hungry, you can eat and drink there. Café Ray even serves breakfast between 9:30 and 11:30. It is open until 16:30 and you can also get fresh salads, burgers, pizza and a sandwich. But you can’t bring food into the aquarium and that’s not allowed.

What do you get for dinner there:

Our opinion

As already mentioned, The Florida Aquarium is a great destination that you can do in Tampa. Our tip is to swim there once with dolphins and that is a great experience that you do not forget so quickly. Furthermore, you should not miss it to watch the shows and feedings which are very interesting. Furthermore, you get to see fish that you may have never seen.

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