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Shedd Aquarium

Shedd Aquarium

Museum Campus, Chicago
  • The experts at Wired and Chicagoist recommend this place
    • Wired
    • Chicagoist
  • 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!!!"(21 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."(11 Tips)
409 Tips and reviews
  • jazzin
  • penguins
  • fish
  • beluga whales
  • museums
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  • Jon S.
    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 2 weeks ago
  • 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.
  • Jeremiah L.
    Jeremiah LoudenAugust 2, 2013
    Buying tickets online is a must! That or get there when it opens. or wait 1-2 hours. This place along w/ the Planetarium have great city skyline photo ops. The dolphin/beluga whale show is a must.
  • Jonathan F.
    Jonathan FerreraFebruary 15, 2015
    Been here 5+ 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 2 weeks ago
  • 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!
  • Rachel S.
    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.
  • G🐞rkem
    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.
  • Ruth M.
    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!
  • Tabatha G.
    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!
  • 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
  • Paulo H.
    Paulo HenriqueFebruary 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!
  • 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!
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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!!
  • 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
  • Sandor W.
    Sandor WeiszMay 25, 2013
    Despite what the clerks say, general admission DOES allow you to go downstairs to see the belugas, as well as the basement kids area. It's only $8, or $5 for residents; but it's not on the price menu.
  • 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 $.
  • 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.
  • Steven S.
    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.
  • 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.
  • Blanca G.
    Blanca G.February 28
    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.
  • Jake S.
    Jake SmithOctober 21, 2012
    Check out the turtles, especially the huge Alligator Snapping Turtle and the Fly River Turtle, who is extremely friendly.
    Upvoted 2 weeks ago
  • Song Z.
    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.
  • 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.
  • Fernando F.
    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)!!
  • Will S.
    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!
  • 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.
  • Brian W.
    Brian WenteJuly 24, 2011
    Incredibly long lines, however if you have children and bring a stroller, you can move to the ramp entrance and directly bypass all the lines. Saved us nearly an hour in line of 90+ degree heat!
  • Laurassein
    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.
  • Samantha L.
    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.
  • Lisa Z.
    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
  • 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.
  • Julie A.
    Julie ArrisonOctober 12, 2012
    I haven't been to a great aquarium in a long time and this was GREAT. Not only was it wonderful marine life, but the architecture was to die for.
  • Nicole Y.
    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!
  • John G.
    John GondaAugust 3, 2016
    Absolutely fun and amazing - my six year old loved it. Especially the playful beluga whales. Get there early!!
  • Lisa K.
    Lisa King MorganJuly 1, 2013
    Buy your tickets online before arriving, otherwise you may be in line up to 2 hrs! Make sure to buy a ticket for the aquatic show. We thought it was included in the Shedd Pass. It is not.
  • Daniel.MD
    Daniel.MDMarch 25, 2013
    The waiting line on monday morning was huge! Temp was on the low 30's. Getting the city pass was awesome 'cause we skipped the line and didn't waste at least 1hr !
  • Jessica W.
    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!
  • Mark H.
    Mark HOctober 10, 2011
    Got here at 9.30am on a beautiful Saturdy morning n there were no lines! Hurray! $3 off tics with ur student ID. This place is nice but I think overhyped. View from restaurant's patio is amazing.
  • Kelly W.
    Kelly WongFebruary 18, 2015
    One of the first indoor aquarium ever. Originally had the saltwater transported by train from Key West in Florida.
    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.
  • Tracy H.
    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
  • Anna S.
    Anna StumpfApril 11, 2016
    Although we arrived 30 minutes prior to opening and in the first 50 through the door the aquatic shows were sold out. People pre-purchase w/tix online which is nice for them, not if you have City Pass
  • Chauderz
    ChauderzMarch 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. ;)
  • Alexandra F.
    Alexandra Faught BivinsSeptember 30, 2013
    Visited on Saturday and had a great time. Upgraded from the general admission so that we could see the whales and dolphins. My kids had a great time!
  • Sarah P.
    Sarah PerkinsSeptember 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.
  • Mark
    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.
  • Terry T.
    Terry TroskeSeptember 3, 2013
    We spent seven hours here and only went home simply because they were closing. The entire experience was awesome as well as the food!
  • Megan K.
    Megan KroneFebruary 20, 2012
    Been here 5+ times
    Buy a membership. You have unlimited visits for you AND a guest, plus discounts and sometimes special events! Plus, Jazzing at the Shedd in the summer is delightful.
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