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The Florida Aquarium is home to many impressive exhibits, particularly the Wetlands Gallery, which is enclosed within an architecturally stunning spiral dome that mimics the perfect environmental temperature and light for the animals and plants inside the huge glass-paneled dome. The design has even been listed in the American Institute of Architect’s Florida Architecture: 100 Years. 100 Places. But the natural setting is only second to the lively animals that inhabit the area. From exotic free flying birds like blue herons, white ibis, and roseate spoonbills to sharks, alligators, eels, river otters and endangered sea turtles, the ecosystems of Florida flourish with natural coral reefs, lush flora, and touch tanks to learn about Florida’s native surroundings. Also, dive into the beauty of the Coral Reef Gallery, where you’ll marvel at the underwater worlds that divers experience from shallow-water fish to deeper waters inside a 500,000 gallon tank. From there, visit the Bays and Beaches, where mammoth-sized Goliath Grouper (up to 300 pounds!) swim and feed Stingrays by the typical Florida beach environment. Lastly, there’s the new Ocean Commotion Gallery that’s an interactive adventure fun for the family using lights, sounds, and information using wireless devices on the Florida Aquarium’s free Wi-Fi.
Water Adventure Playground
On a hot Florida day, there’s nothing better than chilling out for a few hours in the Florida Aquarium’s two acre outdoor water playground. Kids have a blast with the water jets, geysers, slides, and other interactive areas in this Caribbean themed splash zone. From a sand box and slides to a two story pirate ship play area, recess has begun; parents can cool off in the shade by the Cantina bar and grill, while children run wild. And don’t forget your toddlers, The Shipwreck Shore: Just for Toddlers is an area where even smaller children can enjoy their foothold in the wet wild world of water splashing.
Catch the live animal shows throughout the museum exhibits from the otter experience in the Wetlands to the Stingray Beach show in the Bays and Beaches. Also, don’t miss a Meet-and-Greet with lovable penguins in the Lobby every morning for close encounters and photo opportunities during the Penguin Promenade.
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