5 Reasons to visit the Tennessee Aquarium

*My family received tickets to give our honest review, as always, all opinions are my own.

The first attraction we did we when arrived to Chattanooga was the Tennessee Aquarium. The Tennessee Aquarium is much smaller in size comparing to the Georgia aquarium (of which we are used to), even being held in two separate buildings. I hate to compare the Tennessee Aquarium to the Georgia Aquarium, but maybe some of you are opposed to visiting the Tennessee Aquarium due to the fact that we have a pretty spectacular aquarium here in Atlanta. So, here is what you’ll experience at the Tennessee Aquarium.




Small, but intimate: As I noted earlier, it is smaller than our beloved Georgia Aquarium, but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. It was so nice to actually walk in and get a front seat view of every exhibit. We actually got to see the penguins close up without trying to fit through a crowd. We took our time at each and never felt like we had to rush to move to let 100 others in our spot.





Housed in two separate buildings: The two buildings that house the aquarium are River Journey and Ocean Journey. It makes a great way to break up your day. You can experience one building, take a break, grab a bite to eat, see an IMAX movie, experience the River Gorge Explorer or just get some fresh air and then finish your day in the other building. It just allows you day to flow better.





The Jelly fish exhibit was pretty awesome!




Add-ons: They have a few ad-on activities that you can do with or without admission to the Tennessee Aquarium. However, you do get the tickets cheaper if you are purchasing with admission to the aquarium. Backstage Pass (children under 6 not permitted). I have every intention of going back and this will be part of our experience. It’s only $17 for non-members. IMAX, with most shows lasting around 45 minutes long and at a ticket price of $6, this is another great way to just stop, relax and get re-energized to finish out your day. River Gorge Explorer, we had the opportunity to experience this and it was not only educational but fun, relaxing and awesome! Tickets are around $32 for adults ($27 if purchasing an aquarium ticket) and $24.50 for children 3-12( $21 with aquarium admission) and $18 for 3 and under.



Butterfly Garden: My favorite part! It was so cool to go in and just have a butterfly crawl onto your hand


Or head 🙂


Very educational too! They have a window so that you can see the life of a butterfly.


It was pretty cool to see so many beautiful butterflies in one place!





Location, location, location: The Tennessee Aquarium is right across from the river front and smack dab in the heart of downtown! I’ve said this before, but Chattanooga is a small town with a big town feel. Everything is so close to each to each other. The Tennessee Aquarium is also close to Walnut Street Bridge, which is one of the oldest walking bridges in the world! Hop on there and head across the bridge to Coolidge park and make memories on the indoor carousel.


So, all in all, I would recommend visiting the Tennessee Aquarium! We had an awesome time and the next time we visit Chattanooga I plan on visiting again! I’d say that if you are a family of 4 or more that purchasing a Family Membership is a MUST! For only $115/family, it’s a lot more cost effective than purchasing tickets individually. Chattanooga is overall a great weekend getaway, and adding the aquarium to would not be disappointing.
Check out some great fun for the kids on Tennessee’s Aquarium site HERE! They even have a Dr. Seuss inspired scavenger hunt sheet to print and take with you when you visit.


Ticket’s are $26.95 for adults, $16.95 for 3-12 and 3-under are FREE! Get your tickets HERE




  1. So glad you enjoyed your visit to Chattanooga! It is one of my favorite close to home cities to visit!
  2. I've never been to Tennessee but when I finally get there I will make sure I put this on my list of places to visit!
    1. We live in Metro Atlanta, so we frequent the Georgia Aquarium often and see the penguins there, but, the Tennessee aquarium was so intimate that we didn't feel rushed or anything.
  3. What a fabulous place to hang out. My son would love it.
  4. Every time I come to Tennessee... at least once a year, I always stop in Nashville or Memphis primarily. I will now have to add Chattanooga to the next stop for the aquarium.
  5. Your kids are so cute posing for the pictures. I'd definitely go to this Aquarium next time I go to Chattanooga! And I love your descriptions of everything.

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