We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Interesting” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Great Lakes Aquarium

Great Lakes Aquarium
353 Harbor Drive, I-35, exit 256B, Duluth, MN 55802
218 740 3474
Website
Improve this listing
Ranked #25 of 47 Attractions in Duluth
Type: Aquariums, Natural History Museums, Specialty Museums
More attraction details
Attraction Details
Owner description: The only aquarium in the U.S. that focuses on freshwater exhibits, this three-story waterfront structure is ready for public viewing after a year and a half and almost $34 million. Plenty of interactive exhibits and re-created habitats are fun and educational for children.
Cumberland, Wisconsin
Top Contributor
71 reviews 71 reviews
42 attraction reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Interesting”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 15, 2013

General admission is very pricy, but the group rates are very good. The upper level has a lot of information to read, so my son gets way ahead of me. They have a lot to look at and several hands-on exhibits. You can touch the stingray, and they have a play area of the locks of the great lakes which the kids really enjoy. We saw the otter program. I could watch the otters for hours, but I was sad to find the eagle was gone. There are also lovely views of the harbor. If you can gather 10 people, you have a group, but I would not go if I had to pay full admission.

Visited February 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

182 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    46
    58
    42
    29
    7
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Minnesota
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Too expensive”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2013

I've been to this "aquarium" 3 times- it is mediocre , at best.

Compared to (say) the TN Aquarium in Chattanooga, this place is (ugh) tiny and unimaginative.

Leave it up to Duluth to screw-up something that COULD have been a major tourist draw.

Unless your money is burning a hole in your pocket and you've got 35-40 minutes to blow- bypass!

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
EAU CLAIRE
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Nice but overpriced”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2013

Very nice aquarium for seeing Great Lakes fish and others but way overpriced. It was much smaller than expected. Our 6-yr-old daughter enjoyed the touch tanks and some of the hands-on activities for kids, including the wave machine. Unfortunately, many of the exhibits are informational, require a lot of reading, and are geared toward an older audience. These exhibits are well done and very interesting, but not going to be engaging to young children. We were lucky enough to be there for a sturgeon feeding in the touch tank - the museum staffer was very informative and gave a great presentation. And we even got to touch a small sturgeon, which was very cool since they have "armor" rather than the usual scales that most fish have. But my daughter was asking to leave after just one hour, so it did not feel worth the cost of getting in. For example, it costs $18 for an adult to get into the Minnesota Zoo which is huge and includes an aquarium plus many other animals, so $16.50 for this aquarium felt way overpriced. Plus, they charge $5 just to park the car, which really felt like a money-grab to us and added to an already-overpriced experience. I do not recommend this aquarium if you are on a budget, esp to families with young children.

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hugo, Minnesota
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“The freshwater fish experience”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 16, 2012

Excellent place to visit, especially on a cold winter day. Great view of the harbor and lift bridge. Spent a couple of hours experiencing the exhibits. Somewhat pricey, but our senior discount helped.

Visited December 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Nice display but high priced”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 14, 2012

This was a nice display but not quite up to what I had expected. The displays and creatures were nice but not as extensive as I had hoped. The glass waterwall although obviously expensive was dirty and not impressive. We completed touring the empty place in 25 minutes without skipping any part. We think that this is a good destination of bus loads of school kids but for senior citizens like me the concrete floors and lots of walking took their toll on my feet. Even at the Senior discount rate I thought it was very overpriced. I would not visit it again.

Visited December 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Been to Great Lakes Aquarium? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Great Lakes Aquarium, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.