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“Is the only issue the cost?” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Great Lakes Aquarium

Great Lakes Aquarium
353 Harbor Drive, I-35, exit 256B, Duluth, MN 55802
218 740 3474
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Ranked #24 of 47 attractions in Duluth
Type: Aquariums, Natural History Museums, Specialty Museums
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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.
Top Contributor
1,067 reviews 1,067 reviews
749 attraction reviews
Reviews in 298 cities Reviews in 298 cities
748 helpful votes 748 helpful votes
“Is the only issue the cost?”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 7, 2013

We are seniors and spend more than the admission price on a bad lunch at times, so no big deal. I do think there should be a family rate that caps the cost because young families are not going to spend 60+ dollars for this Aquarium. We went late in the day because we wanted to see the Aerial Bridge by night as well as the Canal Park area. The exhibits are kid friendly and children will enjoy the touch and feel parts. Adults will not be as excited about the place. It needs an infusion of financial support from some good fund raising so the costs can be lowered. They are high because the place can't make it on its own. Too bad I do not see a bright future for this Aquarium.
The Canal Park is free and has more to appeal to families...go at night it is beautiful.

Visited August 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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168 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Erie, Pennsylvania
Top Contributor
146 reviews 146 reviews
45 attraction reviews
Reviews in 44 cities Reviews in 44 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
“Nice visit...good information”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2013

A lot of interesting information regarding the Great Lakes, wildlife and environmental issues. Pleasantly surprised at the gift shop prices. More than reasonable for some nice merchandise. Suggest stopping by

Visited July 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jacksonville, Florida
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
17 attraction reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Very Informative”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2013

This aquarium crosses a children's museum with a traditional exhibit heavy aquarium. Our kids (2-1/2 to 9 years) all enjoyed it and so did the adults. Obviously, there is something for everyone.

All of us enjoyed the Great Lakes lock system where you can open and close the locks and let toy boats through.

I liked the complete fresh water fish displays. One does not see muskies often.

Visited August 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sioux Falls, South Dakota
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128 reviews 128 reviews
63 attraction reviews
Reviews in 60 cities Reviews in 60 cities
119 helpful votes 119 helpful votes
“Kids Had Fun”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2013

The kids really enjoyed some of the hands-on things such as the wave machine and interactive model of the Great Lakes. This was a great way to teach kids how boats move through locks. We all had fun with the camouflage screen. I haven't laughed so hard in ages. The lower level definitely had more interesting varieties of sea creatures. The kids were entertained by the busy ducks on the upper level.

The is a very personal opinion, but as someone who does not believe in evolution, I really disliked the evolution-based information presented on the panels at the beginning of the second floor exhibits. Because the is where you start your tour, my immediate impression of the museum was negative. I realize the banner on the outside of the museum hinted that this type of information would be presented and I chose to go in anyway. I also realize other museums display similar information. It was just a large amount right off the bat.

As others have said, the admission fee is high. Other than Spirit Mountain, this was the most expensive attraction we visited in Duluth.

Tip: To save money on parking, if the convention center lot is not full for a convention, you can pay to park there and see three attractions: Vista Cruise, William Irving Ore Boat and the aquarium. The lot is large enough that it is possible to move your car to various sections of the lot close to each attraction as opposed to using separate lots for each attraction and having to pay three different parking fees.

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jackson, Michigan
Top Contributor
356 reviews 356 reviews
102 attraction reviews
Reviews in 117 cities Reviews in 117 cities
101 helpful votes 101 helpful votes
“VERY expensive in my book”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2013

We only went because it was raining. First they hit you for $5 to park and then $13.50 pp senior! There is a $1 coupon in the tourist coupon book. (I got mine at the Thompson Hill info center but others may have them) Fishermen and kids will enjoy it the most. There is one big, 2 or 3 story (can't remember) tank with all kinds of native fish. The only thing impressive is the size of some of them but pretty, they aren't. My husband did enjoy it more than me but he even said it was not worth the money.

Visited July 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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