North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island

North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island, Manteo: Hours, Address, North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island Reviews: 4.5/5

North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island

North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island
4.5
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
The North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island was originally founded in 1976 as the North Carolina Marine Resources Center, along with our sister facilities at Pine Knoll Shores and Fort Fisher. In 1986, the three facilities were renamed Aquariums, and we were joined by Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head in 2011. The state of North Carolina owns the Aquariums and Pier, which are administered by the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (NCDNCR). Located on the Outer Banks, three miles north of Manteo on Roanoke Island, the Aquarium is an educational attraction focused on “inspiring appreciation and conservation of our aquatic environments.” The Aquarium is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).
Suggested duration
2-3 hours
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.5
1,526 reviews
Excellent
851
Very good
491
Average
153
Poor
21
Terrible
11

LMegs
Irwin, PA23 contributions
Jul 2021 • Family
We decided to take a day and do some different things while on our vacation to the Outer Banks. The aquarium looked cool so we done down from Corolla.

Everything was open, but timed tickets were still required. It isn’t huge, maybe an hour (max) to check out everything. We spent more time because they were feeding the otters and we got to watch. The exhibits were all well kept and full of wildlife. The kids could touch the sea creatures in the touch tanks which was pretty cool.

The price was pretty reasonable - something like $12.50/person (may not be exact).

Overall it was nicer to do something different. Definitely a one time trip, but well worth it I thought.
Written August 22, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Jay A
Princeton Junction, NJ9 contributions
Jun 2021 • Family
Good experience a pretty good rate is only about $15 a person I am yeah you have to have time tickets and have a nice outside area we could have like a small picnic and yeah nice view of the bay. then the inside is set up nicely there is one section you could easily miss that is where they have the sea turtles. Don’t forget to hit up some of the shows the auditorium as soon as you come inside on the left they have some nice shows over there with the interactive with the kids
Written June 14, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

D Phillips
Sumter, SC24 contributions
Aug 2021
Very nice aquarium on Roanoke Island, we had to buy timed tickets online because of Covid but that also kept the number of people down, so it was more enjoyable to walk through without heavy crowds. Got to watch the alligators get fed, pet stingrays and see the sea turtle hospital. Fun for any age.
Written September 1, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

TheSouthernExplorer
Spring Lake, NC455 contributions
May 2022
The last time I reviewed this aquarium I gave it an average rating; nothing has changed since my last visit four years ago. The aquarium is seriously small and you'll make your way through it in an hour, which, when it costs a family of 3 close to $40 to visit, you expect just a little bit more. There are still no shows or interactive "meet the keepers" programs for the little ones. This would make the aquarium significantly better. There is a touch tank where visitors can touch rays which was really enjoyable for my 4 year old.

All in all the aquarium is okay, but the number of exhibits and the lack of educational programming makes this place significantly over priced, and underwhelming.
Written May 13, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Kelly F
Plymouth, MI48 contributions
Jun 2021 • Family
Went with my children on an afternoon in late June. We bought tickets in advance online for a specific time slot. I was shocked at how crowded it was. The exhibits felt overly crowded, making it difficult to see and take our time to read about what we were looking at. The sea turtle rehab exhibit was nice and we enjoyed talking to the employee about the turtles. Overall, it was a nice aquarium, but it was too crowded for our liking.
Written June 28, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Sheila O
1 contribution
Jul 2021 • Family
Very disappointed in the customer service side of this establishment. I was on vacation with my family in Virginia and thought it would be nice to spend the day with the kids at the aquarium. When we booked on line I did not realize that it was a 4 hour drive from where we were. I booked this on a Friday at about 6 pm for the next day , Saturday at 11am, the only way to come into this place is by appointment due to Covid as per their phone messaging . It did state they have a 24 hour cancellation policy, however I did not have 24 hours as the time frame was only 15 hours until the appointment. I did however leave them a message with in 2 hour of booking the reservation telling them of my mistake. When I called and explained my position I was told out right that it’s their policy regardless of circumstances . I even asked for a credit for a future visit and was told no. Wow!!! This is how they treat a family that had made a mistake. Also Covid restrictions are over, why do I need an appointment? It clearly said on their message due to Covid appointments are required. They took my $140. And never looked back. I really suggest you avoid this tourist trap at all costs!!!
Written July 19, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

April S
Hempstead, NY16 contributions
Aug 2021 • Family
This is not a huge aquarium by any means but it is still tons of fun. They have two touch tanks which were a huge hit with my kids. The day we went wasn’t very crowded at all, which was great. We could take our time and get a close up look at everything. The activity book we purchased made for an extra cool and fun learning experience. The grounds around the aquarium were nice to walk around and were part of the activity book. My aquarium loving kids enjoyed it very much. Took maybe an hour to do it all and for us worth every penny. I could see however that if it had be crowded it would have been overwhelming and less enjoyable.
Written August 23, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Superhero Family
Chesapeake, VA471 contributions
May 2020 • Family
Such an amazing aquarium! The exhibits are well taken care of. The staff are super friendly and very knowledgeable. They are especially patient with children as our son kept asking questions and they kept answering. This was well worth the visit
Written April 28, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Sarah S
Westminster, CO1,119 contributions
Mar 2019
This was a really informative and cool aquarium. It illustrated the region's underwater world, from mountain streams to the offshore marine realm. When we were there there were tons of school field trip groups but we could still see everything. First there are the standard tanks of lots of different specimens. There were otters, which my son loved. There was an exhibit in which you were given equipment, instruction, and a toy turtle to rehabilitate -- quite cool. There was the huge aquarium and when we were there there was a staff member giving a talk and two sharks engaged in some mating ritual the staff said he had never ever seen before so it was really special. There was a very nice big theater that showed a wide variety of videos and a very large gift shop.
Written February 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

lhs624PA
Philadelphia, PA45 contributions
Aug 2021 • Family
Quick visit in a super hot day. Spent about 90 minutes here. The turtle rescue area was our favorite even though there was only one turtle there. Timed tickets but still crowded and people ignored the signs to wear masks indoors. Guess the rules don’t apply to them. Not the fault of the aquarium though. I appreciate that they are trying to keep everyone healthy and safe. It was a good excursion but overall a small aquarium. I thought it was reasonably priced as well
Written August 13, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island

North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island is open:
  • Sun - Sat 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM

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