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“night out at the aquarium” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of National Aquarium, Baltimore

National Aquarium, Baltimore
Ranked #4 of 224 things to do in Baltimore
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Considered one of the world's best aquariums, the National Aquarium's mission is to inspire conservation of the world's aquatic treasures. It champions environmental initiatives by engaging with visitors, volunteers, education groups and schools to actively participate in the preservation of the world's natural resources and living systems. The National Aquarium delivers meaningful experiences through its living collection of more than 17,000 animals from more than 750 species of fish, birds, amphibians, reptiles, marine mammals and sharks, as well as through exclusive behind-the-scenes experiences like sleepovers and tours, science-based education programs and hands-on experiences in the field.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Silver Spring, Maryland
1 review
“night out at the aquarium”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 21, 2014

We had a blast!
the kids (ages 6 months-12 years) watched both imax films. we got to see the dolphins and had a wonderful time. it was not crowded whuich made it more enjoyable for us too. let us know when the next members night out will be and we'll be there!!!

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
Thank debra w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Fairfax, Virginia
2 reviews
“Expensive and busy, but still a fun time”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 21, 2014

We had a great time at the aquarium, but next time we will not go on a Saturday afternoon, the place was packed! It was practically impossible for my 3yo to see some of the exhibits bc we were packed in like sardines. Eventually my husband hiked the little one onto his shoulders so he could see better. All of the staff were friendly. I would highly recommend advance purchase of tickets online. The line to purchase tickets on site is outside and it was about 20 degrees the day we were there. I felt so bad for all those poor people waiting in line! If you buy online, all you have to do is swipe your credit card at a booth and walk right in.

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
Thank MamaBex2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Midlothian, Virginia
Level Contributor
110 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 497 helpful votes
“Totally Cool”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 21, 2014

Recently my wife and I traveled to Baltimore for a weekend getaway and while there we visited several attractions in and around the Inner Harbor. One in particular that we found educational and fun was the Baltimore National Aquarium.

We decided to purchase our tickets on-site (would recommend purchasing on-line and picking up on site) and after a 30 minute wait in line, we had our tickets in hand. We had to wait another 30 minutes to actually enter the aquarium as entrance is based on the size of the line and 15 minute entrance intervals.

Once inside we were not disappointed. The self guided tour on the first level included a gallery that traces the water cycle from a freshwater pond in the mountains of Western Maryland through the tidal marsh into the coastal beach. We then looked at a life size model of a Humpback whale, coral reefs populated by sharks, stingrays, turtles and countless other sea and land creatures.

The exhibits were very cool and we definitely enjoyed the Blacktip Reef as it amazingly replicates a slice of Pacific reefs with the variety of life, colors, and visual beauty. The attention to detail was truly amazing. We thoroughly enjoyed our visit and would highly recommend the venue as a consideration for anyone visiting Baltimore.

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
Thank K A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Camp Hill, Pennsylvania
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“So many people we had to skip most of the exhibits”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 21, 2014

It cost a small fortune to get in the place and once we got there we were unable to see most of it. We were under the impression that only so many people could get in at a time and if we did not purchase our timed ticket we could have to wait outside until it was safe to go in. We were shoulder to shoulder with people couldn't see anything! We were told no strollers were allowed so we bought a carrier to carry our 9 month old son and people kept smashing into him. IT WAS AWEFUL! The worst part is, I paid over a hundred dollars to get 4 people and an infant into this place drove over an hour and a half to get there as a birthday gift for my son and we ended up sweaty, sore, broke, and disappointed! It was too crowded to take pictures or even carry a camera. The food we purchased to get away from the crowds was expensive and gross! The dolphin show was the only enjoyable part of our visit!

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
3 Thank Jeanne P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kate H, Public Relations Manager at National Aquarium, Baltimore, responded to this review, January 22, 2014
Hi Jeanne, I am so incredibly sorry to hear about your experience visiting for your son's birthday! We are so thrilled when families choose to visit us, especially for special occasions - especially from a distance! This is the opposite of the experience we strive to provide (minus the fun you had in Dolphin Discovery).

Our teams work closely together to make sure our timed entry system is running smoothly and there are not too many people in the building at any given time, but it sounds like, when you visited, this was not apparent. We also have rules such as our no-stroller policy in place for crowding and safety reasons. I'd love to find out what time/day you visited so we can look into the numbers in our system to better understand. You can reach out to me specifically at social@aqua.org any time.

We understand that our tickets are high and it is an investment to visit with us, but we hope that you understand it is just that - an investment. Every dollar that comes to the Aquarium goes directly to our mission of inspiring conservation of the world's aquatic treasures and our conservation/education programs to help make the world a better place (not to mention feeding our 17,000+ animals).

Thank you for your feedback. Again, I am very sorry to hear about your experience. I'd love to talk to you further about it so it can help us learn and provide a better experience for you and other families moving forward.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Level Contributor
81 reviews
35 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“jellyfish exhibit was very cool”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 20, 2014

Overall, the aquarium isn't very big compared to some others, but the quality of the jellyfish exhibit made is very worthwhile to visit. It had some good rays and sharks and colorful fish, and some cool star/sun fish that we hadn't seen before. Tip: we got VIP passes through the four seasons which allowed us to get there any time we wanted. It seems like a better way to do it than choosing a certain time to arrive. We could be more flexible because of that.

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
Thank Maria R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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