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The Florida Aquarium

The Florida Aquarium is a large-scale, nonprofit aquatic life institution located in Tampa, Florida. As one of the most highly rated aquariums in the United States, it provides visitors with the opportunity to explore and learn about a diverse range of marine life and ecosystems, contributing to the conservation of the natural environment through research and rehabilitation efforts.


Opening its doors in March 1995, The Florida Aquarium was conceived as an educational, scientific, and conservation leader in the Tampa community. Since its inception, the aquarium has been dedicated to understanding and preserving marine life, as well as providing educational programs that inspire and teach visitors about the importance of biodiversity and conservation.


  • Size: The facility is over 250,000 square feet with exhibits housing marine life from Florida and around the world.
  • Animals: The aquarium is home to over 14,000 aquatic plants and animals from around 1,300 species.
  • Conservation: It actively participates in conservation initiatives and research projects, including coral propagation, animal rescue, and rehabilitation.
  • Accreditation: The Florida Aquarium is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).


The Florida Aquarium is located at 701 Channelside Drive, Tampa, FL 33602, in the heart of Tampa’s Channel District, close to downtown and the Port of Tampa.


The official website for The Florida Aquarium , which offers a wealth of information about exhibits, tickets, events, and conservation activities.

Opening Hours

The aquarium is typically open every day from 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM, but hours can vary due to special events or holidays. It is always a good idea to confirm the current hours of operation before planning a visit.

Things to Do

Exhibit Exploration

Visitors can explore a variety of exhibits, such as the Wetlands Trail, Bays & Beaches, Coral Reef, and Ocean Commotion, each showcasing different habitats and the species that live there.

Animal Encounters

The aquarium offers unique animal encounters where guests can interact with penguins, swim with fish in a coral reef exhibit, or even dive with sharks for certified scuba divers.

Behind-the-Scenes Tours

These tours give an inside look at animal care and the conservation work conducted by the aquarium.

Educational Programs

The Florida Aquarium provides a range of educational opportunities, from school field trips to camps and workshops, which promote marine conservation.

Events and Functions

The venue hosts various events including birthday parties, weddings, and corporate events in a unique aquatic setting.

Tips for Visiting

  • Purchase Tickets Online: Buying tickets ahead of time can save you from long lines and sometimes even offers a discount.
  • Check the Calendar: Look at the daily schedule for show times, feeding sessions, and special events.
  • Wear Comfortable Attire: The aquarium is mostly indoors with air conditioning, but comfortable shoes are recommended as there is a lot of walking involved.
  • Use the Aquarium App: The Florida Aquarium app can enhance your visit with exhibit information and navigation help.
  • Plan for Lunch: Dining options are available on-site, or you can find a variety of restaurants in the surrounding Channelside District.
  • Consider Membership: If you plan to visit more than once a year, a membership can provide great value with unlimited visits and other perks.


The Florida Aquarium is a treasure trove for those interested in the aquatic world, offering interactive experiences and insights into marine life that are both educational and entertaining. It is a place where visitors of all ages can immerse themselves in the wonders of water ecosystems while learning about the importance of conservation. As a leader in environmental education and stewardship, The Florida Aquarium remains a significant institution in Florida’s cultural landscape, making it an essential visit for anyone interested in the ocean’s mysteries and the life it sustains.

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