Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta: A Deep Dive Into Biggest in US


Are you tired of doing the same old family activities? Why not delve into the wonders of the Atlanta Georgia Aquarium? With an impressive collection of sea creatures spanning hundreds of species and more than 10 million gallons of water, this aquarium has the largest tank in USA, and a prime destination for those seeking both entertainment and education.

From the awe-inspiring whale sharks, to the playful otters and majestic beluga whales, the Georgia Aquarium offers an unparalleled opportunity to learn about a diverse range of animals and their habitats.

Best Things to Know Before You Go to Atlanta Aquarium

The aquarium is located on 22 acres (8.9 ha) of land in downtown Atlanta, next to Centennial Olympic Park. The facility includes 10 galleries, two restaurants, and a gift shop. The galleries include Tropical Diver, Ocean Voyager, Cold Water Quest, River Scout, Seaside Slumber, Butterfly Center, Georgia Explorer, Shark Alley, Ocean Voyager Built, and Coral Reef.

  1. Check the hours of operation for the day you plan to visit. The aquarium is open every day, but the hours vary depending on the season and special occasions, weekdays or weekends. In the Ocean Voyager Built section, you’ll find an incredible Viewing Windows that offer a glimpse into the watery world of the Two Whale Sharks. This exhibit is a permanent showcase at the aquarium.
  2. Purchase your tickets online in advance to avoid long lines at the ticketing counter. You can also purchase an Atlanta attractions combo ticket that includes general admission to the Aquarium and other attractions in the area, such as the Georgia Aquarium Whale Shark Encounter or the CNN Studio Tours. Don’t miss the chance to experience the Virtual Reality Simulator and the interactive Aquanaut Adventure zone for a truly discovery-filled experience.
  3. Review the list of prohibited items before you pack for your visit. Outside food and drinks, coolers, and large bags are not allowed inside the Aquarium. Also, be aware that due to infectious disease precautions, some interactive exhibits may have restrictions or be temporarily closed.
  4. Be prepared to walk! The Aquarium is large, and you will do a lot of walking to see all of the exhibits. comfortable shoes are a must.
  5. Use the Aquarium’s App for a convenient guide and to access information about the exhibits, including the Observation Windows for a closer look at marine life. The walk will take you through different zones, including a stroll along the Pier for a unique view of the aquatic environments.
  6. Don’t forget your camera! There are plenty of photo opportunities throughout the Aquarium, so make sure you have your camera ready to go. Don’t use the flash when taking pictures inside the aquarium.

Acrylic Tunnel in Atlanta Georgia AquariumAlvin J. Wilder

Top Facts About the Georgia Aquarium

  1. Nestled in the heart of downtown Atlanta, Georgia, lies the Western Hemisphere’s largest aquarium, the Georgia Aquarium. Boasting over 500 species of marine life and a massive 10 million gallons of water, this colossal aquarium is a true marvel of modern engineering and a hub for aquarium features like the Ocean Voyager built by the Home Depot, showcasing thousands of animals.
  2. Since its inception in 2005, the Georgia Aquarium has been a hotspot for marine enthusiasts and casual visitors alike. But, perhaps the most iconic exhibit of them all is the Ocean Voyager, a majestic display that features a staggering 100-foot-long tunnel, allowing visitors to journey through an underwater viewing area, surrounded by the most impressive marine creatures in the world, including the largest aquarium in the United States. The exhibit features awe-inspiring whale sharks, shark rays, predators of the deep, and other colossal ocean dwellers, sure to take your breath away. The Ocean Voyager’s remarkable dimensions include a length of 284 feet and a width of 126 feet, making it an architectural and aquatic spectacle.
  3. Speaking of whale sharks, did you know that the Georgia Aquarium is home to four of these gentle giants? These creatures are the largest fish species on the planet, and the Georgia Aquarium’s whale sharks range in size from 18 to 22 feet long and weigh between 3,000 and 5,000 pounds each!
  4. But the Georgia Aquarium is not only home to whale sharks. You can also see marine animals such as beluga whales, sea otters, and dolphins on the Dolphin Coast. Here, visitors can dive into the experience and see these incredible animals up close.
  5. The aquarium offers behind-the-scenes tours that allow you to witness the inner workings of this massive aquatic wonderland. You can also get up close and personal with some of the marine creatures during animal encounters or even spend the night at the aquarium during one of their sleepover programs.

Sleeover: Sleep Under the Sea

Sleep Under the Sea, presented by the Georgia Aquarium, offers visitors an extraordinary opportunity to spend a night amidst the spectacular aquatic fauna on display in one of the aquarium’s galleries.

The highlight of this adventure is the chance to sleep next to a mesmerizing sea lion exhibit, where the playful nature of these marine animals adds an unforgettable element to the experience.

The experience includes a range of activities, including a guided tour of the aquarium, an immersive 4D movie experience, and numerous interactive animal encounters. In addition, they have the chance to enjoy their dreams alongside one of the aquarium’s many exhibits, such as the Ocean Voyager gallery, which proudly showcases the world’s largest indoor aquatic habitat.

This gallery not only features a diverse range of marine life but is also home to an ‘Infectious’ display of bioluminescent organisms, providing a magical backdrop for an overnight stay.

The Sleep Under the Sea adventure provides a wonderful combination of tranquility and adventure, a chance to learn about oneself and enjoy the breathtaking beauty of the underwater world up close and personal.

Here, in this cage-less environment, guests can safely observe predators of the deep, learning about these fascinating creatures in a way that’s both educational and accidentally thrilling. The discovery of the delicate balance in marine ecosystems becomes a central theme, offering insights into the importance of conservation in North America and beyond.

How long does it take to see Georgia Aquarium?

With so much to see, it can be hard to know how much time to budget for your visit. Here is a quick guide to help you plan your trip:

Acuario de GeorgiaTimothy LaBranche

Start your visit with a bang by seeing the Aquarium’s most popular residents – the whale sharks. Then, walk through the galleries at a leisurely pace, taking time for each one. Give yourself enough time to learn about the animals throughout the tour.

If you have 2-4 hours: In addition to seeing the whale sharks, make sure to catch one of the shows at the AT&T Dolphin Celebration or Georgia-Pacific Cold Water Quest.

These are both must-see attractions that will give you a deeper understanding and appreciation for the amazing creatures at the Aquarium. You will also have plenty of time to explore all of the other galleries at your own pace.

If you have 4+ hours: In addition to whale sharks and shows, take a behind-the-scenes tour to see up close how the Aquarium cares for its animals like African penguins or sand tiger sharks.

You can also visit the Ocean Voyager, home to the largest fish in the world, the whale shark. And this is how much time do you need for the Georgia Aquarium.

Is Georgia Aquarium the largest aquarium in the world?

The Georgia Aquarium opened in 2005 and was the world’s largest aquarium until 2012. Then the S.E.A. Aquarium in Singapore and Chimelong Ocean Kingdom in China opened and Georgia Aquarium became the 3rd largest aquarium in the world. But it still holds the title of North America’s largest aquarium.

How Much Does it Cost to Go to Georgia Aquarium?

As of my knowledge cutoff, the general admission ticket price for adults was $39.95, while the ticket price for children aged 3-12 was $33.95. Prices are of course always subject to change, so it is worth checking the official website for the most up-to-date price information before making your travel plans.

There is a way to save on admission costs. One way is to become a member of the aquarium. Members get free unlimited admission for one year, discounts on guest tickets, parking, and more.

Georgia Aquarium Military Discount

As a token of appreciation for their service, the aquarium offers free admission to all current and former members of the United States Armed Forces, which is an incredible gesture. Moreover, accompanying family members receive a discount of 30%, making it a more affordable and enjoyable outing for everyone.

In addition, military personnel and their families receive free admission to the aquarium on Armed Forces Day, Memorial Day, Veterans Day, Parade Day, and Armed Forces Day throughout the year.

Is Georgia Aquarium free on your birthday?

Get ready to make a splash on your birthday because, guess what? The Georgia Aquarium is absolutely free for you! That’s right, free admission to one of the world’s most magnificent aquariums on your special day!

You must show a valid ID with your birth date on it in order to get in for free. You can only get in for free on the day of your actual birthday, not before or after. See the web site for details.

Georgia Aquarium AtlantaDevlik Photography

Can I get a refund on my Georgia Aquarium tickets?

It’s always frustrating when you can’t attend an event or use a ticket you’ve already paid for. The Georgia Aquarium has a strict no-refund policy for tickets, including unused tickets and lost or stolen tickets.

However, they do offer the option to reschedule your visit for a different date, subject to availability. So, if something comes up, don’t worry, you can still enjoy the amazing sights and sounds of the aquarium on a different day.

Best time to visit Georgia Aquarium?

The aquarium is a popular attraction that can be packed with visitors throughout the year, especially on weekends and holidays. To avoid crowds, it’s best to visit on a weekday or during non-peak hours.

Furthermore, visiting during the off-season or shoulder season, such as late fall or early spring, may also help avoid crowds. It’s also worth checking the Georgia Aquarium website for any upcoming special events or promotions that may impact visitor traffic.

4D Theater in Aquarium

The 4D Theater at the Georgia Aquarium is a veritable cornucopia of awe-inspiring, mind-bending cinematic experiences that are sure to tantalize your senses and leave you gasping for more.

A must-see attraction for visitors seeking an unparalleled voyage into the unknown, the 4D Theater is a veritable smorgasbord of immersive movie-watching experiences that will transport you to another dimension, filled with 3D films that have been expertly enhanced by an array of special effects that include seat movements, wind gusts, and even sprays of refreshing water.

At the 4D Theater, the possibilities are endless, as the theater screens a mesmerizing variety of educational and entertaining films that all share a common marine or nature theme.


Whether you’re seeking an underwater adventure that will plunge you into the depths of the ocean, or an animal encounter that will take you on a wild safari through the savannas of Africa, the 4D Theater offers an unforgettable experience that will leave you reeling with wonder and amazement.

The fact that showtimes are variable is a reality that visitors have to accept. Those who go to the cinema expecting to see a movie at a certain time may be faced with the reality that the screening may be changed or, worse, canceled. Therefore, those who want to participate in the 4D cinema experience need to take proactive measures to ensure their entry.

How long is the 4d show at Georgia Aquarium?

The duration of the 4D event at the Georgia Aquarium varies depending on the movie being shown. In general, the duration of these moving images is approximately 15-20 minutes.

However, it is highly recommended that you review the day’s schedule or consult with qualified staff regarding the exact running time of the specific motion picture you intend to attend.

Advantage of Atlanta CityPass in Atlanta Aquarium

If you plan to visit the Georgia State Aquarium in Atlanta, I recommend that you take advantage of the perfect card CityPass. With this card you’ll have access one of the world’s largest aquarium as well as five other great attractions in the city.

That’s a savings of over 50% on some of Atlanta’s most popular tourist destinations. Other top attractions around Atlanta World Aquarium with CityPass are World of Coca-Cola, CNN Studio Tours, Zoo Atlanta or Center for Civil and Human Rights, Fernbank Museum of Natural History or College Football Hall of Fame.

Aquarium Atlanta Whale Shark - Snorkel with whale sharks in Georgia AquariumJulian David Escobar

Tips for Avoiding Crowds

The Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta is a popular destination and can get crowded, especially during peak visitation times. I can suggest a few things to avoid the crowds and enjoy your visit hassle-free:

  1. Purchase tickets in advance: In order to mitigate the potential for prolonged wait times and interminable queues, it is recommended that you take into consideration the advantageous option of procuring your tickets beforehand. This can be conveniently accomplished by utilizing the internet to purchase tickets prior to your intended date of attendance. By doing so, you will effectively bypass the tediousness and time constraints associated with queuing in the ticketing line, and gain direct access to the entrance.
  2. Take advantage of member hours: If you happen to be a Georgia Aquarium member, consider taking advantage of the exclusive member hours that are generally provided during off-peak periods, such as early mornings or late evenings, beyond the standard operating hours. By making use of these exclusive hours, you’ll be able to bask in the delightful aquatic wonders in a tranquil and unhurried atmosphere, without worrying about the typical hustle and bustle of the busy daytime crowd.
  3. Visit during off-peak hours: To experience the aquarium without the hassle of navigating through crowds, consider visiting during off-peak hours. Early mornings and late afternoons are typically less busy and provide a more serene atmosphere to explore the aquarium’s wonders. By avoiding peak times, you’ll have more opportunities to observe the marine life in a less congested and more relaxed setting
  4. Plan your visit strategically: To avoid crowds at the aquarium’s most popular exhibits, such as the Ocean Voyager exhibit, plan your visit strategically. Consider visiting these exhibits first thing in the morning or late in the afternoon when crowds are typically smaller.
  5. Skip the weekends and holidays: Weekends and holidays are the busiest times at the aquarium, so if possible, plan your visit for a weekday or non-holiday.
  6. Explore other areas of the aquarium: While the most popular exhibits can get crowded, other areas of the aquarium may be less busy. Take some time to explore other exhibits and attractions to avoid crowds and discover new areas of the aquarium.

With these tips in mind, you can overcome the queue problem and have a more enjoyable time at the Georgia Aquarium.

Food and Drink

The Aquarium, an immersive marine wonderland, boasts a plethora of eating and drinking establishments, providing a smorgasbord of sustenance to visitors of all appetites.

From quick-service cafes to full-service restaurants, The Aquarium has got you covered, ensuring that your gastronomic needs are met while you peruse the breathtaking underwater exhibits.

  • Cafe Aquaria: Behold Cafe Aquaria, a fast and efficient eatery located on the second floor of The Aquarium. This bustling hub of culinary activity serves an array of delectable delights such as sandwiches, salads, soups, and snacks that are sure to tantalize your taste buds. But that’s not all – this cafe also offers a stunning view of the aquarium’s magnificent beluga whales, making it the perfect spot to relax and refuel after a long day of sightseeing.
  • Cold Stone Creamery: For those with a sweet tooth, look no further than Cold Stone Creamery, a premium ice cream parlor situated on the second floor of The Aquarium. With a wide selection of flavors and mix-ins to choose from, as well as milkshakes, smoothies, and other frozen treats, you’re sure to find something to satisfy your cravings.
  • Deepo’s Undersea 3D Wondershow Snack Bar: Are you in the mood for a snack while watching a movie at the 4D theater? Deepo’s Undersea 3D Wondershow Snack Bar has got you covered. Located on the second floor, this snack bar offers classic movie theater treats such as popcorn and candy, as well as soft drinks and bottled water to quench your thirst.
  • Oceans Ballroom Cafe: For a heartier dining experience, head to Oceans Ballroom Cafe, a full-service restaurant located on the first floor of the Aquarium. This restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as a Sunday brunch buffet that is sure to leave you satisfied. The menu offers a variety of American dishes with a special emphasis on local and sustainably sourced seafood.
  • Wolfgang Puck Express: Wolfgang Puck Express is a quick-service restaurant located on the second floor of the aquarium, near the AT&T Dolphin Tales exhibit. The restaurant serves pizzas, sandwiches, salads, and other light fare, as well as beverages and desserts.

The Aquarium has a wide range of dining options for all tastes and budgets. Whether you are looking for a quick bite to eat or a sit-down meal, the Aquarium caters to your every need, offering a gastronomic experience that will leave you feeling satisfied and energized.

How to Get to the Atlanta Aquarium?

The metropolis of Atlanta, Georgia is home to the famous Atlanta Aquarium. Depending on your location and preferred mode of transportation, there are various ways to get to the Georgia Aquarium. Whether you’re a local or a tourist, here’s the inside scoop on how to get to this aquatic wonderland.

  • Driving: Driving, if one has access to an automobile, presents a convenient option. The aquarium is situated in downtown Atlanta, precisely at the crossroads of Baker Street and Luckie Street. To arrive at this destination from the north or south, the recommended course of action would be to traverse either I-75 or I-85 until one reaches the Williams Street exit, then carefully follow the signs that will lead them to the aquarium. Conversely, those approaching from the east or west would benefit from taking I-20 to the Spring Street exit, and again following the signage provided to access the aquarium.
  • MARTA Rail: Alternatively, the MARTA rail system presents itself as a reliable mode of transportation that provides service throughout the Atlanta area. The system has several stations situated in close proximity to the Georgia Aquarium. Of these stations, the Peachtree Center station is the nearest to the aquarium, and it is served by the Red and Gold lines. Following one’s disembarkation at this station, one need only take a short stroll to arrive at the aquarium’s doorstep.
  • MARTA Bus: MARTA also operates a series of bus routes that cater to the downtown Atlanta area, with several of these routes stopping conveniently close to the Georgia Aquarium.
  • Atlanta Streetcar: The Atlanta Streetcar is a relatively novel means of transport that provides service between the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site and the Centennial Olympic Park area. Several stops on this line are located near the Georgia Aquarium, and the streetcar operates on a fixed schedule, making it an ideal option for those who prefer a more structured means of transportation.
  • Taxi or Ride-Sharing Service: Taxis and ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft are available throughout Atlanta and are an excellent option for those who desire quick and easy transportation to the Georgia Aquarium. One need only request a ride to the aquarium’s address: 225 Baker Street NW, Atlanta, GA 30313.
  • Walking or Biking: If one happens to find themselves lodged in the midst of downtown Atlanta, then walking or biking their way to the illustrious Georgia Aquarium may very well prove to be an alluring option. This exquisite aquatic exhibition is situated in close proximity to a plethora of highly sought-after hotels and attractions, and traversing through the area can be accomplished with ease, given the numerous bike lanes and pedestrian walkways that are scattered throughout this vibrant locale.

It is important to plan your transportation ahead of time to ensure a hassle-free visit. Consider factors such as traffic, parking availability, and public transportation schedules when making your plans.


When planning your visit to the Georgia Aquarium, it is important to factor in parking options and costs. Consider purchasing parking in advance or arriving early to secure a parking spot, especially during peak visitation times.

Additionally, be sure to check the aquarium’s website or call ahead for updated parking information and rates. Here are some suggestions to give you some ideas.

  • Georgia Aquarium Parking Deck: The Georgia Aquarium’s parking deck is located at the aquarium and offers convenient parking for visitors. The deck is accessible from Luckie Street and Ivan Allen Jr. Boulevard. Parking rates vary depending on the day and time of your visit.
  • World of Coca-Cola Parking Deck: Located across the street from the Georgia Aquarium, behold the World of Coca-Cola parking deck, a stellar additional parking option for visitors. This parking lot is accessible from both Baker Street and Ivan Allen Jr. Boulevard. Fear not, parking fees are similar to those at the Georgia Aquarium parking lot.
  • Centennial Olympic Park Parking: Located adjacent to the Georgia Aquarium, Centennial Olympic Park offers visitors a multitude of public parking options; a surface parking lot and a parking deck are just a few of them. However, prices may vary depending on the day and time of your visit.
  • Philips Arena Parking: Rising proudly across from the Georgia Aquarium, Philips Arena offers visitors a variety of parking options, including a bewildering maze of parking lots. Accessible from both Centennial Olympic Park Drive and Andrew Young International Boulevard, the Arena’s parking fees vary depending on the event schedule.
  • World Congress Center Parking: A short walk from the Georgia Aquarium lies the Georgia World Congress Center, presenting visitors with several public parking options. With accessibility from Ivan Allen Jr. Boulevard and Northside Drive, rates vary depending on the day and time of your visit.
  • Street Parking: In the area surrounding the Georgia Aquarium, several metered street parking spaces can be found. However, they may vary depending on the day and time of your visit. Parking meters usually accept coins, credit cards and mobile payments.


Is the Georgia Aquarium open on July 4th?

July 4th is Independence Day in the United States. And the aquarium is open on that date. In fact, it’s open 365 days a year.

How long is the dolphin show at Georgia Aquarium?

The dolphin show at Georgia Aquarium is a must-see. The show lasts 15 minutes, and it is an educational and fun experience for the whole family.

During the show, you will learn all about dolphins, their habitat, diet, and more. You will also get to see the dolphins up close as they perform tricks and swim around. Participants are then allocated 8 minutes of interaction time.



The Georgia Aquarium stands as a prodigious locale for those who hold a keen admiration for the subaqueous biosphere and yearn for a deeper understanding of it.

With an extensive spectrum of exhibitions, encompassing the grandiose Ocean Voyager that boasts the presence of majestic whale sharks and manta rays, in addition to the beguiling Beluga Whales and the awe-inspiring Dolphin Celebration show, this aquatic sanctuary provides a singular and indelible encounter for all its patrons, no matter their age.