A cynical person might say that aquariums are only for children and perhaps particular sorts of weirdos. In reality, however, there are only a few experiences that are as mind-boggling as paying a visit to a proper, gigantic aquarium.
Today, aquariums are our stars and we will be looking into the only best among them. The good news is that you will find them all over the United States, with some parts of the country being better-equipped, of course.
The biggest and the most spectacular aquarium in the United States is in Atlanta and it is called Georgia Aquarium. The sheer numbers are ridiculous, with the entire aquarium covering over 550,000 square feet and boasting more than 100,000 animals. However, the fact that it is the largest aquarium in the U.S. is not the only thing that sets it apart from other aquariums in the country. It is also a fantastic place for people to learn more about sea life and its role in the life of the planet. It is truly something you have to experience for yourself.
When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, one of its victims was the legendary Audubon Aquarium of the Americas. You will be happy to learn that it is back on its feet and that it is still one of the best aquariums in the country. Their Amazon exhibit is still one of the most unreal things you will experience in your life, with a greenhouse that perfectly mimics the South American jungle and its ecosystem. Think piranhas and anacondas. It also boasts a beautiful 400,000 gallon tank filled with sharks and a hurricane simulator!
In Houston, you will find one of the youngest aquariums on our list and also one of the most exciting. Its name is Downtown Aquarium and it is famed for its cylindrical tank, the biggest in the U.S., holding 110,000 gallons of water. The aquarium is the perfect backdrop for some of the finest gourmet food in the city and Texas in general. They really went out of their way to pack Downtown Aquarium full of content and they built a Ferris wheel and even a 65-foot drop ride. One thing is for sure – it is impossible to get bored in this aquarium.
New York City is home to the oldest continously opened aquarium in the U.S. – the New York Aquairum. It was first located in Castle Garden in Battery Park where it was housed between 1896 and 1957. In the late 50s, it moved to Coney Island, Brooklyn where it has stood ever since. Its primary mission is an educational one, raising awareness about the threats to the ocean and other aquatic ecosystems. With the new addition called Ocean Wonders: Sharks! being constructed right now, it is bound to become even better than it already is.
Ripley’s Aquarium of Myrtle Beach is not exactly the biggest aquarium in the country, but it has a few features that make it stand out, even when compared to some much bigger facilities. For one, it is one of the rare aquariums where you can touch a piece of the planet’s prehistory. Namely, at Ripley’s Aquarium, you can touch their most prized exhibit, the prehistoric horseshoe crab. The aquarium is also home to a number of poisonous frogs and other animals that you might not see in other aquariums.
We also had to include the Tennessee Aquarium which you can find in Chattanooga on our list. The main reason for this is their River Journey facility which is the stage for their Story of the River. This exhibition shows the birth of a river, from a single raindrop in the Appalachians to the ocean it meets in the Gulf of Mexico. It may not sound like much, but it truly does put things into perspective. Do not get us wrong, this is not the only reason to visit the Tennessee Aquarium as it features plenty more.
These are just some of the many absolutely incredible aquariums that this country should be proud of. All of this (plus many more) prove that American cities definitely know how to their aquariums.