Review Detail

 
Adventure Aquarium
Places to Go
by Rochelle     August 16, 2016    
Overall rating 
 
3.5
Overall Quality 
 
4.0
Physical Accessibility 
 
3.0

A mixed review

Quality

I've seen this on a number of lists of best aquariums in the U.S., so I guess my expectations were unreasonably high - and I don't think it helps that the first part of the aquarium is the least impressive. It was so dark you couldn't read the labels or tell if there was any rhyme or reason to the ordering of the tanks, and so crowded it was a wait to see anything. But there were other parts of the aquarium I really enjoyed, including the touch tanks and the hippoquarium. To me, I think those were the features that elevated this over the average aquarium.

Accessibility

This was a very mixed bag accessibility-wise. The negatives included the parking (not enough accessible spaces and all of them pretty far from the aquarium, although there is a drop-off area that's closer) and the bathrooms (the one I visited only had one "accessible" stall that was barely wider than the neighboring stalls). On the other hand, the touch tanks in zone C are the most accessible I've seen, and my daughter got to touch (with assistance) two starfish, a sea apple and a sea cucumber. The tank at the end of the floor had both a relatively thin wall *and* a shelf that brought some of the animals within better reach. Corridors are wide and ramped where appropriate, and elevators are available in several places. I would strongly recommend *not* visiting in the middle of the day in mid-August, because the sheer crowds made it both very noisy and hard to push through to see some of the exhibits. I would also recommend buying tickets in advance on the website - the ticket office lines are outside, which could definitely be an issue for anyone with temperature regulation issues (or anyone who doesn't like standing in 90+ degrees F heat...).

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