The Florida Aquarium – Afternoon for Kids

One of the fun things about Tampa is that everything is so close to one another you can easily fit several fun activities for kids in one day without overtiring them or driving them around too much.

A good, easy day with kids would be to start at the Glazer Children’s Museum. Have lunch either at Ulele Restaurant or Columbia Restaurant (two of the most iconic restaurants in Tampa). And top off the day by visiting The Florida Aquarium.

the florida aquarium

Photo Tour of The Florida Aquarium

The aquarium is just the right size. I know that sounds odd, but it seems to pack in a lot for the size that it is. And, judging by the way my kids are at aquariums, after one hour or so they start to get restless. In this case, you can see the majority of the place by then and even get a quick show and feeding in as well.

What I loved most about this place was they have a full outdoors park. After visiting the actual aquarium, your kids can go nuts on the playgrounds of all sizes.

The Florida Aquarium - outdoor playground

Petting Areas

The Horseshoe Crab – the oldest living creature on our planet. Over 450 million years old.

tampa aquarium - horseshoe crabs

Nemo’s home – Anemone

the florida aquarium - petting zoo

A Bit Different

Lemurs – yes, that’s right lemurs. Totally out of place, but so cute you overlook that you’re at an aquarium and not a zoo

the florida aquarium - lemurs

Environmental Programs

Florida’s reef, as in the rest of the world, is dying fast. The aquarium has a great Coral Farm program going on.

the florida aquarium - coral farm program

The Tank

Every aquarium has a huge tank for the big fish. This one is no different

the florida aquarium - shark in large tank

Catch a Show

This was one of the most unique show’s I’d attended at an aquarium. The divers were pointing to different fish and talking to us from under the water. They even heard all the kid’s questions.

the florida aquarium - divers show

Video Fun

Information for Visiting The Florida Aquarium in Tampa

Address: 701 Channelside Drive, Tampa, FL 33602

Phone: (813) 273-4000

Hours 9:30am to 5pm

Prices

Adults $23.95

Seniors (60+) $20.95

Children (ages 3-11) $18.95

Children 2 & Under Free

Exhibits

  • Wetlands Trail – A journey through swamps where you will see and learn about alligators, otters, two 14-foot Burmese Pythons.
  • Journey to Madagascar – This exhibits has Lemurs and Hissing Cockroaches colorful chameleons and much more
  • Bays and Beaches – More than 20,000 aquatic plants and animals both native to Florida and from the shores around the world.
  • Coral Reef – The gallery simulates a 60-foot dive starting in shallow-water reefs and descending to deeper waters. Each viewing window presents a micro habitat which changes as the depth increases.
  • Ocean Commotion – This is their newest gallery. It gives you a close encounter with some of the most amazing animals found in our oceans.

Shows and Schedule

  • 10:00 – River Tales: Animal Talk
  • 10:30 – Live Animal Presentation
  • 11:00 – Predators Of The Reef
  • 12:00 – Fish School – Safety In Numbers
  • 1:30 – River Tales: Animal Talk
  • 2:00 – Live Animal Presentation
  • 2:45 – Penguin Promenade
  • 3:15 – Predators Of The Reef
  • 4:15 – Fish School – Safety In Numbers

Programs

  • Dive with the Sharks – Certified SCUBA divers, age 15 and older, get to come face-to-face with live sharks by diving into the Aquarium’s Coral Reef Exhibit.
  • Shark Swim – Swim amongst 1600 fish including sting rays, barracudas, sea turtles and Sharks. You don’t need to be a certified SCUBA diver for this one.
  • Swim with the Fishes – It is an in-water reef experience, gives guests 6 and older an adventure on a replica of one of the Florida Keys.
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About Marina Kuperman Villatoro

Marina Kuperman Villatoro CEO of TravelExperta.com, a travel resource site to inspire families to travel with kids of all ages. Marina has been an expat 10+ years in Central America raising 2 boys in a multicultural, trilingual household. She travels all over the world with her family to give first hand experiences of where to eat, stay and play with kids. Needless to say, it’s never boring! Join Marina on Facebook and Twitter for more unique and boutique family travel!

2 Responses to The Florida Aquarium – Afternoon for Kids

  1. Great read. Reminds me of the one in Valencia.
    Laura @Travelocafe recently posted..Easter in SpainMy Profile

  2. Lori says:

    Oh, I love aquariums! It looks like you had a lot of fun!
    Lori recently posted..Travelling and the survival and pocket knives #infographicMy Profile

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