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Guide to the Tennessee Aquarium

Looking to spend some time in downtown Chattanooga? Explore the various aquatic ecosystems with a trip to the top-rated Tennessee Aquarium. Housed in two separate buildings, the Tennessee Aquarium showcases a wide array of fish life as part of its From the Mountains to the Sea exhibit, which is broken into River Journey and Ocean Journey sections.

This Chattanooga aquarium is also home to an IMAX theater that airs a variety of nature documentaries. So, if you're wanting to learn more about the local fish life, then the Tennessee Aquarium is an excellent place to spend the day in downtown Chattanooga.

Main Attractions

The Tennessee Aquarium features an overarching exhibit called From the Mountains to the Sea. Visitors can explore fishlife in two sections. The first is called River Journey which features animals and fish from the most exotic rivers to the local Appalachian Cove Forest and Tennessee River. The second section is called Ocean Journey and features a good mix of fish and animals from a variety of ocean ecosystems, including some penguins.

IMAX Theater
The Tennessee Aquarium IMAX Theater, 201 Chestnut St., sits a short walk from the main buildings. Tickets cost $8. There are several nature documentaries that air in 3D as well as other movies such as Marvel Studios' Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. The Tennessee Aquarium IMAX Theater utilizes the IMAX with Laser projection system for an improved viewing experience. 

General Information

Ticket Prices and Hours
Tennessee Aquarium is on a timed-entry schedule, meaning tickets are required. The Tennessee Aquarium hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets are sold in 30-minute blocks but once inside, guests can enjoy the Tennessee Aquarium at their own pace. It does take about two to three hours to go through. Ticket prices are:
  • Adult: $34.95

The Tennessee Aquarium is in Downtown Chattanooga's Riverfront area. There are several nearby paid parking lots, requiring minimal walks to either the aquarium or IMAX Theater. The Riverfront Parking Lots costs $1 to $6 depending on how long you stay. There is also the CARTA North Garage at 211 Broad St. that costs $2 to $8. There's also a free shuttle that runs through downtown Chattanooga and stops a short walk from the Tennessee Aquarium.

From Riverside Bed and Breakfast:
  • Take Hixson Pike (SR-319) west to U.S. Highway 27
  • Follow U.S. 27 South for about 19 miles to Exit 1C for 4th Street
  • Turn left on 4th Street and take it to Chestnut Street
  • Turn left on Chestnut Street and follow to Tennessee Aquarium (One Broad St. Chattanooga, TN)

Google Reviews

"The Tennessee Aquarium was a nice experience. They have a lovely collection of animals in two separate large buildings. The path is pretty linear, so that you are never confused if you have seen something before. My favorite animal was the beautiful black with yellow spots sea pancake (sting ray)." Christian Lee

"We had such a wonderful experience. There was so much effort & love poured into this aquarium compared to other ones we've been to previously. Seeing the number of gators they had filled my heart with joy. Highly recommend if you're considering visiting." Rexaura

"Amazing Aquarium. Two huge buildings. One ocean. One fresh water. Fantastic tanks. Turtles, penguins, alligator, rain forest, too many fish to mention. Lots of water activities to do outside." Joe Schwartz

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