Last month the girls and I headed North to Atlanta to visit my Mom for Mother’s Day. My uncle rode along for a quick whirlwind trip -up on Friday, home on Sunday- with Saturday being spent at the Georgia Aquarium. Let me tell you, it was worth every moment.
We arrived pretty early Saturday morning, knowing we were going to spend a full day enjoying all of the sights of the Georgia Aquarium (and in hopes of beating the crowds… note: it worked!) There are several different ticket options in all different price ranges. Since the girls (and I) are a bit fanatical about the Dolphins, we knew we wanted to see Dolphin Tales, the theatrical show with dolphins, actors, and a killer light show.
You can not even get into this place before it takes your breath away. I could have just stood in the doorway for hours.
I promise the pictures get better… it was dark in here… but ummm… this alone makes me want to march right back up to BestBuy for that Canon DSLR… just sayin….
The Georgia Aquarium is divided into different exhibits- Coldwater Quest, Ocean Voyager, Tropical Diver, River Scout, and Georgia Explorer. The first thing to grab The Toddler’s attention was a huge Shark and Sting Ray tank where you can reach in and “pet” them as they swim by. Thankfully, SOMEONE had to take pictures, so I was able to just sit back and watch this part of the journey.
Inside there was another “touch” tank full of huge shrimp and horseshoe crabs…
I can honestly say I have not been that close to a shrimp that size that did not end up on a fork … well, ever. I did find it quite humorous that they had these on the side of this tank:
The rest of the exhibits became a blur of laughter, “ooohhhs” and “aaahhhs” … and me in complete and total amazement watching my two daughters get along and behave the best I have probably ever seen them. They were both so enthralled by everything they were seeing, they didn’t even think to argue.
We even had some fun silly moments too.
Mid afternoon we stopped to have a bite to eat in their restaurant the Cafe Aquaria. I was expecting it to be like “Carnival Food” or something, but it was absolutely delicious. Honestly. Between the six of us who went, I think we sampled just about everything – from the Bacon Cheeseburger to the Gourmet Cupcakes – it was all amazing.
Another cool exhibit was the Penguin Exhibit located in the Coldwater Quest. The exhibit has a “crawl tube” that if you are short (or like to crawl in crowded places) you can peek your head up into the exhibit to get a closer look at these comical little guys. The girls went alone (I told you, I was amazed at how well they got along) and I love this image because you can see my girls in the tube (Tween taking pics… my Blogger in the making), as well as my Uncle’s reflection as he stood watching them.
My absolute favorite part however was the Ocean Voyager which has a 6.3 MILLION gallon exhibit housing literally thousands of fish, as well as three manta rays and four whale sharks – the largest fish species in the world. It is hard to move standing in front of an acrylic wall measuring 23 feet high and 61 feet wide. You literally feel like you are IN the Ocean. Check out some video:
One of these days I am going to remember to turn my phone sideways…. this moment I was in too much awe to think very clearly.
It was an absolutely PERFECT day as we wrapped up with the Dolphin Tales show from AT&T. They would not allow cameras in there, but it was a great show full of lights, special effects, actors and actresses – and of course, some breathtakingly talented dolphins. It was the perfect end to the perfect day.
If you are ever in the Atlanta area and are looking for a way to spend the day inside where it is nice and cool, has great food, and more entertainment than your children could ever fully take in in one day – I highly recommend you go to the Georgia Aquarium. It will be a day you will never forget.