- $28 for one admission to a 50-minute guided behind-the-scenes tour of Shedd Aquarium (up to $55.95 value)
- Includes express entry; admission to all exhibits, including the special Jellies exhibit; and a ticket to the next available aquatic show
During this rare glimpse into a hidden side of Shedd Aquarium, you’ll get to watch the staff perform preventative health care on a few of the 32,000 aquatic animals. You’ll also learn how they prepare nutritious meals for so many exotic species, plus the innovative ways they keep the water clean.
Chicago might be far from any ocean, but that obstacle didn't stop it from pioneering the first permanent inland saltwater aquarium in the country. Thanks to civic leader John G. Shedd’s drive and contribution of $3 million paid for nearly a million gallons of seawater transported by rail from Florida’s coast, by 1930 the city hosted exhibits large enough to accommodate a wide variety of marine species–sea mammals as well as fish.
Today, Shedd’s dream continues to thrive with the aquarium’s scores of undersea creatures—from sharks and dolphins to vibrant sea cucumbers—showcased in educational, eye-catching exhibits. The permanent collection spirits visitors from the Great Lakes to the Amazon River to the waters of the Pacific Northwest. The resident animals often share their turf seasonal exhibits like stingrays, who fill dramatic special exhibits.
The most exciting animal encounters, however, may come via the year-round Aquatic Presentation. Trainers may demonstrate the natural behaviors of sea lions, dolphins, and even beluga whales. They have some four-legged company, too: a trio of rescue dogs often appear alongside their finned adoptive family, demonstrating how learning through positive reinforcement transcends boundaries between species. Also included is quarterly updates on the symbolically adopted animal via email. These emails provide unique updates from the aquarists and marine mammal staff that care for these animals daily.