Aquariums in Las Vegas A Complete Guide

Last Updated on March 22, 2023

Las Vegas is filled with adventures of all types. If you’re looking for a family-friendly activity, or if you just happen to love all things aquatic, Las Vegas is home to more than a generous handful of amazing aquariums. 

Some aquariums in Las Vegas are paid entrance, while others are free of charge. Some are huge and spectacular, while others offer a chance to experience some visual serenity as you make your way through the Vegas landscape. 

In our travels, we’ve enjoyed many of the Las Vegas aquariums. Some of the best include the Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay, the Aquarium at the Silverton Hotel, and Atlantis at the Forum Shops. Here is a list of our absolute favorites, along with some notable runner-ups.

Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay

Winner Overall Best Las Vegas Aquarium


Shark Reef Aquarium at Las Vegas

Shark Reef Aquarium is one of the most popular and favorite attractions in Las Vegas. Located in the Mandalay Bay Casino & Resort, the aquarium has attracted millions of guests for more than twenty years. To give you an idea of how spectacular this aquarium is, the main tank holds 1.3 million gallons of water and ranks among the largest in the world. 

If you can imagine a space of 95,000 sq ft devoted entirely to aquatic life, then you have a good idea of how massive this aquarium experience is. It is currently home to more than 2,000 animals, including fish species, from the exotic to the everyday. 

Some sea creatures you can get up close and personal with include endangered sea turtles, a shark or two, piranhas, giant rays, and a komodo dragon. Apart from the sheer size and magnificence, part of what makes this aquarium the best in Las Vegas is that it’s also an experience. In addition to enjoying the main aquarium, there are also some super fun experiences that you can add to the cost of your ticket. 

Some of the additional activities you can enjoy include an underwater VR theater where a marine biologist takes you on an unforgettable underwater journey through the waters of the South Pacific. Through VR technology, you can swim alongside humpback whales, tigersharks, and more. 

Other experiences include their Dive with the Sharks program, where yes, you can swim with more than 30 real shark friends. The tour is guided, and you can invite up to four people to view your experience. There are also opportunities to feed stingray, sharks, and turtles. All in all, this aquarium provides a once-in-a-lifetime style experience for all ages. 

You’ll find this aquarium located on the main casino floor of the hotel. Follow the cobblestone walkway that takes you toward the convention area, then past the wedding chapel and Border Grill. The aquarium is open to all ages daily from 10 am – 6 pm, and children four years of age or younger are admitted for free. 

Aquarium at Silverton Hotel & Casino

Best Hotel Aquarium


Aquarium at Silverton Hotel & Casino

The aquarium at the Silverton Hotel has long had the reputation of being one the best free activities in Las Vegas, especially for families who want something fun and stress-free to do with the kids without blowing the budget to have a little fun. 

The massive aquarium holds about 117,000 gallons of water and is not only home to literally thousands of tropical fish, but it’s also one of those rare spots where you can find real mermaids. 

Several times a day, starting at noon and carrying on into the evening, you can find two mermaids swimming through the aquarium and interacting with visitors. If you keep an eye on the event schedules, you might be able to catch one of the weekend mermaid swims where children can even enjoy lunch with the mermaids after a show. 

In addition to the tropical varieties, you’ll be able to spot other aquatic animals like sharks and stingrays. Don’t worry. There’s no risk of harm to the mermaids! The aquarium at Silverton Hotel is open for viewing 24/7, with scheduled times for interactive feeding shows and swimming mermaids. 

Atlantis Aquarium at the Forum Shops

Best Aquarium Runner Up


The Atlantis Aquarium is a 50,000-gallon round aquarium located in the middle of the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace. It’s a great place to stop and relax after indulging in a little retail therapy or sightseeing, but if you want to make the most of the experience, try to time it so that you catch the Atlantis Show, which happens right next to the aquarium. 

The Atlantis Show happens every hour, on the hour, starting at 11 am. The show is completely free, lasts a little under 10 minutes, and is a spectacle of animatronics, flames, and dragons that you can only expect to see in Las Vegas, NV. 

Back to the aquarium itself, the round, walk-around shape makes it unique and allows you to view what’s happening inside from all angles. You’ll get a glimpse at aquatic animals such as pufferfish, rays, triggerfish, and more. The entire experience is free and open to all ages. 

More Fun Aquariums in Las Vegas, NV

SeaQuest Las Vegas


More Fun Aquariums in Las Vegas, NV

If you don’t mind traveling a few miles off of the Las Vegas Strip, or maybe even prefer it, SeaQuest Las Vegas is a fun, immersive experience for all ages to enjoy. SeaQuest is actually much more than just an aquatic adventure, but their aquarium is really what they’re known for. 

SeaQuest is a large 20,000 sq ft space where you can go and interact with animals, including land and sea creatures, from around the globe. There are well over 1,000 animals from five different continents that call SeaQuest home. 

Among the experiences you can have are stingrays you can snorkel with, a Fishy Kiss experience where you sit with your feet dangling in an aquarium that’s filled with little fish that love to kiss on your toes, and playing one on one with Asian otters. 

There is a fee for admittance into SeaQuest for guests over the age of 2. Students, military, and those 55 and over qualify for discount tickets. The ticket price is just for admittance into SeaQuest and the general activities. Special experiences cost an additional fee. SeaQuest is open daily from 11 am – 7 pm. 

The Aquarium at the Mirage


The Aquarium at the Mirage

The aquarium at the Mirage Las Vegas isn’t so much an interactive experience as it is just a beautiful and really cool sight to behold. Spanning more than 50 feet, the huge aquarium sits behind the front desk of the Mirage. The design is intended to look like a coral reef, but in the interest of protecting delicate coral and the ecosystems it helps build, no real coral is used in the aquarium. 

The aquarium holds 20,000 gallons of water is home to approximately 450 saltwater fish, including at least 85 different types. Trust that this isn’t a haphazard collection of aquatic life. 

The fish come from all over the world, including the Pacific and Indian Oceans and the Caribbean and Red Seas. Each fish was specifically chosen for its adaptability and ability to cohabitate effortlessly with the other fish in the environment. 

This isn’t one of those aquariums that you’ll spend the entire day exploring but for lovers of unique and exotic species, it’s true treasure in Las Vegas, plus, it’s also completely free to enjoy, You can stop by and view the aquarium any time of the day or night. 

Tank at the Golden Nugget


Tank at the Golden Nugget

The Tank at the Golden Nugget is more than just your standard aquarium. It’s actually part of the Golden Nugget’s award-winning swimming pool complex. The tank is a 200,000-gallon shark aquarium that’s situated within the three-story pool complex. This tank gives a whole new meaning to swimming with the fishes. 

Of course, you’re not actually swimming with the aquatic life, but considering how up close and personal you are with the sharks, it almost feels as though you are – especially if you take a glide down the waterslide that runs through the center of the tank. As you get closer to the tank, the sides of the waterslide become clear, so it truly feels like your sharing the experience with all of the aquatic life. 

If you’re staying as a guest at the Golden Nugget, access to the Tank is completely free. The pool complex is open to the public, but you do have to pay an access fee if you’re not staying at the hotel. 

The downside is that as part of the pool complex, there is limited access to the Tank and whether you can visit all depends on pool hours, which are restricted in the fall and closed for the winter season. 

Chart House Aquarium at the Golden Nugget


Chart House Aquarium at the Golden Nugget 

While you’re at the Golden Nugget, you can stay for dinner at the Chart House and experience one of the best restaurant aquariums in Las Vegas, NV. The Chart House is a seafood restaurant, so the aquariums are only fitting. Don’t worry. You won’t find any of the aquarium animals on your dinner plate. 

Make reservations and enjoy your seat next to all types of exotic fish, such as the Humpnose Unicorn, Striped Sweetlips, and the Convict Tang. The only downside of these aquariums is that you have to dine in the Chart House restaurant to view them, but the experience is well worth making a reservation and enjoying a great meal. 

Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World Aquarium Tank


Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World Aquarium Tank

Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World is located super close to the Silverton Hotel, so if it’s a day of experiencing aquariums in Vegas you’re after, Bass Pro Shops plus the Silverton make for a great double feature. 

Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World in Las Vegas, NV, is the company’s flagship store, so you know on the scale of retail experiences that this one is going to be exceptional. Part of what makes it so unique is the 40,000-gallon aquarium in the middle of the store that is home to an array of freshwater fish, including trout, catfish, carp, and bass. 

The aquarium is built to be included in what Bass Pro Shop has made to look like a natural outdoor setting. There are canyon rocks and shrubbery, with real flowing waterfalls that empty into the aquarium. If you like the idea of exploring the natural life around Las Vegas, NV but aren’t a fan of the sun or heat, this experience makes for a fun substitute. 


Which casino has an aquarium?

There are a few casinos in Las Vegas, NV, that have made an aquarium filled with aquatic life part of the attraction. Mandalay Bay is the most well-known hotel casino aquarium in Las Vegas. The Mirage, Silverton Hotel & Casino, and the Golden Nugget also have aquariums located on the property that are definitely worth the time to visit.

Is the Mirage Aquarium free?

Yes, the aquarium at the Mirage is completely free of charge and open to the public. It’s located behind the front desk and spans more than 50ft. It’s a great spot to relax for a few minutes and watch colorful angelfish and other aquatic life gracefully swims through the water.

Make a Day of Visiting Las Vegas Aquariums

Make a Day of Visiting Las Vegas Aquariums 

If you only have time for visiting one of the aquariums in Vegas, our top choice is the Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay, but if you’re in the mood for something a little more low-key or free, there are plenty of other options for your aquatic viewing pleasure in Las Vegas, NV. Make a day of it, explore, take a guided tour, or just leisurely stroll around and enjoy the beautiful aquatic exhibits around the city. 

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