The exterior of Ripley's Aquarium in Gatlinburg.
August 27, 2018

While a visit to Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies is already an exciting day out, you can make your visit even more fun with several unique experiences ! The aquarium features some extra activities and attractions that allow you to get up close and personal with some of the most fascinating sea creatures in the world! Here are 4 unique adventures that you should experience at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies:

1. Glass Bottom Boat Adventure

Shark at Ripley's Aquarium in Gatlinburg Tn

The Shark Lagoon is one of the top exhibits at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, featuring more than 8,500 aquatic animals that represent over 75 species! Now you can venture into the Shark Lagoon on a Glass Bottom Boat Adventure where just 3 inches of glass separates you from 12-foot sharks, a green sea turtle and thousands of other sea creatures! The boat ride is led by the aquarium’s Adventure Crew, who will provide interesting commentary about all of the sharks and other aquatic life.

2. Splash With The Stingrays

Get into the water at the Touch-A-Ray Bay exhibit with the Splash With the Stingrays program! This is a unique opportunity to actually interact with the stingrays in the water, so be sure to bring a swimsuit with you on your vacation! The aquarium will provide towels for you to dry off after the experience. All of the tickets to Splash With the Stingrays include a souvenir T-shirt so that you will always remember this incredible adventure!

3. Penguin Encounter


Meet all of the aquarium’s adorable penguins with the Penguin Encounter ! This fun experience puts you “face-to-beak” with one of the penguins from the aquarium’s state-of-the-art indoor/outdoor habitat! During the Penguin Encounter, you will have the chance to pet a penguin and get a souvenir photo with the penguin! You will also be able to learn all about these wonderful creatures from one of the aquarium’s expert staff members.

4. Behind the Scenes Tour

If you ever wanted to know what it takes to operate and maintain an aquarium facility, sign up for the Behind the Scenes Tour at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies! This educational tour takes you through several life support rooms and the control center where all of the water quality is monitored. You will also get to see the food preparation process for the animals and learn what it takes to keep the animals healthy and happy!

If you love Ripley's Aquarium, here are some other Ripley's attractions you should visit !

Where to Stay

Two bedroom log home in Gatlinburg Tennessee

Stay close to all of the excitement of Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies with a vacation at Parkside Cabin Rentals! We have cabins of all sizes to meet your needs, ranging from 1 bedroom for a couple to a 7 bedroom cabin for a large family or group of friends. We even have pet friendly cabin rentals where you can bring your favorite furry companion along for your vacation in Gatlinburg! While staying with us, there are tons of awesome amenities for you to enjoy including fully equipped kitchens, fireplaces, hot tubs, game rooms and more!

Check out all of our cabins in Gatlinburg TN today to plan a vacation near Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies! We hope to see you soon at Parkside Cabin Rentals!

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