Saturday, May 31, 2014

Ripleys Aquarium of the Smokies and more in Gatlinburg, TN


As a family we have made a few trips to the Smoky Mountains and every we visit we drive through Gatlinburg, TN I love this small busy town, which the Ripley's Aquarium always stands out when you pass it. Its such a nice bright building.

Recently we had the chance to travel to TN and check out 3 of Ripley's Attractions in Gatlinburg, TN yes there are many to choose from. We took a day to enjoy the 3 attractions.

We started our day with the Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies to start off with get there early or closer to closing because this is a hot spot everyone is waiting for a chance to get in, the lines were long but worth the wait. When you first get in they have someone set up to take a pic which they then add a background there are a bunch of these throughout the Aquarium.



It looks smaller than what it is from the outside, but inside it was quite big it had all kinds of things to get into and then the Shark Lagoon was insane it was about a 10 minute ride under the sharks! (a moving 340-foot long glidepath) it was very cool to see all types of fish, eels, sharks and more while on the path.



First section of the Aquarium is the Tropical Rainforest which has your dart frogs, piranhas, and more which would live in or along the Amazon. Its a really fun treat to show my kids what kinds of animals inhabit different areas of the world. They had a tank full of Pacus which were huge they can grow up to 44lbs! That's the weight of my 5 year old!



The rest of the Aquarium is kinda branched off in sections one section is the Penguin Playhouse which is neat because the penguins can be seen in all different spots throughout, there is a dome which kids can crawl and be in the middle of, windows lower for kids to look through, a outside viewing area which you can walk around in the fresh air and enjoy some penguin fun and they even can go right under your feet. My kids really enjoyed this section.



Gallery of the Seas was my personal favorite it had some amazing animals which you would never think to see like the Giant Japanese Spider Crab! They are not kidding about the Giant part!

There is so much to take in at the Aquarium you can spend a full day there! I can't wait to return and enjoy a full day at the Aquarium. You can find out about all the other fun attractions in the Aquarium by clicking here.



Next we went to the Ripley's Mirror Maze and Candy Factory. This was fun its a Maze which is dark and lite up with red lights one part of the maze they have a dance room which is all kinds of fun. My husband and I let the kids go first (figured they can run into things first lol) but they did great and we had a good time. Before or afterwards you can enjoy the Ripley's Candy Factory which has all types of candy which you can purchase by the lb. I let each of my kids pick out a small bag worth, and I picked up my favorite pop corn jelly bellys : )



Finally we finished our day out with a round of golf at the Ripley's Davy Crockett Mini Golf Course just at the end or beginning of Gatlinburg, it has its own parking which you could walk but easier to park there. The other 2 attractions the Aquarium and Mirror Maze are within a block of each other and you can park anywhere in downtown Gatlinburg to enjoy them. Its a full 18 holes of golf and its fun. We had a blast there was all kinds of things to look at and fun interactive effects.

There are so many more attractions from Ripley's that you can make a few days of it! Check out all the other things I missed out on this round and build your ultimate vacation ticket here.




Disclosure: I received one or more of the products mentioned in this post to help facilitate my review. All opinions are mine and I was not influenced in any way. Please contact Casey@themeparkmamablog.com with any questions.