The big new tourist destination in the Valley is this large complex, which boasts not only one of the largest aquariums in North America, but also a big butterfly habitat, a dolphin building, and several other attractions, along with a two-story mini-mall of shops and restaurants. It’s easy to spend a good part of an enjoyable day here. The aquarium itself has a slightly odd industrial feel inside, but there are lots and lots of stops for everything from an otter tank to a low-slung pool that lets kids stroke manta rays as they glide by. A big room with round aquariums hanging from the ceiling is a stunner, as is the escalator that descends right down through the big shark tank. The big attraction is a wild revolving theater at the center of a giant donut of tanks; you revolve a quarter-turn and get a new show, sometimes with divers in the tanks with the various spectacular fish, including sharks. If you’re taking kids, it’s kinda fun not to let them know this is coming. Enlightening information in the exhibits points out how the aquarium’s populations will be affected by climate change. The butterflies and dolphins require separate admissions; all of the attractions allow same-day re-entry.
9500 Via de la Ventura
Our Rating Neighborhood Scottsdale Hours Daily 9am–8pm (closes at 6pm Sun); check website for occasional early closings due to private events Phone 480/291-8000 Prices $38 adults, $28 ages 2–12, free for kids under 2 Web site OdySea Aquarium
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.