Tips for a Great Visit

Ticket Tips

  • The best Shedd visit begins online, not in line. We offer three easy ways to purchase your tickets in advance to avoid a long wait: Select our most popular ticket, the Total Experience Pass; become a Shedd member; or get a Chicago CityPASS, a great vacation value featuring Shedd and four other major Chicago attractions.
  • Shedd is a popular place to visit, and the wait in the ticket line can be two or more hours. If you buy your tickets in advance online, be sure to show tickets on your mobile device or print and bring to Shedd for priority entry.
  • Check out our discounts before buying tickets. We have reduced prices for Illinois residents, educators, students, senior citizens, select corporations, active-duty military personnel and Chicago police officers and firefighters. Discounts are available for onsite ticket purchases only.
  • If you plan on visiting more than one cultural attraction while in Chicago, purchase a Chicago CityPASS. You'll save 50 percent off admission to Shedd Aquarium, plus four more top Chicago attractions.

Before You Arrive

Need To Knows

  • Last tickets sales are 45 minutes before close. Click here to see our hours.
  • Pack light. If you do want to store items during your visit, we have coin-operated lockers available. If you’re traveling with a toddler, we recommend using an umbrella stroller that will be easier than larger models for navigating exhibits and elevators. See our complete admission policies here.
  • Take public transportation to the aquarium. It's cheaper than driving and parking, and the CTA #146 Museum Campus bus delivers you almost to our door.
  • Outside food is allowed in the aquarium, but can only be eaten in designated areas.

Must "Seas"!

Shedd Calendar

Planning a visit to Shedd? Check out the Shedd calendar for the latest info or campus events on the day of your visit!

Daily Dive

Caribbean Reef dive

Daily: 10:30 a.m., noon, 2 p.m., 3 p.m.

Animal Chats

Sharks: 9:45 a.m. | 11:15 a.m. | 3:45 p.m. | Wild Reef

Belugas and sea lions: 11 a.m. | 1:30 p.m. | 3 p.m. | Abbott Oceanarium

Penguins:  9:45 a.m. | 12:45 p.m. | 4 p.m. | Polar Play Zone

Fun Finds Maps

From must-see kid sights to hidden animals, explore Shedd with our unique fun finds maps!

Extraordinary Experiences

Meet a penguin, touch a beluga whale, become a trainer for a day, or take a tour behind the scenes of Shedd. Prices vary by experience. Learn more!

Become a Shedd member

Membership is  a great option if you’d like to support Shedd and get special perks for return visits! Learn more here

Visitors Guide

Looking for tips for your next visit to Shedd? Check out our awesome guide here

Participate in Research Study, Visit Shedd for free

Want to take part in a research study with Shedd and visit for free? Get the details!