Open 9 am - 5 pm
A yellow footed tortoise chows down on fresh berries and greens.
A group on a behind-the-scenes tour in Shedd's Microbiome lab are given an introduction to the labs by a Shedd volunteer holding two nets.

Special offer

Guests of Hilton Hotels or Hilton-Family Hotels can show their keycard at any ticketing counter at Shedd to receive a discount on a Behind-the-Scenes Tour! This promotion does not include admission.


  • See Shedd at work behind the scenes in the Waters of the World galleries
  • Get a look into the state-of-the-art animal hospital
  • See what it takes to keep aquatic habitats clean and healthy in the environmental quality lab

Includes admission

A general admission ticket is included with the purchase of a Behind the Scenes Tour. Participants have access to express entry to the aquarium, admission to all exhibits and a ticket to the next available aquatic presentation.


Tours are available all year, Sundays through Saturdays.
11 a.m. and 1 p.m.


Minimum age is 7. Guests ages 7-17 must be accompanied by a participating adult, age 18 or older.

A waiver must be signed by a parent or guardian for any participant 17 years or younger.

Guests will need to understand information and instructions given in the English language or arrange for a paying translator to participate.


We believe there should be no boundaries to your Shedd Aquarium experience. If you have an accommodation request related to a disability, please email or call us at 312-692-3355.

Program includes

  • Walking/standing for 60 minutes
  • Use of stairs; elevators are available
  • Very light and very dark spaces
  • Loud noises
  • Walking on uneven surfaces

Behind-the-Scenes Tour FAQs

This closeup photo features the point where a grapeshot anemone's fleshy lower body opens up into a bowl-shaped opening filled with short, fleshy fronds similar in appearance to shag carpeting.

Gift certificates

Behind the scenes tours are an extraordinary gift idea! Purchase a gift certificate online, redeemable for Extraordinary Experiences, general admission, or membership. Or call us at 312-692-3355. Certain restrictions apply.


Adults: $59.95
Child (7-11): $49.95
Members: $18.95


Participating guests should meet at the Northern Trust Suite on the day of their visit.


E-mail us or call 312-692-3355 with questions. We are unable to take reservations by email.

Accessibility Needs

If you have any accessibility needs, please contact us in advance of your reservation.


Photography and video recording are not allowed during this experience. 

Refund Policy

No refunds. Participants who need to reschedule may do so up to 10 days before their scheduled experience. Otherwise, date and time exchanges cannot be accommodated. For additional details, see our refund and cancellation policy.