Open 9 am - 6 pm
Museum Campus parking availability and cost will be impacted by a concert taking place at Soldier Field. Taking public transportation is highly recommended.
Sea otter floats on its back with paws covering its mouth in a small pool.
Sea otter Luna rests comfortably in a rubber bucket behind the scenes, her long body coiled to fit.


  • Go behind the scenes of the sea otter habitat
  • Prepare an enrichment item for a sea otter
  • Interact with a sea otter through an acrylic partition
  • Watch a training session
  • Learn about the species and why they are important to protect

Includes admission

A general admission ticket is included with the purchase of a Sea Otter Encounter. 

COVID Safety Precautions

KN95 masks are required to be worn whenever behind the scenes of the sea otter habitat. This does include during any photos taken by the provided photographer.

These measures are required to ensure the safety of the sea otters. Thank you for your compliance!


Minimum age is 6 years old. Guests ages 6-17 must be accompanied by a paying adult, age 18 or older.

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

An electronic waiver must be signed by a parent or guardian for any participant 17 years or younger. This waiver will be found in the confirmation email you receive upon purchase.

Please wear comfortable clothing that you don’t mind getting dirty or wet. Be sure to wear rubber-soled shoes; sneakers are recommended. For your safety, please do not wear heels or flip-flops on this encounter.

We recommend guests with shellfish and seafood allergies do not participate in this encounter.


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

Program includes

  • Use of stairs
  • Crouching and kneeling
  • Standing for 45 minutes

Sea Otter Encounter FAQs


Adults (12+): $134.95
Children: $124.95
Members: $108.95

Admission to the aquarium is included with the purchase of a Sea Otter Encounter.


Check in at the Extraordinary Experiences kiosk in the main galleries on the day of their visit. 


Email 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.


For the safety of the sea otters, pictures will be taken by a provided photographer. One free digital image is included. Opportunities to purchase additional photos are available onsite.

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.