Open 9 am - 6 pm
Museum Campus parking will be severely limited for the morning and early afternoon. Taking public transportation or parking off campus is highly recommended and may be required.

Safety precautions

  • Staff and guests (over the age of 2) wear face coverings.
  • Advance purchase of timed tickets is required.
  • Hand sanitizer available for guests and staff.
  • Increased cleaning in high-touch areas.
  • High-touch experiences will gradually resume, including Sea Star & Sturgeon Touch.
  • Plexiglass shields at all counters.

Help protect our community!

Do you have a fever, cough or feel short of breath? Have you been exposed to someone with these symptoms? Are you visiting from a state or have you recently visited a state that is a part of the City of Chicago's Emergency Travel Order?

Join us at a later date! Already have tickets? Call 312-939-2438 or email [email protected] and we’ll gladly reschedule your visit.

During your visit

  • We implemented timed entry to keep an even flow of guests throughout the day.
  • We increased our rigorous cleaning efforts with guests and animals in mind.
  • We've installed additional hand sanitization stations throughout the aquarium. The entire building will also get a deep cleaning every night after closing.


  • Beginning July 31, in accordance with the CDC, state and city recommendations, masks are required for all staff and visitors over the age of 2 regardless of vaccination status.
  • You may substitute a face shield as an alternative. Please bring your face shield and wear it as you arrive for your timed entry. We ask that all guests who are feeling unwell or experiencing symptoms of Covid-19, please contact us to reschedule your visit. If you any questions, please contact us directly at 312-939-2438. Learn more about our accessibility offerings.

Recommended masks

Non-medical disposable masks

Masks that fit properly

Masks made with breathable fabric

Masks made with tightly woven fabric

Masks with two or three layers and with inner filter pockets

Enhanced cleaning measures

Enhanced daytime cleanings and nightly deep cleanings

  • All touch points and hard surfaces throughout the aquarium are disinfected, not just the frequently touched surfaces.
  • When you walk around the aquarium, you will see our “Sanitation Squad” at work. This is a newly implemented group that wipes down areas where they are stationed and joins forces to focus on railings, reading rails, elevator interiors, seating areas, exhibits, counter tops, interactive screens, etc.
  • A specialized custodial team wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) cleans the aquarium overnight. The team uses electrostatic sprayers, misters and vacuum equipment with high-efficiency particular air (HEPA) filters to make sure hard to reach surfaces are not missed. Not all of this equipment will visible to guests as it’s used after-hours.
  • The disinfectants we use are on the EPA N list of approved disinfectants for use against SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 and are in widespread use by the healthcare industry.

Augmented custodial staff

We’ve reviewed our sanitation rounds and added additional touch points to ensure cleanliness of the aquarium. Our staff has also been augmented with sanitation and atomizing experts using specialty equipment.

Building ventilation and air flow

  • Shedd Aquarium is operating under ASHRAE COVID-19 Building Readiness/Reopening Guidance dated May 7, 2020.
  • All of our air handlers are running 24-hours, 7-days a week.
  • Each day 2 hours before we open and 2 hours after we close, we perform a flushing of the building. This includes operating the exhaust fans as well as opening the outside air dampers to 100%.
  • We have increased our pre-filter change out schedule and changed our final filters to MERV 14.
  • The interiors of our air handlers and air conditioning coils have been disinfected prior to our reopening and will be a part of scheduled preventive maintenance of the aquarium.

EPA cleaning guidelines

We are implementing disinfectant spraying for our bathrooms multiple times daily, a practice commonly used by hospitals and airlines, to supplement the enhanced cleaning measures already in place. We ask for your patience as bathrooms will be closed sporadically to accomplish this task. All disinfecting and sanitation products have been certified safe for humans and our animals per the EPA and our own onsite chemist.


Shedd Aquarium FAQs