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“Very well done aquarium on Dauphin Island”

Dauphin Island Sea Lab Estuarium
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: A large center for the academic study of marine wildlife.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Gig Harbor, Washington
Level Contributor
177 reviews
45 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 279 helpful votes
“Very well done aquarium on Dauphin Island”
Reviewed 22 November 2013

We visited this facility on the same day as we toured Fort Gaines, and sorry to say, we ran out of time before the ferry departed. The aquarium, which they call an estuarium, is excellent, and you should not rush your way through all of the exhibits, because it takes time to read the descriptions of what you're looking at and to understand the significance of it all. I personally think you should take at least an hour at minimum, and more time would be better.

Visited October 2013
2 Thank ThorneBirdGT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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436 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
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English first
Lynchburg, Virginia
Level Contributor
35 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Small but awesome displays”
Reviewed 5 November 2013

This aquarium is small compared to the big ones (like the Baltimore Aquarium and Monterey Bay Aquarium) but the displays are great and this is a great way to see the marine life that lives in the Bay and in the Gulf. The tanks were very clean and all the fish and invertebrates seemed healthy. There is a lot of information and we spent 2-3 hours reading everything and watching the short videos. You could whip through the place in less than hour if you want to just glance at each display, but we loved taking our time and learning everything we could about the area. Only criticism is that the signs on the displays were not always up to date (i.e., there were animals in some tanks that were not identified on the signs). The fish feedings in the large tanks were fun to watch. Price is a little steep for a small aquarium but I figure it is for a good cause, as this is a great educational opportunity for kids and adults alike.

Visited November 2013
Thank Doctagon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mansfield, Ohio, United States
Level Contributor
78 reviews
32 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Have to go here.”
Reviewed 2 November 2013

What a great little jewel of a place. It isn't large and exotic, but if you want to learn about the environment of south Alabama and the Gulf of Mexico, this is the perfect place to go. You can then walk on the beach and wander in an old Civil War era fort that has been restored and protected.

Visited November 2013
1 Thank Howard W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mobile, Alabama, United States
Level Contributor
43 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Family fun!”
Reviewed 22 October 2013

My husband, 4 year old son, and myself made a trip over for a "homeschool day." The estuarium is not very large but it is probably the perfect size for a young child. We bought a Groupon and so we only paid $10 total for 2 adult tickets (I believe regular price is $10 for each ticket). Our 4 year old was free (under 5 is free). There were several hands on exhibits, which the little one loved. The staff was friendly and knowledgeable. It was a fun AND education experience. We thoroughly enjoyed it!

Visited October 2013
Thank MommyofIan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Birmingham, Alabama
Level Contributor
120 reviews
56 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“Great hidden attraction!”
Reviewed 21 September 2013

We have tried several times to make it here for a day trip while at the beach and were finally able to this year. The estuarium is located near the tip of Dauphin Island on Mobile Bay. The Monday we were there there only a few people there as school had already started back and not far enough in the school year for field trips, so we fairly much had the place to ourselves. I have been to a number of aquariums but really enjoyed the visit to a smaller facility which focused on the sea, sea life, habits, water areas (swamps, etc.) that were local to the gulf coast and Alabama. We were fascinated to learn new things such as far the coast of Alabama extended Southward in the last ice age and many other things. Well worth a visit and the cost of admission.

Visited September 2013
1 Thank dc1836
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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