San Antonio Aquarium – A Second Chance

We visited the San Antonio Aquarium soon after it opened. I wasn’t impressed. There were about a hundred million kids, it was hot, and everything in it seemed random. 
MJ was barely walking at the time and skinned her knees over and over. I left a bit frustrated. Yesterday we decided to give it another chance. MJ is bigger now, steady on her feet, and I thought she’d enjoy the fish and stingrays. She recognizes fish from her books and now says the word. So off to the Aquarium we headed once again, my kiddos and nephews in tow. 

Once again, it just seemed strange to me to see a water area and water slide outside of the front entrance. My 4 year old nephew was upset that he didn’t have swim trunk, but we hadn’t anticipated there being a water slide. After buying tickets (beware, the prices listed on the website are not the same as at the door), we walked through the dino area. Strange in an aquarium I thought, but kind of cool nonetheless. Again, the 4 year old loved it. The older kids, not impressed. 

  
Next we walked past a few fish tanks to the large, unsupervised sand area (sand and toys for kids to play with). Kids in it were playing & throwing sand, so we kept walking. When we arrived at the stingray tank, the stingrays were eager to swim right over, looking for food (sorry stingrays, we hadn’t purchased any with our tickets). The stingrays were enjoyable. We all pet them and enjoyed watching them swim around. 

We walked through more of the aquarium, viewing the fish swimming in the murky water, snakes, birds, and a friendly tortoise walking freely though the aquarium. My 12 year old son, 13 and 4 year old nephews, and MJ all enjoyed touching the tortoise and following it around, as did many other children.  This was our favorite part of the visit. 

  
My 4 year old nephew enjoyed the Iguana Bounce area (a bunch of moon bounces near the snack bar). Again, random I thought. MJ enjoyed the kitchen area (a poorly organized toddler area with small wooden appliances, a plastic storage tub of food, and small wooden utensils. My nephew and MJ served pretend meals in this area for almost an hour. On our way out an employee was stationed near one of the tanks with a lizard that we also got to pet. Exciting!

Today’s visit was more enjoyable than when we visited a few months ago. It was a Monday, and there were not nearly as many people than the last time we attended a birthday party on a busy Saturday. The tortoise, lizard and stingrays made it a fun experience for the kids, but that was it, and that lasted for maybe 10-15 minutes. I’m not eager to pay $14.95 for an adult ticket again any time soon. I’m more inclined to use my San Antonio Zoo Membership where I can enjoy many of the same attractions, plus some, and for a lesser price. However, I have to admit, we had a much better time than we did at our last visit.