Underwater Adventures Aquarium
This aquarium had all the makings of a really good aquarium but it seemed to fall short. The best thing was the 300 foot long glass tunnel - loved the sharks and stingrays swimming over our heads. It claims to have the world's largest jelly fish collection and they were also very cool.
It also had a variety of underwater environments such as the Amazon River, a seahorse kingdom, and a touch pool and play area for kids.
The $19 admission for adults and $13+ for children seemed too steep.
Book tickets online for a discount and to avoid lines. Try and schedule your visit to include some of the feeding times (especially the sharks).
The aquarium is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
The Mall of America is connected to downtown Minneapolis by the Light-Rail.
Shop Til You Drop!
The Mall of America is the largest mall in the U.S. Inside are 500+ stores (4.3 miles of storefronts!), 50+ restaurants (sit down and 2 food courts), an amusement park, movie theaters, a comedy club, a Legos imagination center, and an aquarium. The light-rail even links it to downtown Minneapolis and the airport. 40 million(!) people come to the mall each year.
The four anchor stores are Macy's, Sears, Bloomingdales, and Nordstroms. You'll find stores of every category - from Jewelry to Minnesota Gifts to Sporting Goods. A bonus is that there isn't any sales tax on clothing and shoes.
The mall is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Summer and holiday hours may vary.
There's plenty of free parking, directory boards, and information centers (pick up a mall map).
Nickelodeon Universe is located in the middle of the Mall of America. At 7 acres big, it is the largest indoor amusement park in the country.
There are over 30 rides and a pay-one-price wrist band costs $29.95. You can also buy single tickets. You must be 47 inches tall to ride on most rides. There are 3 rides for children under 36 inches tall and chaperones can ride free on those. There are 8 rides for children under 42 inches and chaperones can ride free on those as well. There are 4 additional rides for children between 36 and 47 inches where chaperones can ride free.
Most of the rides were not for very young children but there is a meet and greet with favorite Nickelodeon characters.
Tickets can be purchased at self-service kiosks at each of the 4 entrances into Nickelodeon Universe.
It's a great place for the kids - especially on a rainy day!
Mall Of America
We spent a whole day here. Which is all I can tell a person to do (if not more time) because it's incredible. I'd heard stories, but still had no idea what was actually inside this place.
mall of america
From East - Take Interstate 94 West to Interstate 494 South/West. Exit 24th Avenue South.
From North - Take Interstate 35 South to Interstate 35W South to Interstate 494 East. Exit 24th Avenue.
From South - Take Interstate 35 North to Interstate 35W North to Interstate 494 East. Exit 24th Avenue.
From West - Take Interstate 94 East to Interstate 494 South to Highway 77 South. Exit Killebrew Drive or 81st Street/Lindau Lane.
From Airport - MetroTransit buses run between the airport and MOA every 30 minutes. At the airport, exit Door 5 on the lower level and follow the signage to bus stop. The transfer to MOA takes approximately 5 minutes.
Visit the mall and the amusement park
OK, I live near a big mall, so I didn't know what to expect. What I got was an enormous mall, with tons of your standard types of mall shops. Of course there are a few distinctions here. There is a huge LEGO store, with an area where the little ones can build things with LEGO (they also have a number of neat displays.) By far, the most interesting differentiator is the amusement park in the middle of the mall. Formerly Camp Snoopy, it's now a Nickelodeon themed park (rides based on Dora the Explorer, Blues Clues, etc.) There are a number of kiosks throughout the park where you can get a wristband and get on all the rides or buy a package of tickets (rides call for 3-5 tickets.) If you want just a few individual tickets, you'll have to make it over to one of the customer service stations. All rides had a height limit to determine whether or not you need a chaperon. Baby girls rode a train and still talks about it a few weeks later - seeing some of her favorite characters made quite the impression. There are rides for older kids as well, but it's hard to say at what age the park would stop generating interest.
So, just checking out the mall and the park will take a couple of hours. Depending on how much you enjoy mall shopping probably will drive how big an attraction this is!
The Mall of America has an awesome area with many LEGO creations. It is quite impressive to see all of the LEGO creations! This is a very popular place for children, and if you come with children, I highly recommend you bring them to the LEGO Land. The LEGO creations are life size, and there are LEGOs there that children are allowed to play with, too!
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Camp Snoopy is the Mall of America's very own amusement park! It's inside the mall. There are quite a few different rides for children. None of the rides are too intense, so young children should be able to go without worrying about not being big enough to ride the rides. There are also Camp Snoopy stores that you can buy Snoopy-themed merchandise!
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