Mermaids are back at the Sea Life Aquarium at the Mall of America, and now there are pirates!
From October 3rd – 27th, (Thursdays and Fridays to Sundays only), mermaids are performing underwater next to sharks, sea turtles, and even sturgeon. Plus, they’re bringing pirates!
And on dry land, kids of all ages can meet a mermaid face to “fin” in a magical meet & greet with a fun photo op.
Plus, on Saturdays and Sundays, exclusive makeovers will be available for both kids and adults to trade their legs for fins and become a mermaid, or a swashbuckling pirate! This makeover experience includes face painting, a colorful mermaid tail or pirate gear, goody bag and a personal meet and greet with a Mermaid.
We got to preview “Meet a Mermaid” when they debuted last summer. I brought my kids and my daughter’s best friend (they’re the biggest mermaid fans ever) and we were so excited to see the mermaids.
They’re not the first thing you see – though my daughter especially just wanted to skip everything to go straight to the mermaids. Instead we enjoyed everything along the way, starting with pools where you can touch or at least get close to undersea creatures!
Here is the 15,000 gallon stingray pool, with cownose stingrays, southern stingrays, and shovelnose guitarfish. There were so many of them!
Then we walked through Jellyfish Discovery where you can see Moon Jellyfish and Atlantis Sea Nettles.
In the Coral Caves exhibit, you can get close to clownfish and other fish by getting right in the tank like this.
The neatest fish I saw was the razor fish. They literally float vertically! But most impressive were the sharks and other larger sea creatures in the tanks around and above us. This is when we knew we were close to the mermaids!
Before seeing the mermaids underwater, there was a Mermaid photo opp with activities. We waited in line for a picture, where little kids could put on a pretend mermaid tail for the picture. You could take a picture for free (so be sure to bring your phone or camera!). There were also coloring activities.
Then it was time to meet a mermaid in the tank! We could hear the narrator speaking about the mermaid that was there as we approached. There were two divers with her, which we were told were to keep other fish away.
The mermaid had a breathing tube that she used occasionally. The narrator said it was “so she could create bubbles, which she loved to do.” Makes sense to little ones…
The mermaid posed for plenty of pictures and waved to everyone.
The girls loved it. It was fun to see her smile and interact with people, especially the little kids. How weird to pose with someone smiling underwater in a tank!
Our Thoughts from our First Mermaids Visit
The mermaid experience we had last year was fun, though a little different than I expected. I expected to see several mermaids swimming around, going up for water occasionally. I think they do swim but didn’t when we were there. Instead, it was just one mermaid sitting there with two divers nearby. It worked, but I think it was different than some others may expect as well.
So if you’re hoping to see mermaids swimming around together, know that they may mainly just sit there and interact with people. But it makes sense for the mermaids this way, and keeps it simple for the kids to engage with her.
Do I recommend it? Sure! How else can you see a “real” mermaid in the water? But be sure to take time to enjoy the rest of the aquarium too, as the mermaid experience is only part of your visit.
When is it?
Thursday – Sunday October 3rd -6th
Friday – Sunday October 11th – 13th
Thursday – Sunday, October 17th-20th
Friday – Sunday October 25th – 27th
How to Save on Tickets
Tickets to see the mermaids and pirates are different this year. It’s not included in general admission as you have to get the special admission tickets. They’re $21.99 for adults and $15.99 for kids.
Good news for members though – members get in FREE to this event! They have information for members wanting to attend this event on their website.
However, if you just want general admission to visit Sea Life (at times when the mermaids and pirates aren’t there), Groupon has a deal for up to 18% off admission!
You can get:
Child admission, Monday to Friday: $14.99
Child admission, ANY DAY: $15.99
Adult admission (13+), Monday to Friday: $19.99
Adult admission, ANY DAY: $21.99
For more info, visit the Sea Life Minnesota website!
(Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links that help support this site at no cost to you All opinions are 100% mine.)