Our Interactive Visit to SeaQuest in Roseville
Our family recently visited SeaQuest in Roseville, and honestly, we had the most interactive family experience that I think we’ve ever had at an attraction!
SeaQuest opened in Roseville in the spring of 2019, and is 23,000 square feet with 1200 animals of 300 species from 5 continents. Many are rescues.
A visit starts with basic admission with their Single Day Passports and Annual Passports, but you can also feed the animals, experience encounters with animals like the sloth, otters and kinkajou, and even snorkel with stingrays!
I had heard about SeaQuest coming to the Twin Cities for a while and was looking forward to checking it out with the kids, so finally we headed there not just to visit, but to experience some of the add-on interactions they offer as well!
SeaQuest is located inside Rosedale Mall in Roseville, which makes it convenient if you have some shopping stops to make as well or want to eat out after your visit (Rosedale is one of our favorite malls, especially after their recent makeover!).
We headed there late afternoon on a Monday so it wasn’t very busy. The attraction is on two levels and right away we were encountering animals that we could interact with and feed!
There were themed areas, from the Amazon to an Egyptian desert to a Mayan Jungle. The Mayan Jungle had a popular attraction, the aviary. Here you could go into a big birdcage room and have birds (mostly parakeets) all over your arms! It was crazy! There were so many and they were so tame and unafraid to sit with us and be fed. I was afraid we’d step on one or hurt one but everything was handled safely – the staff person was very organized and we just sat on a bench as the birds came to us. (And no, I don’t think we had any bird poop on us but it is a possibility!)
There were many animals from both land and sea throughout SeaQuest. For land animals there are tortoises, lizards, chickens, goats, rabbits, insects and so many others. Sea animals included all kinds of fish and crustaceans.
In “The Great Wall of China” area there were TONS of koi fish which my kids really liked feeding.
There were a variety of other underwater creatures like razorfish (these are fun to watch), sharks and even an octopus you could feed and pet!
Our visit included sloth and kinkajou encounters, which were AWESOME.
We first had a sloth interaction which lasted about 15 minutes. We went into the sloth room and met Flash who was up high, but when we came in with food to feed him, he s-l-o-w-l-y crawled down to greet us. Our guide taught us about Flash and we then got to feed him some grapes and celery with a clothespin.
We even got to pet Flash! He was very friendly and interesting to watch and learn about.
The Kinkajou was so cute! At Seaquest he lives near the sloth, in his own room. He is a tropical rainforest animal and this one was very young so he was SUPER active during our visit!
We learned about Honey the Kinkajou and got to feed him like we did the sloth. He was hard to feed only because he wanted to crawl all over the staff person, which was ok because the kinkajou was so funny and entertaining to watch.
Snorkeling with Stingrays!
Not only can you watch the stingrays be fed, but you can actually SWIM with them!
My kids were a little young (and unsure) to swim with stingrays, so I invited a friend to go with me. Kelly is one of my contributors here and is always up for an exciting adventure, so she joined me for our first experience swimming with stingrays!
We brought our own swimsuits and towels, and were provided with wetsuits and snorkels which we changed into in private bathrooms near the stingray tank.
The stingray tank is at the end of the attraction, by the gift shop. And the water is COLD. Just a heads- up. It’s 70 to 76 degrees (which is cold, believe me). I didn’t know this in advance but of course it has to be at the optimum temperature for the fish, not us. Nonetheless, we braved the waters and our bodies adapted.
I didn’t have much experience snorkeling, so it took me a little while to get used to breathing only through my mouth while swimming (the key is to relax). You can go deep underwater if you want, which some do but we just stayed close to the surface.
Once we got the hang of it it was really cool. We swam around to the other side (staying close to the edge) where you could sit and feed the stingrays. We did this for a while and it was the weirdest thing to have stingrays all over our laps as we fed them krill. A few of the stingrays actually nibbled my hand as I hand fed them. Other than being hungry, they were very friendly.
We had an hour but were probably in the tank for about 45 minutes, if even that. The time went fast as it was so fascinating.
Does this not sound like an AWESOME once-in-a-lifetime experience? It totally was and how fun it was to do something like this with a friend, though families and groups can do it too.
Overall Thoughts of SeaQuest
Overall, we had an amazing time at SeaQuest. We didn’t want to leave! There were so many things you could see and do and we plan to visit again sometime.
What we liked
I loved that there was so much to interact with. It’s not just a zoo where you look at things. It’s literally like a petting zoo, and not just of underwater creatures but of land animals as well. You can feed and touch so many animals!
It was super educational, and the animals are cared for well. The staff were constantly interacting with the animals. They were even walking a pig around the facility to give it some exercise. We talked to the staff and they regularly take the animals out of their cages, for hours at a time even. They also closely monitor how much the animals are fed. Because guests can buy tokens to feed the animals, they price them a bit high so people don’t feed them too much.
What we didn’t like
The prices are a bit high to do and see everything. However, for the safety of the animals, we understand this, as if the prices are too low, the animals could be overwhelmed and overfed.
Otherwise, we could see how a visit could be affected by crowds. The space to walk through areas was a bit tight sometimes, especially if people have strollers.
I definitely recommend visiting during off times like weekdays, when we visited. Also, get your tickets online from Goldstar or Groupon to save money (see below).
The cost can add up quickly for a visit, as not everything is included in the admission price. Admission itself is required no matter what you do, and encounters with animals like the sloth are charged per person, not per group. However, there are ways to save!
Their admission prices are:
Adults (ages 12+) – $16.95, or $14.88 online
Children (ages 2-11) – $10.95, or $8.88 online
55+ / Military / Students – $13.95, or $11.88 online
If those deals aren’t available, get tickets online directly on their website as it’s most expensive to buy your tickets at the door.
Add-on interaction prices are:
Feeding tokens – You can get 6 for $10, 14 for $20, 22 for $30, and 40 for $50. I recommend getting at least 22 for $30 as they go fast.
Sloth, Otter and Kinkajou Encounters – Cost is $19.95 per person.
Snorkeling with Stingrays – Cost is $29.95 per person.
Currently, Goldstar is offering deals on admission and packages, which include feeding tokens and add-ons. There are service fees but the feeding token and snorkel with stingray deals are the best. CHECK AVAILABILITY!
Groupon has some great deals as well. You can get a family 4-pack plus 8 activity tokens for only $39, valid any day. There are also birthday party packages and tickets that include a sloth interaction! CHECK AVAILABILITY!
(Disclosure: We were provided with a complimentary visit with add-on experiences to facilitate this review. Also, this post contains affiliate links that help support this site at no cost to you. All opinions are 100% mine.)