Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium

One of the most family-friendly tourist attractions
in Las Vegas

Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium Opening Hours: 10am - 8pm Sunday - Thursday; 10am - 10pm Friday - Saturday
Cost: Adults, $16.95; Children 12 years old and below, $10.95; Children 4 years old and below, free.
Location: Mandalay Bay Las Vegas NV
Further information and tickets: Shark Reef Aquarium

The Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay is one of the most family-friendly tourist attractions in Las Vegas that you shouldn’t miss. With a baby on the way we're more and more interested in what you can do with kids in Sin City and this is a great place to visit.

What's the Aquarium at the Mandalay Bay in Vegas like?

As you enter the Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay you begin a journey through a temple which is sinking into the sea. The walk-through tunnel aquariums surround you and make you feel like you’re under the sea with all the sharks and fish not in the middle of a desert.

Las Vegas Power Pass attractions passThe cost of visiting all the great attractions Las Vegas has to offer can really add to the cost of your trip. To help keep costs down we usually get a Las Vegas Power Pass

With it you’ll have access to over 20 attractions, tours, rides etc. The Power Pass is worth more than $500 in admissions and discounts.

Image of Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium

A couple of hours quickly passed by as we wandered through the tunnels at the Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay mesmerised by the turtles, giant rays and brightly-coloured exotic fish. The camera really doesn't do justice to their true myriad of colours...

Image of Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium

If you fancy a more hands on experience that's on offer too as there’s a pool where you can reach out and touch the sea creatures.

Image of fish at the Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium

And among the 2,000 animals at the Shark Reef, Mandalay Bay Vegas I thought I spotted my father-in-law in this reptile tank...

Image of big lizard at the Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium

My father-in-law and our friend Chris having a chat with him through the glass!

Image of Chris at the Shark Reef Mandalay Bay

About the Aquarium

The Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium opened in 2000. It’s the third largest Aquarium in the USA and the only Aquarium based in a desert. The animals are housed in 1.6 million gallons of seawater.

Image of a starfish at Shark Reef Mandalay Bay

Dive with sharks at the Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium

If you're a guest at the Mandalay Bay hotel Vegas who's over 18 and feeling daring you can now dive with sharks when you visit the aquarium but only if you're dive certified. Unfortunately we're not (phew!) but if you are this a unique experience and certainly not one you'd normally expect to get in the middle of the desert!

Image of a shark at the Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium

The dive takes place in a Shipwreck exhibit which is 22 feet deep and home to more than 30 sharks. Yep that's right more than 30 of all different varieties from Sandtigers to White Tip Reef Sharks.

We swam with sharks at Typhoon Lagoon in Florida and that was enough for me. I just got myself from one side to the other as quickly as I could and didn't see a thing - totally missing the point. This, however, is a completely different experience and a great opportunity if you're in to diving and not an utter wimp like me. Plus you'll be in safe hands with an experienced dive guide.

As well as sharks you'll also see all different kinds of fish, some sea turtles, sawfish and rays.

The whole experience takes between three and four hours. If you're tempted you'll need to book because you can only dive with sharks on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays.

It's not cheap. It costs $650 for one diver but you'll get to take home a video of your dive and boast to all your friends.

Image of Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium

Would you say the Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay is expensive?

As you can see from the prices it’s not that cheap but is in line with the other attractions in Vegas and is a pretty spectacular place to visit.

Return from the Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium to Las Vegas Things to do

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