Bringing a slice of deep-sea life to North Austin, this aquatic playground offers 35 exhibits in which tropical and cold-water fish swim alongside larger sea creatures. Past the “shipwrecked” boat packed with sea anemones, you’ll see large tanks full of shrimp, nautiluses and a giant jellyfish swirling under color-changing black lights. Kids can touch and feed stingrays, leopard sharks and starfish in three large tanks and encounter land animals like chameleons, lizards, parrots and a giant tortoise.
In a city so devoted to taking care of animals, it’s no wonder that Austinites are always seeking new ways to connect with local and exotic critters at petting zoos, animal farms and habitats. Some of the best things to do in Austin involve getting in touch with nature and its inhabitants, whether that’s going on the city’s top hikes or wandering through Austin’s best parks and gardens. Want to pet llamas and longhorns in their natural environment? Or chill with a coterie of cats? These animal havens will do just fine.