Tennessee Aquarium Photos

The Tennessee Aquarium really put Chattanooga on the map. It's reason enough to pay the city a visit, as these photos will attest. And it just keeps getting better. The original River Journey building has now been joined by a new, equally dramatic building housing the Ocean Journey exhibits.

Be prepared to spend several hours here. There's lots to see, and you'll want to linger at your favorite exhibits.

The Tennessee Aquarium's architecture is very distinctive. The top floor of each of the two buildings features the dramatic glass roof you see in this photo. 

Entering the sunlit Appalachian Cove Forest exhibit on the top floor of the River Journey building. The exhibit features river otters, several species of trout, songbirds, and reptiles. 

A waterfall in the Appalachian Cove Forest recreates the peaceful beauty of the mountains. 

A white heron poses in the re-created cypress swamp of the Mississippi Delta exhibit. 

Four lazy turtles bask in the cypress swamp. The Tennessee Aquarium holds the world's largest collection of freshwater turtles. There are species from around the world, some of which are a bit bizarre. 

Sit a spell and take in the view in one of these comfy rockers on the top floor of the Ocean Journey building.

Watch the river traffic pass by on the Tennessee River.

Two dramatically colored rays swim about in the Forest Pool exhibit in the Ocean Journey building. 

A Tennessee Aquarium staff member shows off one of the Hyacinth Macaws. 

At Shark Island you can touch small sharks and rays, if you're quick enough. Aquarium staff members add interesting tidbits about these animals. This pool is large enough that you can get up close even when the aquarium is crowded. 

One of the colorful denizens of the butterfly garden, where you'll find these beauties fluttering all about amid splendid tropical foliage. 

The little tykes can't resist the shallow pools and streams in the aquarium's landscaping, so come prepared with bathing suits or a change of clothes. There are outdoor restrooms nearby.