Without a doubt one of the most popular things to do in downtown Dallas is to visit the Dallas World Aquarium. Located in the historic West End, the DWA is a favorite with Dallasites and tourists alike. Whether you’re looking for something family friendly to do in downtown Dallas or planning a fun date complete with a great bar in downtown afterwards, the DWA is a must see.
More Than Just An Aquarium
As soon as guests walk through the front doors, it becomes apparent The Dallas World Aquarium is more than just a first-class aquatic adventure. Visitors venture into an ecosystem complete with a living rain forest, which is home to crocodiles, manatees, monkeys, toucans and many more amazing animals.
The incredible aquarium itself, features its own underwater ecosystems with coral reefs and a kelp forest. Visitors can also get a feel for what it’s like to be underwater, and get a unique look at the sharks and other fish as they walk through the 20,000-gallon tunnel exhibit.
The Temple Of The Jaguar
No, we aren’t talking about the next Indiana Jones, film. We’re talking about the chance to see the Jaguar in the Mundo Maya exhibit. This three-level habitat has an upper outdoor level with natural light, fresh air and room to exercise. The middle area is the temple area where the Jaguar can rest and roam. There’s also a large tree in the middle, which the Jaguar uses to go between the middle and third level just like in the wild. The lower level is a holding area, which can be accessed in the evening.
When It’s Dinner Time
Who doesn’t love the adorable otters? Visitors to get to watch otters and other aquarium residents get fed daily. And yes, to answer everyone’s question, you can watch the sharks eat as well. There’s also daily educational talks about important issues such as Jaguar conservation. If you’re visiting on a Saturday, be sure to get there by 11:30 AM to see the Crocodiles get fed!
Have Your Next Private Event In Downtown Dallas
Want a very unique venue for your wedding reception downtown? How about a company luncheon surrounded by crocodiles? The DWA has several areas for private events guests can choose from.
- The Reef Room – Surround your guests with cuttlefish from Japan, Southern Australia Leafy seadragons and more. This area eats 125 people or can accommodate 250 guests for a cocktail buffet.
- The Port Hole – Is located on the second floor and can handle 400 seated guests for dinner and 600 for an informal function. This room offers a great view of the downtown Dallas skyline at night.
- Rainforest – Also known as the Tribal Gallery, this area can seat 250 people or serve 300 for a cocktail buffet. It’s adjoined by the Orinoco Room, which can seat 50 guests or serve cocktails to 100 patrons. It’s surrounded by a floor-to-ceiling acrylic view panel displaying a wide array of freshwater species including stingrays, turtles and manatees. The Jungle Café is also located in this area and is a full bar and kitchen.
- Mundo Maya – Café Maya is on the third level. It includes a full bar and kitchen. You’ll be able to serve 125 guests for dinner or have cocktail buffet service for 250 people. There’s also an outdoor area to enjoy now that it’s warm weather in downtown Dallas.
With all the attractions inside the Dallas World Aquarium, you can expect to visit for fun-filled several hours. Afterwards, be sure to check out some of the best restaurants in downtown Dallas located in right here in the West End.