USA Today readers say Florida Aquarium is second best in North America

It was number 3 last year.

click to enlarge USA Today readers say Florida Aquarium is second best in North America
Photo via Florida Aquarium

For the second year in a row, USA Today’s 10Best Readers’ Choice Award named Florida Aquarium one of North America’s best aquariums.

The downtown Tampa wildlife conservatory fell into the no. 2 slot in the paper’s 2019 poll, which is an improvement from its no. 3 finish in 2018. To determine the best aquarium on the continent, a panel of experts selected 20 of the best aquariums in North America. The top 10 winners were determined by popular vote.

The top vote getter? Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Just one non-American facility made it into the top 10 (the Vancouver Aquarium), and Florida Aquarium joins New Orleans’ Audubon Aquarium of the Americas as the only Southeastern facility on the list.

“The Florida Aquarium is a Tampa gem and a cultural and conservation leader in the region,” brand new City of Tampa Mayor Jane Castor said in a release. “They understand that their best chapter is yet to be written and this honor is proof that exciting things are in store for them and the city they call home.”

According to a release, more than 800,000 guests — plus more than 100,000 students — visit The Florida Aquarium every year.

Someone crack open a Sea Turtle Sour.

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Ray Roa

Read his 2016 intro letter and disclosures from 2022 and 2021. Ray Roa started freelancing for Creative Loafing Tampa in January 2011 and was hired as music editor in August 2016. He became Editor-In-Chief in August 2019. Past work can be seen at Suburban Apologist, Tampa Bay Times, Consequence of Sound and The...
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