Tactile Tours

A tactile tour of Great Lakes Aquarium allows guest with vision loss an opportunity to experience our galleries and live animal collection through detailed descriptions and touching artifacts or models. 

Each tour is led by one of an Aquarium educator and includes five stops. There is some flexibility based on the interest of the guest with vision loss. We welcome up to four additional family members or companions on the tour. Tours are offered at 9:30 am and 4:30 pm to ensure ease of movement through the exhibit galleries. Tours must be scheduled at least one week in advance.

There is no fee for tours providing access to guest with vision loss. Contact Inclusion Coordinator Samantha at 218-740-2003 or ssmingler@glaquarium.org with questions or to arrange a tour.  

Tour Themes Available

Vertebrates of Minnesota Tour – this tour includes stops about Lake Superior fish, common snapping turtle, raptors or birds of prey, albino bull frogs, and river otters and/or moose. 

Fish Diversity Tour – this tour includes stops about electric eels, seahorses, sharks, lake sturgeon, and sea lamprey, covering fresh water and marine species with stories of unique native species and invasive species.

Have other favorite animals?  Let us know when you schedule your tour!

Tours will not include time at the touch pools, so we recommend you save time to explore on your own and work/connect with our touch pool staff for fun guided touch experiences with sharks, horseshoe crabs, sturgeon, moon jellies and tide pool species.   

Tactile Tours are available for groups of people who are blind or have vision loss.  Please give us at least two weeks’ notice to schedule multiple educators to support a group setting. Note, groups of more than 5 individuals with vision loss will be divided to ensure the best experience. 

There is no fee for tours providing access to guest with vision loss.  Ready to plan your visit?  Contact Inclusion Coordinator Samantha at 218-740-2003 or ssmingler@glaquarium.org