My family and I checked out the new Via Aquarium at the Rotterdam Mall in Schenectady last weekend, and were very impressed with the whole experience. The line to purchase daily tickets was very long, but the line to become an annual member was short, and we knew we wanted to become members. It was going to be $58 for a weekend daily ticket, and we knew we would want to visit it at least twice so a family membership for $100 (Annual Passport) was a going to be a good deal. (If it is affordable for you, and you know you are going to return, I’d recommend this). Children under 3 are free, and there are discounts for seniors, college students, and first responders. It is also good to know that a daily ticket is good for the whole day so if you have things to do in the Albany area or want to shop at the mall and return for aquarium fun a few times during the day, that can be done.
Our favorite things to do at the Via Aquarium were feeding the fish at Koi Island, petting the stingrays at Stingray Bay, and the Shark Alley. The glass that supports the tunnel of Shark Alley is so clean and clear that it really gives visitors the feeling of being able to reach out and touch the marine life. We walked through the aquarium kind of quickly our first time around because it was a bit crowded, but we will definitely come back on a weekday afternoon and spend more time there. It is definitely worth a visit if you have marine animal lovers in your family. I’m excited to have one more fun place to go to on a rainy/snowy day in the Albany area. Via Aquarium, 93 West Campbell Road, Schenectady, NY (518) 280-5100