Here’s a first for us—an actual hotel swimming pool attraction! Did you know that for $30 a person, you can go on a behind-the-scenes tour and get up close and personal with the sharks, creatures and marine biologists at the Golden Nugget Tank? This is the often mentioned pool with a water slide that takes you through a shark tank. It’s been on our bucket list for a long time and is often listed in hotel pool top 10 lists.
Tours are offered once a day, at 3:30pm, Thursday through Saturday. You don’t have to be staying at the hotel to take the tour. Just buy tickets online or at the ticket counter on the ground floor of the Golden Nugget.
A marine biologist took us and 5 other guests up the elevator and to the top of the tank. To get into the authorized zone we had to first walk through a decontaminating foot bath (not water, just air!). Then we were in, above the tanks and just out of view of the pool visitors 3 floors below. Wet suits and diving equipment hung off garment racks. There was lots of rubber padding and we could see the crated walkways over the tanks. Lots of pipes and industrial feeling equipment. We were right above/alongside the tanks, like Samuel L. Jackson in Deep Blue Sea, only these sharks are not genetically engineered to increase brain capacity and were therefore unlikely to snap us up for an appetizer before happy hour.
The friendly, patient, and well-versed Marine Biologist Stephanie told us about all the sharks and fish in the tank, the sharks names, what they eat and how they take care of them. There was plenty of time for trying on diving chain mail, seeing the food the animals are fed, and asking questions about her job, her background and all the fish in the tanks. We even got to take home with a souvenir shark tooth from one of the sharks in the tank.
It’s great for marine-obsessed kids, anyone interested in sharks or even for a nice distraction from gaming or swimming.
Photos from our recent visit:
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