About the Show- Tickets, Seating, Special Accomodations, the Presentation, and Dolphin Encounter - FAQs

About The Show - Tickets, Seating, Special Accommodations, and the Presentation

How early should I arrive to the exhibit space prior to my show?
Queuing areas will open approximately one hour prior to show time, while doors to the AT&T Dolphin Tales theater will open approximately 30 minutes prior to show time. There are no assigned seats. Guests are able to choose their seats on a first-come-first-serve basis.

I am coming with a group. Will my group be allowed to sit together?
We advise all large groups to ensure they be among the first in line to enter the AT&T Dolphin Tales theater. Queuing areas will open approximately one hour prior to show time, while the door to the AT&T Dolphin Tales theater will open 30 minutes prior to show time. While we cannot ensure groups will be able to sit together, arriving in the theater early to select seats will give groups a better chance of finding seats together.

What happens if I am late for my show-time? Will I be allowed to re-schedule for another show time?
Once the doors close for a show, late admittance is prohibited. Rescheduling for the next show is based on availability and will be handled on a case-by-case basis. Please plan your visit to be ready to enter the theater approximately 30 minutes before the show begins. Queuing areas will open approximately one hour prior to show time while door to the AT&T Dolphin Tales theater will open 30 minutes prior to show time. An original film about the Aquarium and its conservation programs will be shown in the theater beginning 30 minutes prior to show time to entertain guests in the theater.

How will guests with visual or physical impairments be accommodated?
Guests of all abilities will be able to access the AT&T Dolphin Tales theater 30 minutes prior to show time. The AT&T Dolphin Tales theater provides seating for guests traveling in wheelchairs accessible seating on the promenade level. These seats are available for guests in a wheelchair or those who require special assistance, and are available at a first-come-first-serve basis. We recommend that guests with special needs or requests arrive as early as possible. Queuing areas will open approximately one hour prior to show time, while the door to the AT&T Dolphin Tales theater will open 30 minutes prior to show time.

Will strollers be allowed in the exhibit space?
Strollers are not permitted in the AT&T Dolphin Tales gallery and show. If you must use a stroller while visiting the remainder of the Aquarium, we recommend smaller, umbrella-style, less bulky strollers as it is much easier to navigate the Aquarium with those. There is stroller parking located in the Atrium for your convenience while you visit AT&T Dolphin Tales.

Is there an opportunity to swim/dive with the dolphins or have a VIP behind-the-scenes tour in this area?
We are pleased to announce that we now offer a NEW Dolphin Encounter experience that includes an exciting poolside interaction with the stars of our AT&T Dolphin Tales show. In this encounter, you have the opportunity to meet, touch and feed one of the Atlantic bottlenose dolphins in our care. You will also see many of the ways we care for our dolphins up-close and participate in a training session. Learn even more about this exciting experience and make a reservation today: Dolphin Encounter Program

As a member, will I receive a free ticket to see AT&T Dolphin Tales?
Georgia Aquarium members with valid annual passes receive free general admission to the Aquarium and free admission to AT&T Dolphin Tales.

Is there an additional charge for AT&T Dolphin Tales?
No, AT&T Dolphin Tales is included in Georgia Aquarium's Total Ticket general admission.

How does the AT&T Dolphin Tales show compare to other shows at similar venues?
Shows and presentations that you may have seen at other facilities and attractions all offer their own unique experience. The AT&T Dolphin Tales show will be unlike anything that has ever been seen before. AT&T Dolphin Tales is a Broadway quality show, combining thrilling theatrical performances with the grace and beauty of dolphins. From state-of-the-art special effects, to elaborate costuming and a completely original musical score, the AT&T Dolphin Tales show will mesmerize guests of all ages.

Do any of the special effects in the show affect the dolphins or trainers?
Just like every other habitat at the Georgia Aquarium, AT&T Dolphin Tales was designed with the health and well-being of the animals as the number one priority. During planning and construction, a series of experts and engineers worked with our team of trainers and veterinarians. Their expertise helped us to develop a show which entertains our visitors while never jeopardizing the well-being of our dolphins or our team members.

How many dolphins are in the show?
During any single performance the number of dolphins will vary.

About the Dolphins

Where did the dolphins come from?
All of the animals you will see in the AT&T Dolphin Tales show were born in human care at other like-minded, accredited zoological partners. However, it’s important to know that not all of the animals in our collection will be part of the show. As an Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums (AMMPA) accredited organization, Georgia Aquarium has created and follows an Acquisition & Disposition Policy, for all animals in our living collection. Any time Georgia Aquarium makes additions to our living collection, we fully comply with the Animal Welfare Act and all government regulations.

How do you move dolphins to Atlanta?
Dolphins have been safely and successfully moved between aquariums for more than 40 years. Any animal transport is planned in great detail, and extraordinary care is taken to ensure that animals remain comfortable throughout the transport. Each animal move includes an investment in a significant amount of time with the animal at the partnering facility prior to transport, veterinary approval for travel, in-transit monitoring, post-transport observations and acclimation of the animals by Georgia Aquarium and partnering staff. It is important to note that any transport undertaken by Georgia Aquarium is coordinated to ensure strict compliance with the Animal Welfare Act.

How have the dolphins fared since coming to Georgia Aquarium?
The animals have adapted to their new environment very well. Georgia Aquarium has a comprehensive preventative health program. Our team of onsite veterinarians, animal trainers, nutritionists and water quality team members monitor every facet of the animal’s health and well-being.

Why did you choose to produce a show with dolphins?
Here at the world’s most magical aquarium we have a long history of listening to our guests. Since we opened in 2005, Atlantic bottlenose dolphins have been the number one request by visitors of Georgia Aquarium. We strongly feel that experiences are more impactful when guests are engaged by the animals they meet at the Aquarium. The AT&T Dolphin Tales show and gallery is about inspiration, and we truly believe that inspiration is unique to each individual; when one is inspired, there is no limit to the things one can do. Showcasing dolphins in an entertaining yet educational show format gives us the opportunity to inform millions of visitors annually about these amazing animals and the Aquarium’s leadership in the study and stewardship of this species. 

How many dolphins are living at the Aquarium?
At this time, there are 11 dolphins living at Georgia Aquarium. At any given time, the population count can fluctuate based on many factors including breeding management, genetic diversification, social restructuring and partnerships with other accredited locations. The new dolphin habitat far exceeds the United States Department of Agriculture’s spatial requirement for marine mammals.

Is the Aquarium getting involved with stranded dolphins so that it can bring some to Georgia Aquarium?
Georgia Aquarium’s Dolphin Conservation Field Station, adjacent to the Aquarium’s Marineland facility, is dedicated to studying marine animals off the coast of Georgia and northeast Florida and rescuing and rehabilitating stranded animals. Animals deemed releasable by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) will be released in the ocean after rehabilitation. Animals deemed by NMFS to be unfit for release will be provided a home for life at Marineland, Georgia Aquarium or another location selected by NMFS.

What is the Aquarium’s response to those who say dolphins should not be in Aquariums?
While we respect all opinions, we firmly believe that we provide a valuable educational experience to our millions of guests each year. Showcasing dolphins in a respectful, beautiful way gives Georgia Aquarium the opportunity to educate more than two million visitors annually about these amazing animals and the Aquarium’s leadership in the study and stewardship of this species.

In a Harris Interactive® poll, released by the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums (AMMPA), 97% of those surveyed agree that marine life parks, aquariums and zoos play an important role in educating the public about marine mammals. In addition, 96% agree that marine life parks, aquariums and zoos provide people with valuable information about the importance of oceans, waters and the animals that live there.

Georgia Aquarium is an accredited member of the AMMPA and the AZA, which hold zoos and aquariums to the highest standards. AMMPA members house hundreds of dolphins and have advanced the care and understanding of the species in our care and in their natural habitat for decades.

Are the dolphins that live at Georgia Aquarium from drive fisheries? I recently saw “The Cove” and want to know what the Georgia Aquarium is doing to ensure that its dolphin acquisitions are legal and humane.
The dolphins residing at Georgia Aquarium are NOT from drive fisheries. The animals came to Georgia Aquarium from accredited zoological locations in Hawaii, Bahamas, Bermuda and Georgia Aquarium’s Marineland facility in Florida. As an accredited member of the AMMPA, we do not support, fund or acquire animals from the Japanese drive fisheries. In fact, not one animal in an AMMPA-member facility or interactive program is from drive fisheries. AMMPA and the AZA strictly prohibit any zoological park and aquarium from joining or maintaining membership in the organization if the facility acquires animals from the Japanese drive fisheries. Georgia Aquarium, along with other like-minded zoological institutions, has called for an end to these practices, and did so before The Cove was filmed.

Does being in an Aquarium shorten a dolphin’s lifespan?
Absolutely not. Dolphins in human care at aquariums and marine life parks live longer, on average, than their counterparts in the wild. Dolphins at accredited aquariums are protected from many of the survival threats which face wild dolphins, including starvation, disease, predators and lethal encounters with fishing nets which kill hundreds of thousands of dolphins annually. Our dolphins are served restaurant-quality fish each day, receive world-class veterinary care, mental and physical stimulation, and the attention of devoted trainers. In fact, at this time, there are dolphins in AMMPA-member facilities that are in their 40s and 50s, well above the average median lifespan of mid-20s. Studies also indicate that the average median lifespan continues to increase as knowledge of the species’ biology and husbandry advances. The oldest dolphin known in human care, Nellie, lived to 61 years. She was born at Georgia Aquarium’s Marineland facility in Florida in 1953, and thrived there in human care.

About Georgia Aquarium's Conservation Efforts

What are you doing to benefit dolphins in the open ocean?
As an authority in aquatic animal research, dolphin research, and dolphin conservation, Georgia Aquarium is dedicated to scientific research, rescue and rehabilitation of stranded dolphins and other marine species through its Dolphin Conservation Field Station and the Dolphin Conservation Center at Marineland, located in northeast Florida. The Aquarium also provides significant funding and resources for multiple research projects which focus on health assessments and ecological studies of Atlantic bottlenose dolphins in The Indian River Lagoon and Sarasota Bay, Florida, as well as Brunswick, Georgia.

Georgia Aquarium’s efforts are part of an overall philosophy of research, conservation and preservation in concert with other accredited zoos and aquariums. Over the past five years, aquariums and zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the Alliance of Marine Mammals Parks and Aquariums have provided nearly $89 million to more than 3,700 conservation projects all over the world.  

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