Western North Carolina is one of the most beloved regions in the country. Here, visitors of all ages discover one-of-a-kind shops, entertaining theatrical performances, and absolutely stunning Blue Ridge scenery. One unique way to spend the day with your family here is to visit the aquarium in Hendersonville, NC! Here is everything visitors need to know about it.
There’s no better place to spend an Appalachian vacation than our historic town, located just 30 minutes south of Asheville, NC! The aquarium in Hendersonville, NC, is just the beginning of fun things to do here.
For a complete, hand-picked list of the area’s best attractions, simply request access to our free Hendersonville Vacation Guide! It is the region’s most valuable resource for planning unforgettable mountain getaways, so get your copy today.
You Need to Visit the Aquarium in Hendersonville, NC!
About Team ECCO
At the heart of the Team ECCO Ocean Center and Aquarium is Team ECCO itself, the nonprofit group responsible for bringing the inland town of Hendersonville a little taste of the ocean. The group of leaders became active in 2001 when they decided to take 40 kids and 10 adults from Western North Carolina on a voyage to view manatees along the Atlantic coast. The successful trip inspired the group, which became registered as a nonprofit in 2005. Since the spontaneous voyage, Team ECCO has dedicated countless hours to providing marine science education and oceanic adventures to the schools of Western North Carolina.
The Team ECCO Ocean Center and Aquarium
In 2011, Team ECCO welcomed visitors to their new public aquarium in downtown Hendersonville. The center immediately became recognized as the only aquarium near Asheville, and the first inland aquarium in the entire state of North Carolina! At first glance, the Team ECCO Ocean Center and Aquarium appears small and unassuming. Inside, however, visitors of all ages are able to discover nearly 70 marine and reptile species! Immersive exhibits like a touch tank allow visitors to view and interact with colorful creatures like starfish, angelfish, and even sharks.
An Educational Experience
An important aspect of the aquarium is education. No one leaves without having learned something new! Young learners and budding scientists are encouraged to ask questions, form hypotheses, and document behaviors during their visit. Like the tide, the Team ECCO Ocean Center and Aquarium is in continuous motion, encouraging everyone to defy the existing standards of marine biology.
What to Know Before You Visit
Due to the construction of a new, 2,000-foot shark tank, the Hendersonville, NC aquarium is closed until February of 2018. The North Main Street facility is normally open Wednesdays through Saturdays from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. For just $3 (or $1.50 for senior citizens), visitors can spend as much time as they’d like viewing over 25 vibrant exhibits. Street parking is available, but a car is not needed for those who choose to stay in downtown Hendersonville!
The Aquarium Is a 5-Minute Walk from The Henderson!
If you’re planning a family vacation in the Blue Ridge Mountains, there’s no better place to stay than The Henderson! Located just one block away from Main Street in downtown Hendersonville, this historic inn is close to everything the area has to offer. Our accommodations feature historic details you’ll remember for years to come and premium amenities you won’t find at a hotel.
A picture-perfect day with the entire family is at your fingertips when you stay with us! Wake up to a complimentary gourmet breakfast at The Henderson. Then, get some fresh air hiking beautiful Chimney Rock, or head over to Asheville for a visit at The Biltmore. Come back downtown to bring the kids to the aquarium in Hendersonville, NC, then walk over to a great place to shop like Dancing Bear Toys. Finally, return to the comfort of your beautiful family suite after a day well spent!