Moody Gardens in Galveston is a unique place. It is a hotel and convention center that also features three pyramids on the property – the Aquarium Pyramid, the Rainforest Pyramid, and the Discovery Pyramid. We visited Moody Gardens twice during our stay on Galveston Island.
We were there a couple weeks before Christmas, during their Festival of Lights. The grounds were all decorated up with Christmas lights and various light sculptures. The price was $11 per person. On “Food Drive Thursdays” you could get two-for-one admission if you brought a canned food item. We happened to be going on a Thursday, so we stopped at Walgreens on the way to grab a couple cans to bring with us.
We had some warm December days during our time in Galveston. However, this night happened to be a little on the chilly side, but only added to the festive feeling of the event. The walk through the festival path took about an hour. It was divided into sections with different themes. One of our favorites was “The Twelve Days of Christmas” where the song played as the different sculptures were choreographed to light up to go along with the song . There was also a section where lights dangled from the trees which was really pretty and made a great photo-op.
Our second visit to Moody Gardens was to check out the Rainforest and Aquarium Pyramids. We found the pricing for the attractions to be quite confusing. It ended up being $30 a person for the two pyramids.
We went into the Rainforest first. It was warm and humid in there, as you would expect a rainforest to be. Tropical plants and trees were everywhere. Birds flew about freely. There were even a few monkeys wandering around. There were ponds filled with all different kinds of fish and a few turtles. A couple of side rooms held enclosures with reptiles and amphibians. There were also some larger enclosures in the main room with animals like bearded dragons, ocelots, and blue duiker – which are the cutest little mini deer I have ever seen!
We checked out the Aquarium Pyramid next. Unfortunately, it was under construction so most of the exhibits were not open. There were a few otters in an outside enclosure on the way in that were fun to watch gliding through the water. Inside, there were a lot of large aquariums with fish, sharks, stingrays, and the like.
The penguin area was open, so we watched them for a while. It was a little disappointing that not much was open to see, but it looks like it will be pretty interesting when it opens back up at the end of May.
Our takeaway is that Moody Gardens is an interesting tourist attraction, but a little bit pricey. The Festival of Lights was a nice holiday activity and the Rainforest Pyramid was a fun way to spend an afternoon. However, if we wouldn’t have had time to visit, we wouldn’t have been all that upset.