Mixing theme park thrills with marine-life animal studies and an eye toward educating visitors, SeaWorld Orlando is the crown jewel of the SeaWorld Parks and Resorts Orlando entertainment complex. World-famous killer whale/orca performances, up close and personal exhibits where guests can touch marine mammals and various aquatic creatures, and ocean-themed thrill rides make the modern park far more than the basic sit-and-watch animal parks of past decades.
One Ocean is the current killer whale live performance show, and it features a number of highly-trained orca whales executing high-speed swimming maneuvers and various aerial acrobatics to uplifting music in the seven-million gallon Shamu Stadium. Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin uses motion-based technology to draw guests through a number of live penguin exhibits. Manta merges aquatic wildlife with manmade thrills as exhibits featuring live rays lead up to a high-speed ride on an aerial roller coaster complete with four inversion flips. Wild Arctic gives guests the option of a motion simulation ride or stationery seating while enjoying film footage and live polar bears, beluga whales, and walruses.
Single-day admission is $74 for children ages 3-9, $82 for adults, and admission is free for ages 2 and under. SeaWorld Orlando Annual Passes for everyone aged 3 and up are $149 for one year, and $229 for two years. Combination passes for SeaWorld Orlando, Aquatica Orlando Waterpark, and Busch Gardens Tampa are also available, and vary in price according to park combinations, but are all priced the same for everyone aged 3 and up.
Best time to visit
The park opens year-round at 9am, but summer and holiday hours are extended, which makes it possible to take in more live animal performances. The heat of the summer months is also good for counteracting a big watery splash during one of Shamu’s live shows.
Near by POI
Aquatica, a waterpark for all ages and sister-park to SeaWorld, features wave pools, raft slides, children’s areas packed with activities for smaller swimmers, and the amazing Dolphin Plunge, where a pair of enclosed tube slides wind through a pool containing live Commerson's dolphins. Discovery Cove, another sister-park to SeaWorld, spotlights human interaction with many kinds of animals, most of them aquatic, with bottlenose dolphins being the perennial favorite among guests.