SeaWorld is one of those unexpected treasures of Orlando. First time visitors usually come away with a new-found affection for this park, you will even hear people saying that it’s the best attraction in Orlando!
This may seem strange what with Disney and Universal taking pride of place in Orlando, but SeaWorld rises above all the magic that Disney creates and the technical budget blowing special effects that Universal employs.
SeaWorld currently has a couple of thrill rides, so what makes it so appealing? Well the park provides a reminder to its guests that there are many natural wonders in the world and that we shouldn’t overlook them. What can be more spectacular than an adult killer whale emerging from the water at the speed of a torpedo, rising 30 feet into the air before crashing down and sending a tidal wave of icy cold water right into your lap. Who needs a water ride!
However, Seaworld in the Summer of 2016, will be home to the Orlando's tallest, fastest and longest 'hyper coaster', allowing riders to experience the feeling of weightlessness from the high speeds and steep drops!
SeaWorld manages to combine thought provoking education and spectacular entertainment all in a relaxing fun package.
SeaWorld can be enjoyed at a more relaxed pace, far from the hustle and bustle of the other Orlando parks, even in high season you can still get to see most of the shows and attractions without the feeling that you are on a commando training exercise!
2017 looks set for some new additions and changes to the park's attractions. It will debut it's first digitally enhanced ride experience as the legendary 'Kraken' is transformed into a VR roller coaster, the only one to be found in Florida! The 'Dolphin Nursery' will become more interactive, allowing guests the opportunity to get up-close to mother and baby dolphins. The 'Seven Seas Food Festival' a popular food and music event will also be introduced and finally 'Electric Ocean', an end-of-day spectacular event brings fun after dark, with bioluminescent lighting, music and entertainment.
2015 Attendance figure = 4,777,000
How Much Time:
Although everything can be seen in one day I would recommend a 2-day visit to get the most out of this wonderful park. Spend one day mainly enjoying the shows and the next day concentrate on the rides and exhibits, repeating the shows you particularly enjoyed from the previous visit.
The park is near the intersection of I-4 and the Bee Line Expressway (528), about ten minutes south of downtown Orlando. From Orlando, take exit 28 off of I-4. From Tampa, take exit 27A off of I-4.
The parking lot isn’t so big that you’ll lose your way, but it’s still a good idea to note down where you have parked. If you are parked towards the rear of the lot then you will be directed to the Trams, which will transport you to the entrance, very often though it’s easier and quicker just to walk. To orientate yourself, look for the 300 foot Sky Tower with the American flag aloft.
- Cars and motorcycles for $15.00
- Recreational vehicles for $20.00
- "Preferred parking" (nearer the turnstiles) available for $20.00
- Platinum Passport members receive complimentary preferred parking. 1 year and 2 year Passport members can park in general lots for free, and pay only $5.00 for preferred parking.
- Guests visiting SeaWorld Orlando or Aquatica in the same day pay parking only once.
If you can, plan to arrive early and leave late. Arrive 30 minutes before scheduled opening time and you will be parked near to the entrance and you will have a hassle free entrance. If you arrive later in the morning then the lines at the ticket booths and security stations may be long.
When you get to the beautiful themed entrance you might think you have arrived at the seaside, there is a majestic lighthouse with waves lapping around the edges and the sound of marine life fills the air.
If you need tickets then here you’ll find several booths to relieve you of your tourist Dollars. On the far left is the entrance to guest relations and the Annual Pass Centre. If you have vouchers for the SeaWorld Passports this is where you need to exchange your vouchers into your photo passes.
Just past the ticket booths are the entrance turnstiles which are fronted by security guards that will ask to inspect any bags that you may have. If you don’t have any bags there is a line to bypass the security checks.
Once into the park walk straight ahead to the large information desk, here you can pick up a large colour park map and show schedule. This is also the place to make any dining reservations or book one of the various extra tours that are available.
Antartica: Empire of the Penguin
Explore the all-new biggest attraction in SeaWorld Orlando's history. This epic exploration of a mysterious world blends animal encounters with an exhilarating family ride for a one-of-a-kind experience the whole family will enjoy.
Be transported to an icy world like you've never seen before. Experience the majestic grandeur of the South Pole and see it through the penguins’ eyes on the first-of-its-kind family ride, at the end step out and see first hand their colony in an expanse that envelops you in cool extremes: bringing you above and below their icy world.
...new for 2016
Surfacing in the Summer 2016, Mako is a 200ft tall 'hyper coaster', reaching speeds of 73mph along 4,760ft of steel track. The coaster will be the tallest, fastest and longest in Orlando, inspired by the ocean's fastest Mako sharks who are known for their top speed, extreme jumps and ability to quickly change course as they pursue their prey.
Manta, the next generation of SeaWorld thrills, takes you on an extraordinary journey from “seeing to being” by immersing you in the beautiful and mysterious world of rays, then for a flying roller coaster thrill ride on the biggest of them all, the manta
Experience One Ocean®, the sensational, visually stunning Shamu show, showcasing SeaWorld's entire family of majestic killer whales performing awe-inspiring choreography to an original musical score. The elaborate 3-storey set features an 80-foot-wide whale tail designed exclusively for this show as well as four rotating 20-foot-wide panoramic LED screens and nearly 100 speakers.
Kraken, Orlando's tallest and only floorless roller coaster is themed after a massive, mythological underwater beast unleashed from the depths of the sea. Riders' feet dangle as they travel in open-sided seats, riding on a pedestal above the track at speeds of 65 mph to heights of more than 140 feet, taking you upside down 7 times!
Journey To Atlantis
Dare to take the ultimate adventure ride, where you'll be tossed and dropped by unseen mystical forces. This one-of-a-kind water-coaster thrill ride through the mysterious lost city combines serpentine twists, out-of-this-world special effects and two of the steepest, fastest, wettest drops in the world! Make the journey! You WILL get wet!
Plunge into the frozen north on a virtual jetcopter ride to the Wild Arctic. Witness a beluga whale surface. Make faces with a walrus. Get close to growling polar bears. See all the breathtaking discoveries of a polar expedition - without the frostbite!
See a mystical daydream with acrobatic dolphins and whales, leaping water, soaring birds and spirited performers come to life in a vivid, theatrical experience only SeaWorld® could create.
Shamu's Happy Harbor
Shamu's Happy Harbor is a great play place for the kids - with net climbs, water mazes and a pirate ship just for the little ones! Now there's even more to explore with six additions to the area including; Shamu® Express, the family rollercoaster, Jazzy Jellies®, Swishy Fishies®, Ocean Commotion®, Sea Carousel® and the Flying Fiddler®!
Whether you're after a bite to eat, a spot of shopping, or simply somewhere to relax and watch the world go by, take a stroll along the Waterfront. Look out for the Groove Chefs, a unique band who use kitchen instruments to make their music!
Dolphin Cove is a 2.1-acre centrepiece, home to the large community of Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. Featuring crashing two-foot-high waves, a sandy beach, a spectacular underwater viewing area and a naturalistic coral reef.
Inside the world's first 3D 360 degree theatre, guests are given a turtle's view of the ocean's wonders, as the Turtle Trek story shows the perilous journey sea turtle's endure from birth to adulthood, as they survive close encounters with crabs, seagulls and sharks to name a few!
Shamu's Celebration: Light Up the Night
In June 2014 a new night time Shamu show, "Shamu's Celebration: Light Up The Night", debuts. The high energy show will include new, original music and production elements, as well as new killer whale behaviours.
Seaworld has a range of restaurants to suit all, from fine dining to quick service.
Shark's Underwater Grill
Terrace Garden Buffet
SeaWorld Aerial Views from Live Local
Park Opened: 15th December 1973