For those of you looking to plan one last vacation before the kids return to school next month, you’re in luck! I’m here to share my top picks for your first time at SeaWorld Orlando Parks in Orlando, Florida.
Wave Pools at Aquatica (“Big Surf Shores”)
First, we were very impressed with the newly opened Aquatica. Lots to do for young and old. The wave pools offer lifejackets for your beginning swimmer to ride the waves (you can also wear these throughout the park). Note that one of the two pools, called “Big Surf Shores” has smaller, more even wave action. Both are located on soft sand beaches – great for castle building for those who have not seen the ocean before (we live in Minnesota .
Lazy River at Aquatica (“Loggerhead Lane”)
Under the larger “Tassie’s Twisters” ride, you can float along a lazy river called “Loggerhead Lane”. This journey features waterfalls and a cave. Inside the cave, you can view the park’s Commerson’s dolphins through large windows. We especially liked that the river has no time limit (do as many laps as you please) and double inner tubes for families to share.
“Kata’s Kookaburra Cove” at Aquatica
This is a great place for starter waterslides located right by the wave pools. There was even a double inner tube slide for us to slide together, plenty of lifeguards, and a nice sandwich shop nearby (“Mango Market”).
“Dine with Shamu” at SeaWorld
Located behind Shamu Stadium, “The Cove” offers a backstage dining experience. This cost beyond the park ticket was worth it for us (I would advise booking in advance). The buffet was good, we got to see the largest of the whales at the park (12,000 lbs.) perform just feet from the table my daughter and I were sitting at. We got to meet a trainer, ask questions, and get her picture taken.
“Serengeti Safari” at Busch Gardens
Located at the entrance to the “Edge of Africa” trail exhibit, the “Serengeti Safari” is an open-truck tour of the plains. We saw zebra and rhino families with new babies. The highlight of this 30-minute ride is a stop to hand-feed romaine lettuce leaves to several giraffe. This is a wonderful opportunity. The cost is in addition to the park ticket but we, again, thought it was well worth it (I would also advise booking in advance). We found the guides to be really fun and entirely willing to take family pictures of us with our own camera or via the professional photographer who comes along for the ride.
I’m happy to share more info and our “runners up”, just let me know in the comments. You can also find additional Orlando activities from our Delta flight attendant’s travel guide here.
Did your favorite Orlando/SeaWorld activity make the list?