Stingrays, Dolphins, and Penguins: My first (half)day at Seaworld

There are a range of emotions people have when I said I’ve never been to SeaWorld. Here are a few:

  1. WHAT?!
  2. But you live in Florida….?
  3. Have you seen that one movie…?
  4. Well, why not?

Let me start by addressing some of these things. Growing up, I was a Navy Brat, and technically I still am. We moved around a lot and sometimes you didn’t know how long you would be staying somewhere. With that in mind, when we lived in Florida (and once when we didn’t) my parents took me to Disney World. When I lived in other states I went to Kings Dominion. None of those involve animals. Well…technically Disney does now because it has Animal Kingdom, but that’s really nothing like Sea World. I am also allergic to most things in life so I stay away from animal related areas. Once I moved to Florida in a strange attempt to become an adult, I discovered Universal and Islands of Adventure. A mix of Disney and Universal can really take up your days so I never ventured to Sea World. One time I did head to Busch Gardens in Tampa, but I was so disappointed that I didn’t even consider Sea World.

As far as the documentary goes: No. I have not seen it. No, I don’t plan on seeing it. I believe that anything in media can sway your mind – as it is meant to. Whether it is accurate or not, I don’t know. I believe that having anything in captivity has good and bad and if you think it’s completely good or completely bad, I think that you’ve lost your mind. All I know is, after I met some of the animals and some of the people at Sea World, I just don’t think I can believe that these people would intentionally hurt the animals they care for. On top of that, many of these animals are there because they have difficulty surviving in their natural habitat anyway. But having animals, or people, in much smaller areas than they are used isn’t necessarily the best thing either – and that goes for zoos as well.

Either way.

My friends decided I must go to Sea World. So we went.

Sea World

We did intend to go to Sea World for the entire day, but as Florida goes, the weather did not cooperate at all. Despite the day being cut short, I had a really good experience and I’m glad my ticket doesn’t expire until the end of the year so I can go back and try things I didn’t get to do the first time.

One thing I would recommend to anyone: The Up Close Penguin tour. OMG amazing. But technically I’m going out of order, so hold that thought.

First thing we did: Feed Sting Rays. Absolutely terrifying to me. I really don’t know why, but I did it one time and refused to do it again. Oh, and baby sting rays are the cutest thing. Just simply adorable.

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Next we fed dolphins! Super cool. I was definitely not as scared. The little girl net to us kept playing with her fish and I couldn’t stop laughing, but the dolphins were super sweet and knew we had food so didn’t really care what we did as long as we fed them.

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The Atlantis ride… all I can say is: Absolutely soaked. I recommend doing this after you see the penguins – not before.

Some of the rides were closed due to technical difficulties which was kind of a bummer, but let’s be real: once someone says a roller coaster is closed because something is wrong, there isn’t a chance I’m going to get on it when it is working ten minutes later.

So off to the penguins we went! They have this adorable ride where you follow a baby penguin. The ride stopped working while we were enclosed in a small space, but thankfully that part only involved a movie so I wasn’t too freaked out. We still went on it, but there really wasn’t much that could go wrong. Then you’re dumped out to this freezing room where all the penguins are. THEY ARE SO CUTE! (Again, if soaking wet it’s even colder than you think it is.)

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The Penguins Up Close Tour was super legit. I learned a lot about the penguin exhibit and got to play with penguins! Really cool experience and totally worth the extra money.

Then it poured…lightening came along… Everything closed… so we drove home! So I didn’t get to see a lot of stuff, but again, I did a bunch of things I’ve never done before and some of those things I never thought I would do. I had a really cool experience. If you haven’t been, I think you should, and don’t let people sway your mind.

Baby Penguin!

Baby Penguin!

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Our new friend

He wanted to come chill with us

He wanted to come chill with us

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