SEA WORLD ADVENTURE PARK, ORLANDO
SeaWorld Orlando is a theme park near Orlando, Florida. It is owned and operated by Busch Entertainment Corporation, a subsidiary of Anheuser-Busch, and is the subsidiary's most visited park. When combined with its neighbor Discovery Cove and the Aquatica waterpark, it forms a larger entertainment complex devoted to Earth's oceans and the array of life that inhabits them. SeaWorld features a variety of thrill rides, including roller coasters like Kraken. Journey to Atlantis, a combination roller coaster and splashdown ride, can also be found at SeaWorld Orlando.
In 2008, SeaWorld Orlando hosted an estimated 5.9 million guests, ranking it the seventh-most visited amusement park in the United States and #12 in the world.
Sea World Orlando
One of the biggest attractions is the Shark Encounter, in which guests are carried through a submerged acrylic tube into the sharks' tank. Another famous ride is Wild Arctic, simulating a helicopter ride to the Arctic. After the ride, the guests arrive at a simulated base station, where they can observe polar bears, Pacific walruses, and beluga whales. During the Christmas holiday season, Wild Arctic is transformed into the Polar Express Experience which offers the park's guests the opportunity to ride the Polar Express to the North Pole and meet Santa Claus in addition to the polar bears, Pacific walruses, and beluga whales that are at the Wild Arctic exhibit year round. Another attraction is the Penguin Encounter, showcasing a variety of penguins. In addition, an attraction features endangered Florida manatees. The park has an extensive playground for children, named Shamu’s Happy Harbor. It used to have a different playground named Cap'n Kids World.
SeaWorld has made many contributions to wildlife conservation. SeaWorld scientists, zoologists, trainers and rescue teams participate in research and wildlife preservation. SeaWorld teams have helped save stranded whales, dolphins, seals, and sea lions and helped raise the awareness of endangered manatees. SeaWorld's commitment to conservation, research and animal rescue was recently formalized with the creation of the non-profit SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund. Sea World is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, meaning they have met and exceeded the standards in Education, Conservation and Research.
Unlike most other theme parks, SeaWorld Orlando is not divided into "lands" or sections. There are, however, some distinct areas within the park.
- Key West at SeaWorld - Key West at SeaWorld is designed to mimic the appearance of the city of Key West, Florida. Exhibits in this portion of the park include stingrays, dolphins, sea turtles, manatees, and alligators. The stingray and dolphin habitats offer opportunities for guests to feed the animals.
- Shamu's Happy Harbor - Shamu's Happy Harbor is a children's play area hosted by Shamu, the park's killer whale mascot, that features family rides and a play fortress.
- The Waterfront at SeaWorld -
The Waterfront, the newest section of the park, resembles a seaside Mediterranean village and contains shops and restaurants, as well as the park's iconic Sky Tower ride.
- Clydesdale Hamlet -
A signature component of the Anheuser-Busch theme parks is the stables of the famous Budweiser Clydesdales. Adjacent to the stables is the Hospitality House, where adult guests can sample Anheuser-Busch products and learn about the beer-making process.
Rides and attractions
SeaWorld Orlando has a vast array of attractions, including rides and animal exhibits. Two of these attractions actually combine the two, with both a ride component and a separate animal exhibit.
- Kraken, a floorless roller coaster.
- Journey to Atlantis, a boat ride with roller coaster elements themed to the mythical Atlantis.
- Shamu Express, a junior roller coaster with cars themed as Shamu.
- Sky Tower, 400-foot tall rotating observation tower, built in 1973.
- Sea Carousel, a carousel themed with caricatured marine mammals and fish.
- Jazzy Jellies
- Swishy Fishies, a teacups ride themed as fish.
- Ocean Connection, a rockin' tug ride.
- The Flying Fiddler
- Pirates' Net, a play area with nets and fun things.
Dining with the sharks at the Sharks Underwater GrillPenguin Encounter, an indoor exhibit that also includes puffins and murres.
- Shark Encounter, which features an underwater tunnel and a wide array of sharks, rays and venomous fish. At Sharks Underwater Grill, guests can dine while observing the sea life in the main exhibit tank.
- Pacific Point Preserve, home to the park's sea lions and seals.
- Dolphin Cove, an outdoor exhibit where you can feed and touch Bottlenose Dolphins.
- Turtle Point, an outdoor exhibit that features rescued sea turtles.
- Manatee Rescue, home to rescued Florida manatees.
- Stingray Lagoon, a covered exhibit where you can touch stingrays.
- Dolphin Nursery, a covered exhibit where new-born Bottlenose Dolphins reside.
- Clydesdale Hamlet, home to the park's clydesdale horses.
Manta, a flying roller coaster and aquarium exhibit featuring rays, sea dragons and other species.
Wild Arctic, an indoor exhibit featuring polar bears, beluga whales, and walruses that is designed to resemble a research station in the Arctic Ocean. Guests can take a motion-simulated helicopter journey to the exhibit, or may bypass the ride and watch the film without the motion and proceed directly to the exhibit. During the Christmas season, Wild Arctic is replaced by the Polar Express Experience, a temporary overlay based on the popular 2004 feature film.
SeaWorld Orlando hosts a number of live shows, many featuring trained animals. During peak seasons (such as summer), the park will offer special shows in addition to the main performances.
The following is a current list of animals at the SeaWorld Orlando park:
- Beluga Whales
- Atlantic & Pacific Bottlenose Dolphins
- False Killer Whales
- Pacific Walruses
- Polar Bears
Southwest Airlines is the "Official Airline of SeaWorld" and has three Boeing 737 aircraft painted to look like Shamu as an advertisement for SeaWorld.
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