SeaWorld Orlando is a theme park, and marine-life based zoological park, in Orlando, Florida. It is owned and operated by SeaWorld Entertainment. When combined with its neighbor Discovery Cove and Aquatica, it forms Seaworld Parks and Resorts Orlando, an entertainment complex consisting of the three parks and many neighboring hotels. In 2013, SeaWorld Orlando hosted an estimated 5.1 million guests, ranking it the tenth most visited amusement park in the United States and nineteenth worldwide.
Unlike most other theme parks, SeaWorld Orlando is not fully divided into dedicated themed "lands" or sections. There are instead individually themed attractions and select themed areas of the park including the following:
The main entrance of the park features a Florida-inspired theme with lush tropical landscaping and a large artificial freshwater marina with a Shamu-themed iconic lighthouse. The theme of the main entrance area integrates into the nearby Key West at SeaWorld area with similar architecture and landscaping. The Manta attraction and aquarium exhibit is also near the main entrance area.
Shamu's Happy Harbor is a children's area hosted by Shamu, the park's killer whalemascot. The area is located adjacent to Shamu Stadium and features family activities including Shamu Express (a junior rollercoaster), a net climbing structure, and a water play area.
The Waterfront is the newest themed area of the park, the area resembles a seaside Mediterranean village and contains shops, restaurants, and a pearl dive exhibit, as well as the park's iconic Sky Tower ride which was integrated into the theme of The Waterfront village when the new area opened in 2003.
The Wild Arctic indoor pavilion serves as a combined attraction which includes a motion simulator or film followed by an indoor animal exhibit hosting Polar bears, Beluga whales, and Pacific walrus. The area is themed after an exploration base camp located in the cold elements of the arctic with features including ice walls and a sunken ship trapped in ice that leads to an underwater viewing area of the animal exhibits.
During the Christmas holiday season, SeaWorld Orlando's Wild Arctic is transformed into the Polar Express Experience based on the Warner Bros. film of the same name. Guests ride the Polar Express to the North Pole where Santa Claus waits to greet them in front of a towering Giant Everest tree from Christmas Lights Etc.
SeaWorld Orlando has a vast array of live shows and attractions including rides and animal exhibits. Two of these attractions actually combine the two, with both a ride component and a separate animal exhibit.
An indoor zoo 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.
The seven-million gallon home to the park's killer whale performers. The park's current production is One Ocean, which is joined by the seasonal Shamu: Light Up The Night and Shamu Christmas Miracles night shows.
The Whale and Dolphin Stadium
Features dolphins, macaws and an Andean condor in Blue Horizons, which also adds human acrobats and divers. False killer whales were once part of the show until the eventual death of the park's two specimens. Four rescued pilot whales are also housed here and can be seen occasionally during the preshow (about 15-20 mins before the show) for Blue Horizons.
Formerly hosted water skiing shows on the park's central lagoon. Today, the stage is used for SeaWorld's numerous music concert series and other special events as well as the official viewing area for the seasonal Reflections firework show.
The Nautilus Theatre
An acrobatic show similar in style and presentation to the works of Cirque du Soleil.
Features dogs, cats, and other animals that have been rescued from local animal shelters in Pets Ahoy!. This venue is also home to Abby's Treasure Hunt.
Is both a restaurant and a theatre in the style of a dinner theatre. This venue is home to the Makahiki Luau, a Polynesian festival offering authentic cuisine, fire dances, and island chants and songs.
A seasonal firework show on the park's central lagoon featuring fireworks, dancing fountains, and mist screens synchronized and inspired by the musical soundtracks of the park's shows and attractions. The show was formerly called Mistify. During the Holidays, there is a Holiday Reflections.
Dining with the sharks at the Sharks Underwater Grill
Shark Encounter, which features an underwater tunnel and a wide array of sharks, stingrays, barracuda, and venomous fish. At Sharks Underwater Grill, guests can dine while observing the sea life in the main exhibit tank.