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  1. #1

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    Sea World Orlando - Pictures - UPDATED 1/29/10

    My picture threads consist of images I have taken that focus on the architecture, landscape architecture, planning, design, and theming of the facilities highlighted. They may also contain short descriptions and commentary, but will not focus on construction progress or special events or memorabilia or food selections or my traveling companions. Hopefully these threads are a good introduction for those who have not seen these places yet. All killer, no filler!

    Sea World Orlando photographed in November 2008:
    This marine park is a hybrid of aquatic zoo and aquarium with some rides and non-marine life shows. It has nicely themed and detailed areas set amidst well-manicured gardens and multiple pathways, generally arranged around a central lake.

    Entrance:
    This complex of low Bahamas-like buildings is set on the edge of a rocky lagoon filled with marine mammal sculptures and boats.



    Shamu Stadium:
    The park's largest animal show theater features their orca shows, currently called Believe (as well as nightime and holiday versions). The backside of the stage has several smaller tanks for holding orcas, the most spacious of which features underwater viewing.









    Whale and Dolphin Theater:
    Another large animal show stadium features smaller whales and dolphins and birds, currently in a show called Blue Horizons.





    Sea Lion and Otter Stadium:
    A humorous show that also has a walrus called 'Clyde and Seamore Take Pirate Island' is staged here.







    Dolphin Cove:
    This large rocky lagoon is for bottlenose dolphin feeding and demonstrations and has a nice underwater viewing cave on one side.







    Pacific Point Preserve:
    Large rocky habitats for numerous California sea lions and harbor seals are surrounded by a scenic walkway with multiple viewing areas with glazed railings.





    Manatee Rescue:
    The outside of this excellent exhibit has a pergola with views to an alligator swamp on one side and the above-water portion of the manatee exhibit on the other. Visitors then enter the building into an atmospheric dark education theater with projections before seeing the extensive underwater viewing area of the manatee lagoon.













    Shark Encounter:
    An outdoor shallow pool for small sharks and rays is seen first, then an indoor set of aquariums is encountered. These include a tropical reef tunnel, several smaller wall tanks, and finally the large shark tank with a moving walkway through a tunnel. The other side of the large shark tank is viewed from the table-service Sharks Underwater Grill.













    Penguin Encounter:
    This building houses two large chilly indoor exhibits for polar birds. The first is larger, a long rocky habitat for Antarctic penguins seperated by glass from visitors, with underwater viewing of their pool. A similar habitat is adjacent for Arctic birds such as puffins that fill a similar ecological niche to the penguins.





    Wild Arctic:
    This chilly polar themed attraction is housed in a large modern building. Once inside, sunny Orlando is left behind and a simulated North Polar scientific research station is entered. Visitors first encounter a motion simulator ride with a thrilling film that transports them to the station. After exiting, three animal exhibits are featured along a twisting path through the station that also features educational displays of life in the Arctic. The 3 exhibits feature both abovewater and underwater views of beluga whales, polar bears, and walrus. Each exhibit is a showpiece of ice and snow-covered rocks and simulated shipwrecks. The holiday season brings a movie-themed overlay to the attraction and a different motion simulator film called 'The Polar Express Experience'.















    Waterfront:
    This themed village on the central lake is a nice collection of vaguely exotic buildings with shops, restaurants, a pearl diving tank (strange to see humans in what looks like a nice habitat for fish), and the tall Skytower ride which gently rises for a great view of the park.





















    Journey To Atlantis:
    This thrilling hybrid water flume and rollercoaster ride is set in a themed complex that recreates the mythical lost city. It features a fairly extensive and detailed dark ride section within filled with some special effects and robotic characters. The entry and exit area has a matching gift shop and aquarium called Golden Seahorse which has a temple-like room of small wall tanks as well as larger tanks below the floor and above the ceiling.



























    Kraken:
    This large steel rollercoaster is minimally themed through most of its route behind the park except for the entry and loading area. The area has a giant sculpture of a conception of a mythical kraken as a sort of moray eel, and a cave nearby features the kraken's 'eggs' which are small globe-shaped aquariums with live eels inside and a veil of water flowing over their sides.



















    Shamu's Happy Harbor:
    A brightly decorated children's play and ride area.



    Flying Fiddler:



    Jazzy Jellies:



    Swishy Fishies:



    Sea Carousel:



    Ocean Commotion:



    Shamu Express:



    Manta, photographed in January 2010:
    This new 'flying' style rollercoaster soars over a large area near the park entrance. Its queue features several windows into a large aquarium tank filled with rays (but no manta rays currently, fans need to go up to the excellent Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta to see the two mantas they feature in their huge 'Ocean Voyager' tank). The other side of the tank is a separate indoor aquarium for visitors to see more exhibits, including the large tank and eight smaller ones that highlight smaller fish and mollusks.





















    Enjoy!
    Last edited by geomorph; 01-30-2010 at 10:29 AM.

  2. #2

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    Re: Sea World Orlando - Pictures

    I love these photos! I wish our San Diego park was as amazing as the Orlando park looks.

  3. #3

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    Re: Sea World Orlando - Pictures

    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyPro View Post
    I love these photos! I wish our San Diego park was as amazing as the Orlando park looks.
    Agreed I really wish the front entrance of sea world san diego was transported into the beautiful seafront they have in florida. even the san antonio entrance is better than SD> Thanks for sharing these photos


  4. #4

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    Re: Sea World Orlando - Pictures

    I think some features in San Diego should be celebrated. Its actual bayside location and the Cirque de la Mer theater in its waters are a great asset. Shipwreck Rapids is a nicely detailed attraction unique to this park. Also unique here is the sea otter exhibit and the Atlantis-themed Commerson's dolphin exhibit (in Orlando you have to pay separate admission to the Aquatica waterpark to see their very different environment for this species). The Freshwater Aquarium is a nice thorough exploration of multiple tanks for fish that are ignored in many other aquarium collections. And the version of Wild Arctic with the open-air exhibits for animals is far superior for the exhibitry of these species to the darkly artificially-lit environments for them in Orlando.

  5. #5

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    Re: Sea World Orlando - Pictures

    I just visited again and updated the post with pictures of the new Manta ride and its nice aquarium attraction.

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    Re: Sea World Orlando - Pictures

    Hello,
    SeaWorld Orlando is a large park that features numerous zoological displays and marine animals alongside an amusement park with roller coasters and water park. Universal Orlando, like Walt Disney World, is a multi-faceted resort comprising Universal Studios Florida, CityWalk, and the Islands of Adventure theme park.SeaWorld Orlando has created a winter wonderland throughout its park with holiday decorations and festive holiday music, not to mention a wide variety of holiday entertainment.

  7. #7

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    Re: Sea World Orlando - Pictures

    I think the whale in picture five is the one that killed the trainer. Yikes. Sure looks like it

  8. #8

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    Re: Sea World Orlando - Pictures

    Yes, all three pictures of orcas there in Shamu Stadium are Tilikum, he is the largest orca in captivity.

    For those interested in captive orcas and where this park and whale fit in the big picture, here are some interesting facts about the current captive orcas I found on what seems like a very well-researched website called Orca Homepage :

    There are currently 42 captive orcas worldwide in 11 facilities. In Asia, there are 8 in 2 facilities (7 at Kamogawa SeaWorld and 1 at Taiji Whaling Museum, both in Japan). In Europe, there are 8 in 2 facilities (4 at Loro Parque Tenerife in Spain, 4 at Marineland Antibes in France). In South America, there is 1 at Acuario Mundo Marina in Argentina. In North America, there are 25 in 6 facilities (2 at Marineland Ontario in Canada, and the rest in the USA: 1 at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in California, 7 at SeaWorld San Diego in California, 6 at SeaWorld Texas, 8 at SeaWorld Orlando in Florida, and 1 at Miami Seaquarium in Florida).

    153 additional orcas have died in captivity. The first captive was in 1961 at the now-closed Marineland California in Palos Verdes; the orca died within 2 days. In 1964, Vancouver Aquarium had one for 3 months. In 1965, Seattle Marine Aquarium had one for 1 year. Also in 1965, SeaWorld San Diego captured the original Shamu, who lived 6 years. After the initial success of Shamu's first few years, the first larger-scale wild capture of many individuals was in 1967 in Washington, with many others to follow until 1977 in Washington and British Columbia waters. 1 wild capture in 1979 off California was the last North American capture. Another wild capture hotspot was Japan from 1972 to 1997. Also, Iceland provided many orcas from 1976 to 1989. Smaller numbers have come from Argentina (4), 1 from Russia, and the most recent wild capture was 1 in 2007 in Mexico (an unfortunate 2 month captivity)! By far, the longest-lived in captivity are still alive and probably the same age: Corky 2 at SeaWorld San Diego with just over 40 years and Lolita at Miami Seaquarium with 39.5 years.

    The current population includes 13 survivors from wild capture (1 from Washington, 1 from British Columbia, 1 from Japan, 9 from Iceland, and 1 from Argentina) and 29 born in captivity. The mothers with the most living offspring are a mother and daughter team both at SeaWorld Orlando with 4 each (although not all their offspring still live with them). The newest calf is a month and a half old at SeaWorld Texas. Current population sex is slightly off balance, with 17 males and 25 females.

    SeaWorld Orlando has the largest population with 8. They have 2 males, one of which is just over 4 years old; their breeding male is obviously very important to the continuation of the captive population since wild capture is not an option and the two most successful breeding females are right beside him (he is also trained for artificial insemination and has sired over 10). He is Tilikum and he is the orca that killed the trainer. He was wild caught in Iceland in 1983 and was previously kept at Sealand of the Pacific near Victoria in British Columbia. According to the Wikipedia entry for the park, in 1991 Tilikum and his two female companions drowned a female trainer who fell in their pool, and the three were sold to SeaWorld and the park closed shortly after. At that time, trainers did not enter the water with the whales, and that is still true at SeaWorld Orlando as far as Tilikum is concerned, so he is not used to humans in the water.

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    Re: Sea World Orlando - Pictures

    Manta is the best coaster here in Orlando, but I have to say, the coolest part of our SeaWorld is the aquarium at Atlantis. I'd love to have that in my house. I'm glad you showed photos of it.

  10. #10

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    Re: Sea World Orlando - Pictures

    Yes that Atlantis aquarium complex is small but a gem!

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