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Planning a trip to San Antonio, Texas with your family? Trying to decide what to do while you are there? One option is Sea World San Antonio. But is it worth your time? Keep reading to find out if you should add it to your list of San Antonio must-do’s.
- Sea World San Antonio at a Glance
- The Shows
- The Rides
- Tours, Animal Encounters, and Animal Exhibits
- Eating at Sea World San Antonio
- The Logistics of Visiting
- Is It Worth Your Time?
Sea World San Antonio at a Glance
Sea World San Antonio is one of three Sea World parks in the United States. The other two are in San Diego, California and Orlando, Florida.
The San Antonio park actually consists of two parks: the original Sea World and Aquatica, their water park. While the two parks require separate admission tickets, you can buy a combination ticket if you would like to visit both during your trip.
The original Sea World offers theme park rides, shows featuring marine animals, and animal exhibits. Aquatica, on the other hand, is a classic water park with water slides, pools, a lazy river, and splash pads. It also has a reef area that allows you to see stingrays and fish.
The shows at Sea World San Antonio are definitely the highlight of visiting this theme park. They include the following:
The orca, or killer whale as they are also known, is the face of Sea World. It is what most people think of when they think of this theme park. And, as you might expect, the Orca Encounter is the most popular show in the entire park.
When you watch Orca Encounter, you will get to see the 5 orcas who live in San Antonio show off their amazing size, beauty, and skills. You will also learn about their natural behaviors, habitats, and conservation efforts that are helping them around the world.
I love this show. These gorgeous creatures are larger than a bus yet are agile enough to turn back flips in the air. It is awe-inspiring to see them in person.
This show takes place in its own stadium. It is offered several times per day.
Ocean Discovery-Beluga Whales and Dolphins
The next most popular show is the beluga whale and dolphin show. This one is another educational show meant to teach you about the unique beluga whales and playful dolphins. You will also learn about their natural habitats.
This is my favorite show in the entire park. I love the beluga whales and thoroughly enjoy watching them in this show.
Your kids will be amazed at how fast the dolphins can swim and how high they can jump in this show.
It is located in its own stadium. It runs several times per day.
Sea Lion and Otter Spotlight
Unlike the other shows, the sea lion and otter show has a comedic twist to it. This show has a storyline, a plot, and human actors that play roles in the story.
Kids love this show. It is full of corny jokes and silliness that they enjoy. The stars of this fun little show are California sea lions and Asian small-clawed otters.
It also runs multiple times per day.
Sea World San Antonio features a Sesame Street area for the littlest visitors. As a part of this, you will find a block party, a street parade, and meet and greet opportunities with some of your kids’ favorite Sesame Street characters.
There is also an area called Bay of Play. This section, located right in the middle of the park, has several rides for the toddlers in the family.
For older members of the family, you will find several thrilling rides throughout the park. These include a number of roller coasters, extreme swings, a rapids ride, and a few rides that plunge you into the water.
The newest ride is called Catapult Falls. It opens in the summer of 2023. It is a launched flume coaster that splashes down into the water at the end. You will probably get wet on this one!
Tours, Animal Encounters, and Animal Exhibits
One of the things that makes Sea World unique when compared to other theme parks is the animals. It doesn’t take long to realize that the animals are the stars of the show at this park.
In an effort to highlight the animals and educate people about them, Sea World offers a variety of behind-the-seas tours and in-water animal encounters.
With these experiences, you can get up close and personal with dolphins, beluga whales, sea lions, tortoises, penguins, killer whales, stingrays, or even sharks.
Eating at Sea World San Antonio
There are a variety of eateries located throughout the park where you can fill your belly. You can find sit down restaurants, food courts, snack carts, and even a coffee shop.
You can choose from bbq, burgers, pizza, chicken, Chinese dishes, loaded fries, pretzels, and more.
Additionally, you can book a special meal that will allow you to dine pool side with the orcas!
For $50, you can get an all-day dining pass to enjoy all the yummy food the park has to offer.
The Logistics of Visiting
During the summer months, Sea World San Antonio is open every day from 10:30 am until either 9:00 or 10:00 pm.
During the spring and fall, the park is only open Thursdays through Sundays. They open at 10:30 each day. On Thursdays, they close at 6:00 pm. On the weekends, they stay open until 10:00 or 11:00 pm.
During the winter, they are open Thursdays through Sundays from 1:00 pm until around 9:00 pm or later.
When buying tickets, you can choose from 1 park/date-based tickets, 1 park/any day tickets, 2 park/2 day tickets, or 2 park/3 day tickets.
The 1 park/date-based tickets vary in price, depending on the day you select. These tickets start as low as $50 for kids and $85 for adults. During peak times, these tickets will cost you $85 for kids and $120 for adults.
The 1 park/any day tickets are $90 per person.
The 2 park/2 day tickets and the 2 park/3 day tickets give you unlimited access to both Sea World and Aquatica for 2 or 3 consecutive days. These tickets are $100 and $110 per person each.
You can buy tickets to both parks on their website.
They offer general parking and up close parking. The general parking is $32, while the up close parking is $42.
Is It Worth Your Time?
Sea World San Antonio is definitely an expensive theme park to visit, especially if you have multiple kids.
So, you will need to think about your family’s interests and priorities and determine whether it is worth it for you. If you have animal lovers in the family or consider this a one-and-done experience, it is definitely worth it.
My family really enjoyed our time at Sea World. Even though we were there on a day that was cold and rainy, we loved it. We had a lot of fun. We want to go back when the weather is better and we have more time to do things we missed.
For us, it was worth the price of admission. However, we did not go on a super expensive day. Additionally, my husband is a teacher. Sea World offers teachers free admission. You just have to register for it in advance. This definitely helps reduce the cost of it for us.
If you want to visit, but are concerned about it being too expensive, visit the Sea World San Antonio website. They almost always have sales or special deals, which can make it more affordable. So definitely check that out for the best deals!
Sea World San Antonio is a unique theme park that not only teaches you about beautiful marine animals, but allows you to see these creatures up close like never before. While it is expensive, it is worth it to get such a one-of-a-kind experience.
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