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All of the ~Splashin'~ Details for Your Next SeaWorld Orlando Trip

by Mommy Frog on August 19, 2021 242 Orlando

SeaWorld Orlando Reopening - PinterestAre you ready for some tail flippin' fun while riding thrilling coasters, zipping down waterslides and meeting wild animals? The SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment locations in Florida reopened in June 2020 after temporary closures due to COVID-19 with new policies and procedures, some of which are still currently in place. This lineup includes SeaWorld Orlando, Aquatica Orlando, Discovery Cove, Busch Gardens Tampa and Adventure Island. We've made quite a few visits (and will continue to hop back) so we can keep you informed as things change!

We feel fortunate that we've been able to watch holiday fireworks at Busch Gardens Tampa and trick-or-treat at SeaWorld Orlando. What we've found impressive about the SeaWorld Parks events is that each event feels the same as past years despite the modifications. Also, we CANNOT WAIT until Ice Breaker launches its first guests at SeaWorld Orlando and Iron Gwazi debuts its makeover at Busch Gardens Tampa. Tad especially has been watching both of the rides' progress, and he hopes to be among the first frogs to ride them when they open later in 2022.

If you're planning a trip to any of the SeaWorld Parks in Florida anytime soon, here is everything you can expect!

SeaWorld Orlando | Busch Gardens TampaAquatica, Discovery Cove & Adventure Island

What You Should Know About Visiting SeaWorld Orlando

Arriving at the Park

As of May 6, 2021, temperature checks have been phased out. Instead, you'll go through the usual bag check at security (which has plexiglass to protect both guests and ambassadors) and the entry turnstiles (which are now touchless — an ambassador scans your tickets through plexiglass). There are no paper park maps. Instead, you can scan a QR code to download a map on your phone.

Face Coverings and Relaxation Areas

Based on the recently announced guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, SeaWorld Orlando, Aquatica, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and Discovery Cove are all modifying their policy regarding face coverings. Face coverings will no longer be required outdoors. The parks will not require proof of vaccination, but ask guests to respectfully comply with the revised policy. Likewise, it is recommended that all guests wear a face covering while indoors.

SeaWorld Reopening - Mask Enforcement Ambassadors

Rides and Attractions

Some rides, attractions and play areas remained closed, including:

  • Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin (penguin exhibit is open)
  • Sky Tower
  • Wild Arctic (animal exhibit is open)

Animal Exhibits

SeaWorld Orlando Reopening - Sea Lion

You can watch the dolphins play with toys from the main sidewalk or the underwater viewing area. Public feedings for the stingrays and sea lions have resumed after not being initially available in June 2020.

Restaurants and Retail Shops

SeaWorld Orlando Reopening - Altitude Burgers

Ambassadors and guests are both protected by plexiglass at the registers. Contactless payment is highly encouraged, but cash payment can also be accepted. At restaurants, tables and chairs are sanitized frequently. Select restaurants may be closed or have limited availability until further notice. Flamecraft Bar and Glacier Bar may have a limited menu available.

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay Reopening Guidelines

Busch Gardens Tampa - Kumba

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has implemented similar park health and safety measures to protect employees, guests and animals. These include health and safety guidelines and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control, such as face coverings for unvaccinated guests.

Overall Park Enhancements

  • Guests are encouraged to bring their own face coverings, but masks are available for purchase.
  • Contactless payments are encouraged, and plexiglass has been installed in high-traffic areas.
  • Cleaning and sanitization is increased significantly in high-contact areas, including numerous hand sanitization stations.
  • Employees have received new training on new park operating procedures, which includes guidance from the CDC and health advisers.

Specific Enhancements to Key Operational Areas

  • Guest Arrivals and Ticketing: There are enhanced cleaning protocols in arrival areas.
  • Restaurants: Tables and chairs will be sanitized frequently. Additional grab-and-go options have been added.
  • Animal Exhibits and Interactions: Certain tours and interactions are limited to one party at a time.
  • Public Spaces: Hand sanitizer stations have increased throughout the park, as well as consistent signage.
  • Rides and Attractions: Hand sanitizer is available at the entry and exit points of all rides, and the frequency of cleaning and sanitizing ride vehicles is increased.
  • Parades and Meet and Greets: Certain parts of parades and meet and greets are limited or removed. Character interactions and photo opportunities are modified.

Aquatica Orlando, Discovery Cove and Adventure Island Tampa Policies and Procedures

SeaWorld Orlando Reopening - Discovery Cove

Aquatica and Discovery Cove in Orlando and Adventure Island in Tampa have increased cleaning and sanitization of high contact surfaces, such as ride vehicles, rafts, tubes and life vests. To ensure physical distancing, guest capacity is limited in pools and lazy rivers, and lounge chairs are spread out appropriately. All rafts and ride vehicles are limited to a single party, so groups will not be mixed together.

Be sure to check the schedules for each respective park! Aquatica Orlando and Discovery Cove may be closed certain days of the week and their operating hours are subject to change. Adventure Island — now a year-round water park — reopened March 12, 2021.

We hope you'll find this information hopful as you plan your next visit. Do you have any questions about the reopening procedures at the Florida SeaWorld parks? Let us know in the comments below. And don't froget, you can save some green when you purchase SeaWorld Orlando tickets through Undercover Tourist.

Related: Planning a Vacation During an Uncertain Time

Hoppy planning!

Keep hopping, Mommy Frog!
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201–221 of 221 comments
Jul 27, 2020 at 4:38 p.m. Jessica Pomerleau Says...

We can’t wait for our next visir

Jul 27, 2020 at 4:37 p.m. Rosalee Morton Meeks Says...

Cooling towels help you stay longer to enjoy the park. ✅

Jul 27, 2020 at 4:25 p.m. Michael DeFren Says...

WAA I was supposed to be here!! I will reschedule, love it here

Jul 27, 2020 at 4:10 p.m. elizabeth gentile-soto Says...

I love Disney and Universal. :) Thank you for the discounted tickets.

Jul 27, 2020 at 4:08 p.m. KB Says...

Looks like they are doing a good job keeping visitors safe!

Jul 27, 2020 at 4:03 p.m. Daniela Says...


Jul 27, 2020 at 4:02 p.m. Nancy Steward Says...

I love Sea World and can't wait to go back. Due to my compromised health I will have to wait a little longer.

Jul 27, 2020 at 4:01 p.m. Renea Hansston Says...


Jul 27, 2020 at 3:51 p.m. Jessica Lear Says...

I am sure that this has been addressed already, but what about people who can not wear a mask for medical reasons? I have an anxiety disorder that would make this a very hard experience. Thanks as always for your advice!

Jul 27, 2020 at 3:36 p.m. Lauren Says...

I’m a little bummed out about the Sesame Street Party Parade will be cancelled but if it keeps us safe then I guess it’s okay ????????

Jul 16, 2020 at 8:35 p.m. D Says...

I love Busch Gardens reservation systems.

Seaworld however is frustrating. I am an annual passholder and I cannot make a reservation for my 2 free guests because there is no way to print those from home, only at the kiosks. Without the ticket code, I cannot reserve.

I called and called...

3 days on hold for 6 hrs each day and no one answered, no one called back...

If anyone knows a way to claim the passholder benefits with the current system, please let me know.

Jun 12, 2020 at 5:44 p.m. Joneisha Tutt Says...

Is anyone else getting an error message while trying to make a reservation with their preschool pass? I have been on hold with the SeaWorld Customer Service line for 3 hours and counting.

Jun 11, 2020 at 9:29 p.m. Anne Says...

Hi there,

My sister and I are planning to go in October of this year. I am also long overdue to visit my son and the grandchildren who live in Florida. Is there a policy in place for people who cannot wear face coverings due to a medical condition? I have asthma and not able to breathe in the masks. Thank you.

Jun 3, 2020 at 6:59 p.m. PaulaWest Says...

What days will seaworld be open to the general publicfrom 1st november,and will the dine with shamu tickets still be valid.?

Jun 3, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Paula!

Right now, SeaWorld's calendar is showing it will be closed most Tuesdays and Thursdays during November (but note that this is subject to change as things continue to evolve!). Dine with Shamu tickets are available to purchase for future dates here; if you purchased Dine with Shamu tickets from us previously and your dates were impacted by the temporary COVID closure, please contact Customer Service at 1 (800) 846-1302 and they will be hoppy to help!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jun 3, 2020 at 10:30 a.m. Claire Painter Says...

Hi Can you help with some advice, as I can not get any response from Universal or Aquatica. We bought fast pass tickets date specific for Universal, Islands ot Adventure & Aquatica. We are based in the UK and with the travel ban to the USA still enforced we are unable to travel to USA and therefore can not use our Fastpass tickets, which we purchased directly on Universal & Aquatica webistes. I have emailed them to cancel & asked for a full refund but am having no joy with hearinng back from them. I am trying to establish that we will get a full refund back & for them to acknowledge our cancellation. Can you help at all with any contact details? We would rather not call as it is £3 per minute to ring the USA. Thank you.

Jun 5, 2020 at 9:50 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Claire!

We're so sorry to hear it! As the parks get back up and running, with more team members hopping back to help guests, we are hopful that you'll hear back. If, after a few days of the parks reopening, you still haven't heard back, we'd try reaching out to them once more. Keep us posted!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jun 2, 2020 at 8:31 p.m. Andy F. Says...

We are planning a trip to Orlando and have rain delay tickets from our last trip October 2019. Can we reserve a spot for entry either June 11th or 12th. We're leaving on the 13th. We'd love to visit again since we weren't able to see Shamu due to the rain delay. Please advise.

Jun 4, 2020 at 8:25 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Andy!

A quick update: SeaWorld just announced that there WILL be a reservation system in place to enter the park - you can make a reservation beginning Monday, June 8.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jun 3, 2020 at 2:42 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Andy!

There is currently no reservation system in place at SeaWorld, so you are toadally free to hop on by on the day that works best for you :) Enjoy!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jun 2, 2020 at 2:36 p.m. Yanira moya Says...

I was wanting to go to Seaworld for my son 4th birthday, are they allowing ticket pruchasing to be done or will the park only be open to annual passholders like Disney?

Jun 2, 2020 at 12:07 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Yanira!

The park is open to the general public! You will need to make a reservation to attend, which you can do here beginning June 8. You can find tickets here. Wishing your tadpole a very hoppy birthday!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jun 1, 2020 at 4:18 p.m. Jane Says...

What time will Sea World open on June 11? Can I get my preschooler pass be verified? I have a platinum pass for myself and one granddaughter, the preschooler pass for another granddaughter and plan to use the free passes for the 18yo granddaughter. Anything I need to know about this?

Jun 4, 2020 at 8:23 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jane!

A quick update: SeaWorld just announced that there will be a reservation system in place to enter the park - you can make a reservation beginning Monday, June 8.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jun 1, 2020 at 4:19 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jane!

SeaWorld is currently scheduled to open at 10 a.m. on June 11. Since it'll be SeaWorld's first day back after its hiatus, we'd suggest giving yourself plenty of time to park and head to the gate. The ticketing booth should be able to help with any questions you may have about free passes and the preschooler pass, or you can give customer service a call (407) 545-5550 for more information in advance of your visit. Have a great time!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

May 31, 2020 at 4:45 p.m. Wendy Says...

Will seaworld and Busch Gardena require a reservation like Disney?

Jun 4, 2020 at 8:22 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Wendy!

A quick update: SeaWorld just announced that there WILL be a reservation system in place - you can make a reservation beginning Monday, June 8.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jun 1, 2020 at 9:04 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Wendy!

At this time, there is no reservation system in place to get into SeaWorld Orlando :)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

May 30, 2020 at 6:10 p.m. Gretchen Rogers Says...

So does this mean Discovery Cove IS opening June 11? That’s the day I’m looking to go.

Jun 1, 2020 at 8:58 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Gretchen!

Yes, it's official - SeaWorld, Discovery Cove and Aquatica will all be open to the public June 11 :) To enter, SeaWorld recently announced that you'll need to reserve a spot. Reservations open on Monday, June 8. Hope this helps - have a great time!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

May 27, 2020 at 8:59 p.m. Sarah Says...

Thanks for the info on Discovery Cove. It sounds like no masks there, but what about the snorkels and buffets? Do you know if they will have reduced capacities overall vs just in the pools? I'd hate to pay all that money and not be able to go in the pool because it's at capacity.

May 29, 2020 at 3:28 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sarah!

These are great questions! We are still waiting on a little more info to definitively answer your questions, but we do think that snorkels fall under "high-touch items" that will be disinfected regularly. Discovery Cove also advised that buffet services would be either adjusted or closed, and capacity in both the park itself and the pools and attractions will be limited to adhere to social distancing guidelines. As soon as we hear more information, we'll be sure to update you (and this post)!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

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