on November 5, 2010
We wanted to introduce our two and a half year-old son to SeaWorld and Shamu. The visit was his first time being up close with the larger marine mammals. At home, we've already taken him to all of the local spots (California Academy of Sciences, Aquarium of the Bay and the Monterey Bay Aquarium), and we wanted to venture further out.We went to SeaWorld for two days. Our first day there (Wednesday), the weather started off overcast, but the sun broke through later in the day. Hardly anyone was at the park that day and we were able to breeze through many of the shows and exhibits on the "left" side of the map. On that day, we saw the Blue Horizons show and the Shamu Show: Believe. We thought our son would be more excited seeing the dolphins, orcas, and pilot whales, but he just didn't seem all that into it. He seemed to enjoy seeing the orcas and pilot whales, but got really antsy when the acrobats and trapeze artists were performing (Blue Horizons). He did enjoy going into the different aquarium exhibits. I particularly like the bat rays touching pool, but my son got scared by them and didn’t want to pet them. By the afternoon, we decided to call it an early day and headed back to the hotel.We went back to SeaWorld on Friday, and explored the "right" side of the map. This time around, our son seemed to be more excited. We started off in the Wild Arctic exhibit. This exhibit was really, really cool as we saw beluga whales, frolicking walruses and polar bears. The split-level walk-through was really well-planned out and gave us great views of the animals. Afterwards, we headed over to the Penguin Encounter which brought us up close to the different penguins. We also saw the Pets Rule show. I have to say that the show was very neat and energetic. The vibe rubbed off on our son and this was the one show that he was truly happy to watch – we could tell from his body language that he was "buzzing" with excitement. After the show, some of the animals are left on-stage with their trainers, and the audience can take pictures or pet them (the pets, not the trainers)! We stayed and our son even wanted to pet the dog.For lunch we ate at the Seaport Marketplace – apparently, SeaWorld decided to try a pizza/pasta buffet there for a flat rate. This worked out for us as the price was very reasonable as compared to the general price for food in the rest of their restaurants.After lunch, we let our son play in the Sesame Street Bay of Play. This was the highlight for him even though he was too small for some of the activities. However, the area has a few rides suitable for him and an expansive play area which gave him the opportunity to just run, explore and work off any excess energy before his afternoon nap time. We ended our day at the Bay of Play!
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