TurtleTrek opens at SeaWorld Orlando
Written by Domenik Jost
This morning, SeaWorld Orlando reached a new milestone by opening the TurtleTrek attraction. TurtleTrek is the world's first 360-degree 3D dome theater.Tweet
The 3D film follows the journey that every sea turtle goes through from hatching and finding its way to the sea, to coming back to the beach it was born on to lay its eggs.
The presentation, while it might not be the world's most realistic 3D, the full experience of being enveloped by the 360-degree dome screen and watching the 3D film is unique. You can look all around and visually explore the area surrounding you.
In the film we encountered everything from a small crab to a large great white shark, and got to explore the open ocean, a coral reef, a ship wreck, and even see the SeaWorld rescue team back at the beach. The film gives great insight into what sea turtles have to deal with throughout their lifespan, and its quite an inspiring story.
And since this 360 degree experience is in 3D, it really feels like you are in the film. Sea creatures float right above you and it looks like they graze the top of people's heads. With 3D always comes the challenge of the 3D glasses, but SeaWorld went with the simple 3D plastic glasses (think the old Spiderman 3D glasses). Yet unlike the simple, old 3D plastic glasses, these are designed to allow you to see more of your peripheral vision with the lenses wrapping around the sides. Most importantly for me the glasses fit perfectly over my prescription glasses so I was able to enjoy the full experience. The colors of the 3D are vibrant and you don't loose any noticeable brightness with the glasses. TurtleTrek is definitely a unique experience and I would recommend checking it out.
Here are some fun facts about TurtleTrek:
Of course it would not be SeaWorld if there was not live animals to view. There are two tanks which you can view from both above ground and underwater. One features the Manatees, and the other the Sea Turtles. The Sea Turtles under viewing area is the pre-show to the TurtleTrek 3D film. There are several sea turtles in the tank as well as many different fish making for a very colorful experience. After watching the TurtleTrek show you exit towards the above ground viewing areas. There you can find two game stations set up that allow four people per station to take up the sea turtles journey to the beach.
The game controllers are made to look like turtles and by simply tilting the controller up, down, left, and right you control your turtle. Of course there are educators all around to help answer any questions you may have.
We also got a chance to talk with SeaWorld Orlando Creative Director, Brian Morrow, and he gave us some insight into what it took to create TurtleTrek including a tip of where it is best seen from as well as talking a little bit about the new Antarctica attraction which opens up in 2013.
Update from Robert: BTW, Domenik told me that Brian said he loves all the wrong information that is out there about Antarctica, and that we were close, but "trackless ride" is not quite the correct description for Antarctica's ride system.
Next guess? ;^)
Also, here is the video from TurtleTrek's opening ceremony:
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