SeaWorld Orlando drops its new rapids ride

October 4, 2018, 8:46 PM · SeaWorld Orlando today officially unveiled its "Best Year Ever" plan with its newest ride, Infinity Falls, a new annual pass program, and a preview of other upcoming park additions.

We start with Infinity Falls. It is SeaWorld's new family-friendly rapids ride that guarantees to get everyone riding soaked. The ride took us through a meandering waterway full of white-water rapids. And yes, we got absolutely soaked even while wearing our ponchos. The ride itself is similar to other raft rides, such as Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges at Universal’s Islands of Adventure, but SeaWorld boasts it as record breaking as you are lifted via a 40-foot vertical "raft elevator" to a sloping drop.

However, after all the hype of Infinity Falls being recording breaking, the drop is not steep and, according to other riders, kind of a let-down. Despite that, the ride overall was fun and family friendly, lasting almost five minutes and sure to cool you off on a very hot Florida day.

In addition to Infinity Falls, SeaWorld used this morning's media event to debut its new annual pass system. The new system is broken into four tiers:

The Bronze, Silver and Gold passes can be bought for just SeaWorld, or for SeaWorld and Aquatica, or for four parks in Florida, including Busch Gardens and Adventure Island (with discounts for Discovery Cove). Prices start at $119.88 for the one-park Bronze pass, which is a big drop from the $175 pass that used to be SeaWorld's cheapest. That pass was comparable to the new Silver pass, which costs $167.88. The Platinum pass is $359.88.

Florida residents can use a monthly payment plan, starting at $9.99 a month for the one-park Bronze pass, which is cheaper than my gym membership that I never use. Prices rise to $29.99 a month for the Platinum pass.

Lastly, SeaWorld Orlando is adding a Sesame Street land next year where families can walk down Sesame Street, meet characters and ride a variety of rides such as Elmo’s Choo Choo Train, Cookie Drop, Abby’s Flower Tower, Super Grover’s Box Car Derby, Big Bird’s Twirl ‘n’ Whirl and Slimey’s Slider. In addition, Aquatica is also adding KareKare Curl, a two-person raft ride "delivers a high-adrenaline, weightless adventure."

Overall, it seems like SeaWorld is continuing its efforts to reinvent and attract young families after the most recent addition of its extreme roller coaster, Mako. They seem focused on taking another step in the right direction by making their annual passes more affordable compared to other area theme parks. And that's a good start with their passes and new rides. Cheers to them moving forward.

Replies (7)

October 5, 2018 at 6:12 AM

Meanwhile, in other news, One Ocean has had its heart and message stripped from it recently. It is a shell of what it used to be. It has been reduced to a series of behaviors on display with the One Ocean soundtrack in the background. And what I'd like to refer to as "apology" speeches from the trainers before each segment, repeating over and over about how honored they are to have their relationships with the whales.

Orca Encounter wrapped in the One Ocean brand.

Do people really come to theme parks and spend tons of money to be educated and preached to all day? First, Blue Horizon is replaced with Dolphin Days (Doze) and now One Ocean has been replaced with the 2.0 version. I've been a Sea World supporter for a long time. And I get it, push the conservation and rehabilitation message. But this is all getting to be a bridge too far for me.

October 5, 2018 at 6:51 AM

Jeff .... good to hear you enjoyed Infinity Falls .... but ponchos ?? ... :) If it's 90+deg when I go in at night I may try it again if it's a walk on. I missed the flamingos ... !!! so gotta try and see them. More than anything I want to see how the area around the ride develops with the greenery, and the animal ambassadors. Also I want to check out the pass holder lounge plus the Waterway grill.

FL residents on ez-pay can continue with their pass as long as we want, with no need to upgrade, so I'm OK with my $12/month platinum. I received an e-mail last night telling me they've added the 2 free guest tickets, photokey, 1 free animal encounter and now I get 15% off everything, so a really good deal. I'm not interested in the water parks, so I'm going to stay as-is. The general feeling is the old 'perk-a-month' has now gone, hence the inclusion of the free animal encounter and guest tickets into the gold and platinum passes.

Jeremy .... Seaworld has lost the plot with One Ocean. Since Orca encounter bombed at San Diego they are in limbo and I don't think they really know where they want to go with the show. I agree, it's a shadow of its former self, and even with the orca up close tour it's going nowhere good at the moment. Since they changed it, I've maybe seen it twice and I'm not rushing to go back. They are also in limbo with the pilot whales. They've put them in that back pool and don't seem to have any clue what to do with them. It's all one big fat mess around Shamu stadium that's for sure.

...... and yes ... Dolphin days is a snooze fest. Bring back Blue Horizons all is forgiven. I still remember that last BH show with such fond memories. One for the ages ... :)

October 5, 2018 at 11:07 AM

Gee, a Sea World attraction that's a letdown? What a shock.

And the One Ocean stories just make me shake my head remembering how fun this park once was.

October 5, 2018 at 3:19 PM

Makorider, I've got to admit I am not proud of that poncho, but they gave it to me so I thought I'd put it on haha. But, no excuses, you wont see me in a video again wearing a poncho on a ride in sunny Florida.

October 5, 2018 at 4:08 PM

Not an awful attraction, but it falls well below standards when you compare it to the top water based attractions like Jurassic Park.

October 5, 2018 at 7:47 PM

Jeff ... it wasn’t even a Seaworld poncho was it .. ? .... LOL. I was only prepared to get soaked because it was 94deg and like a sauna last Saturday afternoon. It was truly refreshing. Great video by the way, most entertaining.

Anon ... Jurassic Park is a totally different type of ride. Not sure how you can compare the 2 ?? I’ve never been on Popeye and Bluto’s barges so I can’t comment on that comparison.

October 6, 2018 at 8:14 AM

Jurrasic Park in Singapore uses rapid instead of the boat - but is exactly the same as the Orlando version otherwise.

That's the high level of themeing that is top tier.

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