Upon arrival, we bought Quick Queue Passes which we got a good deal on due to our flight attendant friend having a free pass for all of us that gave us discounts on everything at Sea World and Busch. Trust me, Quick Queue passes are highly useful. One may think a park with only 4 rides would make the pass useless. However, if you want to see any shows or reride anything, this pass is your new bestfriend.
First stop: Manta. My sister's favorite coaster is Tatsu, so she was looking forward to this the most. Still, only barely more than I was. The theming for a B&M flyer, was AMAZING! I was disappointed that the Quick Queue pass line did not give one a chance to see the Manta aquarium line, but I would rather walk-on to Manta as soon as we reached the station vs wait in the 1 hour line!
Overall, my sister liked Tatsu more, however I differed. The view you have when you first go up the lift hill is amazing! Be ready to smile on the first drop, this is where they take the picture. The only thing I do not like about flyers is the sensation I get at the bottom of the pretzel loop. I feel like I am swallowing my toungue. But according to everyone else I've asked, I'm the only one who feels this, so no worries. The twists (vertical-g-rolls) on this coaster seem like nothing special from afar, but it is each is a wonderfully thrilling accent to this ride. The near contact with the water and then waterfall also adds to this one of a kind flying experience. We liked it so much we rode it again!
Next up: Blue Horizons. My mom would not ride any of the rides, but she loves theme park shows, and so do I, so I was excited to see this show based off of reviews I had heard. The reviews were no good at all... because they did not even begin to describe how AMAZING Blue Horizons was! The music was inspiring, dolphins better than any I'd seen, and acrobats AMAZING! One of the best theme park shows I have ever seen, and the bird flyovers were a great touch to the show as well.
Journey To Atlantis was next closest, so we chose to ride this next. Overall, the ride was pretty good. The story line was very unclear, and I hope Sea World works at making it clearer and possibly better. The actual ride though was very fun. A big jolt to get onto the lift hill was not my favorite experience, but both drops prooved to be very fun and thrilling.
By now, we decided to eat lunch at Voyager's Smokehouse (I wanted Sharks Underwater Grill, but we could not find where it was!) Still, the food here was pretty good. You basically enter the line with your tray and go around and add food that they have out like a buffet, except each item you get costs money, and you can't keep going back for more. Still, it was pretty affordable (three of us for lunch cost under $20)
and perfect for just a quick stop for lunch before the next, surprisingly most favorite, part of the day.
Kraken has always been said to be the best floorless coaster in the world. I found this to be VERY true. I loved this coaster even better than Manta. In fact, so much, that it made the list as my second favorite coaster (only behind one that will be revealed in a later report) on the trip! Each element flowed perfectly and thrillingly smooth into the next transition. The parts where the ride went underground was pretty neat, and the inversions were the best I'd ever experienced!
My mom was saving seats for Clyde and Seamore Take Pirate Island, so this was up next. The mime at the beginning was hilarious! Everything he did had me laughing very hard. The show however did leave me feeling bad for the actors. They made many mistakes, most of which weren't there fault. Mics wouldn't work, rain started pouring hard, and the audience didn't understand the jokes wouldn't be the funniest thing they'd ever heard, and were on the verge of booing the actors (which I would have been very ashamed of) Still, I am sure Sea Lions Tonite might have beem a better choice.
To get out of the rain, we decided to go through the Shark Encounter. the small exibits were not very exciting, but the actual encounter was pretty cool. I had never been in a tube-like encounter as this was, much less a large aquarium, so it was a pretty neat sight.
Nevertheless, it finished before the rain stopped, so we decided to check out A'lure. I am sure the show was very good, but embarassingly enough, I fell asleep. Not because of the show, but rather it had been a long day (though a very fun one).
We then decided to take the long walk around the lake to reach the last actual ride of the day, Wild Arctic. Luckily, I did not have very high expectations for this one. While there was a lot of work gone into making it fun and realistic, the simulator part (and pre-show) weren't the best. Still, it was worth it to reach the actual Wild Arctic exibit with the polar bears which I had never seen in real life!
After this, we headed back over to the other side and rode Kraken two more times followed by Manta for two more times. Each time was just as good as the next, perfectly thrilling in every way. We then went and ate at The Spice Mill for dinner. It was basically very near identical to Voyager's, but still, perfect for a quick stop for dinner.
We then headed over for Shamu Rocks. I had kind of been looking forward to it, but boy was I surprised. First off, the size of the stadium surprised me the most. This stadium was the real deal, huge and complete with food stands outside. For a 20 minute show? I thought it was crazy, but this is when I got the most surprisement. This was truly a great show, the whales were great, and the music just as well. There was even a guitar soloist who was pretty awesome.
At the end, I needed to head quickly for Reflections as the stadium was PACKED and everyone there had the same idea. I made it to get the seats my sister wanted, first row, top level. This stadium was nearly twice the size as the Shamu Stadium, but it filled up just as quickly. They had added new fountains just so that the show could be viewed from the stadium!
The show was great. the water and fireworks synced to the music, and well, the fireworks again for being so spectacular. This was truly a great way to end the night at a satisfing day at Sea World Orlando!