Teresa’s day at Aquatica

Hey Thrill Seekers,

During her recent trip to Orlando to visit everything SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment has to offer in Orlando Teresa done a daily blog, check out this one from her day at Aquatica which was recently voted as the best Water Park in a national poll!

Find out how her experiences were different both times she rode Ray Rush – Aquaticas newest slide, how she nearly lost her contact lenses and have a giggle at her trying to pronounce some of the slides. 😉

Teresa has also just confirmed to me that because of this miserable weather we’re having, she’s wishing more than ever that she was back chilling at Aquatica. Me too!

Smiles Included,


SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment’s Retired Attractions

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Of course, we have looked at Disney and Universal’s retired attractions so there is only one other place to look…SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment! Anheuser Busch (better known as Budweiser, Abby’s favourite drink) bought SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment in 1989.

During the ownership time’s of Anheuser Busch, there was a hospitality lounge where you would get free beer samples and be able to see Clydesdales whilst sipping your beer!

In 1992 they introduced their first simulator ride to SeaWorld Orlando, Mission: Bermuda Triangle, based on the real life Bermuda Triangle (Devil’s Triangle). This was then re-themed into Wild Arctic which was combined with the amazing animal exhibit when you exit the ride. Here you can view the gorgeous Beluga whales and walruses.

Wild Arctic is also known for having seasonal changes every so often including turning into The Polar Express at Christmas time! Although this wasn’t seen last year, you never know if it will return! I hope so because I love The Polar Express!

SeaWorld used to have a fairly large penguin habitat which was upgraded into Antarctica: The Empire of the Penguin a trackless dark ride in 2013. You’ll meet Puck the Penguin and be able to follow him on his adventures around the Antarctic. You can even choose whether you would like a ‘mild’ or ‘wild’ experience!

Once you disembark from the ride, you’ll enter into the breathtaking penguin exhibit. When I say breathtaking, it literally will take your breath away with the freezing cold as well as the beautiful penguins! Some might call this a ‘2 for 1’ attraction, with the ride and the animal exhibit. Another 2 for 2 attraction is Manta. It opened in 2009 and has one of, if not the smoothest tracks in the world and is a one-of-a-kind ride with riders taunted by a head-first, face-down inverted nose dive. At the end of the ride you have the Manta Aquarium and the Stingray Lagoon.

SeaWorld is also known for it’s many stunning shows. The most popular and well known show has got to be One Ocean where you can capture Orca’s performing the most amazing flips and somersaults. One Ocean opened in 2011 after Believe was there from 2006.

Over in Tampa Bay, you can visit Busch Gardens which is also part of SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment!

Python was the park’s first roller coaster that opened in 1976 with corckscrew and U-turns. Python was demolished in 2006 to make way for Jungala.

Busch Gardens also had African Queen Boat Ride which closed in 1989 to make way for Tanganyika Tidal Wave which is still in the parks to date so you can get a soaking on a hot, sunny day!  Crazy Camel was a coaster that closed in 2003 to be replaced by Sand Serpent which is also still around today.

Sandstormer was an oribter ride that was running from 1980 all the way through to 2013 before they took it down to make way for Falcons Fury which opened in 2014. Not only that, but there was Rhino Rally that opened in 2001, another water boat ride but this one was closed down for Cheetah Hunt to open in 2011.

The one ride that most people know about closing down in 2015 has to be Gwazi. I think me and Gwazi had a love hate relationship like most people! At 90 feet tall it was the park’s only wooden roller coaster!


SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment also own Aquatica and Discovery Cove however Aquatica being their newest park, nothing has yet been replaced and Discovery Cove is already perfect just the way it is! 🙂

What else can you think of that’s no longer at any of these parks that maybe you’re happy are no longer there, or that you’re sad to see them gone?

Smiles Included…



Interview With Geoff Dobson From SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment 2017

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Its time to bring out one of the heavy hitters of our Interview Tuesday series (still not a thing). Geoff from SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment is the current holder of the most “reads” title which he earned in 2015!!!

So lets get to know the current OAT champ

Name: Geoff Dobson
Company: SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment
Position: Sales Manager


If you could have an endless supply of any food, what would you get?  Peanut Butter M&M’s, Reece’s Peanut Butter Cup’s, Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut butter frosting… do you get where I’m going with this answer?
If you were an animal, what would you be and why?  Probably my pet dog Hercules, he has an amazing life, when he’s not eating, sleeping or demanding cuddles he’s out on long walks with his doggy friends… oh and he usually gets more space on the sofa than me as well.
If someone made a movie of your life would it be a drama, a comedy, a romantic-comedy, action film, or science fiction?  Some friends would suggest that “I love a drama” but really my life isn’t that dramatic… If we went through the process of elimination i would be left with a romantic-comedy/drama. The only action in my life is running for trains or running for more peanut butter chocolates!
Complete the sentence; I was once mistaken for . . .  Shamu, I wear a lot of black and white and eating all those chocolate peanut butter treats is taking its toll.
If you had your own talk show, who would your first three guests be? Definitely the same three that I had to my dinner party in last year’s interview: Joanna Lumley, Dame Judi Dench and Helen Mirren I find them all very funny and fascinating.


What was the highlight of 2016 for your company?: We opened Orlando’s tallest, longest, fastest rollercoaster, Mako, at SeaWorld Orlando. Of course, I am biased but it’s definitely the best rollercoaster in Florida!
And over at Busch Gardens, we launched the family friendly rollercoaster, Cobra’s Curse, where riders get to take on the ‘snake king’ and come face-to-face with live snakes in the queue line. The ride runs backwards and twists and spins at certain points, it’s an entirely new coaster experience.
What can we expect from your company in 2017?:  Florida’s first Virtual Reality rollercoaster experience will  be opening at SeaWorld Orlando this summer as firm favourite, Kraken, gets a tech-makeover. We also have a new night time show, Electric Ocean, which will fill the park with lights, music and entertainment.
Over in California, we have a brand new educational Orca Encounter which will enable visitors to get up close to killer whales and learn about how different behaviours are used in the wild to hunt, navigate and communicate. This will kick off at SeaWorld California this summer and will be introduced at the other SeaWorld parks, including SeaWorld Orlando, by 2019.
Make a 2017 prediction…:  It’s not a prediction, it’s a fact – Virtual Reality on Kraken will be amazing!
Best Theme Park ride/attraction of 2016?:  Mako at SeaWorld Orlando, without a doubt. When I found out that SeaWorld was building Orlando’s longest, tallest and fastest coaster I was super excited and it didn’t disappoint. The first-time I went on it, it blew my mind! It’s my first experience of a hypercoaster and the airtime and weightless feeling that you experience after that first drop is unlike anything I’ve ever encountered.
Best Theme Park/attraction food of 2016?:  There are so many great places to eat in the parks, one of my favorites, especially if you’re looking for something a little special is Sharks Underwater Grill at SeaWorld Orlando. Fine dining, fine wines and views you won’t find anywhere else in Orlando. It truly is a special place to eat.
If you’re considering Sharks Underwater Grill be sure to reserve a table in advance as it is very popular.
Best Theme Park/attraction tip?:  Don’t forget to book your SeaWorld Park Extras in advance to make the most of your holiday. It’s the best way to enjoy once-in-a-lifetime experiences like feeding a giraffe or meeting a penguin.
The best place to sit on Mako is at the front so you see the 200ft drop, and for Manta the opposite is true – the best seat in the house is at the back where you feel the maximum G-Force.
Be sure to get to the shows early to bag the best seats, I’d recommend getting there 20-30 minutes before the show is scheduled to commence.
Best kept secret in Florida?: The seasonal shows and events that take place in the parks such as Halloween Spooktacular at SeaWorld Orlando and Christmas Town at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay. These events are often included in your general admission ticket and are great fun for all of the family. Plus we have brand new events coming in 2017 such as The Seven Seas Food Festival and our brand new summer spectacular Electric Ocean at SeaWorld Orlando. With free parking now included with our 3-Park Ticket and Discovery Cove Ultimate packages, there’s no excuse for not popping back to catch these.

Yey!!! Thanks Geoff for taking the time to get involved once again with our little interview series. I love Geoff’s answers and his tip is spot on. One thing though, he definitely does not look like Shamu. 🙂

You can read other interviews in the series here;

Smiles included…