From the brochures and advertisements I'd seen, the Miami Seaquarium was a large, clean, inviting place with multiple displays indoors and outdoors. Sadly, this was not the case.
The park was a lot smaller than I'd been led to believe, and although a lot of the paint seemed newer, you could really tell that the buildings were quite old. And most unfortunately for us, it rained on the day we chose to go. It actually started raining about half an hour after we got there (and it was so sunny as we were coming in!) and after that there really wasn't anything to do.
Because it was so expensive (adult tickets were $40 a piece), we decided to stay and try to make the best of us, but there was really no way to do anything at this park in inclement weather. We went up into the sheltered area for the dolphin show, but because it was still drizzling when the show time hit, they canceled the show. The rest of the shows that day were canceled as well. The main building housing the dolphins was nice and dry and had food counters and restrooms, and we spent the bulk of our time in there.
However, the food was expensive, and the bathroom were difficult to get a stroller in and out of. As a side note - there are also several places in the building where you can't take a stroller (like to the upper platform for the dolphin show) and there is no real corral to keep your strollers in. I was more than a little worried that someone might steal ours.
When we did venture out of the big building to try and investigate the other "buildings" there really wasn't that much to look at. There was a manatee display with an underground viewing area, but again, the building was so old that the water came in at least three inches deep where the floor was slanting, and the drains were in a part of the floor that hadn't slanted, so it was nearly impossible to walk through there without getting your feet soaked.
There was a shark display, but no underground viewing area, and the sharks were not the bigger kind we had been led to believe, but the smaller sharks that generally hunt in the shallows. They weren't much larger that some of the fish in the fish tanks in the dolphin building.
We were able to watch the sea lions for a while, that part was a bit fun since they fed them while we happened to be passing by, and they were very cute to look at. The overhang for the sea lion area was a tent-type of shelter though, and it didn't keep us very dry after the rain started to slant.
We couldn't find an entrance into the Killer Whale exhibit that would lead us to a dry place to watch from, that was the most disappointing of all because my son absolutely adores them and we told him he would see one.
We were pleased that we at least got to show him dolphins through the glass in the underwater viewing area, but I would have loved to see the look on his face if he had seen one of the shows.
Was it interesting? Yes. Was it worth the $80 for two adult tickets plus the $8 for parking? Not even if it had been sunny out. (And we were lucky that our little guy was still free since 2 & under have no charge.) If we were going to do something like this again I would just pay a little more on gas and go to SeaWorld in Orlando.
BEAWARE when you decide to go there make sure to bring your own food and water. The miami sequarium was pretty decent when it comes to the animals that were there. Such as manatees, dolphins, and many different kind of fishes which was really cool to see.
The shows were great. The Orca was very impressive. They have a lot of dolphin shows, but limited seating at them. Make sure you get to the shows you want to see early and don't sit in the front few row, unless you want to get soaked! Though my kids enjoyed it, I think my husband and I enjoyed it more.
I've visited a number of amazing aquariums in the United States and around the world. I'd have to rank this one as meiocre overall. It's small, particularly for the price, and there are not a lot of exhibits to enjoy.
The one part that I did enjoy was getting to experience the dolphins up close and personal. This is quite pricey, of course, but it is a unique way to spend a day for sure! You actually get to go inside of the dolphin training area, in a wet suit, and drop kisses and hugs on the dolphins; something I've never experienced before.
Please note: children under 5 may only observe and must have a parent with them at all times. There are additional rules for older children as well.
*Disclaimer: My experience at this attraction was complimentary as part of a press tour.
My husband and 7 year old daughter went to the seaquarium last month, it was her birthday weekend and she loves dolphins. We surprised her with a trip here and we all swam with dolphins! It was an amazing experience. We took a class before and got into our wetsuits. The trainers and employees were very nice and we couldn't ask for anything better. My daughter is still talking about it. We saw some of the shows and even fed sting rays, wow, amazing. Make sure to check their show times before going to make sure you can make all the shows. We are sure to go back, maybe for their Halloween event.
We visited the Sea Aquarium and were quite disappointed! The exhibits were very small and the shows were not that impressive. We actually left feeling quite bad for the poor animals that were kept in such small quarters! It's a small aquarium sure, but it could use some renovation to improve the quality of life for the animals kept there.
One would think that in South Florida they would have the biggest and nicest aquarium...not so much. The state is surrounded by ocean but you would never know it by the pitiful fish here at this aquarium. The experience was so bad that I wrote a letter asking for my money back. I never received my money back or a letter of response. The fish are small and kind of plain. Nothing really special here to justify the high cost of entrance fee.
This is a place that I'm sure was at it's best when it first opened. There doesn't seem to be a lot of upkeep to the tanks for there the water looked very green in some. The Killer Whale part was pretty neat but on the other hand, for such a huge animal I think it deserves a MUCH bigger tank and space.
The Miami Seaquarium is a south florida attraction like no other. It is very delighting for children of all ages. You can fit it into your schedule of any kind because its open 7 days a week. Theres an extravagent dolphin encounter which you learn so much about dolphin behavior. A water experience including touching, feeding and playing with a dolphin.
See Flipper the dolphin, along with Lolita the killer whale, Salty the sea lion, lovable manatees, and feeding sharks. The killer whale show is the most impressive. Tour the alligator exhibit, reef aquarium, and rain forest habitat. Swim with Flipper (must be 52 inches or taller).
The Miami Seaquarium is not the best place. Its a bit run down. Its small and there is not much to do. If you have been to Sea World, do not bother going to the Miami Seaquarium.
The main show the have, featuring Lolita the killer whale, is ok.
It is a bit pricey to get in, but a real let down once you enter.