Living in Florida and being pretty close to Orlando, we've had our fair share of park visits. James just turned 10 months old and we've been to top theme parks more than a handful of times. There have been some tips and tricks i've had handed down to me from other Mom friends and things i've learned along the way. So here are my top 5 tips for theme parks with little ones. (All the images are from our trip to Sea World, Orlando. We love visiting Disney as well and plan to go to Universal in the fall.)
1. Check Park Websites for Discounts!
Sea World | Tickets and Passes
Who doesn't like saving money? Teachers, Veterans, Annual Pass Holders and those who like to plan ahead can often get a great deal through discounts and specials offers. At Sea World teachers get a annual pass for FREE (yayyy, that's me!) They also let kids in for free under three, which made James free too! Our friend had an Annual Pass as well, so parking was also free. Together we only had to pay for gas, tolls and food. Leaving our day total around $50, not too shabby for a full day of fun.
2. Make the Most Out of Your Visit
Sea World Shows | Shows
We like to plan ahead and get the most out of our day, show times can often make it easy to pack your day full of a variety of attractions while at a park. We checked the show times on our phone while on the way to the park and hit tons of exhibits and performances the entire day. Sea World has a ton of shows that are great for little kids and adults. James loved Clyde & Seamore's Sea Lion High (as seen above.)
Here is the link for access to park hours and show times as well: https://seaworld.com/orlando/park-info/theme-park-hours/
3. Beat The Heat
Sea World Exhibits | Animal Experiences
Along with Live Shows, Sea World has both indoor and outdoor exhibits. To beat the Florida heat we made sure to mix up outdoor shows and indoor exhibits. Antartica: Empire of the Penguin was one of our favorites. Not only did it help us cool down but James loved these little guys. Other indoor exhibits were spread around the park, making the day very enjoyable. Sea World also has food stations and drink areas were you can refill your bottles and or cups for free. Other indoor exhibits we visited on this trip included Dolphin Cove, Shark Encounter, Turtle Trek and Wild Arctic.
4. Bring a Stroller
Britax B Ready | Stoller
Park Days can be long for little ones, we loaded James up with water all day and made sure to bring our stroller that is easy to push and reclines. Making transition to nap time a breeze. We love our Britax B Ready for days out, it also has a section in the back for a carseat if you have two children. Sea World and Disney both have designated stroller areas, so make sure to take a stroller you don't mind leaving behind during attractions.
5. Soak It All In
At the end of the day, remember to sit back and soak it all in, your little one may not be so little the next time you hit the parks. Make sure to take the photos, accept those little hugs and don't let the hustle and bustle of other park goers get you stressed. Vacation and park days are mean't for having fun! Let loose and explore. (Wild Arctic Exhibit Above.)
Here are some more photos from our trip. Seen below in order include, Dolphin Cove, Flamingo Exhibit, Shark Encounter, Dolphin Days and Pets Ahoy.