Swimming with Dolphins Questions, FAQs and Park Tips
Frequently Asked Questions and Park Info - Discovery Cove
 

Planning Your Family Travel
What is the address of Discovery Cove?
Are reservations required to spend the day at Discovery Cove?
How much is admission to Discovery Cove?
If Discovery Cove is a Day Resort, does that mean this includes an overnight stay?
What is the age requirement to swim with the dolphins?
Why is the Day Resort price the same for adults and children?
Product Inclusions
SeaWorld Orlando®/Busch Gardens Tampa® Pass Usage
Do I need to be a good swimmer to participate in the various experiences at Discovery Cove?
How long is the dolphin swim experience?
Changing or canceling a reservation
Reviewing a reservation
"Peace of mind" Hurricane Policy
Could you recommend a hotel in the area close to Discovery Cove?

A Day at Discovery Cove
Do any Discovery Cove® Orlando animals come from drive fisheries?
Where can I find directions to Discovery Cove?
What are the operating hours for Discovery Cove?
Where can I view a map of Discovery Cove?
How much is parking?
Transportation Information
What should I wear to the park on the day of my program?
What do I need to bring with me to Discovery Cove?
Cameras and video recorders allowed
Are prescription masks available at Discovery Cove?
What is the temperature of the water in the pools?
Wetsuits
Air temperature
Dietary Needs
Disabled guests
Expectant Mothers
Unaccompanied Minors
Dolphin Liability Waiver

Other Experiences & Offers
Where can I find more information about the Special Occasion packages available at Discovery Cove?
Trainer for a Day
Private functions
Youth programs
Student group visits
Where can I find information about special offers at Discovery Cove?
Military Discounts
Employment opportunities

What is the address of Discovery Cove?
6000 Discovery Cove Way
Orlando, FL 32821
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Are reservations required to spend the day at Discovery Cove?
Since Discovery Cove limits attendance to about 1,300 guests per day, it is highly recommended you make a reservation for your visit. Also, if you are planning on visiting during the summer or near a holiday, you should book your reservation at least two months prior to your intended visit to ensure availability as these timeframes tend to book early. Once you have made a reservation, you simply check in on the date of your visit. All you need is your name, confirmation number, and a photo ID for those guests over the age of 18. [back to top]

How much is admission to Discovery Cove?
Please click here to view current Dolphin Swim Day Resort Packages and Day Resort Packages rates. [back to top] 

If Discovery Cove is a Day Resort, does that mean this includes an overnight stay?
Discovery Cove is a day resort as it is an all-inclusive day where meals, drinks, gear, and activities are included once you check in for your day of discovery. For information on overnight accommodations, please visit our Hotel Partners. [back to top]

What is the age requirement to swim with the dolphins?
Guests of all ages are welcomed at Discovery Cove. Children ages 6-12 must be accompanied by a paying adult who also is participating in the dolphin swim experience. This policy was established to ensure the cognitive and physical stature of the child. These factors are taken into consideration to ensure children are able to interact in a group social setting, accept instructions, and understand the trainer. Also, the physical size of the child is taken into account since he/she will be in water that is approximately 3 feet deep with large, powerful animals. Also, children must be at least 13 years of age to participate in the Trainer for a Day program without an accompanying adult and at least 15 years of age to visit Discovery Cove without adult supervision.

  • Must be 15 to enter the park without parental supervision. Parent or Legal Guardian must sign "Authorization to Treat" forms before allowing park entry
  • All Minors participating in the Dolphin Experience must have any and all release forms signed by a parent/legal guardian or chaperone over the age of 18
  • Any guest under the age of 18 participating in the SeaVenture experience must have liability waiver signed by parent or legal guardian after watching the instructional video 

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Why is the Day resort price the same for adults and children?
Since children are able to participate in all of the park's activities, we do not offer a children's rate, however, toddlers age 2 and under do receive a complimentary admission. [back to top]

Product Inclusions
The Day Resort Packages at Discovery Cove are all-inclusive. Therefore, admission includes the use of lockers, wetsuit, towels and mask during your stay, free parking at Discovery Cove, shower amenities, souvenir snorkel, complimentary entry photo, breakfast, lunch, drinks and snacks, access to the Explorer's AviaryThe Grand Reef®, Freshwater Oasis®, Serenity Bay, Wind-away River, along with a 14-consecutive day pass to SeaWorld® and Aquatica, SeaWorld's Waterpark™ in Orlando. For the best value, you can upgrade to the Ultimate Package, which includes unlimited admission for up to 14-consecutive days to SeaWorld OrlandoBusch Gardens Tampa and Aquatica, SeaWorld's Waterpark™. Our guests select in which activities they would like to participate. At this time, we do not offer customized packages for guests who chose not to participate in selected activities. [back to top]

SeaWorld, Aquatica, SeaWorld's Waterpark™ and Busch Gardens Tampa Pass Usage
Your reservation includes a 14-day pass to SeaWorld and Aquatica, SeaWorld's Waterpark™ in Orlando (if you have the Ultimate package which includes Busch Gardens Tampa), you must use it consecutively with your visit to Discovery Cove, either before, after, or a combination of both. Your personalized ID card will serve as your ticket if you decide to visit your selected sister park(s) after your reservation date.

However, if you plan on visiting SeaWorld, Aquatica, SeaWorld's Waterpark™, or Busch Gardens prior to your Discovery Cove adventure, simply present your confirmation letter and photo ID for each party member 18 years or older at their Guest Relations/Services window located at the front gate. At Aquatica, SeaWorld's Waterpark™, the process is the same should you visit there prior to Discovery Cove, however, the entry is located at the Big Kahuna Entrance just to the left of the turnstiles.

Valid annual pass must be shown at time of check-in at Discovery Cove. [back to top]

Do I need to be a good swimmer to participate in the various experiences at Discovery Cove?
Even for non-swimmers, Discovery Cove has plenty to offer. Not only can you relax on the white sand beaches or one of our many hammocks, but we have an Aviary full of exotic birds to hand feed. More importantly, however, we do provide life jackets so you can enjoy the waterways as well. The devices are designed to keep you afloat, so you would still be able to snorkel with the fish in the The Grand Reef or take a journey down our Wind-Away river. The lifejackets can even be worn in the dolphin lagoons! [back to top]

Location Length Shallowest Point Deepest Point
Wind-away River  1,600 feet 3 feet 8 feet
Serenity Bay N/A 0-1 feet 4 feet
The Grand Reef®   N/A 0-1 feet 12 feet
Dolphin Lagoon  N/A 0-1 feet 12 feet
Freshwater Oasis® N/A 0-1 feet 7 feet

How long is the dolphin swim experience?
The in-water dolphin experience is 30 minutes long. Beforehand, there is a short orientation session (10 minutes) led by Discovery Cove's expert dolphin trainers to discuss safety and offer an opportunity for participants to ask questions. Next, small groups wade into the shallow water of the Dolphin Lagoon for the in-water experience with the dolphins. At the end, one at a time, guests and a trainer will swim into deeper water for a personal "dorsal tow" back to shore. After the water experience, guests can view photographs and video of their interactions and talk about their experience with trainers and other participants. [back to top]

Changing or canceling a reservation
At Discovery Cove, we recognize that vacation plans sometimes change. To accommodate this, we will allow one complimentary date change prior to your visit. Further changes to your itinerary will be provided for a nominal charge of $50 per change. If you need to reschedule your Discovery Cove visit, one complimentary date change is allowed, pending availability. Bookings made within 3 days of original reservation date will be booked at the original rate. Bookings made outside of that time will be subject to change based on seasonal rates for the new date chosen.

Please note: If you decide to cancel or rebook your Discovery Cove reservation within 30 days of your visit there is no refund. If the cancellation notice is provided more than 30 days from your originally scheduled arrival, you will receive a full 100% refund. If you have to change or cancel your reservation, please contact the Discovery Cove reservations center at 1-877-557-7404. International guests, please call 001 (407) 370-1280.

* Group booking policies may differ.

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Reviewing a reservation
To review your reservations online please click here.  To ensure compliance with reservation procedures; however, all changes must be made through the reservations center toll-free at 1-877-557-7404 or for international guests at 001 (407) 370-1280. [back to top]

"Peace of mind" Hurricane Policy
In the event a named tropical storm or hurricane approaches Orlando, Tampa, or a guest's hometown, the parks will reschedule or refund any vacation package and/or individual park tickets booked through SeaWorld Vacations, Busch Gardens Vacations, DiscoveryCove.com, SeaWorld.com, BuschGardens.com, or the call center. The parks will not apply any cancellation or change fees for this service. For additional Discovery Cove information call 1-877-557-7404. [back to top]

Could you recommend a hotel in the area close to Discovery Cove?
Please click here for information regarding hotel packages. [back to top]

Do any Discovery Cove® Orlando animals come from drive fisheries?
NO. Discovery Cove and all SeaWorld parks are opposed to these drive hunts in Japan and elsewhere. No animal in our collection is from a drive hunt. The overwhelming majority of marine mammals in our parks were born in our parks. In fact, it is a violation of U.S. law to bring an animal collected in that manner into the U.S. To learn more about what zoos and aquariums are doing to stop this practice, visit http://www.actfordolphins.org/ and to learn more about SeaWorld® and Discovery Cove® visit http://seaworldcares.com/.
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Where can I find directions to Discovery Cove?
From the West (Lake Buena Vista/Tampa):
Take I-4 East (toward Orlando) to exit 71. This is the SeaWorld exit.
Bear right onto Central Florida Parkway when exiting ramp.
The entrance to Discovery Cove is on the right hand side of Central Florida Parkway, past the sign for SeaWorld Orlando.

From the North (Downtown Orlando, Universal Studios, Sanford, Deland):
Take I-4 West to exit 72 (Beachline Expressway/FL-528/Airport).
Once on the Beachline, take the first exit (International Drive).
Make a left onto International Drive.
Make a right onto Central Florida Parkway at the third traffic light.
The entrance to Discovery Cove is on the left hand side of Central Florida Parkway.

From the East (Cocoa, Cape Canaveral, Titusville Area):
Take FL-528 (Beachline Expressway) west to the International Drive exit.
Make a left onto International Drive.
Make a right onto Central Florida Parkway at the third traffic light.
The entrance to Discovery Cove is on the left hand side of Central Florida Parkway.
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What are the operating hours for Discovery Cove?
Discovery Cove is a full day adventure with operating hours of 8:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. daily. Check-in begins at 7:15 a.m. [back to top]

Where can I view a map of Discovery Cove?
Please click here to view the map of Discovery Cove. [back to top]

How much is parking?
Self-parking at Discovery Cove is complimentary, however, parking admission at our sister parks is not included. If you would like to add a parking package to your reservation, please contact our Guest Reservations Center at 1-877-557-7404. [back to top]

Transportation Information
Discovery Cove provides complimentary transportation to and from SeaWorld Orlando for those guests who do not have their own transportation on the day of their visit. To utilize this service, there is a well-marked phone at the Bus and Taxi drop-off/pick-up station at SeaWorld. Simply pick up the phone to be connected with a shuttle dispatcher.

We also provide complimentary transportation to Busch Gardens Tampa for guests whose Discovery Cove package includes admission to Busch Gardens. For more information, please contact The Busch Gardens Shuttle Express at 1-800-221-1339 at least 24 hours in advance. Reservations are not required for this service, but are recommended. [back to top]

What should I wear to the park on the day of my program?
Guests should bring their own swimsuits, and, if they choose, water socks or rubber pool shoes, hat, sunglasses and cover-up or dry clothes. Guests participating in the Trainer for a Day program are required to wear footwear during some portions of their day.  Discovery Cove provides all guests with swim vests and/or wetsuits. With the exception of watches and wedding bands, Discovery Cove guests may not wear jewelry, for the safety of the animals. [back to top]

What do I need to bring with me to Discovery Cove?
Discovery Cove provides a mask and snorkel, towels and beach chairs. Guests may use their own masks and snorkels if they prefer, but may not bring any other diving or swimming equipment into the park. Discovery Cove will also provide guests with a sample of specially formulated sunscreen that is safe for use in the animal habitats.Since meals, snacks and drinks are provided with admission to Discovery Cove, no other food, beverages or coolers are permitted. Guests may wish to bring books and magazines, a CD or mp3 player with headset or similar items to help them relax on the beach, and a camera to catch all of their special moments. [back to top]

Cameras and recording devices
Guests may use their personal cameras and recording devices throughout the park, with the exception of the dolphin lagoons (for the safety of our animals and your photo equipment). We do, however, allow other party members to take photos and record video of the interaction from our beach areas. In addition, we provide photographers and videographers to capture your memories. Photography and video packages vary in selection and pricing. [back to top]

Are prescription masks available at Discovery Cove?
Discovery Cove offers special prescription masks in various strengths (near-sighted: -1 through -8 and far-sighted: 1 through 8) on a first come, first serve basis. [back to top]

What is the temperature of the water in the pools?
The temperature of our pools remains constant throughout the year. The fresh water Serenity Bay, Freshwater Oasis and Wind-away River are maintained around 85-88 F (30 C). The salt water Dolphin Lagoon maintained around 72 F (22 C), and The Grand Reef are 77 F (25 C). [back to top]

Wetsuits
While in the water, we do require guests to wear either a wetsuit (short or long depending on the season and guests preference) or a swim vest. This ensures our lifeguards are able to see guests as they swim underwater, thus, enhancing safety.
*Sizing ranges from toddlers through 18XL.[back to top]

Air Temperature

Month Average high Average low Warmest ever Coldest ever Average precipitation
JAN. 72 50 87 24 2.1
FEB. 73 51 90 28 3.1
MAR. 77 55 92 31 3.5
APR. 83 61 96 40 2.6
MAY 88 67 100 52 3.0
JUNE 91 71 100 60 6.5
JULY 92 73 100 67 8.1
AUG. 92 73 99 64 7.2
SEPT. 89 72 97 56 6.8
OCT. 84 66 95 43 3.9
NOV. 77 56 89 29 1.7
DEC. 73 51 90 20 2.1
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Dietary Needs 
In order for our team to best serve you and ensure a safe and enjoyable dining experience, we ask that you please read and understand ALL of the important information below.

WHAT TO DO: Upon arriving at a meal facility, please go straight to the cashier and ask to speak with a supervisor in order to discuss the severity of your allergens and determine a meal that will be safe for you.

OFFERING OF SPECIALTY ITEMS: Our Park offers several allergen friendly prepackaged items for your special dietary needs. For a list of these items and their location, please ask to speak to a supervisor at our main meal facilities.

CROSS CONTACT: Not all of our meal facilities are free from cross contact. In order to ensure your meal is safe, please discuss the preparation process for your meal with the supervisor as you place your order to ensure no cross-contact takes place.

TIPS FOR A SAFE TRIP: Follow these tips to allow us to best serve you and ensure a safe and great dining experience with us!
• Always ask for a supervisor upon arriving at a meal facility
• Visit meal facilities during non-peak hours or ahead of meal time so that you can be efficiently assisted and served
• Always ask about cross-contact potential

This information is provided for informational purposes only by SeaWorld Parks &Entertainment, Inc (SEA). Neither SEA, its parent, subsidiaries, affiliates, suppliers, vendors, and/or employees assume responsibility for sensitivity or allergy to any food product or ingredient provided by or in our parks. 
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Disabled Guests
Discovery Cove can accommodate guests with disabilities who are able to maneuver themselves with limited assistance (or with the aid of a personal assistant) during their dolphin experience and in the various wading locations. Discovery Cove also offers specially-designed outdoor wheelchairs with oversized tires for easy maneuvering on the beach. The wheelchairs are not self-maneuverable and guests will need assistance operating them. Wheelchairs can be reserved by calling 1-877-557-7404. [back to top]

Expectant Mothers
We do not place restrictions for expectant mothers; the decision is left up to each individual. However, guests should take the following into consideration: the day will involve swimming with water depths ranging from 3 feet to 15 feet. In addition, if you have chosen to participate in the Dolphin swim experience, it will be with a live animal weighing in excess of 500 pounds. The experience will involve up-close activities such as kissing and touching of the dolphin, along with being towed 12 feet through the water while holding onto the dorsal fin of the dolphin. Therefore, we do ask that you consult a doctor prior to your visit. Please ensure that you explain the nature of the interaction and activities to receive a proper assessment.  [back to top]

Unaccompanied Minors
Except when participating in an event intended for young guests such as our Adventure Camps, sleepovers, and educational programs, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment suggests that visitors 14 and younger be accompanied by an adult.

  • Must be 15 to enter the park without parental supervision. Parent or Legal Guardian must sign "Authorization to Treat" forms before allowing park entry
  • All Minors participating in the Dolphin Experience must have any and all release forms signed by a parent/legal guardian or chaperone over the age of 18
  • Any guest under the age of 18 participating in the SeaVenture experience must have liability waiver signed by parent or legal guardian after watching the instructional video 

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Dolphin Liability Waiver

All participants or their legal guardians are required to sign a liability release form before experiencing the Dolphin Interaction. [back to top]

Where can I find more information about the Special Occasion packages available at Discovery Cove?
Please click here for more information about Special Occasion Packages. [back to top]

Trainer for a Day
If you are experiencing our Trainer for a Day program, please plan to meet with your dolphin trainer at 8 a.m. in the Guest Reception Lobby (check-in should occur before this time). [back to top]

Private functions
Discovery Cove is available for private functions and night parties. For more information, please call Group Sales at 1-407-363-2264. [back to top]

Youth programs
Discovery Cove is included in a program called Career Camp through the SeaWorld Education Department:
Career Camp
Advanced Career Camp
Coastal Career Discovery
For more information on these camps please call 1-866-468-6226, or check out the Career Camp mini-site.[back to top]

Student group visits
Discovery Cove is the ultimate field trip for school and youth groups. For youth group reservation information, please contact Discovery Cove Reservations at 1-877-557-7404. [back to top]

Where can I find information about special offers at Discovery Cove?
To receive emails about Discovery Cove click here. [back to top]

Military Discounts
While Discovery Cove doesn't offer direct discounts, you may contact your base's travel office for special pricing at our other parks. While not all bases offer tickets, yours should be able to refer you to one which is capable of handling your request.

SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment is continuing our military program throughout 2014. Members of active military duty and as many as three (3) direct dependents can receive complimentary admission to one of our sister parks. Please visit wavesofhonor.com for more information. [back to top]

Employment opportunities
Discovery Cove offers a variety of challenging careers in fields such as guest service, animal care, operations, food service, landscaping and marketing. Visit www.seaworldjobs.com or call the employment hotline at 1-407-363-2600 for details. Also, for more information regarding a career in Animal Training, check out our career resources page. [back to top]

Other Policies:

Weapons including knives are not permitted to be taken into the park.

Smoking is permitted only in designated smoking areas as indicated on the park map.

Discovery Cove is not responsible for fire, theft, damage or loss of vehicle including articles left within.

Discovery Cove reserves the right to refuse admission or ask anyone to leave the park that is not in compliance with these rules.

Your presence in the park constitutes your consent to be photographed and/or recorded while in the park. You irrevocably grant SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Inc., and its affiliates, assignees, licensees and successors the right to use your image, voice and likeness in all forms and media for any purpose whatsoever throughout the world, in perpetuity, without any limitation or compensation. In addition, no photos, videos or other recordings taken by any park attendee may be used for any commercial purpose, gain, or other exploitation for profit without the express written consent of SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Inc.

                                                                                                                                    

 

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