As part of our epic cross-country summer road trip, we made a stop in San Antonio to see the Alamo, take a river cruise, and of course, spend the day at SeaWorld San Antonio. While I like to expose my kids to history, culture and national parks, I know that I also need to build in days for pure fun when I put together travel itineraries, and our day at SeaWorld San Antonio was just that, a full day of fun.
We stayed not far from the park – at the Omni San Antonio Hotel – so we were able to get there fairly close to opening time at the park (check out the latest nightly rates and more details). That was a good thing too because there was a lot to keep us busy between SeaWorld and Aquatica, SeaWorld’s waterpark.
Take a look at 15 things you must do if you plan to visit SeaWorld San Antonio as a family. Need park tickets? Consider buying tickets online to avoid the lines when you arrive (always a good idea).
1. Download the Mobile App. If you go on a busy day, in particular, it’s especially helpful to have the SeaWorld mobile app on your smartphone. The app includes park maps, show schedules, wait times, even a car finder. There’s also a scavenger hunt that your kids can play once inside the park.
2. Watch the New Sea Lion Show. SeaWorld San Antonio recently introduced a new sea lion show called “Clyde and Seamore’s Sea Lion High.” Your kids will love watching the sea lions perform tricks and interact with the audience as they go back to school in search of diplomas (mine did).
3. Get the All-Day Dining Deal. If you plan to spend all day at the park, it’s a must to grab the all-day dining deal. With this you get one entrée, one side or dessert, and one drink every time you go through the line (as many times as you want). This was great when the kids just wanted a snack or a drink.
4. Feed the Sea Lions.Head to Pacific Point Preserve inside the park to visit with the sea lions. You can either stop by during designated feeding times or spend a few dollars to purchase some fish to feed them yourselves. Note that these guys can get pretty loud when they see you holding a fish or two.
5. Meet Animal Experts Throughout the Day. Head to the Animal Connections Conservation Center to meet animal experts, as well as the animals they care for at SeaWorld San Antonio. It’s a great way to help your kids learn about protecting and caring for the rescued animals at the park.
6. Pose with Sesame Street Characters. For the little littles in your family, head to the Sesame Street Bay of Play, which has at least a half-dozen rides just for small kids, including a roller coaster and a carousel. Pose with Elmo or sign up for the daily Sesame Street Breakfast (an extra fee applies).
7. Plan to Eat During Show Times. It’s a good idea to grab lunch or snacks during off-times, but at SeaWorld, it’s an especially good time to eat while everyone else is watching one of the big shows. Consult the show schedule and plan for meals during the shows. Hungry kids do not like to wait in lines!
8. Cool Down at Aquatica. It can get really hot in San Antonio, so plan to spend some time on the water slides and lazy river at Aquatica. Keep in mind that Aquatica closes before the rest of the park, so plan your day accordingly. You’ll also need to purchase a multi-park ticket, but it’s totally worth it.
9. Make Time for Azul. Azul is probably the most popular show at SeaWorld San Antonio and seats can fill up quickly so you’ll want to get there early, but it’s worth it. Arrive at least 30 minutes in advance and you’ll be entertained by a warm-up performer (who happens to spray water into the crowd!).
10. Spend Time with Sea to Shore Art.SeaWorld worked with non-profit group, Washed Ashore, to create and display sea life-themed works of art made from garbage washed up on shores, like tires, sand toys, plastic bags and more. The artworks highlight the importance of protecting our oceans.
11. Try a Behind-the-Scenes Tour. SeaWorld San Antonio offers multiple behind-the-scenes tours at the park. Sure, it’s an extra fee, but learning about the work SeaWorld does to rescue and rehabilitate manatees and sea turtles is pretty incredible.
12. Have Lunch with Shamu.Go behind-the-scenes with the trainers and enjoy an all-you-can-eat buffet by signing up for the popular lunchtime program called Dine with Shamu. You really are right up next to the orcas and it’s fun to watch them play and get some exercise with the trainers.
13. Don’t Forget about Animal Encounters at Aquatica. There may be flamingos, penguins, orcas and sea lions at SeaWorld, but you’ll find plenty of animals to visit with at Aquatica, too. Head to Roa’s Aviary to see 300 tropical birds. Go early in the morning and pick up a free cup of food for the birds.
14. Settle in for the Pets Ahoy Show. Head to the Sea Star Theater for the Pets Ahoy live show. Your kids won’t be able to take their eyes off the stage as dogs, cats, parrots, pigs and more perform funny tricks and steal the show. As a bonus, stay once the show is over to meet and greet the animals on stage.
15. Buy a Quick Queue Pass. Just as kids don’t like to wait in long lines when they’re ready to eat, they also don’t like to wait in long lines to ride the rides (especially when it’s hot outside). Quick Queue Unlimited may be your best bet since it allows for priority entrance all day long. A life saver.
Avoid the lines. Get your SeaWorld San Antonio park tickets online ahead of time. Check the latest prices for single and multi day tickets.
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. However, all views expressed here are my own.