Take a safari adventure at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, watch killer whales perform at SeaWorld Orlando, swim with bottlenose dolphins at Discovery Cove and witness the world-famous “Gator Jumparoo” at Gatorland. All of these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities and much more are available in Orlando – “The Vacation Capital of the World.”
Make Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park the first stop on your fun-filled tour of Central Florida animal attractions. In addition to live shows and thrill rides, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park is home to a variety of diverse animal habitats. Highlights of Animal Kingdom include Expedition Everest, which features roller coaster-like thrills along with a theme based on the folklore of the mysterious yeti Kilimanjaro Safaris; where you will ride in open-side safari jeeps through the Harambe Reserve to view African elephants, rhinos, hippos, giraffes, lions, crocodiles, baboons and more; Pangani Forest Exploration Trail and Maharajah Jungle Trek, two walk-through attractions that allow you to view an abundance of wildlife; Affection Section, a petting zoo for kids; Flights of Wonder, an exotic bird show; and the walk-through Oasis Exhibits, which are full of exotic animal habitats.
Next on your itinerary should be SeaWorld Orlando, the home of the world-famous killer whale, Shamu, as well as great live shows such as One Ocean, Clyde & Seamore Take Pirate Island, Blue Horizons and Pets Ahoy! Animal habitats at SeaWorld Orlando include Dolphin Cove, Dolphin Nursery, Pacific Point Preserve ( California sea lions and harbor seals), Shark Encounter and Stingray Lagoon.
At Discovery Cove, SeaWorld Orlando’s sister theme park, you can interact with bottlenose dolphins, sharks, barracuda and stingrays, as well as snorkel through a colorful reef full of exotic fish. Note: Reservations are required for Discovery Cove. Other nearby animal attractions include Gatorland, known as the “Alligator Capital of the World”; Green Meadows Petting Farm, an interactive, two-hour guided tour of a working farm; and NatureWorks at Orlando Science Center, which features alligators, snakes and turtles.
Seeking a day trip from Orlando? You can choose from several eclectic animal attractions that lie just an hour or so from Disney World such as Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, which is full of animal attractions, as well as thrill rides and live entertainment; Central Florida Zoological Park, a 100-acre zoo that lies in Sanford, North of downtown Orlando; Jungle Adventures, a 20-acre nature park and wildlife sanctuary; Brevard Zoo, which features approximately 500 animals that represent 130 different species; and Silver Springs, “Florida’s Original Theme Park,” which is home to unique live animal shows and habitats.