Discovery Cove Park Orlando

Discovery Cove is a hidden paradise, tucked away right in the heart of the action. Is it a water park? Technically yes. But not like any other you’ve ever seen. This tropical oasis is the perfect excuse to take a day to rest and recharge amongst the crazy hustle and bustle of your jam-packed Orlando vacation.

Discovery Cove offers endless opportunities as to what you might discover upon entering its blissful paradise, so if you have yet to visit Sea World’s beautiful sister park, here are a few reasons why it should most definitely be on your list.

1. Low crowd levels…

Discovery Cove Pool
Image: Discovery Cove

If you’re looking for a way to escape the crazy crowds during your Orlando trip, Discovery Cove offers a uniquely low crowd experience every single time. In order to ensure a truly peaceful visit for all guests, the park has a limited capacity of just 1,300 people per day, with reservations typically made prior to your visit. Aside from the beautiful scenery that Discovery Cove has to offer, this limited capacity is largely to thank for creating that tranquil, island atmosphere that the park is known for. This super-low capacity also means that the various amenities and attractions within Discovery Cove are rarely crowded, giving you that park-to-yourself feeling.

2. You’ll only need to pack light…

Discovery Cove Pool
Image: Discovery Cove

If you’re like us, your parks bag is stocked full of essentials that you might need throughout the day, however one of the fantastic benefits of Discovery Cove is that almost everything you need during your visit is already included in the cost of admission. Towels? Check. Snorkeling gear? Check. Sunscreen? A big check (they actually request that guests use the sunscreen provided in place of their usual, as it's both animal and reef safe!) Lockers are also included in your ticket price so anything you do need to bring can be safely stowed away while you head out on your day’s adventure but, for the most part, you’re able to turn up with simply your swimsuit and ID and you’re ready to go!

3. Arrive hungry…

Discovery Cove Pool
Image: Discovery Cove

One of Discovery Cove’s more commonly known benefits is that your all-inclusive ticket means you get a fantastic buffet-style breakfast and lunch included with your visit, but did you know you can also help yourself to as many snacks and beverages as you care to enjoy throughout your day? After a long swim in the lagoon, head over and grab yourself a warm cookie or pretzel, or even an Icee to cool yourself down on those particularly hot days – all covered by the cost of admission! Plus, for visitors over the age of 21, select beers and wines are also complimentary during your visit.

4. And then it’s time to relax…

Discovery Cove Grand Reef
Image: Discovery Cove

So you’ve grabbed some breakfast, loaded up on the unlimited coffee and you’re now ready to start experiencing all that Discovery Cove has to offer. First, grab a wetsuit and head on over to The Grand Reef which offers you the chance to swim peacefully amongst thousands of uniquely beautiful fish and rays. After that, it’s time to take to the 85-degree waters of Serenity Bay, the park’s stunning freshwater lagoon, as you soak up some sun and bask in the crystal-clear waters, before heading for a swim around the park’s ever-relaxing Wind-Away River. While you unwind in the tranquil currents, be sure to stop off in the Explorer’s Aviary and take a moment to get up close and personal with a variety of tropical birds and perhaps even get the chance to feed them! For those who are looking to level up their day, Discovery Cove also offers a number of paid upgrades, including their signature dolphin swim or even their innovative “SeaVenture” experience.

Is Discovery Cove one of your 'must-visit' places when heading to Orlando? Will you be spending a day there on your next trip?



Dolphin swims are exploitative and abusive, and for that reason alone Discovery Cove shouldn't be on *anyone's* list. A pity, because the rest of the park looks beautiful.

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