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“Insanely Depressing” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Miami Seaquarium

Miami Seaquarium
4400 Rickenbacker Causeway, Miami, FL 33149
305-361-5705
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Ranked #31 of 120 Attractions in Miami
Type: Aquariums
Activities: Viewing wildlife, Swimming with dolphins
More attraction details
Attraction Details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: On a 38-acre tropical paradise with spectacular skyline views lies a South Florida attraction like no other. Welcome to Miami Seaquarium®, a place where dolphins walk on water and killer whales fly through the air. Where sea lions delight children of all ages and endangered sea turtles and manatees find a safe haven. Enjoy a world-class marine-life entertainment park with eight different marine animal shows and astonishing daily presentations. You've heard the mysterious legends and fascinating facts about dolphins, one of the world's most magnificent marine mammals. Now, you can have a hands-on experience with one of these amazing animals at Dolphin Harbor, the new home to our dolphin interaction programs at Miami Seaquarium.Miami Seaquarium® is a place of inspiration, education - and fun!
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Wheelchair access, Bathroom facilities, Activities for young children
Las Vegas, NV
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Insanely Depressing”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2013

I regretted my decision to purchase admission plus a dolphin interaction here about 15 minutes after I walked in. I strongly suggest that if you plan on going here, well, don't. Just perform a web search of this place and make an informed decision. Here's my take:

Park
Old, run-down and small, 2 hours was all it really took to see everything (and there wasn't much)

Staff
Most are slackers, inattentive and were constantly on their smart phones directly in front of guests. Those working at animal exhibits (with the exception of the dolphin odyssey) seemed bothered by children asking questions. They definitely looked like they did not want to be there. Oh, and the whale trainer had the most annoying, high-pitched voice I've ever heard, when you could understand her.

Dolphin Odyssey
Cost more than $200 for about 20 minutes with a dolphin. Very little interaction and just not-interesting (if you have to swim with dolphins, do it in the wild in Hawaii with Sunlight on Water - nothing compares to observing dolphins in their natural habitat)

Animal Care
Tanks are way too small, particularly for the killer whale who shares space with dolphins
The whale trainers still had ponytails, despite a trainer at Sea World of Orlando being killed after being dragged to the bottom of the tank by her hair, not sure if the park knows about that or just doesn't care. Sidenote - They had a whale in the 1980's named Hugo that died after repeatedly banging its head into the side of his tank (he was kept in the tank that they now have the manatees in). You won't find any record of that in the park. What's even worse is what the park did with the whale's body - they sent it to the dump. Something about that seems cold and heartless for a theme park.

Look, I love animals, I enjoy observing and am definitely NOT a PETA-loving activist-type. I actually like going to Sea World, not just because the parks are entertaining and have adventure rides, but Sea World does good works with the environment and places a large emphasis on education as well as entertainment. This place was depressing on so many levels that I would urge everyone to stay away, or make the 4-hour trek to Orlando to see marine mammals that are actually treated decently.

Just writing this made me angry all over again...

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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ft lauderdale
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“awesome”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2013

this was the best --- my husband and i thoroughly enjoyed the underwater sea trek--- it was just awesome and we would do it again...

Visited August 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SeaquariumSupport, Manager at Miami Seaquarium, responded to this review, September 13, 2013
Dear Guest,

What a great review! We are so happy to hear that you enjoyed the Underwater Sea Trek, we hope to see you and your husband again.

Sincerely,

Miami Seaquarium
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Jersey
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Dolphin Odyssey”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2013

For the price I am going to say it was just average. Having done a dolphin swim in the Dominican Republic and in Curacao - those seemed to offer much more. The water seemed murky here and you didn't actually get to "swim around" with the dolphins. You posed for a couple of pictures and then took a short ride across the pool holding it's flippers. In the other places, you actually stayed in the water while the dolphins swam around you and jumped over you. Plus they took your photos in various poses before you got completely submerged in the water so the pictures were beautiful keepsakes. Here you were in a wetsuit with wet hair and everyone's pictures looked a bit disheveled. For the price - over 800.00 for 2 adults and 2 kids, I thought it was overrated. The rest of the park was worn out and they could use some fresh shows and entertainment. The Shark feeding was not that exciting and the guy feeding the sharks could not even answer the kids questions about the differences between two kinds of sharks.

Visited July 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SeaquariumSupport, Manager at Miami Seaquarium, responded to this review, September 13, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to review Miami Seaquarium and for swimming with the dolpins at our park. We apologize if the experience was not what you have experienced in your vacations, we thank you for your review as it will help us improve. We hope to see you and your family again.

Sincerely,

Miami Seaquarium
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Miami, Florida, United States
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Not The Best”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2013

I have swam with the dolphins multiple times both at Dolphins Plus, Theater of the Sea, and now the Miami Seaquarium. Miami Seaquarium cannot compete with the other two in customer service, photo quality, and overall experience.

@ The Miami Seaquarium:

-There is a severe preoccupation with dolphins eating jewelry; it is past precaution and is an obsession with some of the trainers.

-I got yelled at for taking my ponytail out and trying to fix my hair (once again, because somehow the dolphin was going to jump out of the water and eat the hair tie off my wrist).

-We experienced a dolphin "time out" -what?- because a male dolphin refused to perform a trick.

-We then were yelled at to evacuate the water.

-After the crisis was over, new dolphins were corralled into our tank.

-The trainer that I eventually ended up with was awesome. It was a good thing she was fluent in Spanish because no one else in our group spoke English.

-You only get to "swim" with the dolphins once, a short dorsal fin tow across the tank. It is not worth the money.

Theater of the Sea was where I had my most recent swim prior to Miami Seaquarium. It was awesome. The staff was friendly. The dolphins were not only well trained, but extremely curious about the people and even after our program ended the dolphin followed us out along the water. We had the pleasure of swimming with a pregnant female who was the most powerful and beautiful dolphin I had ever seen. It was a true swimming with the dolphins experience.

The Miami Seaquarium was the last place I swam with the dolphins and it was undoubtedly nothing more than how fast can we crank out the tourists type of experience. The photos of the experience were not well taken. And when me and my friend bought some, they cranked up the brightness on the picture so much it completely ruined the quality of the photo. It was extremely annoying. It was still cool, obviously.

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SeaquariumSupport, Manager at Miami Seaquarium, responded to this review, September 13, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to review Miami Seaquarium. Thank you for sharing your experience with us, we work hard to assure that our animals and guests are both safe at all times. We apologize if we came off as obsessive and for the quality of the photo that was given to you. We do hope that you come visit us again in the future.

Sincerely,

Miami Seaquarium
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rapid city ,sd
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Very nice”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2013 via mobile

We visited the miami seaquarium on our honeymoon. It is nit like a regular aquarium. But they do alot for the conservation of the ocean and do it well. I would return one day to swim with the dolphins

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SeaquariumSupport, Manager at Miami Seaquarium, responded to this review, September 13, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for visiting us during your honeymoon, congratulations on getting married. It is great to hear that you had a great time and we hope that you two visit us again.

Sincerely,

Miami Seaquarium
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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