After buying our tickets, we walked up to the overlook at the top of a cliff and viewed the sea lions sunning on the rocks in the ocean far below. Next we took the elevator down to the sea lion cave, but since it was such a sunny day, the cave was empty. The lady who sold us the tickets said they probably wouldn't go back into the cave until the weather got worse.
If you're staying in or near Florence, I would suggest checking back occasionally to see if any sea lions are actually in the caves before buying tickets.
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