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“Fun family day out!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sea World

Sea World
Seaworld Dr, Main Beach, Queensland 4217, Australia
61 7 5588 2222
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Top Rated
and up
Gold Coast Theme Park Pass: Movie World, Sea...
Ranked #1 of 2 Attractions in Main Beach
Type: Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Amusement/ Theme Parks, Aquariums, Amusement Parks
Activities: Swimming with dolphins
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Attraction details
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Brisbane, Australia
18 reviews 18 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Fun family day out!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2012

We all enjoyed an action packed day at Seaworld! I visited Seaworld with my family as our children were dying to see the Dora show. Despite the rainy weather we all had an amazing day and we packed so much in. The highlight was the Dolphin show for the adults and the Dora show for the kids. We visit the park often and always enjoy something new with each visit!

Visited March 2012
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Nomadic Aussie
16 reviews 16 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Over-priced, over-rated, over-crowded. Over it.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2012

I think any visitor to the Gold Coast views Sea World as one of those iconic must-do attractions. My advice: don't.

I hadn't been here since the 80's. It's gone downhill - big time. You can really tell this once-great iconic theme park is now owned and operated by a movie cinema entertainment monolith for the benefit of shareholder profits. Make no mistake - customers to Sea World come last.

They don't even open until 10am. That's 11am if you're coming from NSW. We took a drive up there around 8:30am to discover the car park was one-third full at the entry gates, only to realise these cars belonged to the workers arriving. Any normal business would make their workers park their cars at the far end of the park and leave the better parking for customers. Not Sea World.

We came back at 10 and queued for close to 30 minutes for the pleasure of paying about $80 per adult to get in. Other parks clearly indicate which rides are closed so you can make an informed choice before forking out your hard earned cash. Not Sea World.

Once finally inside we'd already missed the first show. The schedules were impossible to follow, the park layout confusing. Had to deal with massive crowds of rude people, kids, strollers, etc.. - and this is on an "off season" Monday. Don't all these kids need to be in school or something??? Usually these parks design their schedules so you can get an opportunity to visit all the shows and displays. Not Sea World. You're walking from one end back to the other back to the other to go from show to show. I think they deliberately make it confusing that you need to come back a second time.

The rides... the big roller coaster wasn't working. The gondola thing wasn't working - come to think of it, I've never seen it working. Where was the train? The monorail was off for half the day.

Now the cost. Oh. My. God. This is where you can really tell this place is run by a movie cinema company. $8 for a coke. $4 for a water (not a water bubbler in sight). $8 for a small hot dog (bun and frankfurt). $12 for a chicken burger. Got wet on that attraction? Here's a machine you can dry yourself off in for $5. Wanna feed the Sting Rays, that'll be $9 thanks. Want to go on the rollercoaster? You'll need to rent one of these storage lockers for all your stuff... Money. Money. Money.

Can you take your own food? Not Sea World. Eskys are strictly not allowed so forget anything that needs to be kept cold.

They have a "tavern" there that I was actually looking forward to sitting down in and enjoying a reasonable meal. Forget it. It was organized chaos. If you can secure a table in there even on an off-season Monday you're doing very well. People pushing, shoving, tables tightly packed, total disorganisation. We gave up and settled for a $24 lunch consisting of 2 tiny hot dogs and 2 bottles of water. Gee thanks Sea World.

The animal shows were tacky and crass. Watching the dolphin stunts left me feeling both amazed yet guilty for putting the animals through all this - a strange mix of emotions. I guess a 20 minute show spectacular including a 30 second talk about how to check if a dolphin is pregnant ticks the "educational" box, right? The seal detective show was clever but still leaves me sad. A couple of times you could really tell that the large seal did NOT want to do a certain trick here he stands upright on his hind legs, but they kept pushing it to perform.

Employees throughout the park were somewhat disinterested. Very few smiles. The dolphin show commentator sounded like he'd done it a million times before.

Then there were the unfortunate people who paid a small fortune for their special intimate and up close animal experiences... standing in knee height water interacting petting dolphins, all strategically positioned alongside the main walkway so the participants become a spectacle for the passing crowds and an advertisement to help "sell" the experience.

I won't be back. This park was at it's height in the 1980's. Now just another overpriced and overcrowded and run-down tourist trap. Not pleasurable at all.

Visited March 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
54 attraction reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
61 helpful votes 61 helpful votes
“Nice day out”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2012

Great day out if your into Animals. They have a few rides but the lines can be very LONG

Visited November 2011
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Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
1 review
“Customer service is lacking”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2012

It would be great if Sea World would have a look at their customer service. I am sure if the powers to be would take a closer look they would be deeply disappointed because I know I was.

Visited March 2012
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Melbourne, Australia
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
10 attraction reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Not what it used to be”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2012

My husband and I went to Sea world with our daughter, her husband and our 3 year old grand daughter. We had been a few times with our children years ago and always thought it the best value park on the gold coast but, unfortunately, not now. We agree with all the previous posts re lack of rides for older kids/adults and the number of rides that were shut down. I can only presume that it is due to the tourist downturn ie no japanese tourists and the high Aussie dollar. The entertainment for little children is excellent and varied and we did love the sea animal shows. I must admit i found the waterski show in the past to be more of a spectacle than the jetski stunts even though they were very clever. The fish and shark exhibit is as good as any aquarium. The park is still clean with plenty of room to move around and the staff were friendly. We actually thought the food was not unreasonable in price compared to most other places although there was a limited choice. My husband and I shared a huge freshly made ham and salad baguette for $8 which, with a drink, was enough for us.
Like others our biggest surprise and disappointment was the exorbitant charge to use the swimming area - $10 for adults and $5 for children is outrageous. Like others we remember when that was part of the park and provided a welcome break and chance to cool off after seeing the shows so we had dragged our towels and bathers around with us all morning only to realise we couldn't use them. I feel that if they changed the theme of the park to one of just sea animals, a few rides for the little children and forget about having rides for older people (why try and compete with Dreamworld) and brought back the pools for common use they could perhaps charge a lower entry fee and people would be happy.

Visited March 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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