Theater of the Sea
Theater of the Sea
4.5
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Our mission is to provide a wonderful home for our animals while sharing them with visitors in ways that inspire awareness and sensitivity towards animals, the environment, and conservation issues. At Theater of the Sea watch up close and personal DOLPHIN SHOWS, sea lion shows, parrot shows, and much more! A pioneer in animal interactive programs, at Theater of the Sea you can... SWIM WITH A DOLPHIN... SWIM WITH A SEA LION... Wade, Meet and Paint with a Dolphin... Meet and Paint with a Sea Lion... Swim with the Rays... Swim with the Sharks... And Meet the Sea Turtles! Our 30 minute dolphin swims include BOTH trained behaviors like dorsal tows, kisses, and hugs as well as swimming and snorkeling with dophins. We offer a variety of animal interaction programs for various ages and prices. Programs are available daily and include admission to our dolphin, sea lion, and parrot shows, guided marne life tour, lagoon-side beach, and bottomless boat ride. Theater of the Sea is family owned and operated since 1946 and one of the oldest marine mammal facilities in the world. The lagoons and lush, tropical gardens are home to Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, California sea lions, sea turtles, tropical and game fish, sharks, stingrays, alligators, marine invertebrates, and birds.
Duration: 2-3 hours
Does not meet animal welfare guidelines
Tripadvisor does not provide bookings for this experience because it does not meet our animal welfare guidelines.
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  • Jean C
    Howard, Ohio11 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great experience!!
    What a great place to learn about animals! We did many of the animal interactions. My grandson swam with the dolphins and the sharks and got to interact with the sea lions. I am not a swimmer so had the dolphin swim to me. The interactions are very scripted for the protection of the animals. My regret is that we didn't get to see all the shows or ride the boat. Great experience We were busy doing the animal interactions. They had surprisingly good food there. I got a chicken Ceasar salad. My grandson had shrimp and fries. There were no lids or straws for our drinks. The plants there were beautiful. Many different types of orchids and ferns. They even had a little beach. If you do any of the animal interactions make sure to take a towel and some kind of shoe to wear in the water. They provide fins when needed. I think it says you can rent a storage locker but that was not available when we were there. Be prepared to carry what you need. They do stamp your hand, so you are able to go back to your car if needed. For all the animal interactions you meet in the same place each time. They have showers to wash off the salt water. If you wish to tip the trainers I realized later that I could have send them a Venmo. They have a photographer to take the pressure off of trying to capture that moment. We thoroughly enjoyed our day.
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written June 11, 2023
  • Nomad
    Tampa, Florida237 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Outstanding
    Compact, but with outstanding animal shows that are so close-up as to be memorable. The quality of these shows are at the level of Sea World, but at a fraction of the cost and with smaller crowds. This is the place to view these animals up close. Large numbers of exotic parrots and macaws, large pools and rivers of large local species of fish and sea turtles. Outstanding tropical plant collections and foliage. Dolphin and sea lion shows were memorable. Alligator and shark feeding was interesting in that these animals are all highly trained to respond.
    Visited May 2023
    Traveled solo
    Written July 23, 2023
  • Cindy W
    Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin72 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great place to visit
    We thoroughly enjoyed the dolphin show and sea lions. The walking paths are beautifully landscaped and provide nice shade as well when walking from attraction to attraction. They have the shows spaced perfectly so you can join at anytime and still see them all which is very nice.
    Visited October 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written October 12, 2023
  • Jenna R
    Naples, Florida16 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Amazing!!!!
    What an amazing time!!! We did the shallow water dolphin swim with my mom and 4 year old daughter and it was awesome!! All the shows were really cool! You get to see the sea lions, dolphins, turtles and all the animals so close! The boat ride was so cool too!! Dolphins jump right in the middle of the boat!!! A must do!!!
    Visited October 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written October 14, 2023
  • caraCHS
    Charleston, South Carolina4 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    What a gem!
    We had read some mixed reviews and were very pleasantly surprised during our visit with our two school aged children. They absolutely loved it! While some of the facilities are a little worn down, Theater of the Seas has a local, old Florida vibe in a good way with very up close interactions with all of the animals and no crowds. We spent close to four hours watching the shows, wandering around ourselves, and “petting” the parrot fish in the lagoon. The dolphin shows were particularly impressive and professionally done. Our visit was a highlight of our trip to the Keys and well worth the cost.
    Visited October 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written October 17, 2023
  • The G
    Farmington Hills, Michigan17 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Dolphin Show was very Entertaining.
    Was very insightful and interesting with plenty of aquatic life easily visible. The Dolphin show was outstanding especially because of the performers (to include the Dolphins). The Parrot fish at the beach were fun to interact with. But, it can be expensive for entry before paying for any extras. Easy way to spend several hours walking around in some shade.
    Visited October 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written October 25, 2023
  • Richard K
    Atlanta, Georgia97 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A very fun day!
    My wife wanted to do it all so we swam with the dolphins, swam with the sea lions, and she even had a session of painting with the sea lion! Wonderful shows including trained parrots, shark feeding , and of course the dolphin and sea lion shows. We kissed a sea lion! ( And we liked it!). Do not miss this place especially if you have kids.
    Wow! Sounds like the whole family had a fun filled day! Thank you for this lovely review! We hope to see you again!
    Written November 10, 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited November 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written November 3, 2023
  • TimS1981
    18 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great but could be excellent!
    Very cool place to stop along the Keys, with some interesting and fun shows. The dolphin show is clear highlight, while others could do with a refresh (shark and feeding, crocs). The staff clearly love the animals, but for us, the fact the shows are 3 times a day and the staff repeating the same script day in day out did show, and a few of them seemed repetitive. The site does look tired, and could use a groundsman to tidy up and a lick of paint here and there, the shop/entry was very poorly maintained. Despite all that, we did enjoy the shows, it could be excellent with some small changes!
    Visited November 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written November 5, 2023
  • shannon b
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Hidden Gem in Islamorada
    If you’re looking for an up close experience with rescued wildlife this is the place to go! There are many different attractions where you can learn about dolphins, sharks, exotic birds, sea turtles, sea lions, stingrays just to name a few! You can also swim with many mentioned above for additional fees. The area is beautiful with a tropical Jungle feel to it. I highly recommend this adventure!
    Thank you so much for visiting our park! We are so proud to be be able to provide a beautiful home for many rescued animals and it is a special joy to be able to share them with guests like you! We hope we will see you again!
    Written November 11, 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited November 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written November 9, 2023
  • Christina B
    Madison, Wisconsin24 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A dream come true
    I honestly can not say enough about my experience at Theatre of the Sea! It was the highlight of my trip to the Keys for so many reasons. I am so impressed with the facility and the love that is given to all of their occupants. We swam with four dolphins Stormy, Nikki, Crystal and Trooper and I am still feeling the happiness in my heart days later. My mom has some physical challenges and they were all so patient.
    Thank you so much for your lovely review and for sharing your time with us. We're happy the whole family could have a memorable experience with our dolphins!
    Written November 11, 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited November 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written November 11, 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles5,087 reviews
Excellent
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Very good
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Average
251
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wquinn
Dublin Ireland9 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2019 • Family
Every corner you turn someone is trying to make money off you, hey but that's America, cant even stand on the jetty to take pictures of your own kids during the interaction with the Dolphins, they want to sell you there overpriced picture package. Then your not aloud take pictures of them holding the Parrots, as you might frighten the birds , but they will take pictures with there camera and you can buy them........lol.
everything overpriced in my opinion, but I found America this time really expensive, the Americans must be earning some amount of wages because the prices have gone through the roof.
Written January 6, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your feedback. You are allowed to take pictures with your own phone/camera. We do offer a picture package as well for those who would like to purchase them. If you have additional feedback, please email us at animalcare@theaterofthesea.com.
Written January 8, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

BLCinti
Cincinnati, OH132 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Couples
For families with children, who don’t mind the high cost of admission, this would be a nice activity for a few hours. The shows featuring different animals: birds, sea lions, dolphins seem geared toward entertainment rather than education. A few of the presenters were enjoying the limelight and the microphone quite a lot....they were the stars and not the animals. The grounds had beautiful plantings in the front areas, but also there were parts that were not very nice. For instance the artificial “beach and lagoon” had scummy dark water and were not pretty. The young woman staffing the shark and rays area must have been new because she didn’t know answers to basic questions. Overall it’s a touristy manmade place. Nice that they provide a home for injured animals and could feel safe for young children and or adults not likely to enjoy real ocean or nature outings. Can get $3 off per adult ticket if purchased in advance on website.
Written February 1, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for visiting Theater of the Sea. All of our shows are educational in an entertaining format. For example, in our dolphin show, we highlight sustainable fishing as well as their natural history. We are sorry you had the impression that some of our animal care staff feel they were the stars of the show. Rest assured, the animal care staff care deeply for the animals and get as excited for the shows as the animals do! The animals are the stars of the show! The lagoon side beach is a natural lagoon and varies in clarity depending on the conditions in the ocean. Thank you for informing us of the experience you had with one of our interns. They should have called a staff member to answer your questions. We have addressed this with our new team of interns. Theater of the Sea’s large, natural 3-acre lagoons is home to dolphins, sea lions, sea turtles, fish, sharks, stingrays, and crocodilians. Our mission is to provide a wonderful home for our animals while sharing them with visitors in up close and personal shows and interaction programs.
Written February 6, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Sousabby
Cary, NC178 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2021
First, we chose this place because of good reviews. We were terribly disappointed. We had about 2-3 hours to tour this place. The shows are well timed, well planned for people visiting this place either in the morning, noon or early evening. The shows themselves were entertaining. The parrot show was amazing, parrots can do math!! But that is all they have. Compared to the price and shows of Sea world or any other aquariums this was mediocre. Apart from shows, there is nothing else to see. The boat ride was a joke. $44+ for 2-3 hours is ridiculously expensive compared to what you can do in Sea World or other aquariums ( Miami, Atlanta). If you're in the area, and want to see shows and animals, I'd suggest go someplace else.
Written December 27, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Happifoodie57
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
2 weeks before I had paid for my son, his fiance and my grandson to wade with the dolphins and that was amazing for them so when my sister came to visit I decided to do swimming with the dolphins with her and it was one of the best things I've ever done in my life. Reid was the trainer for both my son's family and my sister and my session and I will ask for him every time I have visitors and decide to do this again. The relationship that he has with the dolphins is amazing and you can see he loves his job and he loves the Dolphins and they love him. He made this a beautiful experience for us. I will do this again and again. I thank you so much for giving me something I will never forget and will come again and again because of my wonderful experience
Written January 26, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
That's wonderful! Thank you for the kind words about Reid. We appreciate the review and look forward to seeing you again in the future.
Written January 28, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Marilyn P
Packer Town126 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Couples
We actually visited to see the gardens which are stunning with many plants and trees identified with markers. We decided to take in the dolphin and sea lion show and both were very entertaining and informative! The entry fee with dolphin sea lion and parrot show included is 39.95 with a 65+ $3 senior discount. A talk on reptiles and fish is also included as well as free access to the grounds and beach area. Well done!
Written February 25, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for visiting! We are happy to hear you enjoyed the gardens and the shows!
Written February 26, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Shari H
5 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2021 • Couples
After visiting Islamorada for 6 years, we went to the theater of the sea upon a friend's recommendation. This was by far the most enjoyable 3 hours on our week-long trip. The grounds were beautiful with pathways filled with tropical flowers, including all types of orchids. There were shows that ran back to back so you were able to go from one show to the next. If you missed a show and they repeated afterward so you can just see whatever you missed. There was a bird show, with parrots, and absolutely fantastic dolphin show, a sea lion show and a show about lizards and fish. The dolphin show was so wonderful that we saw it for the second time, with the same dolphin but a different trainer. If interested, you could do different activities that you would pay a fee for such as swimming with the dolphin. We did not do any of these activities but we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. There is a wonderful gift shop with beautiful, quality items for sale and a cafe to purchase lunch or drinks. We would highly recommend this to anyone who is in Islamorada or the nearby keys.
Written January 3, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brett P
23 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2020 • Family
Lots of things to keep kids interested. The shows and activities are scheduled back-to-back throughout the different areas of the park. The way the activities and shows are setup keeps things moving smoothly. The general admission price gets you the sea lion show, parrot show, short boat ride with the dolphins, a guided tour of the alligators and sea turtles, and finally the dolphin show. I was very impressed with the dolphin show - it was very well done. The show “cycle” starts 3 times per day, like 9,12, and 2 (check times). You just merge into wherever they are at in the program and continue on until you’ve see everything.
Written June 26, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ann M
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2021
Lifelong dream of mine to interact with dolphins. This was the perfect place! We chose to wade with dolphins, the whole experience was over 30 mins, not rushed, trainer Cristy was super, we got to pet, rub, kiss, play with and hold 2 dolphins. They let us take our own pics and videos with not charge or hassle unlike most places. The fee included the price of admission to the park with was fun. The habitat was much more natural with sand and beautiful greenery. Two in our party got to be observers for only $35 (which got them into the park as well). The shows were great, liked the short bottomless boat ride where dolphins come swim in the middle and do a few tricks. If you have ever wanted to interact with dolphins this is perfect, more natural, more relaxed, less commercialized than I have ever seen.
Written May 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

WestwardWanderer206
Elgin, IL63 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2021
More than we expected! We have driven past Theatre of the Sea many times and due to a cancellation of another excursion, decided we must go here. It was more than just a zoo. You take a guided tour of the stingray bay, reptile area, parrots, dolphin and seal areas and glass bottom boat. All shows were included in the admission price. The parrots, seal lions and dolphin show were great. It was fun and educational as well. There is an additional charge to swim with the dolphins or sea lions. We spent much more time there than we expected and turned out to be more fun than we ever expected. The park looks larger than it really is so it is fine for small children as well as seniors. You can spend as much time as you like at the park even after the shows. Highly recommend if in the area.
Written March 4, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Illinilmfan
Bunker Hill, IL107 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Couples
We visited Theater if the Sea because a jet ski tour we had scheduled got cancelled due to rough conditions. Glad we went. This is a nice little place to spend a few hours. The way they have it set up to where you go from show to show is great. No time wasted in between. We paid for one of the extras and got to feed the sea turtles. What a treat. It was a great interaction. It was a very clean and well maintained park.
Written January 18, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for the feedback and review. We are sorry your jet ski tour was canceled but are thankful you got to experience Theater of the Sea!
Written January 24, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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Theater of the Sea - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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