Gulf World Marine Park

Gulf World Marine Park, Panama City Beach: Hours, Address, Gulf World Marine Park Reviews: 4.5/5

Gulf World Marine Park
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Our daily shows featuring Dolphins, Sea Lions, Reptiles, Tropical Birds and other furry animals will amaze you. Pay one price and see all the shows and explore our indoor and outdoor tropical gardens showcasing penguins and sea turtles. Our stingray petting pool is always a popular activity during your visit. Take the opportunity to feed the stingrays at our Stingray Bay! Parking is free and we are open rain or shine. We offer many ways for you to get up close and personal with our animals. You can make a reservation for any of our interactive programs. Our Swim with a Dolphin program is a great opportunity to enter our million-gallon dolphin habitat and get eye to eye with these fantastic animals. You can even choose between two different species of dolphins! The Meet and Greet programs we offer are with many different types of animals, you'll find one you'll love. Trainer for a Day program is an all day program behind the scenes working with our trainers caring for our animals.
Suggested duration
2-3 hours
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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2,527 reviews
Very good

149 contributions
Jul 2020 • Family
We have three young children ages 4,6, and 8. The park is small and only takes a couple hours to see the exhibits and shows. The animal enclosures need some TLC. We did see them building an enclosure for the seal which is nice considering his current accommodations only allow him to swim back and forth. The sea lion/ rough toothed dolphin show was good and last about 25 minutes. If you want a good seat line up about twenty minutes before the show. They do offer a single photo with the sea lion for $10 or a family photo for $20 which is done after the show. The dolphin show was good but not great and a large stadium. You also have the opportunity for a photo after the show. The stingray pool was large and the kids enjoyed feeding them and the cost per tray of food was $5. This provides for some good pictures and video. They have two alligators and a small enclosure. They have a few penguins, tank with sea turtles and sand sharks which can be viewed from above or below just remember the exhibits need some TLC. My youngest was to small to do the Royal swim with the other four of us so she did the meet n greet and she enjoyed the time she spent with the dolphin and they took several pictures. They do not allow you to take any pictures and force you to buy their pictures. Each child under 54 inches requires a paying adult for the Royal swim. The best part is being pushed through the water by two dolphins. We also got to grab each dolphin and go for a fun ride. Kids do have to swim out but don’t worry everyone wears a life jacket. I loved being in the water with the dolphins up close and personal and something the kids will never forget. The painful price for pictures for the five of us was $170. They give you a digital code and you can download to multiple devices ie phone, IPad, tablet, or computer. They are nice professional pictures but you do get sticker shock when seeing the prices. We of courses wanted the photo memories so we splurged and got the pictures. We enjoyed our day here and felt it was worth the cost for the kids to get the opportunity to swim with the dolphins.
Written August 1, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Amber H
Mount Airy, NC12 contributions
May 2021 • Couples
My boyfriend and I love this place! Their dolphin show is the highlight, so it’s best to be there when they open so you get to experience all their shows. It’s a great place for all ages! I love that they have rescue animals and encourage visitors to keep our beaches clean. The food at the snack bar is pricey but the tickets are reasonable for a half day of fun.
Written May 15, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

12 contributions
Jul 2020 • Family
We wanted an outdoor experience and something out of the water and found gulf world. They say they are only allowing 1/2 capacity at the shows but we did not find that to be true. It wasn’t packed shoulder to shoulder but every row was pretty much full. Which we were fine with! But I feel it’s something for those very concerned with social distancing to be aware of.
The dolphin show was very informational and entertaining but our favorite was the sea lion show!
Overall it took a little over 2 hours to get through it. It was a nice break from being IN the water!
Written July 24, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Erica R
1 contribution
Jul 2021 • Family
After reading all of these reviews and determining it would be a fun thing to do during a rainy day on our vacation trip, we drove an hour from Mexico Beach to take our kids. Parking was terrible to start. Once we got inside, our youngest (10) apparently didn't need an arm band and no one checked our arm band or our prepaid tickets. Good thing we are honest people because someone could've easily walked in off the street without paying and gone through. The first area/exhibits were filthy and appeared run down. We walked past 3 penguins, 2 seals, 2 large turtles and then were unsure what else there was to see. We ended up inside the tropical building toward the dolphin show... saw a hand full of birds (they were pretty), 2 snakes, 2 lizards, and a dirty stingy ray petting pond. Concessions were outrageous. Directions and info was unclear throughout. The park is small, crowded, and incredibly run down. I was so disappointed that we spent the money for 6 of us. We didn't even stay for the dolphin show (which I wanted to see more than anything). Absolutely do not recommend wasting your time or money on this.
Written July 20, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Elkhart, IN4 contributions
Apr 2021 • Family
We spent the week in PCB & no one there was wearing a mask all week long. Not visitors or vacationers. So, on our last day we go to Gulf World without a mask. We wait in line for 1/2 hour in the pouring rain. Walk in soaked only to be told if we didn’t have a mask we could buy them for $6.50 each. I’m not opposed to wearing a mask, but the money they are making they should have had some disposables for people. When I asked for a refund she seemed annoyed & shocked. Imagine the profit they are making off the mask sales alone.
Written April 10, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Crowe G.
1 contribution
Jul 2021
"Terrible" is a great way to describe it. This facility is 30 years old, and it shows.
Rotting wood and rusted habitats, and not to mention that the entire facility is infested with ROACHES.
Several times whilst walking around, both live and dead roaches, caught my attention. And who can blame them? The facility is disgusting, and looks like it is barely ever cleaned. And I'm not talking about animal food/fecal. Overflowing trash cans, pizza and popcorn all over the floor and chairs of the stadiums, cups of half-drank soda just sitting left behind in the stadiums... etc

Swim with the dolphins? More like pay 100+ dollars to pose for a few photos with the dolphins. Photos, that you can spend another 100+ on later (Cause you cannot take your own, or have your family take your own). Not to mention that the photos are taken by teenagers who needed a part time job and have no professional training. Also, if you'd like your family to watch you swim? They have to PAY to watch.

The biggest attraction of their outdoor garden area is the snackbar. If its even open, that is. They have a few seals in what can only be described as a pit, an empty pool surrounded by rotting, falling pieces of wood, and a "kiddie corner"? (A few random instruments tied to trees for young children to make noise with). They do have an enclosure with some sharks and a turtle in it, but the underwater viewing portion was closed because the enclosure was leaking, and the outside looked about ready to fall in on itself.

Lastly, the tropical birds. They're beautiful, but likely stressed. They are perched throughout the facility close enough for people to touch.... and oh how people do. The amount of people in my short time who almost got bitten by these beautiful birds because they wanted to pet them.... Can you imagine the stress this causes for the animals if this is what they go through every day? Why have the birds in open enclosures so close to people if you dont want them to be touched/pet? Why put them through the stress?

This place clearly only cares about money, not the animals.
Written August 17, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

1 contribution
Mar 2022 • Family
This is a sad place for animals. We came today to see the dolphins and pet the stingrays because it was so high on the list of things to do. I can’t fathom how it has 4.5 stars. It’s not even 1 star. This place is dirty and run down. The tanks were all dirty. The water where the shark was swimming was so green that you could barely see the outline of the shark. The stingray tank had so much stuff (poop or algae-I don’t know) floating in it. It was a rainy day and the grounds were so soaked the paths were along the exhibits were impassable (poor drainage?). All the plants in the bird house were all browning and dying. It’s definitely not a great place to go on any given day, let alone a rainy day. Actually, just don’t go. I can’t imagine the money is going towards and care for the animals.
Written March 15, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Cindy S
1 contribution
Aug 2021
Almost all exhibits were closed the staff were un helpful. Theycharged us full price did not warn us that the exhibits were closed then the one we were allowed in we were kicked out of be cause we did not want to swim with the stingray only to see them. This was the biggest ripoff I have ever experienced. I go to aquariums every vacation. None have been this bad
Written September 1, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Johns Creek, GA8 contributions
Aug 2021 • Family
Their are signs on all indoor locations saying masks required but NO ONE is wearing a mask. I would say 50% of staff have them somewhere on their body (not over their mouth and certainly not over their nose and mouth). If you require masks maybe ENFORCE it or at absolute minimum require your staff to wear masks. We spent $300 to stay for about 90 minutes this morning. Lines for sea lion show were insane and super packed. If you want COVID-19 this might be a great place to get it!
Written August 3, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Jennifer C
1 contribution
Apr 2021
I could've had a week on a tropical island for the price of 4 kids to have 5 min with a dolphin. On top of that price, it was almost another $200 to buy photos of them. There were many closed off areas and not much else to see besides the show. Not kept up real well and honestly my local zoo and aquarium have better exhibits and marine life. Basically, the prices are ridiculous and we spent about an hour there for almost $1000. But when else would we ever swim with dolphins.
Written July 12, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Gulf World Marine Park

Gulf World Marine Park is open:
  • Sun - Sat 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM