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“A lot of good rides. Fun for all.”

Busch Gardens Tampa
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Aquatica Orlando
Ranked #2 of 197 things to do in Tampa
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Busch Gardens Tampa is the ultimate family adventure, offering 300 acres of fascinating attractions based on exotic explorations around the world. A unique blend of thrilling rides, one of the country's premier zoos with more than 12,000 animals, live shows, restaurants, shops and games, Busch Gardens Tampa provides unrivaled excitement for guests of every age.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Food available for purchase, Wheelchair access, Activities for older children, Lockers / storage
Reviewed July 12, 2013

Busch gardens is full of awesome roller coasters like sheikra and gwazi. There is no shortage of white knuckle thrill rides here. Kids can have fun meeting big bird, elmo and other sesame street characters. A nice park overall. We found the staff to be a little rude though. A stark contrast to Orlando parks.

1  Thank joowantitjoogotit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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7,978 - 7,982 of 14,189 reviews

Reviewed July 12, 2013

What can I say, I stayed in Orlando but we decided to check out Busch Gardens after going to Disney and Universal, and I was very impressed. Just two of us went and I was happy to know military get in for free as well as a companion, so it was a good start.

The rides are awesome, if you are looking for some thrill rides then this is the place, lots of nice roller coasters and then when it gets to hot, just go on the raft ride because you will get soaked! This isn't like those kiddy rides in Disney or Universal. If you can try all the roller coasters, and I believe there are 3 water rides.

There are also plenty of things to do if you don't want to go on rides. I enjoyed feeding the kangaroos and the tropical birds as well, and seeing all the animals in this zoo-thrill ride park. It was definitely a nice change as I was staying in Orlando. It was definitely work the hour drive.

Because we got in for free we bought the quick passes, while they were worth it to us (we bought them at universal too) to some it might not be worth it. It wasn't very busy on the day we went, just ask the people when you pay for parking if its busy, they will give you a general idea if you should consider buying the quick passes or not.

Thank imnotthere1121
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 11, 2013

went to the park just for the rides; daughter is a teenager. Saw a few of the shows, just to relax. The Critter show was really cute. Also saw the Madigascar show, just because it was in the AC! I am not a "rider", so I was hard pressed to find a comfortable seat in the shade while I waited for family. The few benches I could find were either packed, or in the full sun. I finally escaped the heat in the ac in the Crown Colony Restaurant. We did purchase tickets and the meal plan online, which was a substantial savings. Wish we had purchased quick queue tickets, also. They are much cheaper online. I spent most of the day waiting for the family while they were in a "30 minute wait" that took closer to 1 hour 30 minutes for each ride. The food plan was a little misleading...only certain restaurants used the plan. If you wanted a bottle of soda from a snack bar, you had to pay for it, while the water was free. Snacks and sodas were 30% off from retail price with the armband, but still was expensive.

I was amazed at all the parents with VERY small children in strollers; why would you bring your teeny children to a super crowded theme park on a very hot day when the kids were not big enough to walk?

The day we were there the weather was super hot, the park crowded, and most young kids and their parents were having emotional meltdowns. Parents were dragging kids around, kicking and screaming.

Park employees were not overly outgoing and were just a tad unfriendly.

Family reports the roller coasters were great, so I guess the day was worth it!

3  Thank Stacy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 11, 2013

This place was a lot more fun 6 years ago. I used to get annual passes back then. Gave it another chance & it wasdisappointing.

Really lazy people running the kids rides so even though the area wasn't busy there were long waits. Even had one of the guys running the rides complaining his trainee wasn't there - as if that's an excuse not to run the ride. Lines were very small 2 or 3 families. One lady running a ride, the only lady actually working, asked "You're going to let them ride again?" Guess she didn't realize she was the only one doing a good job in the whole area. lol

My friends teens spent the majority of the time begging to leave. They would rather watch tv at the rental house & swimming in it's pool. At least they wouldn't be stuck in short lines that never seemed move. It sprinkled a few times but nothing I that would warrant shutting down the park for the afternoon - which is basically what they did by stopping the rides. I felt bad for the kids & I wanted to leave too & escape the sound of my wining younger children but the dads wanted to wait it out.. The funnest ride at the park was the little wagon we brought that the teens took turns pulling the little kids in. No joke! lol

Oh the food & food service was horrible. Gas station food would have been an improvement. I'm pregnant too & just threw mine away...

Requested the help of 2 different security guards when we got separated briefly from my friend, who had one of my kids, & they both refused to help. Apparently the walkies talkies didn't work that day. Or they were just as lazy as the carnies running the kids rides which seems more likely.

No crowd control at all during the X-treme Physic shows. Allowing people to stand with umbrellas & children on their shoulders, on wet bleachers, when a storm is rolling in on the weather ap is ludicrously dangerous in the lightening capital of the world. It's rude too because no one could see anything behind them but no one working there seems to care about safety... Questioned another security & a fireman on duty of the dangers of standing on wet metal bleachers with kids & umbrellas while there's lightning & rain but they both just shrugged me off. Actually the huge tall guard turned his back on me & walked away like was going to do something but I followed him & he didn't. Just listened to others complaining about the same thing & repeated walked away with purpose to do... nothing. I followed him for a bit watching in awe. At least the fireman was polite.

I want to state that I was really painfully nice to everyone & this was still my experience. Really wish people could see this place in it's Glory Days! Back when it had Clydesdales stables, tours, rides that ran at a decent clip, good food, beer garden, clean bathrooms, & people who working there with customer service aspirations. Why should people come to Orlando for this when you can go to Six Flags or something comparable nearby & have a better time? *Sigh* Maybe everyone there was just having a bad day? I know we were!

2  Thank Redplatforms
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2013

We go to Busch Gardens several times a year.This is one of the best parks in the state.Love the animals.Love the rides, The cheetah hunt is awesome.Love the educational program.My daughter is a councilor in training this year,and has been to previous camps.The animal clinic is is state of the art,where you can watch the animals being treated.The kids made meatballs for the hyenas.all natural,tendons and bones included,no seasoning.Ice Ploration is a really nice show.Highly recommend it.The kangaroo camp is fairly new and also houses the wallabies.Many,many neat animal exhibits. Tigers,lions,heaps of giraffes,etc.This park is so very enjoyable.Love coming here.

Thank Chriseve L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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