Sunday, June 14, 2015

Discovery Cove

This was such an amazing part of our trip!  I probably will not be able to adequately describe how much the entire family enjoyed this day!  I can begin by saying that when we went to bed that night, I had at least 3 children tell me it was their best day ever!

Discovery Cove was an absolutely beautiful place with so much to do.  Since it's an all day event, we were somewhat concerned about sunburn...especially for the younger children, but as it turned out, there was no need to worry.  The majority of the park is nicely shaded and we didn't even need sunscreen!
We started the day off with breakfast at the park...Adelina - she's so adorable!

We had a great time swimming next to the otters and marmosets, enjoying the lazy river, snorkeling with the fish and rays, feeding the birds in the aviary, and OF COURSE swimming with the dolphins!







William's tow was difficult for me.  I really wanted to give him the freedom to do this how he wanted, but because he doesn't have great body control, I was nervous.  I took him out for his picture, but when it came time to swim, he wanted to do it BY HIMSELF.  I had already talked with both trainers about his needs and abilities, so with a deep breath and a silent prayer, off he went with the trainer.  It was only difficult for me and Michael, though!  LOL!  He had a GREAT time and was very proud of himself!  He got a little scared when the dolphin first started swimming and his head dipped ever so slightly and Michael and I were concerned about him going under, but he recovered himself and it all turned out well.  Even though he got a little bit scared, the pride he felt in doing it by himself was immense!  (Honestly, I'm so glad he did it, but I'm really glad it's over!) :) Whew!

Wallace was so funny!  He didn't want to kiss the dolphin and wasn't going to go out to pet it until the trainer told him she wouldn't make him kiss it!  He tried to climb on the dolphin's back and the trainer had to remind him it wasn't a horse!  He had such a good time on his tow and thought it was SO MUCH FUN!  He's really looking forward to doing it again!

I really had no desire to swim with the dolphin and only went to help William because I'm a control freak and couldn't stand the thought of him in the water without me.  I wasn't even going to go out with the dolphin and said no a couple of times, but the trainer and my children talked me into it.  The dolphin felt strange and I couldn't keep my feet under me and it kind of freaked me out a little bit.  I don't really see myself ever doing it again.  I got MUCH more enjoyment from watching the children enjoy it than from actually doing it myself.  The trainer had the dolphin play with Michael a little bit, though, and that was fun to watch.

Since you have to be at least 6 to swim with the dolphins, none of the younger children were able to do it, but they all enjoyed watching.  They are all looking forward to our next trip!

Michael and the older girls participated in the Sea Venture portion.  It's almost like scuba diving, but you don't carry a tank, your connected to a tube and it's only like 12 or 15 feet under.  They had fun walking around on the bottom, swimming next to the sharks, playing with sea urchins and starfish.  Sarah was cold and somewhat nervous to let go of her helmet.  In fact, I don't think she ever did! :)  But they enjoyed the experience.

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