San Antonio SeaWorld - 2023 Insider's Guide

March 18, 2022

Explore educational animal presentations and habitats, adrenaline-infused rides, camps, and finger-licking good restaurants of SeaWorld San Antonio.

Everything is bigger in Texas! And SeaWorld San Antonio is one of the biggest attractions in the city and the state. Reigning as famous as SeaWorld at San Diego it's an unbelievable experience! Millions of people flock to this 250-acre marine mammal experience and oceanarium every year, and now, it's your turn!

You are sure to leave with a treasure trove of memories! Ready to be enchanted? SeaWorld San Antonio, here we come!

Visiting SeaWorld San Antonio  

Seaworld is technically open throughout the year. However, the available days and hours on each day could change every day. Therefore, consult the schedule at least two weeks in advance to get the latest information on the park and its hours.

Located on the west side of San Antonio, SeaWorld is conveniently accessible from all parts of the city.

An easy 30-minute drive from both downtown San Antonio and San Antonio airport, it's perfectly placed for accessible enjoyment. About a 4-hour drive from Dallas airport, it's never impossible to access the fun at SeaWorld and Aquatica!

You cannot take outside food, beverages, coolers, or bottled water into SeaWorld San Antonio, so plan to eat at the park. 

two kids and a father looking at baby penguins in an aquarium in SeaWorld in San Antonio, Texas, USATicket Options to SeaWorld San Antonio

With ticket options, season passes, and annual passes, SeaWorld has the perfect option for tourists and residents alike. Whatever your requirement and preferences may be, there is a ticket for you.

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Single and Multi-Day Tickets to SeaWorld San Antonio

If you only have one day to visit SeaWorld, we highly recommend the Single Day Ticket or the Single Day with All-Day Dine. These unbelievable tickets at their fantastic prices give you access to rides, attractions, dining, and shopping!

Pro Tip: Children under three go free with your tickets!

Want to cover the best of both SeaWorld and Aquatica? Go for the 2-Park, 1 Day Ticket to SeaWorld & Aquatica.

If you have more than a day to visit SeaWorld and Aquatica, consider these consecutive day options:

  • 2-Park, 2 Day Flex Ticket
  • 2-Park, 3 Day Flex Ticket¬†

Free yourself of the headache and cost of buying tickets every day by getting these two and 3-day consecutive day tickets. Enjoy the best of what SeaWorld and Aquatica offer until January 1, 2023.

Not sure when you can travel? No problem, SeaWorld's Any Day ticket is valid for 12 months from purchase. 

Seasonal & Annual Passes to SeaWorld San Antonio

If you are a resident of San Antonio, a seasonal pass ensures year-round access to SeaWorld and Aquatica.

This pass comes with fantastic benefits like free parking, discounts on in-parking merchandise, and photo prints and framing.

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The season pass ends on January 2, 2023, so make sure you get your hands on one soon.

Another fantastic deal for those that want year-round access to SeaWorld and Aquatica. The annual pass. Go for either of the Annual Silver, Gold or Platinum Passes to enjoy additional perks to your park visit like:

  • Free parking
  • Two free guest tickets
  • Discounts on food, beverage, animal interactions, and character dining experiences
  • Access to exclusive events over Halloween, Christmas, Summer festivals, and more!

roller coaster in seaworld in san antonio

Quick Queue

Don't like queuing up? Would you rather get to your main attraction?

SeaWorld offers two options for skipping the lines:

  • Quick Queue Unlimited and
  • Unlimited Quick Queue and Reserved Seating

Opt for "Quick Queue Unlimited" to skip the lines during your visit to SeaWorld's most popular rides and attractions.

Want to skip the queue and get special seats? In that case, the "Unlimited Quick Queue and Reserved Seating" option is divinely ordered for you! Get this quick queue pass to gain instant entry to multiple rides and special seats.

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Parking at SeaWorld

Parking at SeaWorld varies based on your ticket, and we understand this can feel confusing.

Therefore, we have collated everything you need to know:

  • Parking is paid with the single-day tickets, including single day, two day, three day and any day tickets
  • Season pass and Silver Annual Pass both come with free general parking
  • Gold and Platinum Annual Passes come with free up-close parking

Pro Tip: You can rent a stroller, mobility scooter, or a wheelchair as per your needs at Island Traders inside the park.

Rides at SeaWorld San Antonio

SeaWorld is world-renowned for its rides. Any trip to SeaWorld is incomplete without riding the waves of thrill on these majestic metallic creations.

Pick between roller coasters, water rides, thrilling rides, and kid-friendly rides.

Great White Roller Coaster

A high thrill ride that gives you a 360-degree flip, this is one of the most popular attractions at SeaWorld.

Affectionately called the grand-daddy of rides, you race along at 50 mph through turns and curves. Skip the queues at the Great White Roller Coaster with Quick Queue, and you're well on your way to a nail-biting adventure!

Pro Tip: Put your hair up in a bun to enjoy unobstructed views as you ascend and descend the magnificent heights.

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Journey to Atlantis

Part roller coaster and part water ride, this is a ride lover's fantasy!

Climb unparalleled heights to gain panoramic views of San Antonio. Find yourself in a 10-story reverse camelback that ends with a plunge into the lake.

Akin to the thrills of the real Atlantis, this ride will blow your mind and have you giggling for hours afterward.

Pro Tip: You will get extremely wet on this slide, so leave your purse and phone in a rentable locker at SeaWorld.

Close up of a group of people in a boat splashing into the water on Journey to Atlantis at SeaWorld in San Antonio, Texas, USA

photo credit: SeaWorld San Antonio

Rio Loco

A kid-friendly ride, you will be gliding through twists and turns of the "crazy river." Splashed and soaked is the order of the day on Rio Loco, perfect for a hot day.

Rio Loco is perfectly safe and exciting for the tots, a kid-friendly ride that the little ones will adore.

Presentations and Animal Experiences

SeaWorld San Antonio is home to numerous magnificent aquatic beings and wonders. However, the most exciting part about visiting SeaWorld is that you can see wonderful presentations and experience close animal interactions!

Orca Encounter

The deep sea's most fearsome predator, the Orca, calls SeaWorld home. Head to an Orca presentation to learn about their habits, behaviors, and play!

Did we say play? Absolutely! Play is an essential part of Orca life, and the generous Orcas at SeaWorld allow you to witness them playing.

Psst….SeaWorld has discontinued the Shamu show. The Orca Encounter is a fantastic sustainable alternative. In addition, the Orca encounter will leave a deep understanding and sense of familiarity with these outstanding animals.

Pro Tip: Experience the life of Orcas while you enjoy a fantastic meal at the Orca enclosure with a reservation!

Close up of three orcas jumping into the air with rocks and screen behind them that says Orca Encounter at SeaWorld in San Diego, California, USA

photo credit: SeaWorld via Facebook

In-Water Dolphin Beach Interaction

The In-water Dolphin Beach Interaction is the absolute best of all the Dolphin interactions available at SeaWorld.

Play with bottlenose dolphins in 20 inches of water and experience their beautiful energy up close. Twenty minutes with these smiley-faced animals will leave you with a warm and fuzzy feeling lasting months.

This experience is accompanied by an informative talk, Q&A, and instructions on feeding and rubbing down the dolphins.

Pro Tip: All under 18s will need to be accompanied by an adult.

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Beluga Whale Encounter

Did you know that Beluga whales are born white and gray? However, it can take up to 8 years for them to turn completely white!

Snow white with kind eyes and a sweet face, the Beluga whale tour is one of the most inspiring shows. Go backstage with this tour to touch a Beluga whale, participate in playtime with them, and get amazing photos!

Pro Tip: Ask your instructor why Beluga whales are called "canaries of the sea." The response will thrill you!

Father and Daughter close to a Beluga Whale at SeaWorld Orlando - Orlando, Florida, USAPenguin Encounter

SeaWorld gives you the rare opportunity to go backstage and meet the penguins. Chat with a penguin trainer and get all the inside information on this unique species.

Look into their beautiful eyes and be transported to the heart of the Antarctic. As you watch them waddle over the rocks, they will instantly waddle right into your heart.

Pro Tip: Want to walk with the penguins in their native temperatures? Try the SeaWorld Penguin Interaction experience.

Shark Encounter

Passionate about powerful predators? Why don't you head over to the Shark Tour to get your fill of these incredible creatures!

Being housed in their 450,000-gallon aquarium, the sharks give you a glimpse into their world. Learn about them and how they are cared for through a talk with the instructor.

You can even touch a shark at this presentation!

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Close up of a shark swimming through blue water on the Shark Tour at SeaWorld in San Antonio, Texas, USA

photo credit: SeaWorld San Antonio via Facebook

Ocean Discovery

This remarkable attraction features Beluga whales and Pacific White Dolphins together in a show that will blow your mind!

Watch the beautiful interaction between the trainers, whales, and dolphins in this awe-inspiring performance. Get educated about these fantastic creatures as they leap 20 feet into the air right before your eyes!

Animal Habitats  

After your one-on-one animal encounters, you may be curious to see them in their natural habitat.

Do you wonder how they behave within their enclosures? Do you want to take photos of them while they go about their day? Be sure to make stops by:

Discovery Point

In a joyous corner of SeaWorld San Antonio, Tucked away is a spectacular dolphin paradise.

Home to bottlenose dolphins, you can watch them play within their enclosure or indulge in underwater viewing. Legend has it that watching these beautiful creatures from above water is marvelous, but the magic happens in underwater viewing.

Pro Tip: Discovery Point is included in the entry tickets you purchased, so do not skip this one!

sea lion flipping through the pool at a show in SeaWorld in San Antonio, Texas, USAExplorer's Reef

Head to the Explorer's Reef to view a gorgeous living coral reef. This stunningly beautiful cylindrical aquarium hosts corals and sharks. 

Despite being majestic predators in the ocean, many sharks are facing extinction. Explorer's reef offers an opportunity at survival to many endangered species like zebra sharks, sand tigers, and many more.

Pro Tip: Look for other smaller species at Explorer's reef, such as sea horses, clownfish, coral reef fish, and other wonders of marine life.

Flamingo Cove

A sea of blush pink graceful birds beckons you to their home. Will you answer the call?

Their long legs and gracefully curved necks are testimony to nature's artistry. Native to saltwater mudflats and lagoons, they are a sight to behold.

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Head to the Flamingo's Cove to enjoy their company and take exquisite photos!

Fun Fact: Did you know that flamingoes demonstrate synchronized behaviors to communicate with the flock?

Close up of two flamingos one with a baby under it's wing at Flaming Cove in SeaWorld in San Antonio, Texas, USA

photo credit: SeaWorld San Antonio via Facebook

Bay of Play

Are you wondering where the little ones can have a break from all the learning and thrills? Head to the Bay of Play for rides and play areas the little ones will never want to leave.

Abby Cadabby's Rockin' Wave

This ride is the stuff of a child's dream. Strap your little one into a colorful little boat seat. They will relish being rocked back, forth, and sideways. Simulating the movements of a fish, this ride is super fun, and kids often come out giggling.

Pro Tip: Your child will need to be accompanied by someone 14 years or older.

Grover's Round-Up 

Heard about the sesame street-themed ride? Well, this is it!

Bringing together a child's two great loves, sesame street, and a merry go around, this ride is enchantment. So grab a seat on it with your little one and enjoy the carousel with all your friends from Sesame Street.

Photo Alert! After riding with your favorite Sesame Street characters, head over to Sesame Photo times to take pictures with them!

Elmo's Dolphin Dive

A ride that simulates the rise and descent of a dolphin and is guaranteed to generate squeals of laughter.

Decorated in all colors of the rainbow, this ride will catch little ones' eyes from afar. Your child will need a companion on this ride, but this just doubles the fun.

Dining at SeaWorld

Bet you've worked up quite an appetite after all those rides and experiences! Tantalize your taste buds at:

Rio Grill*

Featuring a beautiful patio, Rio Grill is the perfect place to head to for delicious burgers and salads. They also serve kids meals that will tempt their little taste buds.  

The patio overlooks the Rio Loco ride, giving you the perfect view for your meal.

*Rio Grill is only open on Saturdays and Sundays.

Spanky's Fries

Are you one of those people who only want fried and sodas? SeaWorld has something for everyone, including this fantastic combination. They up the ante by loading them with delicious goodness like cheese and meat. 

You will be faced with difficult choices between chicken wings, chili-cheese fries, or loaded baked potato fries! They even have asiago and truffle fries! Yummy!

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Harbor Market 

Prefer a food court-style menu? Then, hop over to the Harbor Market to pick your food from various Asian, Italian, and all American cuisines!

Vegetarians Alert! Harbor Market is just the place for you. They have vegetarian sandwiches that are absolutely delicious.

The harbor Market has indoor and outdoor seating, giving you the option of dining in the sun. What's better is that the harbor is shaped like the west coast shoreline giving it a very California feel. Also, don't miss the Sea lions that like to hang around the harbor. It really completes the California feel.

Close up of the sign for the Harbor Market, red and yellow banners hanging from wooden beams at SeaWorld in San Antonio, Texas, USA

photo credit: SeaWorld San Antonio

Shopping at SeaWorld San Antonio

We meant it when we said that SeaWorld has everything! Whether looking for essentials, collectibles, or fashion pieces, you will find it all at SeaWorld.

Here's a glance at all the SeaWorld shops: 

  • Check out Adventure Gifts for the cutest collection of souvenirs
  • Teenagers Alert! Head over to Currents to hunt for treasures specially designed for you
  • Pick the best gifts at Discovery Point Gifts for all the folks back home
  • Nobody does ocean-themed gifts featuring dolphins, sharks, and tropical fish like Ocean's Treasures
  • You absolutely cannot skip the SeaWorld Store for all the park themed souvenirs, gifts, t-shirts
  • The Sea Star Market is your place if you fancy SeaWorld and Sesame Street themed gifts and toys
  • Shamu's Emporium is a great place to hunt for killer whale themed merchandise
  • Under the Sun/Elmo's Splish Splash is the ultimate destination for dolphin and Sesame Street joys
  • Find more SeaWorld themed apparel at White Water

You are now a SeaWorld San Antonio expert!

With all the recommendations and tips above, you will be able to make the most of your time. Every experience and interaction is a moment you and your family will cherish for life.

So pack your tank tops and sunscreen, drop your pup at their daycare, get some flip-flops and let the fun begin!! 

Have Any Additional Insider's Tips?

Let us know in the comments below!

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Written By Sarina

Sarina Byron is a California-based writer whose work has been featured in leading publications such as  Authors Publish, Introvert, Dear, Thrive Global, Boo ...

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