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Theme Parks: Manta Soars Over SeaWorld Orlando This Summer


Parks also offer unique vacation experiences and unbeatable prices

This summer, visitors to SeaWorld Orlando find out what it’s like to spin, glide, skim and soar like a giant ray as they experience the only flying roller coaster of its kind in the world.

A seamless blend of up-close animal encounters with a head-first, face-down thrill ride, Manta is an adventure only SeaWorld could create. Manta opens May 22.

From seeing…

Right from the start, Manta provides a glimpse into the incredible underwater worlds of tropical fish and rays. Floor-to-ceiling aquariums showcase rare leafy sea dragons and thousands of schooling fish. Kids get a unique 360-degree underwater view by climbing into a pop-up aquarium and coming face-to-face with nearly 300 colorful clownfish and mysterious sea anemones. A massive Pacific octopus slinks back and forth between habitats through an underwater tube. Three hundred rays – their group known as a "fever" – swim/fly past guests and even over their heads. There’s a sense of being immersed and surrounded by thousands of mysterious creatures.

And that’s just the queue line.

  …To being

Turning a corner, guests peer through a waterfall then feel the punch of air as something huge zooms by, just inches away. It’s a giant manta ray. On steel rails. A manta ray roller coaster, ride flying, soaring, gliding and spinning at highway speeds. And secured to the manta’s belly are 32 riders, each one lying prone, going for a ride on the biggest and grandest ray of all.

"Manta takes what SeaWorld does best – animal encounters and thrill rides – and blends them to create something you can’t find anywhere else in the world, " says Dan Brown, SeaWorld Orlando’s general manager. "Manta’s actually the next generation of what makes Orlando so much fun. Orlando is the must-do vacation this summer, and Manta is the must-see."

Manta’s excitement is for everyone

SeaWorld ride and animal experts designed Manta to have thrills for the whole family, at every age level. For guests too young to ride roller coasters – or those who like their adventures a little less extreme – the Manta experience includes incredible views into 10 stunning and all-new aquariums, which are home to 100 species of fish, hundreds of rays and other sea life, more than 3, 000 creatures in all. Never before has SeaWorld had such a diverse display of ocean animals. And never before have non-riders been so much a part of a thrill ride’s experience.

Those who take their excitement flying head first at 56 mph will crown Manta as one of the world’s top coasters. A track-twisting pretzel loop, in-line spins, a waterfall close call and a wing dip just inches from the water add up to a flying roller coaster ride never before seen, let alone experienced.

There are only a handful of "flying coasters" in the world. Climbing into what look like traditional seats and harnesses, riders soon notice what makes this kind of coaster so special: The entire seating assembly rotates forward, positioning riders horizontally, or face down in a prone position. It’s like flying. Or even better, it’s like riding on the belly of a massive 12-foot-wide manta ray as it glides and twists and soars above the ocean.

For thrill ride fans, Manta is sure to be the final notch on their coaster belt. For lovers of up-close encounters with the mysteries of the sea, it’s what they love about SeaWorld.

Discoveries in Orlando that help to stretch the vacation budget

Families looking to have the most summer fun while keeping an eye on their budget will find all-new hotel packages and theme park ticket deals make a trip to Orlando more affordable than ever.

They’ll think it’s a dream vacation: Aquatica, SeaWorld’s waterpark in Orlando where the fun is as endless as the sea itself; Discovery Cove, Orlando’s tropical, dolphin-swim paradise; Busch Gardens in nearby Tampa, featuring the world’s best thrill rides and animal encounters; and of course, Manta. Families will come together with experiences that can’t be found any place else in Central Florida.

"Families are hungry to spend meaningful time together while looking for ways to stretch their family travel dollar, " says Emily Kaufman, family traveling expert and creator of "This summer, the hottest deals are packages with added value in areas like extra nights free at hotels, credits to be used on property and discounted or free admission to area attractions."

Hotel packages include free nights and theme park tickets

Nearly two dozen choice hotels in Orlando have teamed up with SeaWorld to provide an incredible offer. Travelers who buy three hotel nights get two additional nights free and unlimited admission to two of the three parks (SeaWorld, Aquatica and Busch Gardens) during their stay.

That means more nights in Orlando, more unforgettable animal encounters, more thrilling rides, more shows and more memories to last a lifetime. Based on a family of four this limited-time offer starts at only $34 per person, per day and is available at The package must be purchased by June 30, 2009 for vacations scheduled through Sept. 7, 2009.

Hotel not needed? Park tickets offer unlimited admission & flexibility

For those who already have a hotel or might be staying with friends or relatives in Orlando, hot deals on admission tickets provide unlimited admission and flexibility. Buying select SeaWorld, Aquatica or Busch Gardens tickets online means adults at kid’s prices and come-and-go admissions throughout the vacation for maximum flexibility.

A second visit to SeaWorld is free with the purchase of a single-day SeaWorld ticket and for fast entry, all tickets for the parks can be pre-printed at home.

Skip the lines and save time — add-ons make the most of a visit

Families can upgrade their visit to SeaWorld, Aquatica and Busch Gardens with add-ons and experiences that make the most of an Orlando vacation, including Quick Queue, which lets them skip the lines at popular attractions and rides and enjoy reserved seating at shows, All Day Dining Deals that offer all-you-care-to-eat specials throughout the day, and unique experiences and tours such as the Serengeti Night Safari at Busch Gardens or going behind-the-scenes at SeaWorld.

So much more to explore

SeaWorld immerses guests in the mysteries of the sea through up-close animal discoveries, amazing attractions and rides and unforgettable performances. Whether riding a flying manta ray, getting drenched by Shamu, meeting dolphins, braving astounding thrill rides, counting the teeth on a shark or feeding seals and sea lions, vacation adventures become lifelong memories at SeaWorld.

And each summer evening, SeaWorld’s AfterDark sparks the night with all-new shows and fireworks filling the sky.

Aquatica is a one-of-a-kind waterpark that could only come from SeaWorld. Inspired by a whimsical take on the South Seas, Aquatica immerses guests in the playfulness of the sea, taking them in, over and under the water with the world’s most unique water rides and animal encounters. Aquatica mixes animal experiences, waters from serene to extreme, high speed waterslide thrills and wide, sandy beaches to create a day of non-stop fun.

At Discovery Cove, dolphin dreams come true. A day at this secluded getaway is an all-inclusive tropical adventure with one-of-a-kind opportunities to swim one-on-one with dolphins, kick back on pristine white sand beaches, snorkel in crystal waters teeming with rays and tropical fish, and hand-feed exotic birds – the most exciting animal encounters the world has to offer. Discovery Cove is a hideaway of adventure, where guests can choose between adventure and relaxation at every turn.

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay is where the unexpected comes together with an unparalleled combination of thrilling rides, world-class live shows and one of the country’s premier zoos with more than 2, 500 animals. New is Jungala, a lush jungle village where guests have the chance to connect with the natural world. They’ll come nose-to-nose with orangutans, test their strength against a Bengal tiger, explore a three-story play land of climbing nets, mazes and tunnels, and soar above the treetops on a zip line adventure.

All summer long, guests celebrate 50 years of fun at Busch Gardens. The adventure park is throwing a party every night during Summer Nights. Stay late to explore Jungala, ride thrilling coasters in the dark and enjoy the street-party atmosphere with special entertainment, music and festive food and drink.

Everyone can explore to find out more.

Web Site: 

See also: SeaWorld, Busch Gardens announce Thursday Webcast
Residence Inn Orlando SeaWorld Welcomes Blue Man Group Spectators for an Unforgettable Getaway
The Polar Express Experience Rolls Into SeaWorld


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