As you might imagine, we’ve had a ton of fun preparing for SeaWorld Week here at the Frog Pond, and we’re super excited about finally getting to experience Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin at its grand opening!
I have hardly been able to contain myself and have been counting the days until our trip, so Mommy Frog suggested I write a post about the things I couldn’t wait to experience at Antarctica.
At almost 4 acres and featuring a 6,125-square-foot penguin habitat (complete with 50-foot glaciers!), a ride, a restaurant and a gift shop, there was a lot to look forward to, but I managed to whittle it down to five.
So without further ado, here’s what I am most looking forward to …
5. Seeing real snow in Florida!
While those of you in colder climates experience your share of snow, we don’t see it too often at the Frog Pond — or in Florida. To simulate true arctic conditions, SeaWorld is trucking in tons of snow each day that the penguins will waddle through. And this snow will actually stick, since the air will be kept at a chilly 30 degrees and the water an icy 45 degrees. Conditions will get progressively cooler and drier as you make your way through the experience.
For the most authentic experience possible, SeaWorld has created a first-of-its-kind trackless vehicle that will make you feel as if you’re gliding on ice. It also allows for 32 different ride outcomes. If you think about it, it’s possible that you could ride it every day for a whole month and not experience it the same way twice! That’s pretty cool.
Much like TurtleTrek, where guests explore the ocean from the perspective of a sea turtle, guests will experience Antarctica through the eyes of a young Gentoo penguin named Puck, who is seeking shelter from a coming storm. We’ll experience his hatching and his first swim as we journey through Antarctica.
I’m not going to lie, one of the coolest things about this attraction is getting to visit this icy world. I want to experience what’s it’s like in Antarctica — in case I never make it down there. (I’m still a young frog, so it just might happen for me.) Thanks to the ride’s mobile simulator, explorers will be able to choose two levels of adventure — wild and mild versions — that will allow them to experience the unpredictability of the South Pole.
As much as I can’t wait to experience the ride, I’m even more excited about getting up close with a couple hundred highly curious Gentoo, King, Adelie and Rockhopper penguins. It’s not every day you get to hop alongside penguins waddling through the snow! A 2-foot rock wall is all that will separate you from these feathered friends, unless you want to see them underwater via a special viewing tank.