A Day at Discovery Cove

So my time in America was amazing and I loved every minute I spent in the place, everything from the hotel, to the parks and of course the entertainment and little details were incredible. However, one of my favourite days when I was away was the day we spent at Discovery Cove, only about a 15 min drive outwith the Disney lot. 

Discovery Cove is one incredible day, and is an exclusive park, that only a restricted number of guests get access to, therefore it is a very peaceful day and never too busy. We got to swim with dolphins, go snorkeling, and see some gorgeous birds in the bird sanctuary, and it was all included in the price. It really is one amazing day, and for anyone who likes something a little different and wants to be more with nature, it really is a must do!

To take advantage of Discovery Cove, you need to get there and check in early, and I mean early! Check in opens from 7am, so we arrived about 15-20 mins beforehand to ensure we had plenty of time to check in and weren't rushing around... after all it was going to be a chilled and relaxed day! After our bags got checked (and I will point out, we had very little with us as everything is included, but i'll get into this a little later) we headed to the check in desk and got ourselves sorted. They took our photos and attached them to lanyards for us, that we got to keep and makes a great souvenir of the day. This had all our details on it, including the time we had our dolphin swim (if this is something you have purchased) and our personal details too!

We walked round to our cabana, of which their are 3 in total... we were Sand Dollar and got ourselves sorted in to our swim vests and managed to get our lockers too, as well as all our snorkeling gear, which we used later in the day!


Our first activity of the day was the dolphin swim, which a lot of people had recommended to do first as the weather can cause changes throughout the day, something which is useful to note if you are planning to go in the future. 

This was the thing I had been looking forward too the most, I have always loved dolphins and had dreamed of swimming with them since a young age so when I got into the water with the other 3 groups and saw all the dolphins, I was so excited, it was a literal dream come true. The experience really was amazing and we actually got to work with 2 different dolphins, which was great, they both had completely different personalities too and getting so close to them was an incredible experience! The photographers and film makers were also in the water too taking some incredible footage that we could keep if we wanted to purchase. The packages for the souvenirs are very expensive, however as this was something we were probably only going to be doing once, we wanted to treasure the memories we had made, and the pictures really were amazing! 

After we got ourselves sorted and dried off, I was desperate to get into the bird sanctuary and meet some of the incredible birds that they helped. Their were some incredible birds, that loved coming right up to you to get fed, which made for some incredible shots!

Their was 3 separate smaller sections where the birds were kept, each containing different types and sizes, so it was pretty easy to get close to the animals, as their were never too many people in each of the segments... my favourite was of course the parrots, which were absolutely stunning!

Discovery Cove really do cover everything, from shower supplies, to animal friendly sun cream right up to all your food and drinks too! With one main restaurant at the entrance and several snack bars around the resort, their was plenty of choice! I loved the warm cookies from the snack bar and the frozen cocktails too, which was also in the package.... I wasn't lying when I said they took care of everything!

Of course we made several pit stops throughout the day to keep our energy up, especially as the temperature rose throughout the day, the snack bars were the perfect place to stay hydrated when we were lying around the waters edge!

One of my favorite parts of the day was actually just being able to relax, give me a hammock and I could swing back and forth for hours! It was the perfect way to unwind and take in the rays and with plenty of different pools and seating areas, everyone was covered!

The last thing I had to take advantage of was of course the snorkeling! Being someone who isn't the most confident in water I wasn't sure how I would be, however last year I went Scuba Diving in Spain to try and prepare myself, so wasn't completely in the dark and got the hang of things preety quickly... 

The Snorkeling was incredible, and the reef was full of amazing fish, although as soon as I discovered their were stingrays, I struggled, as I have since discovered I am terrified of them (don't ask me why but their you go!). Nevertheless, the experience was amazing, and I am still super happy that I done it for a bit and saw some amazing creatures in the process! 
If you are going to be doing it too, spend some money and get either an underwater camera, or a waterproof case, as we missed some incredible photo opportunities when we were down there....

Discovery Cove really was a dream come true and was one of the best days of my life, maybe one day I will get to do it again but for now, the experiences I had here will stay with me for the rest of my life. This sort of day really is a splurge, however when you see the amount that is included in your day and the opportunities you get I would absolutely pay it again for another visit. The park is so well organised, brilliantly laid out and never too busy, meaning you don't feel super overcrowded, one of the only things I have occasionally found with the Disney parks....

I was sad when it came time to say goodbye to my time in Discovery Cove, their is so much to do and I feel we actually missed out on a few sections, including a lot of the warmer pools and underwater seating area, that looked super relaxing. I just couldn't resist lying in the hammock!

Let me know in the comments below if you have ever been to Discovery Cove. Have you been before? I'd love to hear what you think!

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