Monday, January 10, 2011

VaycayDay 3 - Sea World

Monday, January 10th, the rest of the world was on its way to work and we were on our way to see the SD Temple.  We actually stayed a few blocks away from the freeway so it was on our way out of town. The temple and its gates were actually closed (on Monday, of course) but we were lucky and snuck in behind the hispanic landscape company's truck on its way in.  And yes, eventually we were approached by security and visited with him for a while.  I was surprised the temple grounds were so small.  In pictures it seems so massive but up close it doesn't look any bigger than Idaho Falls.  We enjoyed the warm temps and beautiful flowers and were lucky we didn't get stung by the swarm of bees that Ellie fell into.   Also, to the gentleman who took our picture that either cut out the temple or cut our legs off, thanks but no thanks.  So much for getting a family picture.  
After the temple it was back to Sea World for a few hours to see our favorite things one more time before we took off for dinner and the beach.  We got there and it was almost 20 degrees warmer and hardly anyone there at all.  No lines - I mean zero lines - everywhere we went.   Now this is how to do theme parks, people :-)  As soon as we walked in there was a killer whale training show, we'd already seen the "Believe" show which we were a bit disappointed with - so we decided to catch this one instead.
Since we had already seen the whole park we just got to do whatever we wanted.  On Saturday I made sure we didn't miss everything, I was quite the Nazi tour guide.  I don't know what it is about me, but I couldn't have lived with myself knowing we hadn't seen everything!!  So we went back to the helicopter ride again -- see the picture?  ABSOLUTELY NO LINE!!
We had already seen the dolphin show once, but we decided to catch it one more time.  Ellie got her picture with Merlayna and the prince.
We spent most of the day at Sesame Street Playland.  Elmo and Cookie Monster hadn't been there Saturday - we were SO SO Glad they decided to come on Monday!!

Ellie wasn't too excited about seeing any more shows, but I'd liked Sea Lions Live so much last time I got them to come.  Much funnier, but less educational than the zoo :-)
I had to post these pictures of my most, mostest favoritest part of Sea World = petting the dolphins.  I hardly got any pictures.  So this isn't a good representation of how long we were there and how much interaction we had, but most of that was due to the naughty dolphin and the 12yo boy egging it on.  There was a pool where the dolphins are most of the time - you can pay extra and swim with them - but there are also areas along the sides where you can watch them swim underwater or put your hand in hoping they come closer.  On Saturday there were CROWDS of people all day long several lines back so we didn't even bother to try to get close to the water.  Well on empty Monday we were strolling along and saw there were only about 3 people there.  The dolphins were swimming by very closely, popping there heads up and laughing - and then the 12 year old boy would splash this one dolphin in the face so it would dive down make a circle and come right back up and splash EVERYONE.  After the first one caught us by surprise we decided to put away the cameras.  We were soaked after 30 seconds and this one dolphin kept on playing like that for almost 20 minutes.  Darik had to drag me away.  It was so amazing to me to have a dolphin 18 inches from you popping its head up and letting you pet it right above its bottlenose.  It was SO super-cool.  Darik was marginally impressed and Ellie decided to go make friends with some girls from Australia.  After that we'd decided it was time to hit the beach.
Now that we knew for sure how cold the sun was we made sure Ellie knew we were NOT getting in the water.  Just playing and walking and collecting sea shells and eating at the pizza place right on the boardwalk.  Mission Beach is very pretty.  We were the only ones out there except for the runners on that windy day.  After dinner and sunset we made our way up to Anaheim where we had a hotel a block away from Disneyland for 5 more nights.  We were sad to leave our La Jolla hotel.  I'd gotten it on Priceline for $45 a night and when I went and saw that the regular price was over $200 a night we were excited.  We were right - it was SO SO nice!  It even included a full cooked breakfast buffet of waffles, eggs, hash browns, sausage, fruit, oatmeal, toast, etc.  It was an amazing deal.  We knew we wouldn't be getting a 4-star hotel in Anaheim.  Because I got such a great deal in SD I used Priceline for LA.  I should have known Disneyland hotels don't run the same deals as a Residence Inn in La Jolla.


  1. Definitly making me jealous, I love dolphins and have never been to Sea World. One family vacation we went to the SD zoo and Disneyland. Now I know I've got to go to Sea World. What's the youngest you would sugest for the parks?

  2. I think Sea World is really for all ages - Disneyland, eh . . . I liked waiting until Ellie could get herself around without a stroller and was tall enough to go on the rides with us. I'm glad I waited until she was 5 - still believes everything is real, but old enough to not have to carry a diaper bag and still get to see everything the park has to see.