If you take a trip to Tampa or Clearwater Beach, make time to check out Clearwater Marine Aquarium! My kids (6 & 9) loved it! My daughter Ella (9) has been obsessed with the movie Dolphin Tale for years. We have watched Dolphin Tale and Dolphin Tale 2 more than I can count. My favorite thing for Ella is how she says that because of Winter the dolphin, and the challenges she faces, it helps make her doctors appointments and challenges easier. In case you are new to my blog, Ella has Turner Syndrome, which means she is missing an X chromosome and has been super brave battling a number of health challenges. From having 5 surgeries including open heart to giving herself daily shots, she continues to amaze me everyday. Anyway when the opportunity came to go to the aquarium she was over the moon excited.
Clearwater Marine Aquarium is not your typical aquarium. They are a rescue and rehab facility for so many marine life in the area. Most of the animals brought there have been injured or ill. The day we were there the kids were able to see an injured sea turtle being saved. The turtle had been hit by a boat and his shell had been damaged. So besides seeing animals it’s very eye opening for the children and adults to see how these animals can be damaged by how we treat the ocean.
In addition to seeing dolphins, sharks, sea turtles, sting rays and many other sea animals you can also see part of the set where Dolphin Tale was filmed.
Clearwater Marine Aquarium has over 600 volunteers and works mostly off of donations. Most of the aquarium is inside as well so perfect for a rainy day at the beach! It’s a smaller aquarium so you can spend a half day here and see just about everything. So if you ask my kids they would vote going to see Winter at Clearwater Marine Aquarium!