So remember that time we headed over to Tampa/Clearwater to spend a fun weekend with friends at the Residence Inn Treasure Island? Well that was like a month ago, and I am just now getting around to posting about the rest of our awesome getaway.
Our first fun day was spent at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay. I received media passes back in April and Brian and I went for our anniversary weekend, but we got rained out a couple hours after we were there. We decided then to purchase annual passes for the whole family since it is such a great theme park!
We met up early in the day with our good friends Tiffany and Sean, and their cute little girls Payten and Camryn. As we were walking through the park we saw that there was a show getting ready to start, so we made our way into the outdoor theater and found some seats. Rylie was so thrilled when she saw the Sesame Street characters walking down through the aisles and she had to give all of them hugs.
After the show, the kids wanted to get in their bathing suits and get wet, so we headed over to the splash park. Rylie and Daddy snuck off for a few rides on Air Grover while Bryce, Payten and Camryn splashed around. Rylie finally joined the group and they all had a great time!
Busch Gardens has one of the most awesome splash parks I have been to, at least in the kids' eyes. Unfortunately, it is difficult to keep an eye on your child while they are playing. There are two entrances to the splash park, with a big cave in the middle. The cave blocks your view of the entrance on the other side, so you need to have one parent stationed at each end so the kids don't get out and wander off, which did happen with Bryce at one point. We found him quickly and he was fine, but I'm pretty sure I stopped breathing for a minute or two. While the kids loved playing in the cave, I wasn't keen on not being able to see them. Again, this really is an awesome splash park, and the kids loved it. I just wish it was simpler so that you can always have an eye on your children.
After everyone dried off, we headed over to to Sesame Street to ride some rides. First up was the swing ride. The kids loved it! Bryce loved it so much that he stayed on while the girls went to ride other rides. I'm pretty sure he rode it 5 or 6 times.
The girls waited patiently for their turn on Big Bird's Whirly Birdie and finally got on. Unfortunately, just as they got on, all of the rides were shut down due to lightning in the area.
Even though we weren't happy about the rides being shut down, I was glad that Busch Gardens paid such close attention to the weather in order to keep their guests safe. We got under cover and snacked on some Dippin Dots while we waited out the storm. It wasn't long before we were back out exploring the park.
We headed over to the Tiger Trail where we were greeted by a huge tiger. Bryce wasn't so sure what to think of this tiger shaped bush.
Once inside, we watched the tigers through the glass. I was taking pictures of Rylie and Payten when all of the sudden this tiger came right up to the glass. I swear at one point he tried to bite Rylie's leg! He just stood there for a while and looked at us. The kids thought it was awesome!
The tigers were absolutely beautiful. We even got to watch them during feeding time, and that was pretty cool.
When we came out, Bryce kept saying he wanted to touch the tiger, but of course when we got close to it, he decided to keep his distance. We took the opportunity to get a photo of the moms with the kids.
We headed back over to ride some more rides. The kids rode on a train, and then some airplanes...
...and even a huge turtle!
When Brian and I visited Busch Gardens back in April, we rode the new Cheetah Hunt roller coaster. It is one of the BEST roller coasters I have ridden! The ride is super long, and just when you think it is over, it slings you down the track again. The launches are awesome, and it goes almost 60mph! Check out this video to see just how fun this is...
Tiffany is a roller coaster nut like I am, so while the kids rode some rides, we took a ride on that awesome coaster. It is so much fun! We are already planning on going back sometime for an adult day so we can ride it again (and again!), along with the other awesome coasters at Busch Gardens.
When we came back from our ride, this is what we saw...
We knew then it was time to start heading out.
There is so much to do at Busch Gardens, and we really didn't get to do everything we wanted to. There were shows we wanted to see, and other areas of the park we wanted to explore, but the kids were having fun, so we just let them do their thing. I am so glad we got annual passes so we can go back again. I'm sure there will be several posts about our Busch Gardens adventures in the near future!
Stay tuned for the post about our first beach day of the year. I'll get it up one of these days...
Disclosure: All opinions are my own. I received two media passes to Busch Gardens back in April, but we were rained out shortly after arriving. We ended up purchasing annual passes for the whole family so we can go back again and again!
Search this site