View Full Version : Carpe Diem Feb 09 - Saturday the 14th - Discovery Cove

21-04-2009, 08:16 PM
Mickey woke us by giving us a call at 6 am which felt like the middle of the night and was dark. It had ben a fitfull nights sleep, which you tend to have when you know you have to get up early, plus we were all more than a teeny bit excited as well :D The overiding feeling that morning was one of excitement but how on earth can this place possibly live up to all the hype and expectation.

The previous evening before crashing I had checked and rechecked all the paperwork a bazillion times :mental: and had noticed somewhere in tiny print that although the park didn't open until 9 am 'check in' begins at 8 so we had rung Tiffany at the 11th hour and they had agreed to pick us up at 7.30 rather than the 8.30 we had previously planned. This turned out to be an excellent idea :yes:

Well we got up and dressed in a hurry and we all bounced out of the room and up to the Taxi waiting for us at the entrance with a lovely smiley lady who ushered us into the car and drove us on our way to DC telling us not to worry she had never known anyone come out disappointed :D

Well we arrived a little before 8 and there was a queue of a couple of dozen people waiting to be checked in - it was an amazing lobby - like a 5 star hotel and there was someone directing you to the next avaliable checker-iner - definite improvement on the 'Number 7 please' they use at the post office

Within no time we were having our photos taken for the super cool passes and were told our swim had been alloted to 9.10 So we were very glad we had arrived now and not at 9 :eek: , just had time to wander and get breakfast before getting changed for the swim.

Once you walk out of the lobby you are greeted by a tropical paradise



A short walk down the path you come accross a large restaurant that was serving breakfast.


We had cinnamon swirls and coffee and the boys munched on croissants and drank orange juice.

By the time we had eaten our fill it was time to go and get changed you walk down to your changing areas and someone runs an eye over you and hands you a wetsuit - it was going to be hot later in the day 85 ish but this morning it was overcast and a bit chilly so we all elected to go for the short wetsuits - they also gave you a bag with the snorkel stuff in it and some dolphin friendly suncream. I take thomas in to get changed with me and Lisa takes Matthew - lovely plush changing facilities with oodles of complimentary towels and soaps and stuff :D lovely

We all meet outside to giggle at each other. Its a very strange sensation being in one of these. My top tip would be to get rid of your morning coffee before you do the zip up at the back :yes:




Matthews was a bit big and he had to go back and change :D


Then it was time to put everything in the locker ( and I'm afraid that included the camera) one of the great things about DC is as its all complimentary you don't really need cash so you can spend the whole day in your wetsuit and I really didn't want to be 'tied' to the camer all day.

Anyway it was getting time for the swim so we head off to the meeting point for our introductory talk and then into the water.

Matthew was a little reluctant to get in as the water was cold, we had to explaimn they couldn't heat it on account of the fact it would cook the dolphins and he wouldn't want that :lol:

By the time we were all lined up and introduced to our Dolphin he was shaking with excitement rather than the cold though :D

Well I'm sure you've all seen the videos and know the routine, our trainer told us loads about the dolphins and it was all very relaxed and lovely and we each got to ask questions, feed and stroke this beautiful animal. The boys ( and us) were completely captivated

(best photo ever)



Then it came time to swim out to do the fin drag back to shore which involved swimming out quite deep - a combination of the suits plus the salt water means it is actually very hard to sink!! so noone should be frightened of it, Matthew however wanted a jacket for comfort so that was just fine, it made him look cuter if anything and he whooped and hollered the whole way to shore :D


It was all over very quickly but it didn't feel at all rushed ,which sounds daft but is true. Afterwards you go over to look at your photos and the video and of course you just have to buy the super deluxe mega deal dont you :D seems daft not too really.

Now I must confess to feeling a little anxious now, we had 'done' the big bit and it was only 10 o'clock, I hoped at that point it wasn't going to be a bit of a let down from now on. As we walked to the coral reef all the snack bars were opening up and had a huge range of stuff that was obviously 'free' we didn't really get to use them much though as we had too much to do :D

Had another 'interesting' rest room stop and then went to grab a sunlounger to keep all our towels and stuff on whilst we had an explore.

The sun was out now and we put on the thick white eco friendly sunscreen that has the effect of making us all look like this when we were in wetsuits


But it didn't matter as everyone else looked the same - they tell you they provide 'samples' but don't worry one sachet covered the whole family for a day.

Now none of us have ever snorkeled before and TBH none of us liked the idea so we all sat in the shallows for a bit and just put our faces in to marvel at the amazing fish and slowly but surely we got more confidence, we didn't feel rushed or hassled from anyone around us and we could take our time and one by one we got settled using the snorkles and before we knew it we were swimming around the massive reef tank easily - I cannot tell you how easy it was to swim the bouyancy of the water kept you floating of the surface and the miriad of fishies on display was just breathtaking. Once you have your ears under the water you are transported into a completely different world, it is utterly silent and completely magical, and we were all here together as a family experiencing it for the first time, there are multiple 'beaches' of shallow areas to swim between over the deep bits and we went round and around in enless circuits for hours, I just can't express in words how moving and magical it was,

The only sad thing was that the camera didn't work but we didn't know that until we got home. I however imagine that it would all have been rather disappointing and would not have given you half the feelings of wonder and awe - some of the rays were just huuuge and so beautiful and graceful.

It was just like


Matthew looked so cute fizzing about in his little orange jacket and swum face down almost in the foetal position and often in the wrong direction chasing after some fish or other - he didn't understand we couldn't hear him and if you broke surface you could hear him merrily giving comentary through his snorkle

'Oook Hooo Hish' 'oooooo hat huns hoooooga' :lol:

We have to stop afer a couple of hours as Matthew teeth hurt from talking whilst snorkeling.

This, the coral reef, for me was worth the cost of admission alone, it was completely awesome

Right next door is the ray pool so as we are close we go and say hello to them and stroke rays of varying degrees of hugeness


21-04-2009, 08:18 PM
oooo waiting for photos to upload

the pics of the kids kissing the dolphin's made me all weepy !!! they look angelic!

21-04-2009, 08:38 PM
Those are the best photos ever! You may not have been at disney, but photos represent magical moments!

Love the pengiun picture. I got a great laugh from it.

21-04-2009, 08:38 PM
Sounds like an AMAZING day!

Cant see the pics here :(

21-04-2009, 08:41 PM
Fantastic photos! It's nice to see DC in the sun, it poured with rain for the first couple of hours we were there and although it cleared up it was all very steamy :lol:

Glad you weren't disappointed :yes:

21-04-2009, 11:26 PM
You are such an incredibly beautiful family. I have no words.

22-04-2009, 01:32 AM
Thomas has utterly and completely stolen my heart.

22-04-2009, 02:39 AM
beautiful place


what an amazing experience!!!

Is it Thomas in kissing the dolphin? That really IS the best pic ever! wow!!

22-04-2009, 05:55 AM
Just brilliant. The dolphin-kissing photos made me teary too, in a very good way :)

22-04-2009, 06:38 AM
Is it Thomas in kissing the dolphin? That really IS the best pic ever! wow!!

Matthew is the top one and Thomas is the one afer - mine was just all cap :laugh:

22-04-2009, 07:18 AM

22-04-2009, 07:39 AM
What a way to start my day with tears in my eyes.

Beautiful description and fantastic photos.
I hope the video i sent you didn't spoil it too much for you.

I can't wait to go back and do it all again - 16 weeks on Sunday!

So glad you enjoyed it and it lived up to the high expectations you had.

22-04-2009, 07:47 AM
The video you sent sent the boys into raptures of anticipation :thumbsup: in NO WAY did it spoil it at all :D

22-04-2009, 01:17 PM
:hug2:What a beautiful memory!

22-04-2009, 01:33 PM
It is indeed and worth every single penny

22-04-2009, 02:55 PM
Brilliant trippie :yes:
When we were last at DC, breakfast was outside from a little stand. You helped yourself and sat outside. I wonder if it's inside all the time now.

22-04-2009, 03:22 PM
Awww...the boys with the dolphin pics. Beautiful. :thumbsup:

22-04-2009, 03:31 PM

Do it :yes:

22-04-2009, 04:00 PM
Can you lend me $1000 please.

27-04-2009, 06:50 PM
It's just great to see pictures of you all together. To often a Mummy or a Daddy is taking the picture.