Grandparents Day Out: Clearwater Marine Aquarium

There are no shortage of fun activities for a grandparents day out in Tampa Bay. Check out some of our ideas that family members of all ages can enjoy on a grandparents day out (and join us on Facebook for more). Today, we put a spotlight on one of the top attractions in Tampa Bay for grandparents, grandkids and all ages in between.

Clearwater Marine Aquarium: fun place for grandparents day out

Clearwater Marine Aquarium is not your usual aquarium. It mission states, “We believe in preserving our marine life and environment while inspiring the human spirit through leadership in education, research, rescue, rehabilitation, and release.”

As a family destination, Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA) offers activities for all ages, including:

  • Visiting and viewing the animals and learning more about the work done by CMA to rescue and rehabilitate marine life. See below for more information about inspiring visits with Winter the Dolphin.

Winter and Hope great pic!

  • Information sessions providing insight into their mission of marine life rescue, rehab, and release.

Turtle Release

  • The Sea Life Safari and Dolphin Adventure Tour provide opportunities for families to explore together as they experience our waterways and research conducted by the CMA team first-hand.

Dolphin Adventure Tour

  • You can also visit Winter’s Dolphin Tale Adventure, located in downtown Clearwater.  This location serves as a museum to the Dolphin Tale films, and includes displays of sets, props, and costume pieces. Winter’s Dolphin Tale Advanture is completely indoor and air conditioned, providing a nice break from the Florida heat and sun.

Inspiration and Education: Winter the Dolphin

Winter with Tail

Winter’s story has been an inspiration for many, especially those with disabilities or struggling to overcome challenges. Anyone can be inspired by the animals at CMA and also learn a lot about wildlife and life in general. Many disabled people of all ages, from wounded Veterans to kids with special needs, have visited and found a special connection to Winter.

We’ve heard personal stories from clients and friends who have taken an elder loved one in a wheelchair about the affinity they felt with Winter and the special interaction that occurred during their visits. This could be a wonderfully therapeutic experience for someone who is discouraged about limitations or facing changes. This is an ideal grandparents day out, even if the grandkids aren’t in town!

Winter

Tips for a Good Grandparents Day Out at CMA

Ideally, guests should consider avoiding starting their day at CMA during peak hours, typically between 10:30am-2:30pm.  By arriving first thing in the morning or later in the afternoon, you’ll have increased opportunities for visibility of the animals. Opening hours are 9am to 6pm daily.

If you plan to visit on multiple occasions and/or want to support CMA’s mission, you can become a member which includes free general admission and discounts on a number of Florida attractions (plus members only events and more).

You can extend your experience by viewing the live web cams so you can check in with Winter and Hope anytime.

Booking: To add additional experiences, such as tours or animal encounters, to your visit check out the program and book online at www.seewinter.com (or call the reservations department at 727-441-1790 ext. 0). Learn about special events there too…such as an upcoming opportunity to meet the stars of Dolphin Tale (March 21-25).

Transportation/Parking: CMA provides complimentary transportation between the downtown location and the aquarium via trolley or boat shuttle (weather depending). Free parking is available at both sites. Get directions here.

Accessibility: The CMA facility is wheelchair accessible and there are handicap viewing areas for popular exhibits.  The transportation trolleys are wheelchair compatible. Currently, the boat shuttle and tours require guests to transfer (but CMA is working on grants to make these more wheelchair accessible/disability-friendly also).

EasyLiving companions can assist you with a grnadparents day out at Clearwater Marine Aquarium. Our caregivers provide transportation, help you safely get around, assist with needs such as going to the restroom and coordinate the details. EasyLiving senior concierge services are designed to make sure you have a great family day out (and we can plan regular outings for a loved one who lives at home alone, in assisted living or a nursing home in the Clearwater/Tampa Bay area).

Contact us for Tampa Bay caregiver and concierge services (727-447-5845).

 

*Thanks to Clearwater Marine Aquarium for pictures and information for this article.