Marine Land and Game Farm, Niagara Falls
My husband and I took our 3 and 5 year old to Marineland just this past week. I was there as a child, but remembered little from that experience. I was eager to experience it again with my own children.
I'll start with the good. The 7 rides in the Family Ride section were great for the kids. Both my children had a blast. Lines were short. The rides were clean and well maintained and big enough that parents could ride with the small ones. My daughter was too small for most of the other bigger thrill rides, but the couple we could actually go on were also clean and well maintained. There is lots of room for expansion of the park. We walked a long way between some of the attractions.
The performances of the marine animals were fun to watch and provided thorough entertainment for the whole family.
Now for the bad. I didn't get the feeling that the animals were treated and maintained well. The deer are in a large enclosure with little shade. The ground is dirt, no grass in sight. No visible source of water either, but it must be there somewhere. The deer themselves look in pretty rough shape. Many had broken antlers, bald patches, open sores, and abnormal growths. 3 deer vomited while we were in the enclosure with them. My son when to feed one deer and was startled by a bulbous growth on the deer's lip. Some of the deer were too weak to even bother to come and get some of the food we had. Those that wanted the food, really wanted it. My daughter found herself surrounded, but they are quite tame.
The bear enclosure is small, and fully in the sun. There is some shade and water to swim in, but in the small enclosure I counted at least 13 bears. It's my understanding that bears are quiet solitary type animals. While we were there, we witnessed 3 territorial disputes (fights) between the bears. We could purchase what looked like corn pops to feed the bears, but anyone could throw pretty much anything in to the bears. There wasn't much in the way of supervision of park guests to make sure that unhealthy things weren't finding their way into the cages.
The elk and buffalo were also in enclosures that looked devoid of grass, water and had little shade. Also the large roller coaster went very near the areas where the animals were kept. A very unnatural environment to be in.
I don't know much about marine animals, but some of them looked kind of rough. There were a large number of bulugas in one tank. Many of them had what looked like healed wounds. The tanks resembled more of a human swimming pool than anything an animal might live in. I even caught the sent of chlorine when I was leaning over a tank to get a look.
Now while we had a good time at Marineland, I really don't think we'll be going back. The whales are spectacular animals and the deer and bears were fun to feed, I just don't think they are being given the respect they deserve at this facility. There is lots more to do in Niagara falls with the $130 it cost my family to go to Marineland.
It is worth noting that for such a large tourist attraction, MarineLand is both devoid of any kind of security personnel or an acceptable form of dealing with problems and emergencies, should such situations arise. The park relies on a rag tag group of "managers", who may be located some distance from any of the larger attractions towards the park's rear, making response time to any incidents laughable at best. MarineLand's employees are subjected to abusive and physically violent guests almost daily, and their only from of recourse is to interrupt the ride and or service that they are providing to telephone or radio one of these so called "managers" for assistance. The usual response when one arrives some 10-15 minutes later? "The guest has already left the general area, there's nothing to be done about it." This fact alone makes such a large and well known establishment completely and undeniably unsafe and dangerous for it's employees. John Holer owes it both the public and the persons in his employ to provide the safety and security that is expected with ANY park of this size, which he has failed to do, despite the fact the park makes millions every season that it is in operation. Cost should be no issue when it comes to the safety and security of your guests and employees, but it seems, at least for the time being, that this will continue to be a "whale of a problem" for the ever famous MarineLand.
The name makes them sound ferocious, but killer whales can be quite friendly and affectionate.
This congenial side of the largest member of the dolphin family became known through observations and contact made at facilities like Marineland.
For me, Marineland is a very special place. One day in the future I would really love to visit Marineland again. Among the many attractions, it includes a zoo, amusement park as well as whale and dolphin shows. I am convinced that one can spend an entire day in marineland alone. Arguably one of the most famous treats is the Beluga Whale exhibit. This exhibit includes a below surface observation window.
To fully see the park requires lots of walking.
When one spends U$40 to commit to walking around an enclosed area all day looking at whatever are the advertised attractions,
the customer expects that there will be something available to eat.
Marineland Canada offers junk food only. I don't eat hot dogs, hamburgers, or chicken.
Vegetarian imitations of hot dogs and hamburgers would have been fine, but they don't have them.
Actually, I'm not even a real vegetarian. A tuna sandwich would have been fine.
Do thay have that either? (considering that their specialty is fish)
No. Basically they have hamburgers, hot dogs, french fries, and pizza. The best that my meat-eating wife found was a chicken breast.
Be warned that you may need to take your own sandwiches.
PS. They have beer (bad), but no wine.
Marineland was a great place to take our family! Another hot day in July, but so much to see and experience. Our grandson was actually able to touch a beluga and an orca. To see these creatures up close and interact with them is something he will never forget.
Although there were ticket lines for this, then another line to wait in while each child got the opportunity to touch the whales, no one complained as they waited in the heat. This was Friendship Cove. Beneath the tanks where the beluga and orca visited the children, a mother and baby orca swam. It was cold and dark here...great for cooling off.
Marineland arena is used for shows featuring dolphins and seals. The trainers had these animals perform water skills which were fun to watch. A comedian entertained the audience with sappy, but cute tricks. People sitting in the first rows got soaked, of course, but loved every minute of it.
This was a large park with walkways winding some distance between each exhibit. The bear compound drew our attention and we spent quite a while here feeding them. Deer and other animals were located throughout the park. Gift shops were available where we bought hats--you needed them that day!!
The price of admission and operating hours vary with the season. Check their website for up to date information.
"Like" is a better term, in my opinion.
The shows were pretty standard and uneventful. Only cute little kids are aloud to come help with the demos, which I resent.
The deer pen is pretty fun if you've never been up close to one before. Just don't let them push you around. My sister who was quite young at the time, was almost stampeded by hungry deer.
I was disappointed in the advertisements that make it look like anyone can go up and touch the marine animals during "touch times", when in reality they only let a certain number in line every couple of hours. I waited a long time only to be blindsided by a dozen little kiddies and never got my turn. Boo hoo.
Later in the same area, one of the Orcas came very close to me at the top of their tank (within arm's reach) and started spyhopping. I wanted to touch them but knowing better I didn't. Some kid actually pushed in front of me and DID try to touch the Orca, and fortunately got in a lot of trouble by the guard standing nearby before he toppled into the tank. Watch your kids around the open tanks!
The theme park section I found to be a lot more fun than the 'zoo' section. The rides were clean, well maintained, and a lot of fun. Usually I only like a couple rides in an amusement park and will ride those all day, but here there were a variety of enjoyable rides and the park had to close before I would leave.
The highlight of my trip there was feeding the giant carp in the pond with what looked like Corn Pops out of an ice cream cone. Some of the fish are gigantic, and they look very cute with their big open mouths waiting for you to feed them.
A brilliant day out in a lovely park. Lots of animals to see including Killer whales, Beluga whales, Deer and Bears. Whilst I was there I was able to feed the Killer Whale. This was a wonderful opportunity and only cost a few dollars. You can feed the deer, bears and fish too! You can walk in amongst the deer which was an experience! There are lots of theme park rides including a rollercoaster. It is a lovely place to bring a picnic which is allowed as long as you do not bring alcohol.
Park is open May to October, check website for dates.
At Marineland you will meet one of the most unique looking whales from the marine mammal family - the beluga. Expansive underwater viewing windows at Arctic Cove let you get right up close. You can touch and feed these friendly white whales - it cost 4 CD only.
We arrived at MarineLand expecting it to be as good as SeaWorld but it was a let down in that area. The attractions are few and far between which means you do ALOT of unneeded walking. The best ride there was the 200+foot drop on the hill...we could see it from our hotel room! The rest were kiddie rides but fun. The animals were fun because a majority of them you could feed. The aquatic animals however you had to wait for special times and their enclosures were small. It was almost as though this park had just opened. However, we've never been to Sea World so we weren't too let down. However, I do suggest driving and not riding the shuttle. We waited for over an hour for the shuttle while we were starving so that we could go back to the hotel. The food prices in the park were too high for no more than you got and we were done way before time for the shuttle to return.
High-flying bows, spectacular breaches and amazing flips are just some of the natural and thrilling behaviours performed by killer whales and dolphins that will have you saying “wow” more times than you can count.
Watch the whale show and scream on a rollercoaster, than feed the bears.
Yes, you can do all these and a lot more at Marineland Canada at Niagara Falls, Ontario. Once you are there, do NOT miss Marineland. Many tourists don't even know there is one.
I think the whale show is once in every hour and the rides, including the very long rollercoaster is operating all day long. please check my Marineland Travelodge for more images on this!
Regular Rate (10 - 59 yrs) $32.95 CDN. Child (5 - 9 yrs) & Seniors (60+) $27.95 in Canadian funds.
4 years of age and under are REE.
Applicable taxes extra. Some activities separately priced.
Parking is FREE infront of the park.
A great combination of petting zoo, marine park and amusement park! Where else can you pet a whale and a buffalo, ride the world's largest steel rollercoaster, and feed a bear in one day for one price?
This is the place to go if you're here with children.
Visit Friendship Cove and see the largest killer whale habitat in the world. Watch the show and prepare to be doused with water as the trainers get the whales to splash the spectators. You even get a chance to be kissed by a killer whale!
Also see the newest residents, the beluga whales.
Visit Deer Park and get ready to be surrounded by greedy deer looking for a handout. You can buy deer food to feed them and this makes for great picture opportunities.
Here's a handy tip though, take wet wipes to wipe the deer saliva off your hands when you're done feeding them.
There's an amusement park with rides like rollercoasters if you wish for a little more excitement.
There's also a campground here at King Waldorf's Tent and Trailer Park
King Waldorf is the resident mascot, a sea lion.
Great show. Great PLace. Rides are funs: try the roller coaster WOW!!! Not a place for someone who does like to walk! Very expensive. I do not recommended it! approx $45 Cnd