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Discovery Cove - Coral Reef


Rating: * * * +
Type: A swim-through aquatic habitat
Time: Continuous viewing
Kelly says: A great snorkeling experience guaranteed

Having been disappointed on several snorkeling outings in the real tropics, I was impressed by the variety of multicolored tropical fish on display in this clever re-creation of a coral reef. It’s not real coral, of course, but a thin film of algae encourages fish to nibble at the simulated coral outcroppings very much as they do on the real thing.

Here you can snorkel to your heart’s content without worrying about visibility being lessened by churning surf. Nor do you have to worry about those nasty little things — jellyfish, fire coral, and moray eels — that frequent real reefs. And the sharks and barracudas are thoughtfully kept behind thick (but virtually invisible) sloping glass walls. You get the illusion of swimming above them without the bone-chilling fear that typically arrives with the realization that you are swimming a few feet from something that might eat you.

The fish are fed periodically, and when the water around you is swirling with bits of food, it will also be alive with a kaleidoscope of fish. Put out your hand and the bolder among them will nibble hopefully at your fingertips as large manta rays cruise the depths below.

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