The Eye has it or Not!

Remember when I started this series I said “Now remember, no trip is without its pitfalls. If you keep that in mind you will be able to handle the little trials that come out of no where.”

Well Our lovely day was about to hit one of those little trials. Up until this point the Orlando Eye had been slowly turning above our heads but as we finished with the SeaLife Aquarium they announced that it was temporarily down. Trying to get any information out of the desk attendants was an exercise in futility.


We sat for a bit in the food court but pretty soon even a dedicated people watcher gets bored so we took a walk outside to see what restaurants were nearby. We might as well grab some lunch while we waited.

There wasn’t much in the “Eye” complex but we settled on the “Tin Roof”, a typical bar/pub. I can’t say it was a quiet lunch because there was construction going on and the whole side of the building was open so no sound buffering at all. The waiter was pleasant and the food plentiful. But I caught an “ear worm”. I kept hearing the B52’s sing Love Shack in my head….Tin Roof – Rusted!

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After lunch we headed back to the desk and were told the Eye was still offline and they didn’t know when it would be back online. It seems the “Eye” is down more than it’s running. From what I gathered it is something of a joke in Orlando because it is either offline or they are rescuing guests who are stuck on it.

Joe tried hard to get our money back but since we’d done 2 attractions and we’d only had to pay for 1 ticket there wasn’t much to refund. The best he could get was a promise to honor the tickets for 1 year. Of course I don’t know where we put the tickets now. I guess we’ll both have to search for them if I can get back to Orlando before the year is up.

It was time for plan B.

Orlando Sealife Aquarium

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Sea World it’s not. There are no killer whale shows or chances to swim with dolphins but as little aquariums go this is a fine educational experience.


As an aquarium aficionado I am really glad we went to this but if you are looking for the big WOW factor I don’t think you will find it here. This is great for youngsters. I saw many with their noses pressed to the glass.

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There is no Great Ocean Tank like in Boston but they do have a 360 degree Underwater tunnel. Those are always fun. You get to walk through the clear tunnel while fish and rays swim over and under and around you. Pretty cool.

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They didn’t have a mermaid tank like they did in new Orleans but they did have a pretty spectacular jelly fish display.

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Thus was really my favorite. The lights in all aquariums are dim so the animals are not bothered but the lights are very dim in the jelly fish section. Glowing models suspended from the ceiling light the way to the wall of the tank which is filled with floating jelly fish.

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The ray tank was fun. It’s really hard to get a good shot of these guys. They are fast! No flash photography allowed. The light bothers the animals.


There’s a scavenger hunt for the kids. Joe, of course, had to participate. In each gallery there was something the kids needed to find. Once they spotted it there was a place to stamp your card. If you found all of the items there was a little prize at the end.

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The emphasis here is on education and I have to say they did a great job at that. This is the perfect size aquarium to introduce the next generation to the beauty and importance of the oceans of the world.

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Welcome to Madam Tussaud’s, Orlando

Getting to the Orlando Eye was easy enough. They even had free parking! Once in the entertainment complex there were three attractions, Madam Tussaud’s, Sealife and The EYE.

I can’t remember the last time I went to a “Wax museum”. I think it was the House of Frankenstein in Lake George, NY when I was just a teenager.  I suggested we do the attractions in the order of interest topping off the day with the ride on the EYE.

Turns out Madam Tussaud’s was the best! It was lots of fun.

The displays were all interactive so you could take pictures with everyone from Marilyn Monroe to ET.

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I got to dance with Michael Jackson

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and see how it felt to be a white house secretary while Joe and Obama looked on.

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There are photographers sprinkled about but they don’t bother you and since Joe and I both had cameras we hardly saw them at all. Of course when we first entered we had the “airboat” ride with attacking alligators. Act scared they said!

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The categories were things like “I will call it La Florida” with Juan Ponce de Leon.


Or People Change the World….Neil Armstrong…Martin Luther King

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Arts and Culture and Play Time


Music …Elvis and Michael

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Big Screen to Big Time…Oprah. Joe Loved Oprah.

A night at the Movies…We couldn’t get near John Travolta as Danny Zuko. All the “Pink Ladies” were lined up for their photo op.

Finally there was the A list with celebs like Will Smith, Leonardo Di Caprio, Brad and Angelina and more.

Tons of fun!