When Vanessa and I came back from Orlando after our trip to Disney last year, she immediately wanted to know when we’d be going back. We had had a fantastic time that she wanted to know when we’d be doing it all over again, bu this time with the rest of the family. Knowing that it would be a couple of years before we could save enough for the four of us to travel to Orlando, I told her we’d have to wait until Santiago was a bit older so he could enjoy it too.
So you can imagine her surprise when I surprised her a little bit over a week ago and told her we’d be going again thanks to an invitation by the Hilton Garden Inn Orlando at SeaWorld. Although I had known about the invitation for a while, I decided to wait until the last minute to tell her, which means she found out the night before we traveled. At first, she didn’t really understand what was going on. But when she caught on, she couldn’t hide her happiness — especially when I told her we’d be going to SeaWorld, which was a first for the entire family.
I had never stayed at a Hilton Garden Inn and the one in Orlando at SeaWorld did not disappoint. The guest rooms are spacious and comfortable and I love that they include a microwave and small fridge because that meant I could heat up Santiago’s milk (he likes it warm) without any problem every morning. Our second favorite part of the hotel was the pool, which the kids wasted no time enjoying while we waited for the shuttle to take us to SeaWorld — even though, in reality, we could’ve walked because the Hilton Garden Inn is that close to the park!
SeaWorld was an incredible experience for the entire family. First of all, I never imagined the theme park being so big. Nor did I know that there was a whole section, Shamu’s Happy Harbor, just for little kids — where we obviously spent the majority of our time. There was even a bunch of stuff, including a few rides, Santiago was able to enjoy even though he’s not even 3 years old yet. Vanessa got to go on her first roller coaster with me and it was super fun even though she was a bit scared once it started and she realized what she’d gotten into, haha! There was also a very convenient water park where my children were able to cool off because the Orlando heat was definitely in full swing during our stay there.
My children are still talking about One Ocean, featuring Shamu and the other killer whales and so are my husband and I because it was that amazing. Honestly, if I hadn’t been invited to SeaWorld, I don’t think I would’ve chosen it as a place to go to when visiting Orlando. But now I know better and we’ll gladly visit it again!
Since we ended up staying at SeaWorld until it closed at 8 p.m., we weren’t able to catch the last shuttle back to the Hilton Garden Inn so we decided to walk. While I knew the park was very close to the hotel, I never imagined it would be that close. The night was cool and it was a nice, short walk that proved there’s no need for a car rental if you’re planning on going to SeaWorld and you opt to stay in the very affordable Hilton Garden Inn.
The day after we went to SeaWorld, we went to both the Magic Kingdom and Epcot Center and we had a blast. But the favorite part of the entire trip was that my family was able to drive up from Miami to meet us in Orlando and so we all got to experience the Disney parks together. A truly memorable experience that we’ll cherish forever!
Disclosure: My family and I were invited to stay at the Hilton Garden Inn Orlando at SeaWorld and got complimentary passes to both SeaWorld and Disney. As usual, all opinions are all my own.