is a themed
amusement and animal exhibition park in the city of Niagara Falls, Ontario
. Owing to its proximity to the falls and other natural park areas and its blend of animal attractions and rides, it is one of the main tourist
destinations in Niagara Falls, Canada.
The park first opened in 1961 as "Niagara Game Farm", without any of the current marine attractions or rides. The original Niagara Game Farm was essentially a small zoo
, a large part of which was a petting zoo
. Within a few years, the marine attractions were added, and the park's name was changed to "Niagara Marineland And Game Farm", and by 1966 it was officially just "Marineland And Game Farm". In the 1980s, during the period of time that Kandu the killer whale
became the park's major attraction, the "And Game Farm" part of the name was dropped. It was also around this time that the park began adding rides such as Dragon Mountain, intended to bring raise the appeal of the park to older children and teenagers.
Their park's slogan for many years has been "Everyone Loves Marineland". An earlier slogan was "Happiness is Marineland." During the summer months they run commercials in Ontario
, and Western New York
television stations featuring a jingle
that highlights the features of the park, with new verses added for new attractions every year. The park's mascot is known as King Waldorf, a walrus dressed like a king. The park also runs a campground named after him.. Some versions of the jingle have been sung by Suzie McNeil
Marineland is generally open from the Victoria Day
weekend through to Canadian Thanksgiving weekend in October. Rides operate until nightfall.
- Locker, stroller and wheelchair rentals.
- Allows picnicking and has a corporate area for picnics.
- Offers live musical entertainment with Polka Legend Walter Ostanek performing daily during the peak season.
- Friendship Cove: The world's largest whale habitat for viewing orcas above ground and below. Up until the 2006 season, park-goers were able to pet and feed the whales. 'Splash Sessions' have now replaced the interactive sessions in response to guest feedback. The 'Splash Sessions' include the whales jumping in the air and splashing all the guests around the walls and near the pool. Friendship Cove currently holds three orcas: Kiska, Ikaika, and Athena (Kiska's daughter). Kandu died on December 21, 2005, and Nootka recently died on January 8, 2008.
- Arctic Cove: Opened in 2004, features beluga whales, it is much like Friendship Cove allowing guests to view belugas above and below ground, feed them, and pet them. Marineland currently holds 25 beluga whales in their exhibit both wild captures and captive born whales. Current female Beluga whales: Jubilee, Xena, Eve (Xena's 2008 calf), Isis, Osiris, Kelowna, Sierra, Peekachu, Skyla, Charmin, Peanut, Oceanna, Caspian, Gemini, Sasha (Gemini's 2008 calf), Cleopatra, and Jellybean (born to Jubilee). Males: Orion, Burnaby (born to Gemini), Tuk, Andre, Beyli, Tofino, Horus (born to Isis) and Kodiak. The most recent additions are the births of Xena's daughter, Eve on July 5, 2008, and Gemini's daughter, Sasha on August 1, 2008. Maple (born to Priscilla) was transfered to Sea World of Florida on July 14, 2008.
- King Waldorf Stadium: The site of the show, the stadium previously held the killer whales but hasn't since Neocia's death in 2004. The stadium consists of a large show pool and two small holding pools, and is currently home to 5 performing dolphins: Tsunami, Sonar, Marina, Echo and possibly Lida. Marineland has more dolphins that are kept behind the scenes.
- Bears: an area featuring black bears sits below a viewing deck, this unique vantage point give guests the opportunity to throw Corn Pops cereal (originally marshmallows) for the bears to eat.
- Deer: A favorite for parents (many pictures of their children trying to feed crowding deer), the deer are in a fenced in area which allow people to move about freely, food is provided for a fee.
- Fish: An area in which carp and koi gather around "deck bridges", allowing easy viewing and feeding (for a fee),
- Elk and Buffalo: allow for easy viewing of these creatures grazing. Feeding also available for a fee.
- The King Waldorf Stadium Show and The Aquarium Dome: shows featuring mainly seals, walrus and dolphins.The King Waldorf Stadium Show includes Dolphins jumping in the air and Sea Lions with their comedy. The Aquarium Dome show mainly features training of the sea lions.
Rides and attractions
- Dragon Mountain Roller Coaster: an Arrow roller coaster which opened as the world's largest (not longest) non-stop roller coaster (covering 30 acres). It features tunnels that lead to the queue area, has two consecutive vertical loops and the only bowtie loop of its kind in the world.
- Sky Hawk: a spinning ride which also moves vertically up and down. Features one- or two-person cages without restricting belts or harnesses.
- Wave Swinger: a swing ride with a moving top that allows the swings to move up and down. The first adult ride the park ever had.
- Lady Bug Roller Coaster: children's roller coaster, features a lady bug cart.
- Tivoli Wheel: a "hanging" ferris wheel.
- Magic Experience: a spinning ride located near the bear area; features statues of bears on the ride.
- Kandu's Twister: a "teacup" style ride that features orcas on the sides of the cups.
- Space Avenger: a spinning ride that features a control panel in the cages allowing the rider to move vertically up and down.
- Boat Carousel: a simple carousel with a Viking boat theme.
- Flying Dragon a ride that offers thrills for a lot of ages, goes up into the air then falls back down without inversion.
- Sky Screamer: Marineland's newest signature ride. Which opened in 2004 and claims to be the world's highest triple tower ride (91.4 meters or 300 feet). It is situated on a large hill (150 feet), making the total height of the ride 450 feet, giving the rider an impressive view of the city and the falls. Given its height, it is a very recognizable landmark, with the Marineland logo at the top of the tower clearly visible at night. The ride shoots riders up at 4G's, and shoots them down at -2G's.
- Topple Tower ride: Opened in 2007 this ride has a circular gondola where the passengers sit, is elevated into the air and then starts spinning, and the tower rocks back and forth on a 60 degree angle, giving it a 30 degree angle with the ground, and its scenery features a walrus on top of the tower.
- Viking Adventure: Opened in 2006, it is a small sized Viking boat ride that operates on a track to rock passengers back and forth and spin them around.
- Orca Screamer: Opened in 2005, this is a miniature, child size one-tower version of the famous Sky Screamer.
- Bumble Bee: Opened in 2005, this brightly coloured children's ride allows parents and children to sit in a car together a be elevated and spun around.
Marineland is currently undergoing a $160 Million expansion, the main focus of which will be a massive aquarium complex. When completed it will be the world's largest aquarium complex, with a series of domes, each containing a different attraction. The already operational Arctic Cove (which feature Beluga Whales, opened in 2004), was the first step in this new development. The next planned development will be Terrors of the Sea, which will feature various sharks and stingrays. This is still under construction during the 2008 season. It is rumored this "dome" will be opening 2010. Other stages of this long-term plan include a tropical reef attraction, a rain forest lagoon and a new dolphin habitat. All exhibits will feature above water and below-water viewing. Separate admission to the aquarium complex will be offered.