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Visiting Winter and Hope at Clearwater Marine Aquarium – Clearwater, Florida

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My kids are obsessed with the Dolphin Tales Movies so when we were near Tampa we had to go visit Winter and Hope at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. It’s located at Clearwater Florida, just west of Tampa. 

My kids are obsessed with the Dolphin Tales Movies so we had to go visit Winter and Hope at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. Here is what to expect. #ourroaminghearts #clearwater #florida #aquarium #dolphintalesmove | Clearwater Florida | Florida | Aquariums in Florida | Clearwater Marine Aquarium | Family Attractions

Visiting Winter and Hope at Clearwater Marine Aquarium – Clearwater, Florida

If you want to see our video of the Clearwater Marine Aquarium and our visit with Winter and hop scroll to the bottom of this post or visit our YouTube Channel.

You can get discounted tickets to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium with the Tampa Bay CityPASS.


We visited the Clearwater Marine Aquarium 2 years ago and coming in time is a night a day difference. They are in the middle of major renovations. They now have a massive parking garage and a new ticket area with movie props. 

Winter and Hope - Clearwater Marine Aquarium construction

Once you have your tickets follow Winter into the Clearwater Marine Aquarium

Winter and Hope - Clearwater Marine Aquarium - CLearwater Florida35

When you enter there is a covered area where you can get your photo take in front of a green screen and grab some snacks and drinks and sit down for a quick lunch. 

Clearwater Marine Aquarium -Shark Bites Cafe

You enter into the gift shop and then you have 4 ways you can go. You can pick from Stingray Bay, the animal hospital, the underwater viewing of the shark area and Winter and Hope, and then the upstairs and upper viewing areas. 

Related: Top 15 Free Things to do in Tampa, Florida

The kids wanted to start at the animal hospital. This is what CMA is built around and why Winter and Hope came here!

 Clearwater Marine Aquarium Animal Hospital

The first room in the hospital is a glass room where you can watch what they are doing. While we were there they were prepping this turtle to get ready to be released the next day! 

You can see it in the video at the bottom of this post.

Clearwater Marine Aquarium Turtle

You head down the rest of the hallway they have walls of windows. You can watch the food being prepped and see the board of who is in the hospital then. 

CMA Animals Hospital Board

You can see the sick bays with the different animals. They didn’t have many there when we were there (which is a good thing!) They did have a few turtles and a tank of tiny baby seahorses. 

CMA Sick Bay


Next, we went over to see the stingrays. I love the side windows on the tanks because even my youngest can see them. They have a stage where they do talks and trivia games. 

They also allow you to pet the stingrays and even feed them. 

Clearwater Marine Aquarium Stingray Beach


Then after washing our hands (several times), we headed into seeing the sharks! This is the underwater viewing area straight ahead when you enter the aquarium. 

Clearwater Marine Aqarium Sharks

Around the corner is a hallway called the Sea Cavern. 

CMA - Sea Cavern


This is where they a touch tank with hermit crabs, sea urchins, and spider crabs. There is a tank with pufferfish, and one with an eel. There is also a massive wall of windows looking into the shark tank with the sharks and fish swimming by. Video on that in the video at the bottom of the post. 

Related: 11 of the Absolute Best Places to View Manatees in Florida

Continuing down the hall you come to the underwater viewing area for Winter, Hope, and PJ. Now in the video below, I share PJs story and you can watch the 3 of them play together. 

Winter and Hope and PJ


Then you can head upstairs to see the sharks, and the dolphins and other animals. First is the upper view of the shark tank and next door to that is Winter Zone. 

But first behind there is Dr. Clay Haskets office, the one from the movie. They said they haven’t touched it since the movie. 

CMA Dr Hasket Office

This is also where we did our meet and greet with 2 of the actresses from the movies. They do many meets and greets throughout the year with different actors and actresses from the movies. 

Winter and Hope - Clearwater Marine Aquarium - CLearwater Florida


Ok now for the main attraction. Winter, Hope, and PJ! Yes, there is a 3rd Dolphin! You can learn her story on this video here

Winter and Hope

There is always someone there to answer questions, and to give you information on what is going on in the tank. This is also where the deck is to have your photo taken or feed them if you buy this extra package. 

Winter and Hope - Winter Zone

From there you have 3 more animals to see!

Related: Free Things to do in Tampa – Pinellas County Heritage Village

The pelicans like the one who played Rufus!

Clearwater Marine Aquarium


Then there are the Otters. These guys are so lazy all they did was lay there! 

Clearwater Marine Aquarium Otters

Next door is the massive turtles they have rescued. See more on both the otters and the turtles in the video at the bottom of the post. 

Clearwater Marine Aquarium Turtles


They have a whole outdoor Dolphin area for their only male Dolphin Nicolas. 

Winter and Hope


You can also get a sneak peek into more of their animals Hospital too. 

CMA Animal Rescue

They have all sorts of fun extras that you can add on to your daily ticket too! Check their website but we did two of them. 

The first was a photo opportunity and feeding Hope! They took a TON of photos and we got to pet and feed Hope!

Feeding Hope at CMA

The second add on was their Sea Life Safari boar ride. They also have a dolphin safari that out specifically looking for dolphins. 

You can get all the details on the Sea Life Safari Boat ride in this video. But in short, there is a marine biologist on board and they are doing a harbor sample to see the status of the harbor and sea life and you get to join and watch!

Sea Life Safari Boat Ride

Here is what we caught during our boat ride.

Sea Life Safari CMA

They also stop the boat at one of the island in the harbor and let you get off and walk around and stick your feet in the water.

Clearwater Marine Aquarium Sea Life Safari


Have you been to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium to visit Winter and Hope? Let us know how it went in the comments below!

Don’t forget to grab your Tampa Bay CityPASS for discounted tickets! 


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