This is the last of three features on discovering Subic Bay Freeport – a terrific place and I encourage everyone to visit.
If it’s thrilling dolphin, sea lion and marine shows you want to see, there’s no need to traipse over to Ocean Park in Hong Kong. Save all that overseas travel money and head to Ocean Adventure in Subic Bay.
Ocean Adventure is Southeast Asia’s only open water Marine Park. It’s fun for the whole family. Animals live and play in a natural setting of clear water swarming with marine life, coral reefs, and a lovely white sand beach.
Ocean Adventure features four main shows – a Walk on the Wild Side, amazing Kenyan acrobats, Sea Lion Marine Patrol and the main attraction, the Dolphin Fiends show.
We started with the Walk on the Wild Side show. Not only is this entertaining, it’s very educational. You get close-up views of the wildlife of the forest and meet some amazing creatures including bats, pythons and owls. You’ll also see how members of the Aeta tribe make fire using just bamboo sticks.
From there it was over to see an amazing troupe of Kenyan acrobats. Boy, talk about being fit. Their act was one breathtaking move after another.
I’d seen them at breakfast in the nearby Camayan Beach Resort and surprised them by speaking a few words of Swahili which I learnt as a child from my father, who was stationed in Kenya during WWII.
After a leisurely lunch it was on to the Sea Lion Marine Patrol. It’s impressive to see just how many tricks a sea lion can do. It was certainly a lot of action and fun.
Highlight of the visit was the Dolphin Friends show. We really enjoyed this presentation which is packed with action. We certainly learnt a lot about these highly intelligent and spectacular animals. I’ve seen the shows at Ocean Park in Hong Kong. The Ocean Adventure shows are every bit as thrilling.
Not only do visitors get the chance to see these brilliant creatures in action, but for a small additional fee, you can actually have a one-on-one encounter with them. Treats include swimming with a dolphin, meeting a dolphin in shallow water and even diving with dolphins. Now that’s something you don’t get to do in Hong Kong.
But Ocean Adventure is not all just about fun. There is a very serious conservation side to the operation.
The Ocean Adventure Rescue and Rehabilitation Program is an important part of the park’s commitment to conservation and education. It works closely with the non-profit Wildlife in Need (WIN) to care for sick, injured, or confiscated animals.
To date Ocean Adventure and WIN have received and cared for hundreds of animals including whales, dolphins, sea turtles, monkeys and a variety of birds and reptiles.
It’s heartening to know that all of their dolphins are rescued animals. Some came from the drive fishery in Japan where they were literally hours away from being slaughtered. Others were rescued when they came ashore sick and injured in local Philippine waters and once rehabilitated were unlikely to survive if released.