SeaWorld announces new theme park in the Middle East, with no orcas

SeaWorld Abu Dhabi will open by 2022, with no killer whales.

SeaWorld today announced a partnership with the Abu Dhabi government-backed Miral to develop “a first-of-its-kind marine life theme park.” It will be on Abu Dhabi’s manmade Yas Island.

Miral is funding the project. SeaWorld is licensing the brand and will incur no capital expense.

The theme park will include the United Arab Emirates’ first dedicated marine life research, rescue, rehabilitation and return center.


It will have up-close animal experiences, attractions, and an aquarium.

Planned to open ahead of the theme park, the research and rehab center will provide a resource for people in the United Arab Emirates hoping to develop or enhance expertise in marine life sciences, the company said.

SeaWorld has been planning a Middle Eastern park for several years. Last month it disclosed in SEC documents it had reached a definitive agreement for a project.

SeaWorld will complement Miral’s Yas Island portfolio of four themed parks, That includes Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, Yas Waterworld, and the recently announced Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi and Clymb.


The Middle East is becoming an increasingly popular destination for theme parks.

In a press release, SeaWorld Chief Executive Officer Joel Manby called the new park “a next generation SeaWorld that engages, educates and inspires.”