California Travel Tips

Penguin Valentines

Published on: January 23, 2020


I nearly forgot about the annual Penguin Valentines event at California Academy of Science’s Steinhart Aquarium in San Francisco (pictured) until I read a press release touting SeaWorld San Diego’s 2020 summer plans to open The Emperor, the tallest, fastest and longest dive coaster in California, as well as the only floorless dive coaster in the state. Named for the world’s largest penguin, the new ride will mimic this species’ amazing underwater diving ability. Climbing to 153 feet with feet dangling in the air, riders on Emperor will be suspended on a 45-degree angle at the crown of the ride before plunging down a 143-foot facedown vertical drop accelerating to more than 60 miles per hour. Riders will also experience inversions, a barrel roll, Immelmann loop, hammerhead turn and flat spin as they race along the nearly 2,500 feet of track.

This thrilling attraction highlights a partnership between SeaWorld San Diego and Penguins International focused on penguin awareness and the conservation needs of this special aquatic bird. A portion of the proceeds from sales of penguin merchandise at the Emperor retail store  to supports Penguins International conservation, education and research efforts.

Penguins are the fun birds to watch at zoos and aquariums in California during Valentine season. They often keep the same mate for life, and both parents take turns incubating the eggs and feeding and protecting their chicks. Although they’re birds, they don’t fly; their wings, flat and stiff, function as flippers, allowing them to dive to nearly 200 feet in pursuit of fish and squid.

See California’s Penguins

LOS ANGELES COUNTY – LONG BEACH: 20 Magellanic Penguins reside at  Aquarium of the Pacific Penguin Habitat.

MONTEREY: Monterey Bay Aquarium Splash Zone Penguin

SAN DIEGO: Penguin Habitat at Cape Fynbos in the San Diego Zoo‘s Africa Rocks

SAN FRANCISCO: San Francisco Zoo Penguin Island with one of the most successful captive breeding colonies in the world.

VALLEJO: Six Flags Discovery Kingdom Penguin Passage

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