As Orlando’s summer temperatures average in the low to mid-90s, theme park guests are always looking for ways to take a break from Orlando’s heat and humidity. Luckily, the area offers plenty of ways for you to splish and splash while enjoying fun in the sun. Each major theme park has at least one water park, offering guests thrills and chills all day long! Here are our favorite Orlando water parks to stay cool and chill out.
Location: Walt Disney World
Theming: Tropical island after a large tidal wave. The storm created caverns of water throughout the park, blowing surfboards into palm trees and precariously placing a boat (Ms. Tilly) on top of Mount Mayday, the park’s icon.
Great For: Families with children of various ages.
- Crush’ n’ Gusher—A multi-person raft water coaster ride propelling riders forward and up through three tube slides, the remains of a tropical fruit processing plant.
- Humunga Kowabunga—An enclosed body slide that careens you down a 200-foot drop.
- Miss Adventure Falls—One of Typhoon Lagoon’s newest attractions, this family raft ride lifts guests on a large conveyer belt and down through a flume full of twists, turns, and waterfalls.
- Suf Pool—This two-acre wave pool is North America’s largest, producing whopping six-foot waves every 90 seconds at various times throughout the day.
Unique offerings: At H20 Glow After Hours events, the park stays open for an additional three hours. The event features fun nighttime lighting, a dance party with a DJ, and short wait times for the park’s most popular attractions.
Tips for visiting: Park reservations are not required at Typhoon Lagoon, unlike other Disney theme parks. Parking is also complimentary. We suggest arriving early for your best chance to ride the bigger slides without waiting.
Location: Universal Studios Orlando
Theming: Polynesian island paradise
Great For: Water-loving thrill-seekers
- TeAwa, The Fearless River—A thrilling take on a lazy river, this winding pool makes you swim through white-water rapids and waves.
- Waturi Beach—The park’s primary beach area is a relaxing retreat with beautiful views of Krakatau, its volcano icon, and cascading waterfalls below.
- Ko’okiri Body Plunge—This body slide features a 70-degree free fall through the volcano.
- Krakatau Aqua Coaster—Hop aboard a four-person canoe and journey upward toward the base of the Krakatau volcano, then plunge down a waterfall.
- Taniwha Tubes—A duel-tube ride that spins and slides you down colorful shoots inspired by the architecture of Easter Island.
Unique offerings: All lines are virtual at Volcano Bay, thanks to your TapuTapu™ wearable bracelet. Walk up to an attraction you’d like to ride, tap your bracelet, and receive a return time. Wait for other rides or enjoy a tropical cocktail in the meantime!
Tips for visiting: Universal hotel guests can enter Volcano Bay 30 minutes before the park opens. If you’re visiting for the day, you’ll need to park in Universal’s primary parking garage at CityWalk and take a shuttle to Volcano Bay.
Theming: Colorful, bright, family fun
Great For: Families with young children
- Loggerhead Lane—A lazy river with tunnels that give you 180-degree views of tropical fish.
- Reef & Dolphin Plunges—Two body slides that take you through an underwater tunnel, complete with dolphins and leopard sharks.
- Riptide Race—One of the tallest dueling race slides in the world, this two-person raft ride races you side-by-side through a thrilling slide with a beyond-vertical drop.
Unique offerings: Many of the park’s attractions allow you to explore marine life with underwater tunnels and viewing areas. You could see anything from schools of tropical fish to Commerson’s Dolphins throughout your day.
Tips for visiting: SeaWorld offers great deals when purchasing combination tickets, giving you access to SeaWorld, Aquatica, and even Busch Gardens—Tampa Bay. Check with your favorite Wishing On A Star Travel agent to get the best deal!
Theming: All-inclusive day resort with a tropical oasis theme.
Great For: Families with children at least six years old, teens, and adults looking for intimate animal encounters.
- Dolphin Lagoon—This is your place to get one-on-one time and swim with dolphins (must purchase a package that includes this experience).
- Serenity Bay—A beach area to relax and unwind.
- Freshwater Oasis —A freshwater pool with crystal-clear spring water, home to otters and marmosets.
- Grand Reef—A coral reef perfect for swimming and snorkeling with tropical fish, sting rays, and more. Gear is included!
- Explorer Aviary—Take a break from the water and explore a walking trail. Spot tropical birds like parrots and toucans along the way.
Unique offerings: Discovery Cove offers a one-day all-inclusive resort experience. Food and drinks, including beer and wine, are included with your package, along with sunscreen, towels, snorkels, and wetsuits. Discovery Cove is also a certified Autism center!
Tips for visiting: Reservations are required and have limited availability, especially during Orlando’s busiest times of the year. However, the experience is one-of-a-kind and well worth it!
Location: Margaritaville Orlando Resort
Theming: Open-air thrills with an emphasis on social sharing
Great For: Teens, adults, and friend groups
- Live! Lagoon—The park’s primary pool area features a large TV screen, which plays dive-in movies on select Friday nights.
- Follow Me Falls—Experience zero-gravity moments while being launched down a slide and then blasted up a vertical wall of water.
- Live Streaming—This attraction boasts that it’s the only 360-degree looped waterslide in the world. You’ll also experience a vertical freefall. Relive it all with a video recording that automatically generates after your ride.
- Hashtag Heights—A boomerang-style family raft ride.
Unique offerings: Customize your playlist for your rides with a wristband that puts you in control of your tunes. You can also earn rewards like discounts on food and drinks by checking in to attractions with your band. Several attractions integrate real-time technology, allowing guests to share their ride experiences on social media easily.
Tips for visiting: Margaritaville Resort Orlando is located in Kissimmee, just a few miles from Disney’s Animal Kingdom. You will need to arrange for transportation if you are staying on Disney property or at another local hotel.
Cool Down with Wishing On A Star Travel
Wishing On A Star Travel is your go-to travel agency for all things Disney, Universal, SeaWorld, and much more! We’ll plan every aspect of your Orlando vacation, including booking tickets and reservations at any of the water parks listed above. We are an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner and are a U-Preferred Universal agency. Get a free quote for your trip today!
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