Explore the Top Water Parks in Orlando
Summer is approaching, and so is the Florida heat. So if you are planning a trip to Orlando this summer, we have two words for you. Water Parks! That's right. There is no better way to beat the heat and enjoy the Sunshine State than to take your fun to the water. Today's water parks are full of thrills and chills and have theming to rival any other Orlando theme park.
Walt Disney Resort, Universal Orlando, and lots of independents have all entered the water park game. And that means more excitement and aquatic fun for you. The best water parks in Orlando Florida are highly themed and are great at telling a story like the other theme parks and making you a part of that story. You'll explore a water park created from an epic meltdown resulting from a freak Florida snowstorm and enjoy experiencing the tropical ruins left behind from an epic typhoon.
The parks are full of spots to relax and chill out and exciting rides and attractions, including surf classes, dueling waterslides, a chairlift to the top of Mount Gushmore for one of the fastest and tallest free-fall slides in the world, lazy river rides, and splash pools for the little ones.
Rent a cabana and have free drinks and a host all day to anchor the perfect family water experience. And the best news of all? Water parks are often less expensive than a day in one of the theme parks, so your budget will thank you too!
Our guide to the best water parks in Orlando, Florida, will include Universal's Volcano Bay, Walt Disney's Blizzard Bay, and Typhoon Lagoon, Discovery Cove, SeaWorld Orlando, Aquatica, Discovery Cove, LEGOLAND Florida Water Park, and a few hotels with pretty epic water attractions right on property and included as part of your nightly room rate.
Which is the
? As always, that depends. We'll cover the parks that we think have the best thrill slides, best family-friendly experience, most relaxing, and best wave pool. So get out the sunscreen, grab your sunglasses and underwater camera and get ready for some cooling and thrilling aquatic fun.
Universal's Volcano Bay
This South Pacific-themed water park will take you on a journey through four different lands, including the mighty Krakatau Volcano overlooking it all. The legend says the native islanders, the Waturi traveled to the ocean in search of a mythical fish which guided them to Volcano Bay. They made it their own with slides and rides.
Volcano Bay is home to some of the most extreme slides in Orlando and uses some smart technology to reinvent how you wait in line.
Rainforest Village has the most thrilling rides. Three drop slides are rising to the top of Krakatau. The first two, Kala and Tainui Serpentine Body Slides are a fast and winding descent to the bottom of the volcano. The Ko'okiri Body Plunge goes straight down 125 feet at a 70-degree angle. Calling all adrenaline junkies!
Volcano Bay also offers three slides that shoot you out four and six feet above the surface of the water. Take a thrilling raft ride that seems to defy gravity and the Krakatau Aqua Coaster that will shoot your raft up and down a track that runs in and out of the volcano.
If relaxation is your thing, enjoy raft rides and river rides. River Village is gentler for the younger ones and has a gently winding river they'll love. Take advantage of the quiet of Waturi Beach and The Reef at Wave Village and even rent a six- or 16-person caban to stake out your headquarters.
Don't worry about forgetting essentials like sunscreen or other items. The shops have you covered, and when you get hungry, choose from over 60 menu items at the onsite eateries.
The TapuTapu wristband will save your place in line when you tap it. Just come back when it's your turn.
Disney's Blizzard Bay Water Park
Disney's Blizzard Bay is built around the legend that a freak winter storm hit Orlando, covering it with snow and creating Florida's first ski area. The weather warmed up, and we are left with a slushy, slippery park that offers it all, from a lazy river ride to high-flying water slides. Ride to the summit of Mount Gushmore in a colorful chairlift enjoying the scenic ride up. Then choose from a variety of heart-pounding rides down. Are you brave enough for the Summit Plummet, one of the world's tallest and fastest free-fall body slides? The 120-foot ski jump will send you down the mountain at 55 mph along a 360-foot track. There are also various options like raft rides, drop slides, tube slides, and more.
Families can get competitive with up to six people simultaneously doing one of the world's longest white water rafts at Steamboat Springs. The Ski Patrol Training Camp and Tike's Peak will keep the little ones engages. And when it's time to relax, the gentle waves of Melt-Away Bay will do th trick, or you can grab a tube and drift on the lazy river around the entire park.
Elevate your experience by renting a private deck with lounge chairs, a cooler, and other amenities.
Disney's Typhoon Lagoon
Disney's Typhoon Lagoon is based on the legend that a storm once roared across the sea and sent surfboards into the trees and boats onto the volcano top. It left a water park filled with twisting rides, rapids, waterways, and rivers in its wake. The massive wave pool with waves up to six feet tall may be the best wave pool in Orlando and is the biggest in North America. It's powerful enough that visitors can take surf lessons before the park opens!
The big attraction is Miss Adventure Falls which is one of the longest rides at Walt Disney World Resort. It is family-friendly and will take you and up to 3 companions on an unforgettable white-water journey. Mayday Falls is the park's longest and highest waterslide, and Humunga Kowabunga features a near-vertical 5-story drop into darkness. The thrills are definitely here.
The little ones will enjoy every minute at Ketchakiddee Creek, which features ten different aquatic activities. Then, for the ultimate in relaxation, take the lazy river ride that circles the park.
From June through August, they host the ultimate pool party with Disney H20 Glow Nights. When hunger hits, stop by Beachcomber Shack.
SeaWorld Orlando / Aquatica
SeaWorld's theme park, Aquatica, is based on the SeaWorld legend and brings up-close animal encounters and a South Seas vibe. They also offer their all-inclusive day resort, Discovery Cove.
Aquatica brings the thrills with some new additions. The KareKare Curl is a two-person raft that lets you experience weightlessness as you climb a nearly vertical wall of water. Ray Rush is a wild raft adventure that enables you to choose from three ways to slide, splash and soar. The signature Ihu's Breakaway Falls remains the tallest and steepest multi-drop ride in Orlando. The Dolphin Plunge will shoot you through a tube in a lagoon full of dolphins.
There are plenty more gentle raft rides and mat racing at Taumata Racer. Drift down the lazy river of Loggerhead Lane and wade in the 60-foot fortress of Walkabout Waters.
Cabana rentals and great dining choices will round out your water experience at Aquatica.
This is not the place for thrilling rides and slides, but it is still technically a water park, and there are lof things to do. This all-inclusive day resort includes everything you'll need for the day, including unlimited food and beverages with alcohol for guests 21 and up, snorkeling gear, fresh towels, and more. You'll spend the day in a great water space with the chance to swim with dolphins, snorkel among thousands of tropical fish and rays, hand-feed exotic birds, and encounter friendly otters. In addition, there are other optional experiences like Ray Feeding, a 90-minute Animal Trek, or even the Swim with the Sharks experience.
Read on for more on What to Do at SeaWorld
LEGOLAND Florida Water Park
LEGOLAND tends to focus on kids and their families, and their water park is no different. The kids will have a chance to show off their building skills with the Build-A Raft River, where they can imagine and create their own LEGO rafts before setting out on the 1,000-foot lazy river.
Creative Corner has more building opportunities with Build-A Boat, where they can race their own LEGO watercraft.
It's not all about building with LEGOS. Splash Out offers three water slides and a 60-foot drop. They can enjoy slides, climbing areas, waterspouts, and a wading pool. Get a big splash with a 300-gallon bucket surprise! There is plenty of gentler fun with waves just big enough for all ages and some shorter slides. Enjoy lunch at Beach-n-Brick Grill and rent a cabana for a short rest and some shade.
Hotels and Resorts with Water Features
There are many hotels and resorts in Orlando that offer superb amenities, and some have amped it up when it comes to water slides, lazy rivers, and elaborate pools. You may just want to skip a ticketed park or attraction and enjoy the amenities of your own hotel or resort.
Some hotels with good water features are Cabana Bay Beach Resort, water slides, two pools, and a lazy river. Four Seasons Resort Orlando has splash zones, interactive fountains, water slides, and a lazy river.
Some of the luxury rental villas offer complete waterparks.
Reunion Resort in Kissimmee offers luxury rental units and an entire water park, including water cannons, a lazy river, four waterfalls, water slides, rope bridges, water sprays, and a giant dumping bucket.
Check out Solterra Resort and their 12 and 14-room luxury mansions for a fantastic stay, and you'll want to spend the day in your private pool or at the community pool, complete with a water slide. Here is more on the Best Large Family Vacation Rentals
Explore the Best Water Parks in Orlando Florida
Round out your next vacation to Orlando with at least one day at the water parks. So whether you are looking for a relaxing poolside day or an exciting day of themed thrill rides, or maybe a bit of both, add a water park visit to your schedule or take time to enjoy the water amenities of your resort or hotel.
Universal Orlando Resort is clearly considered one of the top two theme parks in the world.
When we think of Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, the iconic Magic Kingdom comes to mind. It offers all of the enchantment and magic that Disney has come to stand for.