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Aquatica really raises the bar for Orlando area waterparks

Aquatica really raises the bar for Orlando area waterparks

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My wife, daughter and I arrived at Aquatica at 9 a.m. yesterday. Right at rope drop ...


 Photo by Robert Bish

... And almost immediately after we entered SeaWorld's waterpark, we hit a bottleneck. As this huge crowd of people had stopped to stare down into the pool where Aquatica's star attractions, those Commerson's Dolphins ...


 Photo by Robert Bish

... swim. Mind you, these folks were also checking out the two acrylic tubes that you slide through as you zoom down Dolphin Plunge.


Photo by Robert Bish

And they must have liked what they saw. For within moments, there was a huge line for this Aquatica attraction.


Photo by Robert Bish

Of course, if you weren't willing to wait in the Dolphin Plunge line in order to see those Commerson's Dolphins, you could always grab a tube and float down Loggerhead Lane. Which actually took you under the pool where these sea mammals were kept.


Photo by Robert Bish

And if you found Loggerhead Lane to be a bit too placid ... Well, there was always Roa's Rapids. Which is like this Lazy River attraction that's on crack. Given that it just whizzes you along at warp speed.


 Photo by Robert Bish

And if you really feel the need for speed, then you have to check the Taumata Racers. Which allows 8 different Aquatica visitors to race against each other at the same time.


Photo by Robert Bish

My daughter, Sydney, took a pass on that. Preferring to go check Aquatica's kiddie play area, Walkabout Waters. Which she gave very high marks to.


 Photo by Robert Bish

Another nice aspect of SeaWorld's latest addition is its theming. The way that this new waterpark mixes a bold color palate with stylized aboriginal artwork does give Aquatica a distinctly different look & feel. Of course, to nail home the idea that you're supposedly splashing around somewhere out there in the Outback, all of the in-park PA announcements were pre-recorded by an actor using an Australian accent.


Photo by Robert Bish

All in all, my family and I had a great time at Aquatica's first annual passholder preview day. And given the amount of fun that we had exploring SeaWorld's waterpark, I'm genuinely glad that my family and I sprang for the annual passes. Because I'm sure that we'll be coming back here soon. Given that Aquatica seriously raises the bar when it comes to waterparks in the Orlando area.

Though -- that said -- SeaWorld may still need a little help when it comes to proof-reading Aquatica's signage ...


 Photo by Robert Bish

Technically, Aquatica isn't open to the public yet. Though now through the end of the month, SeaWorld Orlando will be allowing select groups of people to come in and try out their new waterpark. Starting on March 1st, Aquatica officially opens its doors to the general public. Though the grand opening of SeaWorld's waterpark won't actually be held 'til sometime in mid-April.

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  • Great pictures!! I have a trip planned and I already have my tickets. We are going on April 11th. I can't wait! If anyone has a complete attraction list with height requirements, please let me know. Also, can someone possibly scan a park map. I am anxious to get my hands on this information.

  • Thanks for adding the pictures.

    Although I like the idea of waterslides interacting with marine life, I'm not too sure about the theming of this waterpark.  It looks like a cross between the steel / concrete of Wet n Wild, and the tropical lushness of Typhoon Lagoon.  To be blunt, it looks a bit cheap.  

    I'll still visit the park, but I don't think Disney have anything to be worried about.  On the subject of water parks, is River Country still in a sorry state?

  • Considering the temperature outside right now where I am, waterparks don't look too appealing to me at the moment.  Making me shiver just looking at the pictures.  =)

    Last I checked, River Country was indefinitely closed, and has been for years.

    Powers  &8^]

  • Interesting. There are parts of the park that appear very impressively themed. While others just appear to be slides plopped down and don't have any sort of theme.

  • I like the slides through the dolphin pool. Very interesting design. I don't think one gets a good view of the dolphins inside the tubes though.

  • The Dolphins are Commerson's dolphins not Commerce Dolphins.  They were first described in 1767 by Philibert Commerson. As a result, this species now bears his name.

    I was at Aquatica on Feb 6 and also look forward to going back once the weather is warmer. Took a couple of photo as well.

    http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome...=2AcuHDRk1aMnFg

  • Sorry, Trying the link again.

  • This park seems to offer less than Disney's water parks, aside from the dolphins. I'm not sure I see how it raises the bar.

  • Ok, I have a park map from "screamscape" today. here is how it breaks down. I called the park and got some of this info a few days ago.

    -Height Requirements-

    Dolphin Plunge 48"

    Whanau Way 42"

    Cutback Cove & Big Surf Shores (no non walking infants & under 48" must wear life vest)

    Kata's Kookaburra Cove (must be under 48" and wear life vest)

    Roa's Rapids (unsure, but im sure no non walking infants)

    Taumata Racer 48"

    Walkabout Waters (none)

    Walhalla Wave and Hooroo Run 42"

    Loggerhead Lane (no non walking infants & under 48" must wear life vest)

    Tassie's Twisters 42"

    Thats all I have for now. Someone from the park mentioned a few more, but I did not see them on the map. "Slippidy Dippity, Slider Rider, Racer Chaser and Zippity Zoppity." the person on the phone mentioned that these were all 48", but I cannot seem to find them on the map. If anyone has anymore information, or something that I have posted is wrong, please let me know.

  • I'm thinking that, "Slippidy Dippity, Slider Rider, Racer Chaser and Zippity Zoppity"  are the names given to each color of Taumata Racer. I can't think of anything else they could be.

  • Interesting review, the other ones i have read give it a good review in the slide area but a bad review in theming and lack of landscape compared to how they represented it in all the artwork.

    The slide interacting with the dolphins and the underwater caves also supposedly very underwelhming with only a small glass window to look thru.

    I think the bar had already been raised by Typhoon lagoon and blizzard beach.

    This looks like it falls under that category but way above wet-n-wild

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