Universal Studios (finally) built a water park in Orlando to compete with Disney’s Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon. Wet N’ Wild is gone and the Coco Key water park does not really offer enough options for kids that want to do it all. Volcano Bay is brand new. So new that we visited on the 30 day mark of the park opening. I wanted to share some of the things I learned while at the park and some tips for when you decide to visit.
Volcano Bay Pro’s
- Fun for all ages. The age range in my party ranged from 7 to 40. Every single one of us had fun in our own way. I’m sure that their idea was to make this a destination for families and they hit the nail on the head.
- Sprinklers all over the park to maintain the floor cooled. My feet only burnt while on the sand where my chair was located, but throughout the park they keep the floors wet so guests do not burn their feet and that, to me, is BRILLIANT.
- Volcano Bay opens at 9:00 a.m. for all guests, but if you stay on property like we did you have special early access to the park at 8:00 a.m. (This was a life saver because the park was closed by 10:00 a.m. due to capacity requirements.)
For those that don’t know, Tapu-Tapu is Universal’s version of the Magic Band but exclusively for Volcano Bay. Personally, I loved this idea, but it needs its little tweaks.
- No waiting in line for hours on end because you can simply register your band at the ride and go about the park enjoying other parts of the park.
- The bracelet vibrates when your window to go in line opens and you can walk right on over.
- You can connect your credit card to the bracelet and make purchases around the park. Your personal PIN ensures that no one else uses your card in case you lose your band.
- When you’re registered you cannot register for another attraction, but you can ride the slides that are “Ride Now” attractions. IF you are lucky enough to find one, then you’re in good shape. If not, then you can have some lunch or float around in the two different lazy rivers.
- The Tapu-Tapus fall off very easily and that becomes a hassle when you have kids with you on your trip.
- The bands do not tell time so you lose track of it pretty easily.
Volcano Bay’s “Room for Improvement” Areas
- The food options are too exotic for children to pick from (and ridiculously overpriced) and even for some adults.
- The Tapu-Tapu bands are really easy to lose and it takes a while to have them replaced because of the long line.
- Add more umbrellas or trees because the sand burnt my feet in the few seconds I dared walk through it.
- Figure out a better system with the weight limits on the rides. In practically every ride, my family was split up because we had two big men in the group.
- Encourage the lifeguards to speak to guests as though they were at Disney World.
I definitely recommend experiencing Volcano Bay with your family, friends or by yourself at some point in your life because it is incredibly fun and the adrenaline rushes are worth the hype the park is getting from all angles.