By Paula K.
If you’ve ever been to Florida, you know that it can be hot at any time of the year. Fortunately, at Walt Disney World there are two fun ways to beat the heat. The legend of Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park is that a tropical paradise was hit by a typhoon, and what you see is what was left behind. Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park’s story is that there was a freak snowstorm in Florida. A ski resort was built, and then the snow melted. You can’t go wrong if you spend a day of your vacation at either park. You’ll do even better if you decide to hit both. Here are ten reasons why. And parents, please keep an eye on your children, even though there are lifeguards. You can’t be too careful.
10. Refillable Mugs
Spending the day in the water can make you thirsty, and Disney has come up with the perfect solution. You can purchase a refillable mug at either park. Pay one price, then fill the mug up as many times as you want during the day. The mug is yours to keep. The Refillable Mug program at the Disney Water Parks is not compatible with the Resort Refillable Mugs, and vice versa.
9. Lazy Rivers
Most water parks have lazy rivers, so you might have been in one before. What is special about the lazy rivers at the Disney Water Parks is that they have the Disney touch. Castaway Cay at Typhoon Lagoon is 2,000 feet long, while Cross Country Creek at Blizzard Beach is 3,000 feet. The special touches along the way continue the themes of the parks. Both lazy rivers are special.
8. The Sand Pail
Not only will you get thirsty when you spend a day in the water, you will get hungry as well. If ice cream will help satisfy your sweet tooth and your hunger, order the Sand Pail. It’s a soft serve sundae that is covered with sprinkles, waffle cone and cookie pieces, two kinds of sauce, whipped cream, and a cherry. It’s served in a sand pail, with a shovel for your spoon. Since it’s big enough to share, you might want to grab some plastic spoons as well. You can order the Sand Pail at several places at either water park.
As you approach Disney’s Blizzard Beach, you can’t help but notice Summit Plummet. There has to be a way to get to the top, and Disney has found a fantastic one. Since Blizzard Beach was supposed to be a ski resort, all that you need to do is to take the chairlift. You can enjoy the view on your way to the top. The Chairlift will take you not only to Summit Plummet, but to Slush Gusher and Teamboat Springs as well.
6. Typhoon Lagoon Surf Pool
The wave pool at Blizzard Beach, Melt-Away Bay, is awesome. The one at Typhoon Lagoon will blow your mind. Typhoon Lagoon Surf Pool is no ordinary wave pool. Expect a six foot wave every 90 seconds. Be prepared, because this thing can knock you off your feet. There are life jackets on hand, and there is no shame in wearing one. Start in the shallow end of the water so that you can get used to the giant waves.
5. Surfing Lessons
Speaking of Typhoon Lagoon Surf Pool, if you’ve ever wanted to learn how to surf, but you don’t want to take a day out of your Walt Disney World vacation to hit the beach, there is a simple solution. Surfing lessons are held on select days before the park opens. The classes are limited to 25 people, so it won’t be crowded. For information or to make a reservation, call 407-WDW-PLAY (407-939-7529).
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4. Family of the Day
There is one fun extra at both Disney Water Parks that most people don’t know about. You can be picked as Family of the Day. There are a few perks that come with the position, such as free towel rentals, a behind the scenes tour, and a couple of free mugs. One member of the Family of the Day will be picked to open the park. At Blizzard Beach he or she will be called the Ski Captain, and at Typhoon Lagoon it’s the Big Kahuna. Arrive early if you’d like to be picked, and make sure that your 8-12 year old is in a good mood to increase your chances.
3. Crush ‘n’ Gusher
Everyone knows that water slides will take you down, but at Typhoon Lagoon there is one that takes guests back up at times. Crush ‘n’ Gusher is a water roller coaster. It may not go as fast as Expedition Everest, but it is still a thrill. There are three different courses, so you will want to ride more than once.
2. Summit Plummet
If you’re looking for the biggest thrill at either water park and perhaps at all of Walt Disney World, you will want to head to Blizzard Beach. Summit Plummet lasts just a few seconds, but they could be the best few seconds of your trip. You will drop almost straight down 120 feet, reaching a speed of nearly 60 MPH. Some thrill ride enthusiasts claim that Summit Plummet is the best water ride on the planet.
1. Miss Adventure Falls
The newest ride at the Disney Water Parks can be found at Typhoon Lagoon. Miss Adventure Falls is a family raft ride unlike any that you’ve been on before. For starters, you’ll board your raft before it goes up the conveyor belt. From there, you’ll see many treasures left behind by Captain Mary Oceaneer. You might even encounter Duncan, her parrot. Miss Adventure Falls is the perfect water ride for your whole family, and there is no height requirement.