With yesterday marking the official beginning of another hot and busy summer season in Orlando, it seems like a perfect time to take a dip into the cool waters of SeaWorld Orlando’s water park, Aquatica. The park features a combination of slow, medium, and fast paced water slides and winding rivers, allowing guests of all ages to find some fun and escape the heat. Plus beaches, wave pools, shaded comfort, and play areas offer a little something for everyone.
A visit to Aquatica’s web site not only provides information but also great deals on a chance to hit the waves, like the After 2 p.m. pass allowing unlimited admission to the park after 2 p.m. each day through the end of the year for just under $50. With a price that inexpensive, it’s tough to pass up, especially when the heat index is already topping 100 degrees. But you’re not here for a ticket sales pitch. You’re here to hit the water – without getting wet.
Let’s take a virtual journey through some of Aquatica’s water slides, via the videos below. Each is an HD POV (“point of view”) ride, shot on a GoPro HD Hero waterproof camera. These fun trips down winding slides will hopefully act as a bit of a mental vacation away from whatever you’re supposed to be doing right now instead of reading this article.
And we’ll start our trip around the park with the most popular ride in Aquatica…
This unique water slide features two side-by-side enclosed tubes sending guests around turns, through darkness, and racing underwater with the ride culminating in a quick trip through a tank filled with black-and-white Commerson’s Dolphins. It’s a short moment but if you’re lucky, you’ll catch a glimpse of these dolphins swimming alongside you. And you can see just that in the video below, especially in the “slomo replay” near the end.
Video: Dolphin Plunge water slide at Aquatica
Aquatica’s newest addition, Omaka Rocka, offers a combination of colorful tubes and “half-pipe funnels” that send riders front ways and back ways and side ways and up ways and down ways… sorry, got carried away there. And you will too, if you watch the video of the slide below.
Video: Omaka Rocka water slide at Aquatica
You won’t find a more thrilling attraction at Aquatica than Taumata Racer, providing a high-speed, side-by-side-by-side-by-side-by-side-by-side-by-side-by-side (yes, 8 slides) ride down steep hill, head first. And that’s after a few twists through dark tubes.
But do you know what’s more fun than riding Taumata Racer? Trying to pronounce the full word that Taumata is short for:
Tetaumatawhakatangihangakoauaotamateaurehaeaturipukapihimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuaakitanatahu. And in case you’re wondering, that is the long name of a hill in New Zealand. Now take a ride on Aquatica’s big hill in the video below.
Video: Taumata Racer water slide at Aquatica
Take Taumata Racer, remove half the slides but make each slide bigger, and you have the four high-speed tube slides of Whanau Way, each with its own unique flair. Take a trip down one of them in the video below.
Video: Whanau Way water slide at Aquatica
Walhalla Wave allows families to jump into a giant tube together and speed through a 6-story maze of twists, turns, and tunnels. Fortunately, the ride has a tube lift, allowing the tubes to be waiting for you when you reach the top. Unfortunately, you still have to walk up all those stairs. (But that’s part of being at a water park, right?) Skip the stairs and enjoy the ride in the video below.
Video: Walhalla Wave water slide at Aquatica
The last of the rides we’re going to spotlight here is Tassie’s Twister, which has a rather unique entrance, requiring guests to slip into the Loggerhead Lane lazy river (more on that below). Float for a bit then climb into the center island where a giant bowl awaits, spinning guests around and around before splashing back down into the lazy river once more. Take a spin, literally, in the video below.
Video: Tassie’s Twister water slide at Aquatica
Beyond the rides, Aquatica offers two rivers – one fast and one slow. Loggerhead Lane is the slower of the two, a more traditional lazy river in that sense. But it’s not entirely traditional, offering unique views of aquariums, waterfalls, and water slides along the way. Float down the river in the video below.
Video: Loggerhead Lane lazy river at Aquatica
I’ve saved the best for last. In my opinion, Roa’s Rapids is the most fun attraction in all of Aquatica. It combines the relaxation of a lazy river with the excitement and thrill of a water slide, finding a perfect balance in the middle. Imagine stepping into a lazy river and instantly being swept away by a safe current, pulling you through what Aquatica calls “swirling whirlies” and “gushing geysers.” It’s great to just lean back and let the water do all the work. Take a dive into the rapids in the video below.
Video: Roa’s Rapids fast-moving lazy river at Aquatica
But that’s not all that Aquatica has for summertime fun. Other attractions include Cutback Cove and Big Surf Shores, which are two giant side-by-side wave pools, Kata’s Kookaburra Cove, which feature smaller slides for kids, and Walkabout Waters which is a huge kid’s play area. And that’s not including Aquatica’s many beaches for lounging, restaurants for chowing down, and animal encounters for, well, encountering.
In all, SeaWorld Orlando’s water park offers all of the fun witnessed in the videos above plus many more opportunities for casual enjoyment, showcased in the photos below. It’s definitely worth a trip this summer for anyone looking to escape that brutal Florida heat, cool off, and have a generally good time.
Photos from Aquatica at SeaWorld Orlando: