Summer Fun At Aquatica – Don’t Miss It

When I was invited to attend a special media event at Aquatica, I was OVER THE MOON to check it out. Aquatica, for those who don’t know, is SeaWorld’s water park in Orlando, FL. It opened about two years ago, and I have heard great things about it. But since my daughter is just getting to the age of water play, we had not made it yet. A media event was just the excuse I needed to pull my hubby out of work and take the fam down on a Thursday afternoon.

First, I have to give a big thank you to Mother Nature, who saw fit to have a beautiful sunny FL day — no afternoon thunderstorms to get in our way. Yippie!

This was the first time in ages that I have been to a theme park I didn’t have memorized like the back of my hand, and the first time in an even longer time since I have walked around in just a bathing suit!!! But once I got over those two shocking feelings, we had a blast. It turned out that fellow writer and mom blogger Amanda from Mama Mia (check out Mama Mia’s take on Aquatica), whom I know from our mutual work with PLAYGROUND Magazine, was also in attendance. So we teamed up with Amanda and her daughter, Mia, for an afternoon of water play.

One of the comments I head heard most often from friends who have visited Aquatica is how CLEAN the park is, and they weren’t exaggerating. It is impeccable. And the bright colors make it so cheery. Part of me wonders if it is so clean because it is so new, but SeaWorld is just as clean – so they must know what they are doing!

It wouldn’t be a SeaWorld park without wildlife, so we didn’t miss checking out the animals at the media event and the dolphins. But these weren’t your aveage bottle-nose dolphins, they were black and white Commersons Dolphins. Very cool.

For my uber cautious (read timid) daughter, we started off slow in the kiddie area. (Note – there are 2 kids areas, a big one for bigger kids and a kiddie ones for preschool kids.) Once we hiked the entire park, because the kiddie area is on the opposite side of the entrance, we discovered the BEST kiddie area EVER! A giant, luke-warm, knee-deep pool speckled with small fountains and kiddie slides wasvery inviting for even our toddler. The water was so nice and warm… While the bigger kiddie slides were too much for our girl, Amanda’s daughter was all about the thrill of sliding the slides by herself. K did try one slide on a tube with daddy, and she said she liked it, but she wasn’t willing to go a second time… We could have stayed in the kiddie area all day!

After the peaceful splashing in the kiddie area, we decided to try the bigger kid area. (We passed it on the way in, and it looked cool.) It was CHAOS! Mia dragged expecting Amanda right into the excitement, and they disappeared for a long time. We started off into the wild, but kids were squirting us at every turn and when a giant bucket of water dumped on us, K had enough. It was far too much for her. So, we stayed and played at the edge and she was happy to splash at her own speed. When Amanda and Mia finally emerged from the madness, the look on Amanda’s face said it all… You really have to be ready to be constantly attacked by water to venture into this water playland. Note – water here was down right cold, even on a 90+ degree day.

The other must-do activity on our list was the lazy river. Among its 38 attractions at the park, Aquatica has 2 lazy rivers. One looked a bit more speedy, so we opted for the slower version. And after 2 relaxing laps it was time to head home.

Of course, there are also thrilling rides for the biggest kids (AKA adults) too, but since our time was limited and we were touring with 2 small kids, we stuck to preschool friendly activities. I did get a chance to ride one “big” slide through the dolphin exhibit, which was super cool. But we saved the BIG rides for another visit.

Since you know I love a good deal, I have to share with you the best deal at Aquatica. A day pass is $47.95 for adults and $41.95, OR for $49.95 (just $2 more for adults) you can get an After 2 Pass that allows you to come back any day as much as you want after 2 pm for the rest of 2010. And really, who needs to spend ALL day at a water park! So go once (for a full day if you must) and go back as much as you want after 2. Perfect!

So, Florida residents – if you too still haven’t made it out to Aquatica, check it out. You’ll be hooked for more. And for those who might be visiting our fair city – add Aquatica to your to-do list while you are here. On a hot summer day, it’s a great place to cool off.

Disclaimer – I was invited to Aquatica as SeaWorld’s guest, however, all thoughts and opinions are my own. No other compensation was received.

1 thought on “Summer Fun At Aquatica – Don’t Miss It”

  1. Had the best time ever with you guys! I’m so glad someone could appreciate my sheer exhaustion after the chaos that was the big kid area. OMG. Fun, but a little much for almost 5 months prego. I needed a belly protector and a leash for Mia. Loved the lazy river!


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