This is Part 5 of the Walt Disney World Overview Series.
The Walt Disney Resort has two water parks for your enjoyment – Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach. Each require a separate admission ticket, which you can purchase at the front gate. Guests with the “Water Park Fun and More” option on their theme park tickets can also get in without an additional charge. Spending a day at a water park is a great way to cool off in the Florida sun, have a great time, and make some magical family memories. Here is a quick overview of the parks, including attractions, dining and shopping.
Recommendation: don’t forget the sunglasses, sunscreen, and water shoes/flip-flops – the ground gets pretty hot!
Note: The water parks close each year for refurbishment. Only one park is closed at a time. The schedule is on the Walt Disney World Website, or I can provide that information to you as well.
The park, which opened on June 1, 1989, is home to the world’s largest outdoor wave pool. The theme of the park is the “Disney legend” of a typhoon that wreaked havoc upon a formerly pristine tropical paradise. Ships, fishing gear and surfboards are strewn about where the storm flung them. The centerpiece of the park is “Miss Tilly,” a shrimp boat impaled upon a mountain named “Mount Mayday” that erupts a 50-foot (15 m) geyser of water every half hour, right before the ship’s bell sounds. In addition to the wave pool there are slides, a water coaster, and you can even snorkel with sharks! Typhoon Lagoon is located near Downtown Disney, and lockers are available for rent.
Attractions: Typhoon Lagoon Surf Pool, Castaway Creek, Ketchakiddee Creek, Keelhaul Falls, Mayday Falls, Gangplank Falls, Humunga Kowabunga, Storm Slides, Shark Reef, Bay Slides, Mountain Trail, Crush ‘n’ Gusher
Dining: Leaning Palms, Getaway Glen, Typhoon Tilly’s Lowtide Lou’s, Let’s Go Slurpin’, Happy Landings, Surf Doggies, Crush Hot Dog, Hideaway Bay (picnic area)
Shopping: Sinapore Sal’s, High ‘N Dry
The park opened on April 1, 1995 and was the third Walt Disney World water park (Disney’s River Country was the first water park at the Resort. It opened on June 20, 1976 and ceased operations on November 2, 2001.) The theme of the park is the “Disney legend” of a freak snowstorm in the area, leading to the construction of Florida’s first ski resort. Naturally, the snow didn’t last long, leaving behind a collection of waterlogged but snow-less ski jumps and chair lifts. The failed resort was in the process of closing for good when an alligator was seen sliding down a flume and splashing into a pool of water, screaming “Yahoo!” and the “ski resort” was reborn as a water park. Most of the major attractions at the park, including a 12-story drop body slide, are hosted atop of Mount Gushmore, and split into three colored slopes to aid guests navigating around the park: Green, Red and Purple. All water areas are heated with the exception of the melting snow in the ice cave of Cross Country Creek (and boy is that cold!!). Typhoon Lagoon is located near Animal Kingdom, and lockers and Polar Patios are available for rent.
Attractions – Green Slopes: Summit Plummet, Slush Gusher, Teamboat Springs, Chairlift
Attractions – Purple Slopes: Toboggan Racers, Snow Stormers, Downhill Double Dipper
Attractions – Red Slope and Ground Level: Runoff Rapids, Melt-Away Bay, Cross Country Creek, Ski Patrol Training Camp, Tike’s Peak
Dining: Lottawatta Lodge, Cooling Hut, Frostbite Freddy’s, Snow-Balls, Avalunch, I.C. Expeditions, Warming Hut, Polar Pub
Shopping: Beach Haus, Snowless Joe’s, Shade Shack
Parking and Transportation
There is no shortage of ways to get to the Disney Water Parks:
Buses: to all Walt Disney World Resort hotels
Parking: available at the front entrance