Volcano Bay Orlando

Suzanne Barney on 20 June 2017
One of the main reasons we were in Orlando was to sample Volcano Bay, the new theme park which opened at the end of May 2017. We were the first travel agent group from the UK to sample it. It is replacing Wet & Wild, which closed a few months before, as the go to waterpark in Orlando.

We had a bit of a wild night at Pat O'Briens the night before. Which was on the city walk with its duelling pianos and potent hurricane cocktails. So a water park would be quite sobering! We were told to be prepared to get wet so dressed appropriately.

We started our day having breakfast in Sapphire Falls which was excellent (not cheap about $20) but a wide selection and high quality though if you are going to go on 'exhilarating rides' you need to be careful what you eat.

The water park is joined on to Cabana Bay Hotel so just a short walk from Sapphire Falls. We did take a bus from reception but didn't really need it.

It is a bit more technical here as they have a Tapu Tapu wristband which allows you to be cashless in the park and also eliminates you standing in long queues for the more popular rides by giving you a time to return to the virtual queue. You need to be registered on the Universal Orlando resort app (on your phone) and you need to register your credit card details. When you scan the barcode on the tickets this will link everything together. So it will open your locker, pay for drinks etc I must admit I am not a water baby (more of a land girl) and so to do the different slides takes me right out of my comfort zone. I wore a swimsuit and then put everything else in my locker including camera so not many photos I am afraid.

There are different areas so you don't need to be 'brave' and try some of the more exhilarating rides, such as the 'Kopiko Wai Winding river where you can relax around the tropical landscape of the park and if that is too exhausting then there are pool areas with sunbeds to relax and sunbathe, and makeshift beach with waterfalls. There are also areas for small children to play in too.

The names of the rides are not easy to remember I do remember doing a kamikaze ride where I went head first on a raft down a cresta run of tubing (I closed my eyes the whole time), Honu of the Honu Ika Moana hanging on tight on a raft like a sea turtle and the Kratatau Aqua coaster, a four person canoe slide and the Maku Puihi Round River Rafts. So plenty of exhilaration! I didn't get chance to do all of them you do need to be fit as there are a lot of steps to the top but remember once you are up there only one way to come down!