Waterpark Recap: Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon

Welcome to the water! Photo: Flickr/PrincessAshley/CC license

Welcome to the water!
Photo: Flickr/PrincessAshley/CC license

In all the years that we’ve made the migration to Walt Disney World (starting before the child was even born), and trekked our way around all of the parks many times over, we’ve never been to any of the water parks. On last summer’s trip to the Sunshine State, we decided to amend this overt oversight and made our way to Typhoon Lagoon.

Typhoon Lagoon.

Typhoon Lagoon.

The story behind Typhoon Lagoon is that a huge typhoon has come through and soaked everything. Notice the boats and surfboards stuck in trees, and the abundance of water everywhere. When I say water is everywhere, I mean everywhere. There are small pools of water along walkways all around the park, which is a nice touch for a Florida attraction, and one that I particularly liked as we like to stow our stuff and walk around barefoot.

Shark Reef

Shark Reef.

Shark Reef.

Snorkel with sharks and tropical fish in Shark Reef, a salt water coral reef where guests can actually snorkel across an enclosed pool-like reef. This attraction is utterly amazing, and one of our favorites. Shark Reef has blue tangs (Dory!), leopard and bonnethead sharks, stingrays, and many other types of fishy friends. Be prepared, though, the fish enjoy water at a nippy 68 degrees. Once you’re in and swimming around with these interesting guys, you won’t even notice the chill.

The water is about ten feet deep after the initial drop off. There are plenty of life jackets, and guests must be able to float across with a jacket or on their own. You can also see undersea without ever getting wet by way of a sunken tanker with viewing portholes.

See under the sea from the dryness of a sunken tanker.

See under the sea from the dryness of a sunken tanker.

"Fish are friends, not food."

“Fish are friends, not food.”

Typhoon Lagoon Wave Pool

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Typhoon Lagoon has a real, white sand beach with a massive wave pool. Watch out for those waves. Gentle waves quickly become six foot swells, providing hours of fun for surfer dudes and dudettes. The Typhoon Lagoon Wave Pool is North America’s largest. If you don’t want to experience the big kahuna of waves, stay near the entrance where the water is smooth, shallow, and, best of all, nice and sloooowww.

Watch out for that wave. Photo: Flickr/PrincessAshley/CC license

Watch out for that wave.
Photo: Flickr/PrincessAshley/CC license

Surf-a-licious Activities

Teen Beach Movie dance party.

Teen Beach Movie dance party.

“Teen Beach Movie” had just come out when we were there, and the park put on fun beach parties with giant beach balls and dance-offs at several times during the day. Nope, no sign of Ross or Maia.

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Crush ‘n’ Gusher

With up-hill climbs, water jets, dark sections, and hairpin turns, the Crush ‘n’ Gusher is a roller coaster of a water slide, and super fun. Choose from three slides, the Pineapple Plunger and the Coconut Crusher for three riders or the Banana Blaster for one or two passengers. We laughed the whole way down this slide, and would have ridden it again if we had the time. Park photographers are usually standing by at the bottom to capture guests careening down the tubes. I really wish I had purchased this picture!

Sliding through caverns and braving five-story drops and 60-degree angles, not to mention surviving slides with names like Keelhaul Falls and Humunga Kowabunga, are just a few of the aqua excitement opportunities thrill seekers have in store at Typhoon Lagoon. Family fun slides, the lazy river, and several water play areas are perfect for kid-sized fun.

lazy river.

A big thumb’s up for the lazy river.

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Float through waterfalls and cool mists as you circle the park in the lazy river.

A day of sliding and relaxing at a water park makes a nice “down day” (of sorts) between theme park days. Resting in a lounge chair is all this mom needed to be ready for the next day of racing around Universal Studios or Epcot to see and do everything possible. Next year, I’m hoping to make it to Blizzard Beach, Aquatica, Adventure Island, or Discovery Cove. Has anybody been?

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