This past April, I revisited the place where my employment with Walt Disney World started, Disney's Typhoon Lagoon. My kids had been asking to go for a while, they wanted to see where their mom worked when she was on the Disney College Program, and in truth, I was more than happy to show them all the ins and outs of the water park.
First thing first, there are three items I highly recommend when visiting Typhoon Lagoon:
1. Water Shoes- The bottom of the wave pool is very rough, and the waves are big,
so water shoes will save you and your kids some uncomfortable stepping and standing. You don’t need anything fancy but you will be glad to have them.
2. Swim Shirt- This will ensure that you aren't dealing with a bad burn for the rest of your vacation but it also adds to your comfort on the slides.
3. Sunglass Strap (preferably one that floats) - Did I mention the wave pool? And the body slids? Both of these attractions can knock your sunglasses off. The sunglass strap will hopefully keep your sunglasses on your face, but if they still fall off, if your strap floats, you’ll be able to find your glasses without the risk someone stepping on them in the wave pool.
Our morning finally arrived, and our family of 4 pulled up to Disney's Typhoon Lagoon. I pointed out the signs on the way into the parking area and shared the story of Typhoon Lagoon.
“A furious storm once roared across the sea
Catching ships in its path, helpless to flee
Instead of a certain and watery doom
The wind swept them here to Typhoon Lagoon”
We entered the park before it officially opened. You are able to get to the locker area, front bathrooms and rental booth. We headed to the lockers and found one to put our cellphones, wallets and other items we didn’t want to lose or get wet. Lockers are currently $10. Then we decided to rent an umbrella and chairs. This was a great decision because it gave us a meeting place in case we became separated. It also gave us a secure spot, you have a wrist band to enter the reserved area. For our 4 chairs and towels, a small table and umbrella it's $43. This is not to be confused with the Premium Seating Areas that come with lockers, an attendant, all day drink mugs, and a cooler with water. Those accommodate up to 6 guest and are $320.
Our umbrella was #1 and located next to the Leaning Palms restaurant. This position was perfect for our lunch later on in the day. Once we got our towels and umbrella number the park officially opened with a whistle from Miss Tilly high above the wave pool! So, now that we were in the park with our stuff secure and a place to hang out, we headed straight for the lazy river, Castaway Creek. We used Castaway Creek all day as a quick highway to the different sections of the park. This was a much easier more relaxing way to travel around the park rather than walking which tends to be a little more crowded.
Our first stop was to two of the more popular and newer additions as these tend to get more crowded as the day goes on. The new Miss Adventure Falls, the brand new family
water slide was our first stop. It did not disappoint.The wait was minimal and the slide was a blast. We read up on the background story of Miss Adventure and we’re happy to see her parrot talking on our way up the slide. Next we went to the Crush n’ Gushers, the water slide rollercoasters. There are three different slides, two that can only have double riders (Banana Blaster and Coconut Crusher) and one that you can choose to ride as a single or double rider (Pineapple Plunger). Again, this was a minimum wait early in the day, so of course we repeated these slides until we had all rode all three slides.
Now it was time to go to the wave pool and check out the colossal waves. My husband and daughter went straight to the wave pool, while my son wanted to ride Miss Adventure Falls again, so I went with him. By this time the line for Miss Adventure was now at an hour wait. So, we decided to head to the wave pool and catch up with the other two people in our family. Castaway Creek helped us get there in no time and we found my daughter and husband on our way. The wave pool has a few different wave patterns and at this time it was on the small hills. This pattern goes on for about 30 minutes until the calm before the large waves. We swam and prepared ourselves for the waves. Then we heard Miss Tilly blow her whistle, the whole crowd cheered and screamed at the anticipation of the wave. We could hear the doors open and the wave pool lever release the wave. It is an awesome sight to see the large 6 foot wave headed your way and feel its power as it picks you up and moves you back. We stayed for about 3 more waves then we decided it was time for lunch.
This was when our location for the umbrella was a perfect fit. The umbrella rental comes with enough chairs for your party, an umbrella, towels and at least one table. We bought our lunch and were able to sit under our umbrella eat our lunch and relax as we planned out the rest of our day.
After lunch and a little rest, so our food could digest, it was time to get back on Castaway Creek and explore the other side of the park. We rode the other family raft ride, Gangplank Falls, the two raft slides Keelhaul Falls and Mayday Falls. Then headed to the body slides, the three Storm Slides. We ended the day on the speed slides, Humunga Kowabunga. By this time it was 3:00. We had spent 6 hours at Typhoon Lagoon, and we had another huge day planned at Animal Kingdom the next day so it was time to head out. Of course we needed to end the day with some shopping and we got to see Stitch as we were leaving.
Typhoon Lagoon has changed a lot in the last 20 years since my last visit there, but it is still a great way to spend a day at Walt Disney World!