Disney Water Parks – Blizzard Beach Water Park
Walt Disney World is an enormous resort complex. Many first time visitors are surprised to learn about all of the activities that are available beyond the four gated theme parks. Most guests have heard that there is a water park on property, but may not realize that there are actually two water parks currently open, Blizzard Beach Water Park and Typhoon Lagoon . Each is themed to a particular backstory.
According to legend, a freak snowstorm suddenly hit Central Florida one day. The western end of Walt Disney World property was blanketed in powdery fresh snow. Disney immediately put into place plans for a ski resort. Chair lifts were built, toboggan runs implemented, and trails groomed. The resort looked picture perfect. Unfortunately, before the park could open temperatures soared and the snow melted.
Disney believed that their new ski resort was doomed. However, as the slush began to run down the mountainside and water pooled at the bottom, the resort was saved by the most unlikely of sources: a playful alligator. The alligator took a body slide down the mountainside, splashing happily into the pool below. At that moment, a new plan was hatched, to create a water park from the already existing ski resort. Thus, Blizzard Beach Water Park was born. The park keeps faithfully to the storyline.
Blizzard Beach Attractions
Cross Country Creek
This is Blizzard Beach’s lazy river ride around the park. However, this river is packed with surprises. In keeping with the park’s snow theme, you may suddenly find yourself spritzed with cold water, or even drifting inexorably into an ice cave.
Downhill Double Dipper
The Downhill Double Dipper offers side by side identical racing slides. The slides achieve speeds up to 25 mph and are partially enclosed.
Melt Away Bay
Blizzard Beach’s wave pool, Melt Away Bay, features slowly bobbing waves, safe enough for children under parental supervision.
The hallmark of Blizzard Beach is Mt. Gushmore, a snow covered mountaintop that is the origin point for many of the park’s attractions. You must take a chair lift to reach the top, complete with snow skis.
Runoff Rapids features three side by side inner tube slides. However, the slides are not identical. The center slide is fastest and must be ridden solo. The outer slides can accommodate up to three people per raft.
Ski Patrol Training Camp
This area offers attractions reminiscent of “the ole swimmin’ hole,” including a T-Bar drop. Yet the theming remains intact here, with floating icebergs and themed water slides.
Slush Gusher is a double hump water slide standing 90 feet high. The ride is fast and rough, and women are strongly advised not to wear bikinis on this one.
Snow Stormers is another mat race, this one through switch gates on a ski slalom course.
Summit Plummet is a ski jump turned water slide. You will achieve speeds of approximately 60 mph during your 120 foot plunge. This is definitely not a slide for the weak of heart!
Teamboat Springs is a three to six passenger family white water flume ride. The ride is fairly wild, yet tame enough for children who are reasonably good swimmers.
Tike’s Peak is the play area for children under four feet tall. Miniature versions of popular attractions are offered here, along with splashing fountains and water pools.
The Toboggan Racer is reminiscent of an old carnival ride. Guests lay head first on a mat on one of eight racing lanes. First one to the bottom wins.
Visit the Alpine Village for Guest Services, First Aid, shopping, and so forth. This village is located on the eastern end of Blizzard Beach and faithfully re-creates a typical ski resort town.
In Central Florida, thunderstorms are common, particularly in the hotter summer months. All water attractions must close when lightning is spotted on Doppler Radar within 2 miles of the park. Many guests leave the park when this happens. However, summer storms are usually short lived, often lasting less than an hour. If you are willing to wait out the storm, you can re-enter the park with a largely diminished crowd.
Blizzard Beach Water Park is an excellent water park for the whole family. Many of the slides are high thrill attractions, while the gentle wave pool, dedicated children’s areas, and lazy river are perfect for the younger or less adventurous set. Thanks to the warm Central Florida weather, it is possible to visit nearly year round. If you have time in your schedule to visit a water park, Blizzard Beach is an excellent choice.
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