Love water parks? There’s no better place than Orlando for splashing out doors. Orlando has it all: incredible wave pools, relaxing lazy rivers and, of course, some of the most thrilling water slides in the country. Here's our roundup of the top 5 in Orlando.
Summit Plummet at Disney's Blizzard Beach
This centerpiece attraction looks like a crazy ski jump – and it sits all the way up, on top of Mount Gushmore. It’s is one of the tallest and fastest free-fall body slides in the world! After scaling the mountain, prepare for your plunge by crossing your arms across your chest. Once you push off, you'll drop 12 stories at a remarkable speed. This slide starts with an open top, so you can see everything for miles as you start to fall, but then you hurtle through a darkened tunnel, not knowing how much more you have left to go. After splashing down though a massive spray of water you'll be able to see your top speed posted on a digital clock at the bottom. This slide is only for the most adventurous riders. Think you're brave enough to plummet down the summit?
Humunga Kowabunga at Disney's Typhoon Lagoon
Typhoon Lagoon is designed to look like the aftermath of a hurricane that has left boats and debris stuck in trees and high up on the mountain called Mount Mayday. High atop the mountain, just beneath the old shrimping boat stranded at the center of the park, you'll find the three Humunga Kowabunga slides, all side-by-side. These body slides are completely enclosed so you won't know what's coming next as you zoom 214 feet downhill at an incredible rate. You'll drop about 5 stories in only a few seconds at a 60-degree angle. Race your friends by sliding at the same time down one of the three different paths. When you splash down at the bottom, see who made it first, and be sure to yell "Kowabunga" when you win!
Ihu's Breakaway Falls at Aquatica, SeaWorld's Water Park
Aquatica's newest and most thrilling attraction, Ihu's Breakaway Falls was the first trap-door drop slide to be built in Orlando. After climbing to the top of the tower, you can choose from two different chambers, each with their own distinct paths. You and another guest enter the chambers, located directly across from each other. As you stand there with your arms crossed you have no idea which one of you will break away first. As the chamber door begins to close you hear the sound of a heartbeat pounding. The beating grows louder and it starts to beat faster, and when you least expect it, the trap-door opens beneath your feet sending you on a watery free-fall!
Honu at Universal's Volcano Bay
This is the only multi-person raft ride on this list, but don't let that fool you, because Honu is not for the faint of heart. This big blue slide features two massive walls that your raft will streak across, bringing you and your co-passengers nearly sideways and looking straight down before sliding back and continuing onto the rest of the path. As if that wasn't intense enough, the slide incorporates mist sprayers in multiple spots, ensuring that you have no idea when you'll be sent soaring up another wall! If you're not quite ready for it, you can instead ride down ika Moana instead, located on the same load platform. It's a multi-person raft too, but offers a much more gentle descent.
Ko’okiri Body Plunge at Universal's Volcano Bay
Volcano Bay has set some records with its selection of new and unique water slides. Ko’okiri Body Plunge has become North America's tallest body slide and the world's tallest drop capsule slide. This attraction is located at the top of the volcano. After climbing all the stairs to the top (while trying not to look down!), you are placed into a clear chamber standing over a trap-door. Even the trap-door has a little window so you can get a glimpse of your fate. Once the door swings open you plummet 125 feet down a 70-degree drop. After free-falling, you'll pass right through a pool of guests that get to watch you slide through the clear tube – a first of its kind in water parks.
Orlando, FL – 7/13/17
By: Alicia Stella
[Photos: Walt Disney World, SeaWorld Orlando and Universal Orlando]