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Typhoon Lagoon Water Park at Disney World


Typhoon Lagoon Water Park at Disney World

Castaway Creek lazy river at Typhoon Lagoon.

Arthur Levine, 2005. Licensed to About.com


A pioneer in water parks (Walt Disney World's River Country --now closed-- opened in the early 1970s, around the same time as the original water park, Orlando's Wet 'n' Wild), Disney took the concept to the next level when it developed Typhoon Lagoon. It is lavishly themed with a rich back story, and its landscaping is so beautiful, it's damn near intoxicating.

According to the Imagineers' legend, a powerful typhoon wreaked havoc on a seaside village and left ships, surfboards, buoys, and other flotsam strewn about its lagoon and rivers in its wake. At the rear of Typhoon Lagoon now sits the Miss Tilly shrimp boat, perched perilously and incongruously, atop a volcanic mountain. Every few minutes, the mountain lets loose a volcanic tremor and sends an enormous wave rippling across the lagoon.

Unlike some water parks, which feature lots of concrete, little shade, and a hyper-charged ambiance, there are plenty of places to relax and tune in to Typhoon Lagoon's laid-back, tropical vibe. That's not to say that the park is bereft of great attractions. Its Crush 'n' Gusher uphill water coaster is thrilling and a real hoot. And while the Humunga Kowabunga speed slide doesn't match the record-breaking height and speed of Summit Plummet at Walt Disney World's other water park, Blizzard Beach, it is nonetheless terror--and wedgie-- -inducing. Typhoon Lagoon also offers the usual assortment of body slides, tube slides, and family raft rides, but they are tucked away among a dense and beautiful canopy of flora.

Castaway Creek may be the most stunning and tranquil lazy river in all of water parkdom. The 2,100-foot river encircles the park and offers a few overhead sprays and other gotchas, but mostly allows tubers to unwind and go with the gentle flow. If there weren't so many other fun things to do, I could probably while away hours floating aimlessly. But fun things like Typhoon Lagoon's Shark Reef beckon. Guests receive (free) snorkeling equipment and can swim among tropical fish (and a few non-aggressive sharks) in a saltwater pool. Make sure you check out the abandoned ship alongside the reef. It offers underwater views of the reef through its portholes.

Location and Phone:

At Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Florida

Admission Policy:

Requires separate admission. Included in "Water Park Fun & More" option of Walt Disney World's Magic Your Way ticket program.

Best of Orlando offers Disney World water park tickets at a slight discount. Buy direct.

Operating Calendar

Open year-round, 7 days a week. Does close annually for maintenance in the winter.

Water Park Features:

Uphill water coaster, lazy river, wave pool, snorkeling pool, tube slides, body slides, speed slides, family raft ride, interactive water play areas for younger kids.

See the Park:

Park Tips:

  • During peak seasons, get to the park early, as it can often reach capacity and close its gates.
  • In the summer, when the park is open later, consider making a late afternoon visit to the park. Many of the folks that came in the morning are typically leaving, and the park can be less crowded.

Disney World Trip Planning Resources:

For hotel, restaurants, tickets, and other info, go to the Walt Disney World main page.

Official Web Site:

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