Volcano Bay at Universal Orlando is our new favorite water park, mainly because of the island theme and diverse rides.

I’d never heard of a TapuTapu, but it’s the innovative water-proof band you strap on your wrist that allows you to reserve your place in a virtual line for popular water park attractions while you enjoy other areas of the Volcano Bay. What a great concept! But when we visited the park for the first time, we didn’t need to use it to make reservations because there were no wait times!

I imagine that’s unusual for this popular park, but it was wonderful to just walk on (or dive in) to any one of the many options, such as serpentine body slides, a lazy river, a more active river, a variety of water coasters, slides, interactive features, playgrounds, splash ponds and kid pools,… and then there’s the beach—complete with gentle waves around a towering volcano. The deck chairs sit in sandy beach areas, near huts where you can get delicious (and nutritious) meals and beverages. There are cabanas and special chairs you can rent (which we did, but again, we didn’t need to since there was a great selection of available chairs, some shaded and others for sun-lovers). If you come as a small group, the cabanas can be a great way of keeping everything and everyone organized, and to feel like you have your own party within the theme park.

Soft island music made us feel like we were really in Hawaii. So, I guess if you want to have a multi-destination experience in one place, you can go to Universal Orlando for a few days and enjoy a taste of London (The Wizarding World of Harry Potter), Seuss land, King Kong’s Skull Island, E.T.’s California Redwood Forest,… and now, Volcano Bay’s Hawaiian adventure!

More Volcano Bay Tips:

  • Plan your arrival in time to park and take a short bus ride to the park.
  • Don’t forget a hat–one you can wear in the water, if possible– towels, and sunscreen (we came home a little pink, even with sunscreen).
  • Take a moment and have the staff attach a credit card to your TapuTapu so you can keep your card in a locker but use credit to purchase snacks.
  • Watch informational signs or use the app to track wait times for the most popular rides, so you can use your TapuTapu to reserve your virtual place in line.
  • Visit the interactive cave friends in the cave for some air-conditioned fun.
  • If you love the park enough to want to come back, visit the guest services and ask to apply the cost of your day pass to an annual pass fee. Volcano Bay is well worth visiting often!