Top Ten Tips for Volcano Bay Water Park at Universal Orlando Resort

by siera

In case you are not aware, summer is here and I have the perfect way to beat the heat – Universal’s Volcano Bay.

The new water theme park is the perfect way to cool off with over 30 experiences including 18 water attractions such as winding and action rivers, two children play areas, an aqua coaster unlike any other, and plenty of pools and sandy beaches. And you can’t forget delicious food and refreshing beverages.

Since this may be your first time visiting Volcano Bay, you may be looking for some tips and tricks to experiencing the park. Look no further – here are 10 tips for Volcano Bay to help you maximize your visit.

1. Hop or Skip to Volcano Bay by Staying On-Site

By staying at one of Universal Orlando’s five on-site hotels, you can get to Volcano Bay quicker! From Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort you can walk right over on the walking path that takes you directly to the park entrance. Hop aboard our complimentary shuttles from our four other hotels Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, Hard Rock Hotel, Loews Royal Pacific Resort and Loews Sapphire Falls Resort. An added bonus to staying on-site is Early Park Admission. This gives you exclusive access to Volcano Bay one hour before the park opens to day guests.

HINT: If you stay at Cabana Bay, try to grab a Volcano Side room at the new towers where you’ll get a beautiful view of the mighty Krakatau.

2. The Early Bird Gets the Best Beach Chair

This may be a no brainer, but the earlier you get to Volcano Bay the more you can jump on rides quicker. Plus, you can claim a prime spot on the beach of your choice as your home base for the day. #Winning

HINT: Want an even more epic spot on the beach? You can book a Private Cabana or Premium Seating. These options are very popular, so I recommend reserving them before you arrive by calling (877) 489-8068.

3. Head Towards the Back

It’s a known fact that people will naturally drift towards the first attractions they see. We recommend grabbing a spot in the back of the park when you first arrive. You’ll avoid the initial crowds near the front and get to the fun faster. Attractions near the back tend to have shorter wait times at the beginning of the day too!

HINT: As you’re making your way to the back to claim your spot, tap to save your ride time at one of the attractions along the way. That way, after you’ve grabbed your beach chair and applied the sunscreen, you can ride.

4. Items For Rent at Volcano Bay

If you have a large family and find yourself hauling a lot of gear into the park, have no fear! There are lockers for rent for cash or credit card throughout the entire park with three different sizes to store your things. I bet you already have a beach towel, but just in case you forget, there are towels available for rent. Your TapuTapu is technically rented for free, too, since you have to return it at the end of the day. 🙂

HINT: You can link up to four TapuTapus to your locker so the whole family can access it whenever they want.

5. Turn Your TapuTapu Into Your Wallet

If you would like to be able to take advantage of TapTu Pay at Volcano Bay, you can start setting up your account before you arrive through The Official Universal Orlando Resort App or online. You can link all of your party’s Volcano Bay tickets to the same account, and you can set up TapTu Pay by linking your credit card. Next step is to set up a pin number and boom – you’re all set to begin your adventure in Volcano Bay. You’ll receive your TapuTapu wearable at the park entrance when you arrive. Click here to learn more about TapuTapu.

HINT: TapTu Pay allows you to purchase merchandise, food and drinks with a simple tap of your wearable. An awesome benefit is the ability to set spending limits on your account. I know I’ll be taking advantage of this since I tend to get carried away with the shopping.

6. Thrills & Chills to Check Out While in Virtual Line

Here’s a quick snapshot to everything you can do while waiting in virtual line after you tapped into an attraction.

  • Ride the waves in the Waturi Beach wave pool
  • Discover all the TapTu Play effects throughout the park
  • Grab a tube and relax on the Kopiko Wai Winding River or take on the waves of TeAwa the Fearless River
  • Enjoy lunch or unique snacks such as a POG (a blend of Pineapple, Orange and Guava juices) or Waturi Fusion ice cream (made up of four different flavors!)
  • Play among the slides and water guns of the two kids areas Runamukka Reef and Tot Tiki Reef
  • Cool off in The Reef or Puka Uli Lagoon pools
  • Explore the gift shops for a fun souvenir to take home
  • If you’re 21+, try one of the Volcano Bay signature drinks at the two boat bars, Dancing Dragons and Kunuku

HINT: You’re in an island paradise when visiting Volcano Bay. Remember this is your time to relax and let the stress of everyday life drift away.

7. You Don’t Have to Ride Immediately…

 …When your TapuTapu alerts you that your ride time has arrived. You can head over at your leisure. So, if it catches you in the middle of enjoying an Island Chicken Salad, you don’t have to wolf it down. Enjoy your meal!

HINT: You do have to ride that attraction before you tap into another attraction, unless you want to replace it. But why wouldn’t you want to ride?!

8. Keep a Look Out for “Ride Now!”

Your TapuTapu wearable allows you to virtually wait in line for one attraction at a time. As you’re exploring the park, keep an eye out for slides that say “Ride Now!” You’ll be able to jump right onto the ride without getting out of your virtual line. As I mentioned before, you can replace your ride time  with another ride if you’d like. All it takes is a simple tap.

HINT: More attractions will show “Ride Now!” if you arrive early in the morning or if you stay later near closing time.

9. Eat Early or Later

Restaurants are busier in the noon – 2pm hours… on second thought, you may already know that. If you can, try eating earlier or later to avoid crowds of hungry people. There are four dining locations and other food carts throughout the park and two bars to grab a refreshing beverage.

HINT: One of my favorite food finds in Volcano Bay is The Feasting Frog. Look for a frog-shaped structure in the Rainforest Village, where you can enjoy snacks like the Poke Poke Bowl or a Taco Sampler.

10. Ride Out the Rain

If you’re not a local, you may not know: it rains in Florida during the summer. So, when you see the clouds gathering, don’t pack up your things and leave. Just ride out the weather until it passes, which in Florida can be pretty quick. You’ll find wait times for attractions will shorten as people who aren’t as savvy as you leave. I would recommend taking cover and enjoying a drink, a bite to eat or doing some shopping.

HINT: You’re already in a water park. You’re already wet. Roll with it and enjoy a beverage.

If you’ve visited Universal’s Volcano Bay, you’re an honorary insider. Share your tips on enjoying the park in the comments below.

Siera is a travel agent with Destinations in Florida, Universal Studios Travel Agency of the Year 2010, 2011, & 2012. She would love to help you plan your next Universal Orlando vacation at no cost to you. Contact Siera today at siera@destinationsinflorida.com or at 734-771-1290 for more information or your free, no obligation quote. 

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