Wild Adventures in Valdosta, Georgia, is a theme park, water park and animal park, all wrapped into one. My family had the opportunity to visit the park earlier this summer during our two week trek across south Georgia. Today I’m sharing the first of a three part series about our visit, starting with Splash Island!
We arrived at Wild Adventures just before noon on a Sunday and headed over to the Splash Island water park area to check out the private cabanas. Each cabana offers seating for up to 8 guests and features wireless internet, satellite TV, a ceiling fan, secure storage and a mini fridge. I was going to reserve one online and forgot to do so, and unfortunately they were all booked by the time we arrived. They are a bit smaller than I had expected, but provide a place to secure your items, chairs for lounging and of course, shade from the hot Georgia sun. Just keep the limited availability in mind and make reservations in advance if you want to grab a cabana for your visit.
Even though we couldn’t get a cabana, we had no problem finding a place to sit right around the corner by Paradise River. There’s a large covered area there with plenty of lounge chairs, and the lockers and restrooms are just a few steps away. Small lockers are just $10 for the whole day and when you return the key you get $5 in Wild Adventure bucks to spend anywhere in the park. (I recommend using that for a refreshing SnoBiz!)
We actually only used the locker for wallets and my phone, and just left our towels, sunscreen and clothes sitting on the lounge chairs so we could get to them easily. We sent the three older kids off with specific instructions to stay together and be back in 2 hours, they were beyond thrilled to be able to do their own thing for a while!
Our first stop was Catchawave Bay, Wild Adventure’s 20,000 square foot wave pool. It’s perfect for everyone in the family, from young to old, and the waves are timed at 15 minutes on and 15 minutes off. There are free inner tubes floating around in the pool, for kids and adults, and a large rack of life vests right by the edge of the water. Several life guards are stationed around the edge of the pool, which really made me feel much better. My children can swim, but with six to keep an eye on, I get a little nervous sometimes!
Curious how we got those photos in the water? My husband has an Otterbox Armor Series Waterproof Case for his iPhone and it. is. amazing. You can get them on Amazon for around $75 or so, which is a pretty good deal for the awesome photos you’ll get in return.
Next we ventured over to Paradise River and went for a leisurely float around the park. The kids were a little nervous at first because of the current that carries you along, but they quickly realized it was fairly slow and they could all touch in the three foot water anyway. There are inner tubes and life jackets at the entrance to the river, as well as a few areas you can exit along the way if needed. Just like the wave pool, there are life guards stationed along the way, making sure everyone stays safe.
After that we scaled the stairs for Hakini Rapids, a 5-story water slide that twists and turns and ends in a big splash pool at the bottom. The rafts are large enough for 3-5 people and have plenty of handles for holding on. (Not that I had a death grip on them or anything like that, lol.)
Right beside Hakini Rapids is Kona Cliffs, a giant speed slide with three steep drops. The height minimum is 48″ so we didn’t get to try it out with the younger kids, but the older ones went down in a raft together, ran back up the stairs (5 stories!) and then went down again. Over and over. So obviously, they give it two thumbs up!
We bounced around the slides and pool areas for a bit longer, covered everyone with more sunscreen, then went over to check out the Polynesian Adventure Rain Fortress. It’s basically a huge playground with water spraying out everywhere! There are water cannons, slides, and huge buckets that empty gallons and gallons of water on everyone below. The area at the bottom is like a shallow pool that the younger ones can play in, and there is also an area called Sea Turtle Cove that is perfect for little ones under 44 inches.
As a mom, I have to say that I was very impressed with the safety measures in place throughout Splash Island at Wild Adventures. There were inner tubes, life jackets, and life guards all over the place, and I knew that if there was a problem, they had trained staff members ready to jump in and help.
Often times when we visit amusement parks, I worry that there won’t be enough age appropriate activities to keep all six of my children occupied. This was definitely not a problem at Wild Adventures! In fact, we all had so much fun at the park that I can’t fit it all in to one article! Stay tuned for Part Two, where I’ll be sharing all the cool rides and animals we saw in the other areas of the park. And don’t miss Part Three which will be full of tips for making the most out of your family’s trip to Wild Adventures!
Don’t forget to visit the Wild Adventures website for more information, and connect with them on Twitter and Facebook to stay up to date on all the cool things they have going on at the park. They’re even on Instagram!
Did your family visit Wild Adventures or another park this summer? Share in the comments below!