Volcano Bay Water Park is Universal Orlando’s newest theme park making it the third park alongside Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure. This theme park is an expansive water park with rides and attractions where you can spend a full day enjoying the park, rides, and attractions just like you would at either of the other parks.
The philosophy celebrated at Universal’s Volcano Bay is:
Water is Life. Life is Joy.
Everything You Need to Know before Going to Universal Orlando’s Volcano Bay Water Park
TapuTapu is the KEY (literally and figuratively) to a great day at Volcano Bay. It is a digital wristband that each person receives when they enter the park.
- You link it to your credit card, use it to shop within the park, pay for dining, get into a “virtual” line for one of the rides/slides and rent lockers.
- TapuTapu serves as your locker key, and you use it to open and re-open your locker all day.
- The TapuTapu helps you avoid lines at Volcano Bay. When you find a ride you’d like try, tap the TapuTapu against the station in front of the attraction. The station notes time you’ll be able to return and ride. Then, you are free to swim & enjoy other park attractions while your spot in line is “held” for you. While you are waiting look for RIDE NOW signs and hit up a few more slides. Be sure to hit up both the lazy river AND the not so lazy river. Both are very fun but the not so lazy river is a fun wild ride that you will enjoy over and over! When it’s time to ride, your TapuTapu will VIBRATE and show you the name of the attraction you chose, along with a “Ride Now” message! When you return to ride, your TapuTapu resets, and you can select another ride.
- If you lose your TapuTapu (one of my kids lost theirs in the first 30 minutes so MAKE SURE it is secured properly) just head to one of the concierge huts with your ticket stub to get it replaced.
- TapuTapu only works inside Volcano Bay and you don’t get to keep it. When you exit the park they collect your band and wipe the memory – very important if you attached a credit card to them, as we did.
Food is so important – am I right?! Luckily there are six locations in Volcano Bay to dine, featuring over 60 delicious items from water park favorites to Polynesian-inspired dishes. Even the most picky eater in my family (me) was able to find something to eat.
- Kohola Reef Restaurant and Social Club – Burgers, barbecue, chicken, seafood, and
- Dancing Dragons Boat Bar – Tropical cocktails and frozen drinks.
- Whakawaiwai Eats – Pizza, hot dogs, mac & cheese, and salads.
- Bambu – Burgers, sandwiches, hot dogs, and salads.
- Kunuku Boat Bar – Specialty cocktails, frozen drinks, sodas, draft beers.
- The Feasting Frog – Tacos, poke poke bowl, plantain chips, and guacamole.
Free Seating: There is a ton of NICE free loungers/chairs/umbrellas all over the park for you to use. They are first come, first served so make sure and BE EARLY if you plan on just grabbing seats. Bring a towel or beach blanket to save your spot while you swim. We had ZERO issues with our items “walking away” while we played. We were very brave and left bags, clothes, and towels on our chairs. Note that they do NOT come with pads. Price: FREE
Premium Seating: These seats are a little fancier than the free seats for sure. They include a pair (2 chairs) of padded loungers with an adjustable canopy for shade and a built-in storage lock box (replaces the need for a locker). You can enjoy the services of an area attendant who’ll see to your food and drink orders all day. Price: START AT $30 for per pair.
Single Cabanas: These small(er) cabanas hold up to 6 people – perfect for a small family or a couple of moms/dads visiting just with the kids. You can choose from upper level for AMAZING views of Volcano Bay, ground level cabanas for convenience, ease, and accessibility, OR stand-alone cabanas that offer privacy for those that need. Price: START AT $160.
Family Cabanas: This largest size cabana holds up to 16 people. This is the perfect size for multiple families, neighborhood/scout/school groups, family reunions, or events. Relax with your family/friends in a large, private stand-alone cabana. These large size cabanas give you the privacy, space, and accessibility that you want. Price: START AT $300 (and are so worth it!).
Helpful $$ Info To Know Before You Go
Even though it is a HUGE park the price is very comparable (cheaper even) to other Orlando area water parks.
Attach your credit card to your TapuTapu so that you don’t have to carry cash or a credit card.
A one-day Volcano Bay admission ticket is $67.
You can bring your own towels or rent them for $5 each.
There are lockers available for rent where you can store your purse/wallet/valuables. They are varied in price depending upon size. Just know the smallest will only hold a wallet and keys.
- Go early and stay late. The park is less crowded for the first hour (by getting in early if you stay on property) and for the last 2 hours. Everyone leaves once it rains in the afternoon BUT as we all know in Florida that rain only sticks around for an hour or two and then it clears up and is gorgeous again.
- Plan on eating during the rain so that you can enjoy the nice part of the day.
- Enjoy your day! Don’t let the rain, crowds, or sand get in the way!
Make sure to spend a day or two visiting the other two parks while you are there!