Tag: Parks

The 9 Best Water Parks in the U.S.

By MM Travel and Tours in Destinations to Travel

Image courtesy of Dollywood

The warm weather is on its way! So get on that diet, dig out your swimsuit, and get ready to hit the water parks for some fun in the sun! To help you with your planning, here are the nine best water parks in the U.S.

1.  Noah’s Ark

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Noah’s Ark is the country’s largest water park. It’s located in the Wisconsin Dells and (as expected) it has a huge variety of water rides. This family-friendly place includes Surfing Safari, a surfing simulator, a pair of wave pools, and more than 50 slides.

The Scorpion’s Tail is an extreme ride for thrill-seekers only. This ride sends people down an almost-vertical slide into an intense inclined loop. Said by some to be “America’s most thrilling water coaster,” the Black Anaconda rushes riders through a crazy course that reaches speeds of up to 30 mph. After the rides, grab a bite at Monk’s Bar & Grill.

2.  The Schlitterbahn Kansas City Waterpark

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Perhaps the most popular part of the Schlitterbahn Kansas City Waterpark is the 42-foot tall tower. It has three water slides pouring people out from its perch. If you’d prefer to stick closer to the actual sea level, the park also offers attractions such as the slow-flowing Kristal River, Boogie Bay, and the turbulent Torrent River. If you need a break from the ocean-like action, dive into the popular swim-up bar and have a drink in the heated pool.

3. Splashin’ Safari

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You’ll find the merry Splashin’ Safari in Santa Claus, Indiana. This summer the new Cheetah Chase water coaster will make Splashin’ Safari the home of an exciting trifecta of water coasters. This ride will be the planet’s very first launched water coaster, blasting people uphill to 27 feet at speeds of up to 20 miles per hour.

The other two famous coasters, the Wildebeest and the Mammoth have already earned Splashin’ Safari its slot on this list. Additionally, if you visit Splashin’ Safari on a Friday, you will be treated to a fireworks show. You can end your wet and wild day with a bang!

4. Water World

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Image courtesy of Water World

Denver, Colorado’s Water World includes almost 40 aquatic attractions. It is simply enormous. One of Water World’s main attractions is the water coaster known as the Mile High Flyer which is famous for its intensity and speed.

Next in line would be The Storm. The Storm is a unique raft ride of sorts. Here passengers rush down an inky black tube meant to recreate an actual storm. It comes complete with rain, flashes of lightning, and really loud thunder designed to disorient you.

Is speed your thing? Then be sure not to miss the torrid Turbo Racer. It’s an eight-way slide competition that ends each race with an official announcement of the winner.

5. Silver Dollar City’s Wild White Water Park

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Image courtesy of SIlver Dollar

Famous Silver Dollar City’s White Water Park is found in Branson, Missouri. It is significantly smaller in size than a few other water parks on this list. Nevertheless, it earns its place due in part to its organization and its focus on the family.

The Splashaway Cay is but one of the attractions that kids of all ages can enjoy. Housed in a fort, it comes complete with aqua shooters, elevated walkways, geysers, and slides. Another highlight of this park is the KaPau Plummet. It is a cool, dueling drop-floor slide that plunges participants down at 70 degrees into an exciting, unyielding turn.

6. Water Country USA

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Water Country USA is situated in Williamsburg, Virginia. Veteran visitors say it is one of the most well-maintained and best-themed parks in the nation. Perhaps the best attractions here are the new Cutback Water Coaster and the country’s first funnel-and-wave raft ride, the Colossal Curl.

The Colossal Curl allows riders to enjoy weightlessness as your raft rushes down a hill only to rapidly return on a large inclined wall. You can take three of your friends with you on the famous fast-and-furious enclosed raft ride called Aquazoid. It is a dark experience that includes several splash surprises. The best time to visit is when you also can afford to spend a day at Busch Gardens Williamsburg which is right down the road and has some of the most exciting on the entire East Coast.

7. The Big Rivers Waterpark & Adventures

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Image courtesy of Facebook Big Rivers Waterpark

Big Rivers Waterpark & Adventures is “deep in the heart of Texas” . . . Houston, that is. Travel writers say this place is really “big, even by Texan standards.” This water and adventure park span 8 acres.

It can be found within a 632-acre amusement park in New Caney which is located approximately 30 minutes out of Houston. One must-do attraction is the Pecos Plunge which will drop you dizzily down seven slippery stories. The second required stop is the great Gator Splash. It’s the state’s biggest interactive play structure, complete with over 300 watery adventures.

8. Dollywood’s Splash Country

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Image courtesy of Dollywood

Dollywood’s Splash Country in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee is 35 acres worth of wet and wild fun for the whole family. This water park is home to RiverRush, the state’s first-and-only water coaster.  RiverRush includes a total of four drenching drops and hairy hairpin turns through dark tunnels that have made the ride a real fan favorite. Be sure to hit the Big Bear Plunge too. This wet white water rafting slide actually simulates a rough, real river expedition. The famous Fire Towel Falls is a truly terrifying two-slide drop from a harrowing 70 feet.

9. Kalahari Resort

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Image courtesy of Kalahari Resorts

Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin wins another slot for the Kalahari Resort. This indoor water park spans 125,000 square feet. Since it’s open rain or shine, you can visit any time.

One must-do ride is the slick Sahara Sidewinders. Seconds after entering an enclosed capsule the floor falls out beneath you. It’s the biggest thrill in this palatial place.
If you’re interested in surfing, head to the mighty Flowrider. Here you can learn how to surf on a superb surf simulator that constantly pumps 50,000 gallons of water under you, creating what simulates a furious five-foot ocean wave.

Book your next vacation today through M & M Travel and Tours! (810) 877 1814

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Your Travel Guide to Theme Parks

By MM Travel and Tours in Travel

For Millennials, theme parks top the list of attractions interested in visiting on vacation. This is according to MMGY Global’s 2018-2019 Portrait of American Travelers, which also shows strong interest in this regard among Gen Xers. It’s no surprise then that new thrill rides based on such generational icons as the Harry Potter and Star Wars movies series are among the hottest tickets around.

Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure will become Universal Orlando Resort’s first “story coaster” when it debuts June 13 in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. The ride’s thrills include seven launches, dropping nearly 17 feet unexpectedly, a free-fall vertical drop and being catapulted 65 feet in the air and then immediately dropping backward in one movement. Measuring nearly a mile in length, the long roller coaster will ascend above the nearby trees, accelerate through ruins and speed forward and backward, while guests ride in a motorcycle or in its adjacent sidecar.

Guests will enter through ruins in the Forbidden Forest, which were imagined and brought to life by Universal’s creative team in collaboration with the Harry Potter films’ production designer, Stuart Craig, and art director Alan Gilmore.

As they go to the motorbikes, guests will see materials from Hagrid’s Care of Magical Creatures class, including dragon eggs on the verge of hatching and a nursery where Hagrid kept his blast-ended Skrewts, a creature that appears to be a cross between an elongated crab and a scorpion, with no discernible head. Guests will also encounter characters from the Harry Potter films, including Arthur Weasley, Hagrid, and his dog, Fang, through a pre-show experience brought to life with digital projections and special effects. During the show, guests learn about their impending trip into the Forbidden Forest as part of their lesson for the day.

Disney’s Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opened May 31 at Disneyland Resort in Southern California and will debut on August 29 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Orlando. Advise clients to arrive early; access to the park, land and experiences may be restricted or unavailable depending on guest demand and other factors.

Guests hop aboard the Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run ride to “jump into hyperspace” and engage in missions, games and in-queue experiences. They can also build their own custom lightsaber at Savi’s Workshop; design, assemble and activate their own mechanical creations at Droid Depot; dine at Oga’s Cantina, Kat Saka’s Kettle and other Star Wars-themed food outlets; and shop at the Black Spire Outpost and Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities.

Advise clients that Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will not be available during Extra Magic Hour or Magic Morning at Disneyland Park and that Disney FASTPASS service and Disney MaxPass are unavailable for Edge’s attractions. The Disney Parks will launch Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, later this year.

Wonder Woman Lasso of Truth — billed as the world’s tallest pendulum ride — is the newest thrill ride at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, NJ. Riders on floorless seats spin around while swinging to and from at speeds of up to 75 mph, 172 feet above the  ground. Jackson is about an hour’s drive from Philadelphia and less than two hours from New York City.

Coming this summer, Steelers Country is a collaboration between Kennywood Park and the Pittsburgh Steelers that celebrates the hard-hitting heroics of the players, putting the fans at the center of the action. The centerpiece will be The Steel Curtain, a 220-foot-high roller coaster that will speed riders through 4,000 feet of track at 75 miles per hour while navigating nine inversions — the most in North America. One, at 197 feet above the ground, claims the world record for tallest inversion. Kennywood is in West Mifflin, PA, about 12 miles southeast of downtown Pittsburgh.

Not a theme park in the traditional sense, but New York’s Liberty Island and its iconic 151-foot-tall torch-bearing resident has been thrilling people for 133 years. Now, the brand new, 26,000-square-foot Statue of Liberty Museum has opened with three gallery spaces and the opportunity for an up-close view of Lady Liberty’s original torch. The museum also affords visitors panoramic views of Lady Liberty, lower Manhattan, and all of New York Harbor. Access to the museum is free of charge with the purchase of a Statue Cruises ferry ticket to Liberty and Ellis islands. The new museum is part of a $100 million Liberty Island-wide beautification effort.

Jungala water park is landscaped with walls of rock, sky-high tree formations and water sprouting from natural pergolas and “lost ruins.”

Just in time for summer, Mexico’s Riviera Maya has a new, luxury boutique water park: Jungala. Created by tourism developer Grupo Vidanta, the new park is open to guests staying at Vidanta Riviera Maya resort, as well as the public, seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Designed to call to mind a mystical voyage through the jungle, the park is landscaped with walls of rock, sky-high tree formations and water sprouting from natural pergolas and “lost ruins.” Guests will also have the chance to spot native animals and birds as they explore caves, waterfalls and bridges.

In terms of rides, thrill-seekers will be able to enjoy attractions such as the Aqua Drop, Aqua Loop, Flatline Loop, and Whizzard, while families may opt for the family slides or children’s areas, including the Kids Waterslide Complex and Aqua Play Rain Fortress, which Grupo Vidanta says is the largest interactive play structure in the world. There will also be a lazy river — billed as the longest in Latin America, with a length a little over half a mile — as well as a Wave Pool, which will incorporate natural sand.

There are several on-site bar and dining options, as well as boutiques and stores, and visitors can rent amenity-laden VIP cabanas. Group buyouts are also available, with special benefits available for groups of 15 tickets or more. Travel agents booking a group can block out a private area or even the entire venue, which can hold up to 2,000 guests. Customizable group packages are available.

Related Stories

Now Open: Star Wars, Galaxy’s Edge in Disneyland

Universal’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter to Debut New “Story Coaster”

Taking the Kids — What’s New at Theme Parks This Summer

Jungala: A New Luxury Waterpark in the Riviera Maya

Book your next vacation today through M & M Travel and Tours! (810) 877 1814

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