A very scientific, very precise, very objective classification of the Water World Ocean Park rides. Just in case you need a handy cheat sheet, come on September 21.
Water World Water Park — billed as Asia’s first year-round water park – is a short shuttle ride from Ocean Park’s main entrance, covering nearly 700,000 square feet in Tai Shue Wan. During the media preview, the Lifestyle Asia Hong Kong team luckily didn’t slip or fall once (there was a scraped kneecap and a few rashes though), but be careful; very slippery surfaces in front. Plus, for an optimal day at the park, be sure to bring towels, a waterproof disposable camera (or one of those nifty clear, waterproof carryalls for your phone), extra face masks, and at least three friends. Some rides are weight dependent, so you’ll need the bodies.
Cyclone Spin/Tropical Twist: 8/10
So, as it turns out, I like any slide with a pool ring requirement. It’s a comfy, squishy seat that floats you just enough where you, if you’re careful enough, won’t get wet. Comfort meets fun and slightly wet – what more could you ask for in a water park.
The Cyclone Spin/Tropical Twist is a great “first ride of the day”. There are no crazy drops or stomach twists; just a good easy and healthy ride that can be enjoyed alone or with another person on two seater pool rings. Both slides have the same entry point: the first (orange) is black while the second (yellow) is translucent, so choose your own adventure.
Skyhigh Falls: 10/10
Skyhigh Falls is Water World Ocean Park’s best attraction, in my opinion, and here’s a long list of good things about it:
Inflatable pool ring as a vehicle, check.
A circular seating arrangement for three to six people so you can easily, effortlessly scream in your friends’ faces rather than the backs of each other’s heads, check.
His name is a word from sky high (2005), Disney’s teenage superhero film, check.
And finally it has a very, very steep ramp that dips and slides and comes back down, check it out.
No points deducted; we went twice.
Lazy cruising: 7/10
My age may be showing because the lazy cruise – the Water World Ocean Park equivalent of a lazy river – was quite enjoyable. The route is separated into four different climatic thematic zones; think “It’s a small world” with less stimulation.
If you have kids in tow or just want to drift, the Lazy Cruise is a great break from more exciting attractions.
Horizon Cove: 5/10
It’s an indoor wave pool – that’s really all there is to it. Points given for the massive skylight which truly explains why Water World Ocean Park is an “all season, year round” destination.
The wave patterns were deemed “too aggressive” by our editor Lorria, but rest assured, Horizon Cove is very kid friendly. Here’s a tip: if the waves get too strong, just get up.
Mustache Splatter: 3/10
Essentially a toddlers’ play area, Whiskers’ Splash honestly looked quite fun – especially the giant bucket of water that floods the area from time to time – but it looks very odd taking up the space intended to little humans. So we didn’t! The rating would be very different if you have children or if you are a child.
Swirl! : 10/10
We waited in line for 30 minutes (our longest wait yet!) for a Vortex! – and it was worth it. The whirlwind through the striped outer bowl turns towards views of the mine train (RIP) and the South China Sea, so try to get there before sunset.
Full disclosure: The entry alongside Vortex! opens into a twin slide named Cavern Chase (the lack of a turn in the Vortex! bowl being its main difference), but we didn’t want to wait another half hour to slide down a lesser Vortex!, so it didn’t there is no note for that. But it is there, it exists.
Thunder Loop/Daredevil Drop/Bravery Cliffs: 7/10
The Daredevil Drop is the Abyss equivalent of Water World Ocean Park (also, RIP); a straight, plummeting, almost vertical fall that even gave me – a shameless lover of that little adrenaline stomach rush – a moment of pause.
Once you’re tied down with arms, legs, and ten fingers crossed, it’s game over. The curved Perspex bolts around you, the attendant presses the button and the floor (also clear acrylic so you can see exactly how far the slide goes) literally splits under your feet. That is, unless you do the embarrassing thing and instead opt for a stroll of shame to the baby Lazy Cruise instead. No judgement. Maybe a little bit.
Thunder Loop has the same ground drop mechanic, but with more twists as opposed to death drop, while Bravery Cliffs does you do the hard work – you’re going to have to find the courage to take the plunge.
It’s a lazy river concept with an infinity pool at the end that overlooks the South China Sea. Its good! Fun, even! But there are better rides. Do Skyhigh Falls again.
Rainbow Rush: 6/10
We left the Rainbow Rush with assorted scratches on our knees, so points off for skin removed. Be sure to place your legs above the treadmill or plant them with your knees down to the carpet.
Another reason for the points being deducted is that it’s not fun if you do it alone. Bring seven friends and race, there’s a timer to make things official! Or do you make friends; it’s a water park!
Surf hitter: 4/10
Considered Hong Kong’s premier indoor surf simulator, the Surf Striker is less of a ride and more of a workout.
The picture is a Small misleading – there will be lines and crowds of people waiting and, worst of all, watching. Not for those with low core strength or performance anxiety, but there are coaches on hand in case you need a helping hand or words of encouragement.
Bay of big waves: 7/10
There are two wave pools at Water World Ocean Park; the Big Wave Bay is, in my opinion, the best. It’s outdoors, has incredible views, is right next to the outdoor canteen, and has lounge chairs so you can really pretend to be on vacation. Or at least pretend you’re at the beach – it’s Big Wave Bay, after all.