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Walt Disney World’s Typhoon Lagoon For Beginners

According to Typhoon Lagoon legend, a super-storm drenched the area, and when it washed back out to sea, a waterpark oasis was left behind. Typhoon Lagoon is a lush tropical paradise with plenty of cool relaxing waters…along with plenty of pulse-pounding adventures! If you’ve never been to Typhoon Lagoon, what are you waiting for? Here’s what you need to know so you don’t feel shipwrecked or stranded:

1. Navigating the Park

Typhoon Lagoon is sort of laid out in a circle around the wave pool. Upon entering the park, you’ll wind your way down a path to the main buildings: gift shop, first aid station, changing area, restaurant, etc. From there you can choose to go right to the Crush ’n’ Gusher (a water-coaster with drops AND lifts – 48” height minimum) or cross a bridge over the lazy river to the most amazing wave pool on earth. The Surf Pool produces perfect 6 foot swells that you can actually surf (at specified times, for an additional fee) or just body surf. To the left of the Surf Pool, you’ll find the kiddie area, then beyond that two individual tube rides: Keelhaul Falls and Mayday Falls. Continue on to Gangplank Falls where the whole family can ride together, then cross the Mountain Trail to Humunga Kowabunga (steep enclosed flumes – 48” height minimum). Next you’ll find my personal favorite, the Storm Slides, three winding options that take you to the same pool at the bottom. Finally, if you’re brave enough, swim with sharks and stingrays at Shark Reef. Then you’ve completed the circle back to Crush ’n’ Gusher.

2. Packing Well

At Typhoon Lagoon you’ll want everything for a typical day at the pool: swimsuit, sunscreen, towels, sunglasses, camera, and hat. You may also want a waterproof case for your phone and credit/debit card. I personally prefer to put our family in rash guards for sun and scrape protection. The ground can get hot in some spots, so water shoes are helpful, especially for kiddos with tender feet. You can bring in any food and non-alcoholic drinks, so you might want to pack snacks or even a picnic lunch. If you plan to go directly out to eat afterwards, remember to bring dry clothes and toiletries—the showering and changing areas are very nice. Also, if you’d like to rent lockers or towels, friendly cast members will assist you at High ’n Dry Rentals or Singapore Sal’s (the gift shop).

3. Eating Well

Leaning Palms is the main eatery at Typhoon Lagoon. There you will find anything from tropical salads to burgers, and kids’ meals come with sand toys. But throughout the park you will find other delicious offerings such as Beef and Broccoli Rabe or a simple Turkey Pesto Sandwich. You may want to consider purchasing a refillable drink mug for the day—there are refill stations all over! But whatever you do, don’t miss the Sand Pail Sundae. Yep, it’s just what it sounds like. Grab your whole family—and lots of spoons!

4. Just For Kids

Ketchakiddee Creek will be your littlest family members’ favorite spot! Kids under 48 inches can enjoy mini slides, water cannons, and plenty of squirting fountains. At the edge of the wave pool, kids under 60 inches can take a ride down either of the two Bay Slides. They’re medium-sized slides that let kids feel “big” while parents wade in the water below. In addition, at certain times you’ll be able to meet Lilo and Stitch!

5. Finding Shade

Sometimes it’s nice to take a break in the shade. Because of the lush landscaping, it’s actually not hard to find a shady spot. A favorite of ours is the beach area near the Storm Slides, where there are pavilions over soft sand. If you want to have a “home base” for your crew, you may want to consider renting a private Beachcomber Shack.

6. Handling Storms

Typhoon Lagoon cast members are very vigilant about your safety. While a rain shower won’t influence park function at all, lifeguards will shut down rides and/or require everyone out of the water if lightning is close. (Whether it’s a partial shut down or a complete shutdown seems to depend on the distance from reported lightning strikes. We’ve had both happen.) Most of the time you can just get a snack and wait out the storm. But if it doesn’t seem to be letting up with several hours left in the day, rain checks may be issued.

Enjoy your visit to this tranquil and thrilling paradise!

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