We are a family who loves a good water park. Give me a water slide over a roller coaster any day of the week (weather cooperating) and I am one soaking wet but extremely happy camper. Even though they can’t swim just yet, my kids are always happy to be splashing somewhere, whether it be the beach, the water park, or a bathtub. Lucky for us, we live close to a water park that has something for the whole family- Wild Rivers in Irvine.
This year is the first year that I have felt like I could handle my kids in a water park situation and actually enjoy myself. We took the kids to a couple different water parks in Texas (because it was melt your face off hot outside) when they were around 18 months old and it was just too much. One little slip in 18 inches of water or spray from a rouge water cannon and it was breakdown city. This time was much different. The kids were happy to splash around in the kiddie areas and didn’t need their hands held the entire time which meant I could relax and have fun as well.
When we arrived at the park I figured there would be one area of the park that was toddler friendly and the rest would be dedicated to the older kids. Wrong! There were many different areas of the park that were perfect for non-swimmers. We started in a little pool that was about as deep as a bathtub and had a tiny slide and then slowly progressed our way up to bigger slides (designed for kids 54 inches and smaller) and the lazy river. By the end of the day, the kids were sliding down the kiddie water slides like professionals! It was great to see them gain some water confidence and learn that a splash of water in the face won’t cause them to melt.
I also had my 11 and 13 year old niece and nephew with me which meant my husband and I got to switch off and go on the big slides with the big kids. Woot! Woot! I did notice that the lines got longer as the afternoon progressed (so try to hit up the more popular rides early), so during the heavy periods we chose to stick to the lazy river, wave pool, and water basketball court.
Not to be outdone by a pre-teen, I braved a slide which essentially mimicked a toilet. It was a pitch black tube slide that ended in a swirling bowl which poured out into a nine foot pool and it scared the ever loving daylights out of me! But in a good way.
By the end of the day, we still hadn’t had a chance to try out all the slides but still felt like it was a very fun day at the water park. My only complaint was the weather. We have had a very cool summer which doesn’t go very well with warm weather activities. Luckily, Wild Rivers has warming pools which provided relief when things got a bit too chilly.
If you are in live in the Orange County area or are visiting during the summer, I would check out Wild Rivers. Its a great spot for a warm summer day and there truly is something for families with children of all different ages. If you would like to read my full review of Wild Rivers on Trekaroo, click here.
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