Which Disney Waterpark Is Best For Your Family?

Which Disney Waterpark is best -Typhoon Lagoon or Blizzard Beach?

We always plan at least one day at a Disney waterpark when we visit Walt Disney World. A Disney waterpark day is our rest day away from the theme parks. They are always so much fun as we lark about on the lazy river or in the wave pool! Our kids have grown up a lot since our first visit to a Disney waterpark. We’ve gone from looking for the small child areas to the wilder slides for our not so baby water babies!

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Family Group Shot In Lazy River At Typhoon Lagoon, a Disney Water Park Orlando Florida

There is so much to do at each Disney waterpark so how do you decide which one to visit? (Hint: we visit both!)

Typhoon Lagoon

A fictional storm swept through Disney World and when the water drained away, it left behind a waterpark!

The Wave Pool

Our favourite thing at this Disney waterpark is the wave pool. Roughly every half an hour Typhoon Tilly sounds her horn alerting everyone to the start of the waves. A few minutes later you hear the ‘boom’ of the first wave rising at the back of the pool, quickly followed by hundreds of screams and cheers! The waves are absolutely humungous and they push you over as they sweep past.

Top Tip – these waves are incredibly powerful! If you’re not a strong swimmer I recommend staying closer to the shore.

Top Tip No 2 – the bottom of the wave pool is very rough and you do scrape your feet as the waves knock into you, so you might want to wear water shoes.

Castaway Creek

As well as the wave pool, we love the lazy river, called Castaway Creek. We spend ages floating around and making up silly games, tipping each other out of their tubes or pushing one another into the ice cold waterfalls!

Top Tip – I think the waterfalls are quite strong, so if you have small children you might want to help guide them under as quickly as possible.

Top Tip No 2 – instead of walking round the park to the various slides, we like to take a more leisurely pace and float round on the river, it will take longer but it’s lovely and relaxing.

Typhoon Tilly, the shipwrecked boat that sits atop a mountain, at Typhoon Lagoon a Disney waterpark at Walt Disney World Orlando Florida

The Rides

There are tons of great rides – our favourites are the Storm Slides, Mayday Falls and Keelhaul Falls. I have ridden Humunga Kowabunga, a near verticle 214 feet drop, but once was enough! We really like the slides here, but as they are mainly single rider slides they may not suit everyone.

For little ones there is an area with small slides, called Ketchakiddee Creek we found it to be a little on the small side and very crowded. Other than this area, we didn’t feel that there was much for toddlers and small children.


Blizzard Beach

If you like winter and Christmas then you will love Blizzard Beach! The story for this Disney waterpark is that it was once a bustling ski resort but the snow melted and turned it into a waterpark instead.

Cross Country Creek

We are lazy river fans! Cross Country Creek winds its way around Blizzard Beach and we love it. It’s as relaxing as Castaway Creek, but this one has Christmas music playing as you float round. There is something quite surreal about listening to Christmas songs whilst floating around in the searing Florida heat!

Top Tip – there are a couple of areas around the river with small ‘islands’ which mean you can get split up from your group. Don’t panic though as the river meets again at the other end of the island, but if you’re with young children you may want to hold onto their tubes as you reach these areas.

A young boy wearing a green bandana is laughing at the camera and floating along the lazy river at Blizzard Beach a Disney waterpark. There are people up ahead in blue rubber rings and trees line either side of the river.

Blizzard Beach Slides

We prefer the rides at Blizzard Beach. Our favourites are Teamboat Springs – a family raft ride and Toboggan Racers – where you race against your friends and family but our absolute Must Do is the Runoff Rapids, we could happily spend all day on these slides! The Snow Stormers are good fun too, although I came off this slide in the most unsightly fashion last time I rode it, much to the amusement of my kids who were in hysterics watching me!

Blizzard Beach seems better suited for kids and ours have preferred visiting here as they feel that there’s more for them to do. There is an area for toddlers and young children called Tikes Peak, with some small slides and a shallow pool area and for older children there’s the Ski Patrol Training Camp. This is an area with some slides, a ‘stepping stone’ type of area and a zip wire. When our kids were younger this was the perfect introduction to waterparks for them.

A young girl attempting to cross the Ski Patrol Training Camp at Blizzard Beach Disney waterpark. She is kneeling on an 'iceberg' and is holding onto a net above her to help steady herself. There is a lifeguard watching from the side of the pool.

There is a wave pool at Blizzard Beach too, however the waves are much smaller than those at Typhoon Lagoon.

Top Tip – this pool gets very crowded as many people use their tubes to bob up and down on the water, this can make it hard to move around and it’s very easy to lose sight of people not in tubes, so keep a close eye on children or weak swimmers.

Hints and Tips For Visiting A Disney Waterpark

  • If you are staying at a Disney resort you don’t need to take towels with you, you will be able to collect some when you get to the parks. If you’re not staying at a Disney resort you can hire towels if you don’t want to take your own.
  • Lockers are available for everyone to hire and I would recommend putting away anything valuable as you may be apart from your belongings for quite a while, especially in peak season when the queues for rides are longer.
  • There are plenty of places to purchase food and beverages around the parks. Buy a refillable mug and top it up throughout the day (plus it makes a nice souvenir to bring home).
  • Life jackets are available from infant up to adult size at both waterparks. There may be a deposit required to use them.
  • Get there early if you want sun loungers! In peak season the parks fill up very early in the day and you’ll find it hard to spot some empty chairs. If you don’t want to get there for opening consider hiring a cabana for your visit.
  • Be prepared for everything to shut with no warning. Florida in the summer months gets incredibly hot and humid and this normally results in thunderstorms. All areas of the waterpark will close if lightning is detected within a certain radius, it’s for your safety so please listen to the lifeguards and get out of the water as quickly as you can.
  • Sunscreen!!!! It’s so easy to get caught up in the fun of the waterparks but please remember to apply sunscreen regularly – you are in Florida and you will get sunburnt if you don’t.
  • Forgotten something? Both waterparks have shops that stock pretty much all of the essentials you might need.
  • The showers are lovely and hot but they get very busy during the hour before the park closes. To avoid big queues consider getting out of the water a bit earlier and hitting the showers before the rush.
  • Look out for the characters. Mickey’s friends like to cool off at the waterparks and can often be spotted at various locations throughout the parks. We have seen Stitch and Goofy at Typhoon Lagoon and Olaf can be found enjoying summer at Blizzard Beach.
  • Don’t miss a photo opportunity. There are often Memory Maker photographers in the parks (especially in the summer months) and they can get some great photos. We’ve found them in the lazy rivers and by the exits to rides. You can sometimes get magic shots too (when they add a character to your photo after it’s been taken). If you ask the photographer they’ll tell you if that’s possible. There are great photo opportunities at the entrance to both waterparks.
  • Play a game of crazy golf. As you leave Blizzard Beach you will see Winter Summerland on the left. If you have time, go in and play a game of golf. There are two courses, one set in the winter and one set in the summer, both with Christmas songs playing! It’s lots of fun and a great way to finish your day. Depending on which ticket you have purchased there may be an additional cost for this.

A family photo with Stitch at Typhoon Lagoon a Disney waterpark. There are two surfboards behind them, one pink and one blue, with stripes and hibiscus flower decorations.

We hope you have a great time at whichever Disney waterpark you choose to visit (or if you visit both)!

Further Reading

The Ultimate Guide To Booking A Walt Disney World Vacation

Where To Stay In Orlando

How To Reduce The Cost Of An Orlando Holiday

Pin For Later

Looking down on to the lazy river at a Disney waterpark. There are lots of people floating in rubber rings and the river is lined on both sides with trees and vegetation. There is a small waterfall to the left of the picture.


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