Wet and Wild: 15 Of The World’s Best Waterparks

While they may not reach quite the extremes of height, speed, and all-around curvocity of a standard theme park, your average water park these days is not so average. With rides that feature 360 degree loops, freefall drops that rearrange vital organs, and speeds that would have you pulled over on a Texan freeway, waterparks these days are a draw for even the biggest thrillseeekers. So if you’re an adrenaline-junkie on the lookout for the next big challenge, check out the world’s wildest water parks. We’ve gathered together our best picks.

Schlitterbahn Waterpark Kansas City

Schlitterbahn Waterpark, Kansas City

A fun cure for constipation, the Verruckt waterslide at Schlitterbahn is 17 stories tall, reaches speeds of 70 miles an hour, and is the new highest and fastest waterslide in the world. If you’ve been thinking about bowel surgery, now’s the time – you just leave them at the top. It’s no accident that it’s called Schlitterbahn, and you’re likely to have one about three seconds in, so bring a change of underwear. There are plenty of other thrills and spills at Schlitterbahn, but at the moment it’s all about Verruckt, which from German translates roughly to “have you lost your mind completely?” Verruckt has seen some delays, and is not actually open yet, which for some is a massive relief, about as massive as the heart attack they were having when told they’d be riding it. We’re just kidding. It’ll be a laugh. [Details]

Water World Colorado

Water World, Colorado

Billed as America’s biggest water park, Water World Colorado features 49 attractions ranging from the low thrill, tots and family friendly fun, such as Wally World and Caribbean Family Adventure, to the more heat-seeking, subaqueous, nerve-janglng, heart-in-the-mouth, water-filled plummets like the Skyline Speed Slides, or the Mile High Flyer, the first hydromagnetic water coaster. Water World is a fully equipped water park, with all day dining and cabana rentals available. [Details]

Waterpark

Aquaventure Water Park, Dubai

Yes, of course Dubai has a water park. What else would you expect in a desert? Sand? With every water park ticket you get a free lunch at the aquarium. This is probably because they know you’re going to lose yours, most likely on the Tower of Neptune, also known as the Leap of Faith, which shoots you like excited sperm down nine stories through to the by now obligatory shark tank. [Details]

Tropical Island Resort Germany

Tropical Island Resort, Germany

Got an old airship hangar lying around and not sure what to do with it? If it strikes you as odd to have a water park in a desert, Germany has built an entire tropical resort indoors, big enough to hold the Eiffel Tower lengthwise, and where the temperature is a constant 78.8F. It’s the largest free-standing hall in the world, with the largest indoor beach. It also has a water park, featuring a high-speed turbo slide that whips you along at  over 40mph. [Details]

Beach Park Water Park Brazil

Beach Park Water Park, Brazil

Mind you, Dubai’s Leap of Faith pales in comparison to the Insano waterslide in Brazil. Until the Verruckt came along, Insano was the tallest water slide in the world. And at 14 stories high and speeds of 65 miles an hour, it’s not exactly a cruise down the Seine at twilight. It does, however, have the advantage over Verruckt of being open. As well as Insano, Beach Park has Kalafrio, with almost vertical drops. [Details]

Sunway Lagoon Malaysia

Sunway Lagoon, Malaysia

Sunway is home to Vuvuzela, the world’s largest water ride. You’re eleven stories up, the ground drops out from under you, and you plummet through twisting, watery darkness until you’re shot out into daylight and what looks like the Great Pit of Carkoon, but which is merely the biggest funnel on the planet. So no worries. Sunway Lagoon also boasts the world’s largest manmade surf beach, and a selection of Africa themed water rides. [Details]

Wetn Wild North Carolina

Wet’n Wild, North Carolina

For the ultimate seeker of aquatic thrills, Wet’n’Wild Emerald Pointe has it all: enclosed water slides including Twin Sisters with over 350 feet of stomach-churning tubular darkness, 360 degree loop slides, or you can try out The Cyclone Zone, which simulates all the fun-filled horror of being caught up in a tropical cyclone. Then there’s Dr. Von Dark’s Tunnel of Terror – 40 feet of drop included – and also the Dragon’s Den, where first you’re catapulted through darkness, then plummeted into the misty abyss of the dragon, after which, apparently, you just disappear. Well that sounds like fun. [Details]

Area 47 Austria

Area 47, Austria

The brave go first, the sensible don’t go at all. That about sums up the Cannonball Water Catapault, a ride where you stand around mindlessly waiting for a tsunami to come along and catapault you thirty feet into the air. Austrians go for being tossed off. There’s also Blobbing, which we like for its unpredictability. One person sits on a big rubber tube – the blob – while one, two, or three others – blobbers – jump down onto it from a mind-numbing height. This causes the person on the tube – the blobbed – to fly off the tube and into the lake. And that’s Blobbing. It’s different every time. There’s also the Kamikaze slide, which you get to ride just once. [Details]

Adaland Turkey

Adaland, Turkey

The Adaland resort in Turkey also comes with Dolphinpark and Seapark, but what we’re interested in is Aquapark, which offers every kind of water terror you can think of. Freefall drops that put your heart in your mouth, floors that give way beneath you, 360 degree loops where you feel like laundry, and being shot from a tunnel like a stream of jism. It’s about the most fun you can have with water without being on a naked beach. [Details]

Aquaventure Water Park Bahamas

Aquaventure Water Park, Bahamas

Sure, you could visit the Mayan Temples of Central America and travel back in time some 4,000 years, but why, when you can come here and ride the Mayan Temple’s serpent slide into a shark-filled lagoon, or drop fifty feet through total darkness and waterfalls into a prehistoric underground lair? Much Better. [Details]

Blizzard Beach Florida

Blizzard Beach, Florida

Following a freak Florida snowstorm, Blizzard Beach is supposedly a ski resort that didn’t work out. But as a waterpark with more rides than Sunny Leone, it works brilliantly. From the top of Mount Gushmore (hey, we don’t name these things we just write about them) you get to experience rides like the Summit Plummet, a practically dead straight drop on one of the fastest freefall body slides in the world. [Details]

Caneva Aquapark Italy

Caneva Aquapark, Italy

Caneva Aquapark is more than just thrills with water, it’s also part of Canevaworld, which includes Movieland Park, Night Festival disco, and Medieval Times. At Aquapark itself there are 15 attractions, including Black Hole 2, where in addition to sliding through a wet tube in the dark, you get to experience time folding in on itself. That’s wet, too. [Details]

Wetn Wild Sydney Australia

Wet’n’Wild, Sydney, Australia

With 40 attractions including some of the tallest and quickest water rides in the world, if your goal is to ride water in as many different ways as possible, Wet’n’Wild Sydney should not to be missed. For the ultimate in relaxation, try the world’s tallest double Sky Coaster. 75 meters up, you pull on some kind of rip cord and freefall head first toward the ground. We’re not sure where the water comes in on this one. Probably from being drenched in sweat just thinking about it. There’s also the T5, which is about as close as you can get to riding a category 5 tornado in the dark. The difficult bit should be finding three equally insane friends to do it with you. But it probably won’t be. [Details]

Happy Magic Water Park: Reverie and Leisure in Communist China

Watercube Waterpark, China

For all-out centrifugal fun Watercube has the Bulletbowl, where two riders shoot down an enclosed tube before they’re shot into what might be the tightest turn in water rides. Or there’s the Pipeline, complete with 180 degree banked turns and 360 curves, the whole time being soaked with water from above, not unlike, we imagine, being flushed down a toilet. Built for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the Water Cube is also a venue for sports events, performances, games and recreation, and as you might expect coming from China, all of happiness to everyone. [Details]

Wildwater Kingdom Pennsylvania

Wildwater Kingdom, Pennsylvania

Wildwater is part of Dorney Park, which as well as over thirty water rides boasts Dinosaurs Alive, Planet Snoopy, and live entertainment among its long list of things to do. New for the 2014 season is Snake Pit, a complex of six of the slickest water-rides on the planet. The inevitably named Python Plummet, Boa Blasters, and the Constrictor send you down free-fall body slides, sheer drops, banks and 360 degree loops. If you’re going to stay cool this summer, you may as well do it like you mean it. [Details]

 

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