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Disney's Blizzard Beach

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Walt Disney World Resort, Orlando, Florida. Water park.

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    14 Reviews
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      23.08.2013 11:43
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      A Snowy Watery Playground.

      Disney's Blizzard Beach is the second water park at Walt Disney World in Florida. This one time ski resort has melted into what is now a watery playground for both young and old a like. It is situated near to Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park, All Star Resorts and Animal Kingdom Lodge Resort. The theming of the park is just as you would expect for a ski resort, there are Alpine style cabins, which are used as shops and restaurants, a ski lift to get you to the top of Mount Gushmore and snowmen, yes you did read that right snowmen, although these ones are made of fibreglass and so don't melt. For the thrill seekers out there, there are plenty of water slides to keep you entertained, why not try out Summit Plummet, a 120 feet near vertical slope which is 360 feet long, it's so steep that you can't even see where you're going as you hurtle at great speed down the shoot through a tunnel. This one is not for the faint hearted, make sure your swimming gear is secure as you can guarantee that you'll end up with a servere wedgie at the end of this one. Or if you want a bumpy ride try out Slush Gusher at a meer 90 feet long this ride will take you over two rolling hills. For those who want something a little more gentle then take a ride on Cross Country Creek an inner tube ride which runs around the water park. Simply walk to one of the seven landings, and wait for a free rubber ring to float past and then hop on board. This can be a little tricky, it's best if someone else can hold it for you, but falling off is all part of the fun. I love this ride and can spend most of my day just going round and round. If you just want to laze away the day then you can spend time at Melt Away Bay, a soft sandy beach area, where you can bob around in the water, relax under a waterfall or just sit around in a lounge chair. There are plenty of places to eat such as Avalunch, Lottawatta Lodge and Warming Hut which sell a variety of snacks and drinks such as hotdogs, burgers and ice creams. They are all counter service style, so you should be able to find something to eat for all the family. As with Disney's Typhoon Lagoon Water Park, you can hire towels and lockers for the day so that you don't have to carry things around with you all the time. Again you'll pay a refundable deposit for the use of them, but I personally think it's well worth it as you don't have the problem of trying to dry out your towels when you get back to your hotel. If you want to take a break from all the hustle and bustle of the bigger parks, then Blizzard Beach is the place to go, although some of the bigger slides can get very busy and you may have to queue a while to get on them. This park is only open seasonally so it's best to check on the Walt Disney World official website to make sure it will be open whilst you're there.

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      22.04.2013 23:38
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      A super Disney water park.

      I have just returned from 2 magical weeks at Walt Disney World in Florida. Walt Disney World is situated in Orlando and includes 4 theme parks (Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom and Epcot), 2 water parks (Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach) and a number of different resorts. We stayed in one of the Disney resorts and visited all of the Disney theme parks and water parks. We visited Typhoon Lagoon first and Blizzard Beach second. I absolutely loved Typhoon Lagoon (and also wrote a separate review of it) so Blizzard Beach had a lot to live up to. We reached Blizzard Beach by bus. If you are staying at a Disney resort, you are able to catch free buses to all of the Disney parks. Our park tickets were included in our package, so we didn't have to worry about entry costs to any of the parks. We could come and go as we pleased. However park prices are generally very expensive at Disney. A one day adult pass at Blizzard Beach costs $52.00 and a one day child pass costs $44.00, on the gate. These prices are quite high (especially for a water park) but I still think it's worth doing (although if you want to choose between the two water parks, I'd probably choose Typhoon Lagoon). You can park at Blizzard Beach at no extra cost. The park opening times are usually 9am - 5pm or 10am - 6pm. Orlando has all year round warm weather, so any time of year would be a good time to visit. We visited in April and it was very hot. The water is heated so is suitable for everyone. It is best to get to Blizzard Beach as soon as it opens to secure yourself a seat/lounger. Seats and loungers are free to use and there are lots of them, however Blizzard Beach gets absolutely packed (from early and throughout the day) and finding somewhere to sit down is extremely hard. You should find somewhere that provides some shade (keep in mind that the sun will move!), like under a tree or next to a rock. Don't forget to put on your waterproof sun cream too, I got very burnt! Unfortunately there are usually wait times for most of the slides, which can be a bit of a downer. Unlike the Disney theme parks, Blizzard Beach doesn't have a Fastpass system which means you cannot skip any of the queues. My advice would be to do the most popular attractions first. The most popular attractions are Slush Gusher, Summit Plummet, Chairlift and Downhill Double Dipper. You can leave your possessions on your loungers whilst your explore the park but if you have valuables it would probably be a good idea to rent out a locker. Lockers cost $13.00 - $15.00 to rent for the day and require an additional $5.00 deposit. You can bring your own towels or rent them for $2.00 each. The park also has plenty of toilets, showers and changing areas. The theming of Blizzard Beach is very good. It has a more 'fun' theme than Typhoon Lagoon, so may appeal slightly more to children. It's set up to look like a ski resort/winter wonderland and everything is covered in 'snow'! The park plays a bizarre mix of music throughout the park, ranging from summer classics to Christmas songs! The story of Blizzard Beach (according to the park map) is: 'What do you do when a freak snowstorm hits Florida? Build a ski resort, of course! But as our lift went up, so did the temperature, leaving some of the world's fastest, longest, slushing, gushing, downhill thrills and fun for the entire family'. The park is quite large and you may find yourself getting lost a few times, although there are sighposts and maps scattered throughout (you should also pick up a park map at the entrance). As you walk in to the park you will find children's flotation vests. These vests are absolutely free to use and come in different sizes. These were a god send to me as my daughter cannot yet swim and she hates wearing her arm bands. It fitted well and she felt confident in the water whilst wearing it. If you want to take advantage of the free flotation vests you need to get to the park early. The vests went very quickly during our visit. I never thought that the Disney water parks would have characters to meet, but they do. During our visit, we saw Goofy near the entrance (I'm sure there were others throughout the day). The queue to meet him was very small too, so make sure you bring along your autograph books! You can find a number of stalls and kiosks (food and general gifts) at the front of the park, around the entrance. There is also a fast food restaurant, a large shop (which sells anything you could possibly want) and even a 'Polar Pub' inside the park! The restaurant and kiosks accept the Disney Dining Plan (a dining plan which you purchase prior to your trip). We didn't eat at the park. The main pool is called Melt Away Bay, which is a wave pool. You can use rubber dingys in the pool. You need to wait around for a spare dingy to become available, it didn't take us very long to acquire a couple. The waves aren't constant and run every 20 minutes or so. The waves are pretty easy going but fun. Cross Country Creek is a lazy river that runs around the entire outside of the park. There are a number of entry points to enter and exit the attraction. You can ride a rubber dingy, which you need to wait for until one becomes available (we didn't have to wait for long). Cross Country Creek is suitable for everybody and I found laying back and soaking up the Florida sun very relaxing indeed! There is a great little childrens area called Tike's Peak which is suitable for children under 48". Children over 48" should probably avoid this area as they wont be allowed to use the main slides. Tike's Peak has a little pool, an area where water spirts out, lots of tiny slides for toddlers, a 4 person slide (the only slide that adults can ride with their children), a rubber dingy slide and larger slide. My daughter absolutely loved this area as she loves going swimming but isn't very confident in the water. She could ride all of the slides and I felt I had very little to worry about. There is a separate area for older children called Ski Patrol Training Camp. This area has a number of larger (but not too scary) slides, as well as a pool with floating icebergs and a net over the top for children to maneuver their way across. There is also an excellent looking zip line. I didn't spent much time here as it was too young for me and too old for my daughter. Teamboat Springs is a good slide for families and groups, as you sit in giant dingys of up to 6. It's not the most exciting slide in the world (seemingly more exciting for little ones) but it's good fun, especially as it's an experience shared with others. Another slide which you can ride with others (2 at a time) is Runoff Rapids, but we didn't get round to doing this one. Toboggan Racers is a 8 lane slide, with dips all the way down. The slide is higher than you realise when you get up there! You are required to lay on a mat (on your stomach, head first) and race down the slide alongside everybody else. It's good fun and you go very fast, although I felt it was over very quickly. The slide next to it is called Snow Stormers. You ride the same mat (on your stomach, head first) but this time you ride individually. There are 3 different slides to choose from and they twist and turn until you reach the pool at the bottom. I admit, it was a lot faster and vigorous than I expected! The biggest slide in the park is called Summit Plummet which is a 120 foot vertical free fall slide. It's absolutely huge. You go down the slide and in to a cave, although the slide is disguised as a ski slope and it looks as though the rider will fly off the end of the ski slope! Unfortunately I didn't get round to doing this slide, although I would have really liked to. The second biggest slide is Slush Gusher which is long and bumpy (not vertical). This is a really thrilling slide. It's really fast and I even came off the slide on one of the bumps! I wouldn't recommend wearing a bikini for this one and I would recommend wearing goggles if you don't like getting water in your face! There's a lot of walking to be done and stairs to climb if you want to reach the big slides. However the easiest and most fun way is by Chairlift. The Chairlift offers one-way transport to the top of Mount Gushmore (where Summit Plummet, Slush Gusher and Teamboat Springs can be found) and looks like the kind you would take to the top of a mountain whilst skiing. There was a constant queue for the Chairlift during our visit but the queue seemed to go down fast, and it's definitely still worth doing. Just outside of Blizzard Beach is a mini golf course called Disney's Winter Summerland. It's themed to show where Santa goes on holiday! We had a look around (it's quite lovely) but didn't play any golf. There is a charge for this but you don't need a park ticket as it's situated outside of the park. Overall we had a great day out at Blizzard Beach. The theme was brilliant, the slides were excellent and both the kids and adults loved it. I would definitely visit again and would highly recommend it to others. However I must admit that I did prefer Typhoon Lagoon slightly more. The slides at Blizzard Beach are more exciting but I preferred Typhoon Lagoon's tropical theme, plus Typhoon Lagoon has a superior wave pool in comparison to Blizzard Beach (you can also swim with sharks at Typhoon Lagoon).

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        08.05.2010 22:15
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        A NICE DAY AWAY FROM THE HUSTLE AND BUSTLE OF THE THEME PARKS

        We first went to Blizzard Beach last year in 2009 , as we wanted a rest from all the hustle and bustle of the theme parks , and all that shopping, and Typhoon Lagoon was closed. on arrival we had to go through security but this time we learnt from previous years that you can't take any of your own drinks , we left the drinks at the hotel, so we took advantage of the drinks system they have here also where you purchase the sourvenir cup for $11 and have the free refills all day , we also filled the cup up before we came out and took it with us. It is pretty much the same as Typhoon Lagoon, and was impressed as it had plenty of seating area and it was all you wanted for an afternoon of rest you had children swimming area with a beachy area for the adults to sit and relax whilst the children played in the water , with little chutes and waterfalls. It was excellent, this part was especially good as it was only around 3 feet deep which was great for splashing around, and brilliant for our children as they couldn't swim. I was personally impressed with the lazy river , and left my children with my husband and disappeared on the this for about and hour, you had to get on a rubber ring and just float around the river , i was also very impressed with the amount of lifeguards they had on staff here , there must have been hundreds of them. Well just goes to show that safety is paramount to Disney no matter what.

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        12.10.2009 14:44
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        Lets for ski............. i mean swimming.

        Disney blizzard beach is the 3rd water park in Walt Disney World but is only the 2nd active water park. The water park opened in April 1995 and the parks theme is: A freak snowstorm hit the area, which created Florida's first ski resort. The snow didn't last long, leaving behind a collection of waterlogged ski jumps and chair lifts. The failed resort was in the process of closing for good when an alligator was seen sliding down a flume and splashing into a pool of water. The alligator is the mascot of the park named Ice Gator. Of course this is all just a story but makes a great taking point. The park has an amazing choise of pools, slides, shops and food to chooes from. The parks signature ride it Summet Plummet. A 120ft free fall slide. This ride can get riders reaching a massive 65KPH. I have done this ride and it scared me so much I loved it. You can see all around from the top of the slide and the sensation of free falling is great. This is a must do. If you don't want to the a free fall ride next to it is the Slush Gusher a 90ft slide that is a bit more tame. Downhill Double Dippers are a great family ride. 8 slides side by side ready for you to race your contenders. Cross Country Creek is a 3,000ft lazy river. As you go round on the tubes you can relax and take in the sun. Just be careful as there are a few waterfalls along the way. Tike's Peak is a area for childern. Smaller slides and pools are located here so everyone can have fun. There is many take aways around the park. you can get hot dogs to salads. Cookies to donuts This is such a good park with so much to do. You could speand the whole day here fi you wanted. Well worth going.

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          07.10.2009 21:51
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          Great day out but better with older children

          Blizzard beach is the newest of 2 water parks in Walt Disney World Florida. (The otehr being typhoon lagoon). Whilst Blizzard Beach is not my favourite of the 2 i would still never go to Orlando without visiting both (if open). Blizzard beach has been excellently themed. The story is that Florida once had a large snow storm, and straight away a tourist ski resort was opened. The Florida sun came back and the ski resort started to melt, and what was left was Blizzard Beach. They ahve done a really good job with the theme in this park - all around there are references to a ski resort whether its the snow covered hills or an alligator on ski's. Personally i think this park is more aimed towards young couples or teenages more than families with older people or young children, although they do have a seperate kids area. The main rides are on the mountain - mount rushmore. You can either walk up the stairs (lots of them!!) or take the chair lift up. The big ride is called summit plummet which is a near vertical drop - i love this ride ...once im on it! it takes a lot of bottle for me to go on it though! definately not for everyone. The do have a slightly smaller ride call slush gusher but this has a small dip in the middle of it and i find that worse! They have a few rides where you can race each other - downhill douple dipper, snow stormers and toboggan races which are fun if there are a few of you (or fun even if your on your own!) as well as a few rides for smaller kids. There is also a lazy river that runs around the park with rubber rings for you to sit in. This lazy river has lots of surprises the whole way round too! As i mentioned this is not my favourite of the 2 water parks but it is a great place to visit! It can get very busy so its a good idea to get there early. There is loads to do and if it gets a bit too hot there is a crazy golf just outside the entrance!

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            02.08.2009 22:50
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            get there early and beat the rush

            I left this park only a few days ago and I be honest it is starting to look a bit tired, It is just like typoon lagoon but more popular as it is newer so it you want to avoid the ques go to typoon lagoon. Bizard beach has lots of slides and you can compete with your family on the slides and even if your are a big person don't worry there is always some one bigger than you !!! when i was 24 stone I thought every one was stareing and I was the fattest one there now i am 12 stone and gosh I was thin compared to some of them. Any way there are lost of rides for you to do including the family raft ride and tabogans but i would avoid the really big side that hurt my bum!! but I suggest you get there early aim for magic hours if you can then get in and out at the lates by 1pm so you don't get too burnt or que too long, if you plan in advance you don't ue and you don't miss out you can chill in the big pool by 11am

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            09.07.2009 13:23
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            Loved it but preffer Typoon Lagoon

            We have had some great days out here although if only visiting one water park we would choose Typhoon lagoon over it as it has a far bigger wave pool and looks more natural. That said the slides are fantastic, the park is designed to look like a ski resort with fake mountain peaks. Summit plummet is the largest and fastest slide we have ever been on we did it once just to say we had but it was a bit much for us and can be a little painful as you are travelling really fast but the feeling is out of this world. There are plenty of other great slides and we love the toboggan runs and tube slides. There is a really good family tube ride called team boat springs, and when you get tired grab a tube and float around the cross country creek which is around 1/2 mile long and is very relaxing when it is not so busy. A good tip we found was when you first arrive and are looking for somewhere to set up if like us you want a quieter spot head anticlockwise round behind the main mountain area and you can find some much smaller seat and sunbathing areas. Make sure you use plenty of sun screen as you get burnt so easy walking around the park.

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              27.05.2009 15:20
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              Really good park, would reccommend taking smaller children here.

              Blizzard Bech is one of two Disney water Parks, the other being Typhoon Lagoon. This water park is excellently themed as a ski resort in Florida. The story behind this park is that a snowstorm resulted in Florida's first ski resort, however, when the snow melted, Florida's sun turned the ski slopes into water slides. Melt-Away Bay is Blizzard Beach's wave pool, this is pretty tame for a wave pool, and nothing compared to that of Typhoon Lagoon. There is a ski resort Chair Lift which you need to ride to get to the top of "Mount Gushmore", this is quite slow though so I'd recommend walking. At the top on "Mount Gushmore" is Summit Plummet which is a water coaster this is suppose to get riders up to 60 miles per hour and hurles you down a 350-foot slide. This is the iconic ski jump which can be seen from all over the park. The Other rides are quite tame but include; Teamboat Springs - a raft ride Toboggan Racers - which is a mat you go down on your belly. Cross-Country Vreek - Is a very large lazy river type thing, which is really lazy as you will probably end up having to swim - or you'll be there all day. Slusher Gusher - this is the children's equivalent to the the summet plummet, it is pretty tame. These are just a few of the rides that are there, there are still plenty more to go through. This park does get busy about 11ish but most people have cleared out by mid after noon so either go for it opening or the last couple of hours. Locker Rooms with changing facilities and showers are offered near the entrance to the park. Small lockers cost around $5 plus a deposit, large lockers cost around $7 plus a deposit, towels can be rented for $1, and life jackets and tubes are available free of charge.

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              03.03.2009 20:03
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              A great day out with fun family rides and solo slides

              Blizzard Beach is one of the best waterparks in the world. The basis of the waterpark is a story that there was once a freak storm that left everywhere covered in snow. Everywhere in the park has the feel of snow and ice. One of the best family water rides at the park is one called Teamboat Springs. You and your family sit in the circular inflatable dingy and then travel down a large open top tube that represents an avalanche. The ride goes quite fast and twists and turns down the tube until you get to the bottom and land is a large area of mid deep water with a splash! A ride not for the faint hearted is Summit Plummet which is the main attraction. This ride is an almost vertical drop which can send you to speeds of up to quite fast speeds. It is the second tallest and fastest free fall ride in the world. Blizzard beach also has a man made beach area for those who dont like water slides and if you need to cool off there is a Meltaway Bay which is fed by melting snow waterfalls. A brilliant place to visit.

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                02.02.2007 22:15
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                A great place to cool down in the summer sun

                Only the Disney corporation could come up with the idea of a park based on a ski resort smack bang in the middle of Florida, but they did and it certainly works. Blizzard Beach, Orlando is a water park based loosely around a ski resort packed with slides etc. based on a snow and ice theme. According to the Walt Disney World Website: "Legend has it that a freak snowstorm resulted in Florida's first ski resort, but when temperatures rose, the Florida sun turned the ski runs into water slides" Only Disney could come up with a line like that. The Slides: Summit Plummet: This is a 120 foot, 60 mph near vertical slide designed to look like a ski jump. The queues to this slide are very long especially if like me you get to the top, look down the slide and decide it is not for you. It is worth going to the top though for the all-round view of the area, you can see trees for as far as the eye can see with the occasional Disney Theme Park stuck in the middle of them. Toboggan Racer: Is an 8 lane water slide over bumps on a rubber toboggan. Slush Gusher: Slide through a snow banked gully. Snow Stormers: A flume ride on a rubber toboggan down 3 different flumes. Steamboat Springs: A white water rafting trip down a 1200 foot "river" in a 3-5 person rubber raft. Run Off Rapids: Ride an inner tube down 3 different flumes. Downhill Double Dipper: The worlds only side by side tube ride which reaches speeds up to 25mph. There is also a large pool for you to relax in away from the hectic slides or you could take a leisurely ride on a tube around the park on the Cross Country Creek. There is an area for the kids with pools, slides and other things for them to do. There is a chairlift that takes you up to the summit of Mount Gushmore from its base by the beach. The whole park is properly supervised with several lifeguards who keep rotating their position throughout the day so that they don’t get bored and complacent, and yes just like Baywatch they wear red shorts and swimsuits. There is a variety of places around the park where you can buy either snacks or lunch and meals at affordable prices. You can also buy souvenirs with of course the Disney and Blizzard Beach branding from the shops near the entrance/exit and should you run out of money which is quite easy to do at Walt Disney World there is an ATM just outside by the ticket booths. Should you forget to bring a towel they can be hired from Snowless Joe’s at a reasonable cost, this is also the location of the lockers which you can hire for the day. You can wash all the "snow and ice" off you in one of the shower blocks which is also near to Snowless Joes. As is usual at most theme parks there are the usual restrictions like height and age to ride some of the slides and they also advise you not to use some of them if you are pregnant. The park is open at various times but 9am until 7pm seems to be about the maximum time although the times may vary due to holidays and the weather. Tickets can be bought in various places, either at the gate, hotels, shops, roadside booths, your travel agents on the internet or the Disney Store. There are too many variations in the price to put here as you can get entry with the multi day passes or buy tickets just to enter on the day. A word of warning, take plenty of high factor sun screen, preferably waterproof and apply it regularly as the heat of the sun is magnified by the water, a hat is also a good option even if it does get wet. A zip up pocket on your swimming clothing is a good idea as well to keep a small amount of money in to buy drinks instead of going back to your locker all the time for money. Blizzard Beach can be found on the massive Walt Disney World complex and is well signposted from all over it. I would definitely recommend Blizzard Beach to anyone especially if they want a relaxing day out in a safe family environment from the hustle and bustle of all the other theme parks and attractions Orlando has to offer.

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                  30.10.2005 11:25
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                  Typical Disney Park Brillaint, Brilliant, Brilliant

                  Before visiting Blizzard Beach last year i thought it was just going to e another water park. Oh how i was wrong! Blizzard Beach is fantastic its got everything you would want in a water park + its clean! As you walk into the park there is a shop where you can rent a locker and by a huge drinking flask that you can just keep filling and filling for free! theres coke, fanta, sprite even iced tea. then you should move on to the changing rooms (near the lockers) and get changed. you must do this all very quickly or get to the park 30 minutes early to get some sunbeds. When you are settled there are some rides you must go on! Summit Plummit - A brilliant thrill ride, plummits you 120 feet down at 60 mph (you may come off with a real big wedgie:P) + Summit Plummit is of course up a 120 foot mountain so make sure you take your water proof camera to the top of the mountain to take some pictures of the great views you get, you can see Exbidition Everest and Tower of terror perfectly. Slush Gusher - While not as intense as the nearby Summit Plummet, this is still a challenging course. You'll go over two "moguls" and reach speeds of up to 50 mph as you careen down this 250-foot snow-banked mountain channel. Must be at least 48 inches to ride. Snow Stormers - Three 350 feet long flumes descend from the mountain's peak and follow a switchback course through slalom gates. Runoff Rapids - Climb aboard an inner tube and rush down this 600-foot course through twisting and turning flumes, passing through corrugated steel pipes and falling into total darkness at the end. Toboggan Racer - You lie on your mat face down and begin your headfirst slide down the 250 feet waterway. This 8-lane course has some fun dips as you descend the snow slope Downhill Double Dipper - Standing 50 feet high and 230-feet long, side-by-side racing slides have you traveling at speeds up to 25 mph as you race against your competitor aboard an inner tube. Time clocks count off each downhill heat and the runs have audio equipment that signal the start of each race. You must be 48 inches tall. Team Boat Srings - 6 People jump into a HUGE rubber ring and rush down a HUGE slide. Food - You can buy many different varietys of food, mainly hot dogs and burgers but you can by veggie food around the park also. Park Over all - The park is brilliant way to relax in the blazing floridian sun shine, you can relax if you wish but if you are a thrill seeker there are many rides to go on.

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                    19.09.2003 03:53
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                    Disney's Blizzard Beach is probably the most bizarre water park I have ever been to. The fact that Disney has water parks seems strange in itself but I suppose it is about just that- making it another world. We spent a day there as part of our first trip to the sunshine state last year and it was a lovely break from the days of wandering around theme parks queuing for rides. We had 10-day World Passes that we had bought in advance from our travel agent and which allowed us access to all Disney parks for 10 days. It was £199 which sounds a lot but works out a lot cheaper than buying individual passes and gives you the chance to return to your favourite parks. Blizzard Beach is clearly signposted upon entering Walt Disney World and ample parking is available for $6 a day. I do find that this parking leaves a sour taste to an otherwise unfaultable day out. Why should you pay to park when admission is so high anyway? Blizzard Beach is one of three water parks in Walt Disney World. Others are Typhoon Lagoon and River Country. The latter was actually closed during our visit as it was being renovated. We only visited Blizzard Beach but I would love to see the others too. You were allowed to take one cool box per family in which I thought was a good idea as buying drinks and snacks at a place like this can hurt the wallet! No glass or alcohol is allowed to be taken in, which is expected. Towels and life jackets are available for hire but we didn?t bother with these. We did hire a locker though for $5 plus a $2 deposit. Again, why should you be paying as it is obvious people will need a locker. I would definitely advise you use the lockers because you are then free to enjoy the park fully without the worry of where your belongings are. There is not that much Disney influence at this park in terms of cheerful music and characters at every corner so it is a welcome break for those that may be beginning to tire of the Disney mania. <br >But you can still tell it has that magical touch and is like walking into a cartoon. It is amazing how such a close eye to detail can be paid to a water park! As you have probably guessed from the name, Blizzard Beach is themed around a ski resort- rather strange as it is in a place renowned for its sunshine and sandy beaches! The story behind it is that a businessman tried to open a ski resort in Florida during a bad winter. But the snow melted and the palm trees grew back leaving only a lodge, mountain and ski lift. Voila- Blizzard Beach! I told you it isn?t traditionally Disney, but it?s great fun all the same! Staying with this theme, there is a huge ?mountain? with slides running off it and ?snow? is all around, plus ?icicles? adorn the mountainside. A wave pool is a lot of fun and is apparently the result of the melted snow (what do you mean you don?t believe me ;o) A moat-like stream surrounds the entire park and you can float along it in a rubber ring. It is called Cross Country Creek and is a really relaxing ride- great for soaking up a bit of sun. There are little waterfalls dotted around though and be warned- the water is freezing! I know because my boyfriend found it hilarious to push me under each one of them and hold me there- pure evil!! Talking of sun, remember to take plenty of suncream and reapply it after being in the water. Water parks are the worst offenders for leaving you sunburnt! Places for sunbathing on loungers are dotted around the park, as are picnic spots. There is also a dedicated children?s area ensuring there is something for al ages. Some of the larger slides have height restrictions. The children?s area, Tike?s Peak and Ski Patrol Training Camp, had smaller slides and a water assault course. It looked a lot of fun! A ski lift takes you to the top of the ?mountain? for access to the higher slides to save you keep taking the st airs, which does get a bit tiring on your legs after a few trips up! It only takes you to Summit Plummet, Slusher Gusher and Teamboat Springs. The ski lift is actually like a ride in itself. I would recommend buying a waterproof camera if you are planning on visiting this park as we got some really fun shots on the slides! The park has 17 slides and we didn?t have to queue for very long for any of them. Among them is Summit Plummet which begins with a 120-ft freefall and reaches speeds of up to 60mph. There was absolutely no way I was going on this! I went on a slightly smaller one next to it and hated every second of it. My boyfriend braved this one though and liked it. I stayed at the bottom playing photographer. He was that high up that I couldn?t tell if it was him or not! I waved at every man getting ready to go on the slide until he waved back- how embarrassing! I did go on everything else though and loved them all. Slusher Gusher is great (and I love its name!) and is quite scary when you are on it. You start off by plunging into a covered tunnel so you are in darkness and you just seem to drop. I have never screamed so much when I?ve been on my own! Teamboat Springs is slightly tamer. Several people can get in one of the rafts and it apparently goes faster the more people you have in it. Two was enough for me as my boyfriend kept trying to tip the thing over. As you can gather, he is adventurous. I am not. Run-off rapids were great and consist of a choice of three slides. Two are open and one is in the dark. You have the choice of riding alone or sharing a double raft- which I always find more fun. One attraction that we competitively raced each other on several times was the Snow Stormer. Each person picked up a mat with two handles on and lay down forwards at the top of the slide holding onto the handles. Six people could go at any one time and pushed off when the member of staff signalled the s tart. It was a slide consisting of several bumps and the first to the bottom wins. There were no queues when we visited but in peak season you could be waiting a long time as you have to queue once to get a mat and then again to ride. It would be better if the mats were available at the start of the ride as it would kill two birds with one stone. Queues do tend to pick up as the day goes on, as does the heat. I would suggest getting here early and staying for a few hours before leaving to go and do something else. It?s meant to be fun after all and standing around in sweltering heat isn?t most people?s idea of fun! Several shops offering souvenirs and useful bits and bobs you may have forgotten to take along are located near the entrance. Toilets are also located here and were very clean. There are places to grab a bite to eat, although we didn?t so I can?t really comment on that aspect of the park. Several people were eating there though and it did look nice. The park?s First Aid office is located here. We had to pay it a visit as I got bitten by an evil looking bug-type thing and it started swelling up. It was very clean, had several members of staff and looked very well-stocked. It is always comforting to know that such a place is being run so professionally as this was. The opening times vary depending on the season and up-to-date information is available on the official website at www.disney.com I loved this park and it was so different from the others. It had that Disney touch though in its perfect appearance and cleanliness and was like a different world! I thought it was great. My boyfriend, who likes the more daring rides, thought it could have done with a few more big slides like Summit Plummet. I daresay people with young children would want to see tamer rides. It?s a hard balance to strike but I feel it is well on the way to getting it right. A superb place to vis it. Thanks for re ading :o)

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                      18.10.2001 17:30
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                      What happens when someone decides to build a ski resort during a freak snowstorm in Florida? Well, all the snow would melt and you’d be left with Blizzard Beach! BB is the largest of all 3 Disney water parks (Typhoon Lagoon and River Country are the other two) and although it sounds like a good idea, it isn’t the best of the water parks. It has all the usual slides and rafts and other attractions that make up a water park worth its salt, including a terrifying straight down plunge (cleverly disguised as a ski jump) called Summit Plummet. It also has a wave pool and a lazy river, but in my opinion, all these are much better at Typhoon Lagoon. The main trouble with Blizzard Beach is that, due to the theming, there aren’t that many trees around which make it look quite stark (and the lack of shade can be critical during the summer); plus most of the park is white which means that if you aren’t careful, you could end up with a nasty sunburn. (In fact, Disney cast members with experience can spot a BB sunburn from a mile off!!) Therefore, during the hottest time of day you could always take a break on the Winter Summerland Miniature Golf course that is just next to BB (a combo ticket is available). This mini golf is great fun, again with a wintertime/Christmas theming that can look quite bizarre in the middle of summer but it somehow works. Something that is quite common in BB (and indeed all the Disney water parks) is that, during the summer, you may hear an announcement over the PA asking you to stay away of any areas with water. This is due to one of Florida’s most common natural dangers – lightning. If there is a lightning threat due to an incoming storm, Disney policy is to ask all guests to stay away from pools and all water to eliminate the risk of being hit by lightning. As rain storms are usually in the afternoons (4-5 pm) what usually happens is that most people head out of the park anyway – and once the danger has passed and guests are allowed back on water, the park can be blissfully empty and queues are nearly non-existent. If you do get a lightning threat during your stay on a Disney water park, it may be worth your while to stay put for a while (maybe play Mini Golf!) and head back once the warning has been called off. Back on BB, although I do like it much better than Wet n Wild (naff water park located in International Drive) it isn’t as good as Typhoon Lagoon. While many of the rides are similar, somehow TL does a much better job of conveying a relaxed atmosphere. BB is fun because of the extremely weird theming (and to be fair, Disney have done a very good job of “converting” a ski resort into a water park, even down to including chair lifts!) but if you are faced with the choice, Blizzard Beach may lose out to Typhoon Lagoon. So if you do decide to head out to BB (or you find that you have to as TL is so full that no more people are allowed in) then make sure you take your sunscreen.

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                        25.03.2001 16:30

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                        A holiday in Florida visiting the Disney theme parks and other Orlando attractions can be very tiring and it is definitely worthwhile considering taking a break at one of the water parks Disney has to offer. There are three in total: Blizzard Beach, River Country and Typhoon Lagoon. OVERVIEW Legend has it that a freak snowstorm resulted in Florida's first ski resort, but when the temperatures rose, the sun turned the ski runs into water slides and the creek of melted snow that formed the base of the mountain became a relaxing tube ride. The ski jump became the tallest and fastest water slide in the world "Summit Plummet". The village also has a character "Ice Gator" who makes daily appearances to keep the children happy. The park centres around "Melt Away Bay", a bobbing wave pool, the waves from which lap onto a thin strip of beach lined by sunbeds. I hasten to add that these sunbeds are crammed closely together with no room to move which isn't ideal if you like to have some privacy. THE RIDES Cross Country Creek is a continuous flowing river that circles the entire park. Ice Gator's house is actually on the creek and as you float by you may hear him grumbling away to himself as he's in bed with a cold. When he sneezes a fountain of cold water flies from the chimney and sprays passers by. There are various jets of icy water to splash through on this river journey, the worst being a waterfall at the entrance to the caves (which is fantastic as you can slyly push your friends under). Summit Plummet is the world's tallest free fall body slide. This ride is certainly not for the faint hearted. I went to the top and looked down and thought NO WAY (remember to keep your legs closed). Slush Gusher is a snow banked mountain gully style speed slide. Again, certainly for the more daring visitor. Teamboat Springs is the world's longe st family raft ride. A very enjoyable ride, the employees would spray you wet as you go down(so get em back) HA! Toboggan Racers. An eight lane toboggan slide. (You have to lie on a mat for this one). Snow Stormers. These are slalom style mat slides. Downhill Double Dipper. These are side by side racing slides. The attendants on this ride like to have fun with the visitors by pretending to shoot them down backwards rather than forwards. There's a stop clock at the bottom of the ride so the racers can check their times against one another. Ski Patrol Training Camp is a pre teen area featuring slides, a T bar drop and an iceberg walk. Runoff Rapids. Three open and enclosed inner tube rides. Great fun. Tike's Peak is a happy, safe children's area complete with slides, fountain play area and pop jets. There is a chairlift available, but I would point out that small children are not a allowed it oterwise its a long walk up tovisit Teamboat Springs. FACILITIES The life guards are very attentive throughout the whole park. Lockers and towel rentals. Life vests for children. These are provided free of charge. Guests must leave a form of ID or hotel room key. Dressing rooms. Beach Haus, souvenir shop. Picnic areas. Various snack bars. As mentioned in my Typhoon Lagoon review, I would recommend that you buy drink bottles from super markets much cheaper (a friend spent $100 on bottled drink we spent about $12) This saves you money so you can buy other things (great). FINALLY Writing this opinion has reminded me of the great time I had at Blizzard Beach and Iwill definitely be going again!(dont know when) hope this has helped you decide to go. cheers for reading John

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