A theme park isn’t complete without a water ride. There’s nothing like riding a good log flume or river rapids on a hot summer day. Universal’s Islands of Adventure Water Rides are a whole lot of fun.
Universal Islands of Adventure is somewhat unique in that most other major theme parks like Magic Kingdom, Disneyland, and Seaworld Orlando only have one or two water attractions while IOA has three.
Let’s take a look at those three attractions in detail.
Keep in mind that at the other park in the resort, Universal Studios, there aren’t any major water rides, besides a kid’s waterslide at Fievel’s Playland. Therefore, if you want to experience water rides, go to Islands of Adventure.
Also, just know that here we are talking about the theme parks at Universal Orlando. If you want a water park with lots of great slides and attractions, a visit to Volcano Bay is a fabulous option.
Let’s get back to the theme parks though with Universal’s Islands of Adventure.
Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls (Located In Toon Lagoon)
A log flume attraction based on the cartoon characters from the Dudley Do-Right Show (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dudley_Do-Right – don’t be embarrassed, I had to read that too).
It’s like Splash Mountain, but without the sinking logs.
The story revolves around Dudley Do-Right trying to rescue Nell from his nemesis Snidely and includes lots of gags, some of which are parodies from movies and other theme park attractions.
Out of the three water rides at Islands of Adventure, this is the most thrilling. There are three drops, with the final one standing at 75 feet at a 50-degree angle.
What makes the final drop special compared to other log flume attractions is after the drop you zoom over a small incline, causing you to get lifted off your seat.
Keep in mind that no matter which seat you go in you’re almost guaranteed to get wet. Also, in the front seats, you will get completely drenched.
I would also try out the test vehicle at the entrance of the ride. The employees urge you to board the log as fast as possible, and the thing is you board the log in a very unconventional way for an attraction at a major theme park like Universal.
Therefore, some might like to quickly see how you get in before riding the attraction. It might save your dignity!
The Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls ride is a must-do for any thrill-seeker going to the park. While you might not know who the characters in the ride are, you’ll still have an absolute blast.
Popeye & Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges (Located In Toon Lagoon)
Based on the iconic character Popeye (or at least, Wikipedia says he is – I don’t really know), Popeye & Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges is a river rapids attraction that’s perfect for anyone who needs to cool off in the Florida sun.
The character of Popeye may be somewhat outdated and dare I say rather an unusual choice, but the ride is certainly one worth experiencing.
You board a 10-person round river raft and go on a thrilling adventure with Popeye through raging rapids, which ends in a climactic drop into a pool of water.
No matter where you sit in the raft, there’s a huge chance you will get drenched.
Out of the three, this is definitely the weakest water ride at Islands of Adventure, mostly because it isn’t very thrilling. The final drop is not very fast or steep, so it’s a little underwhelming.
If you are looking for extreme thrills you really need to look elsewhere.
However, it’s a really fun ride to go on with your friends and family, as you never know who’s going to get drenched next.
One time when I went on this ride, I said “oh, I’m not actually getting too wet this time around,” and – well, take one guess as to what happened next…
Jurassic Park River Adventure (Located In Jurassic Park)
See dinosaurs on this relaxing boat tour of Jurassic Park – well, relaxing until the velociraptors get loose…
This ride is spectacular. It feels like you’re in a Jurassic Park movie.
Really feels like that T-Rex is going to get you.
Everything is peaceful at first, but then alarms start blaring with announcements saying that you’ve strayed off course and are entering the raptor containment area.
Then you see that the raptors have torn through the fences of their enclosure, and for the next few terrifying minutes, you’re searching all around you, wondering if they’re going to strike.
Then it all ends in a climactic escape where you go down an 85-foot 51-degree angle drop into a river.
This is by far my favorite water ride at Islands of Adventure. It’s thrilling and scary, and the animatronic dinosaurs look amazing.
If you’re in the first few rows, you’ll probably get wet. In the back though, there’s a good chance you won’t get wet, so if you don’t feel like getting wet, ask the ride attendant for the back row.
Useful Things To Know About Water Rides at Islands of Adventure
All of these water rides in Islands of Adventure have a height requirement. Jurassic Park River Adventure and Popeye & Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges are 42″ and Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls is 44″.
You will get wet. If you experience these rides most likely wherever you sit and whatever you do, you will get very wet.
Of course, this can be a very good thing in Orlando for most of the year. However, sometimes you might regret that you were tempted by how much fun the rides looked.
Doesn’t seem quite so great when you are soaked to the skin in December. I know. I’ve done it.
However, there are some ways to minimize this. Wet shoes are not great and tend to be one of the more uncomfortable things to deal with in that situation! Particularly if you are wearing socks. No matter how hot it is, those things probably aren’t going to dry all day.
Flip flops are a good idea, but you have to balance this with walking around the park in them, which is not a great idea. You could carry a spare pair in your backpack and just use them for water rides.
Also, a spare t-shirt might even be a good idea.
You could also wear a poncho. I know that these aren’t exactly the height of fashion but they do a decent job of keeping you dry. Remember to buy them outside the park to save money on the ones offered at the stores in the parks.
There are dryers in the parks. Large enough to fit up to three adults. They are located close to each of the water rides and cost $5. This is a small price to pay compared to the discomfort of walking around the park in wet clothes!
Which is your favorite Islands of Adventure Water Ride?
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