15 Volcano Bay Tips
If you’re planning a Universal Orlando vacation and want to visit Volcano Bay, this is for you. After these 15 Volcano Bay tips, you’ll be a Volcano Bay pro!
If you rent a car for your Orlando vacation, you want to save as much money as possible, right? I recommend renting a car from Discount USA Car Rental.
I highly recommend buying tickets through Undercover Tourist to get the best deals. There are a lot of really scammy sites out there, so make sure you’re booking through an approved partner (like Undercover Tourist) or an approved Travel Agent!
Now that you have tickets and a rental car, on to the Volcano Bay hacks. When you’re done here, don’t miss our 2023 Universal Orlando Planning Guide.
What is Volcano Bay?
Volcano Bay is Universal Studios’ third theme park in Orlando, Florida. I have lots of Volcano Bay tips for first-timers to share today. I will even let you in on some secrets, including Volcano Bay hacks.
But first, a little background on Volcano Bay.
This is not the first water park for Universal Studios. Before opening this park, Universal purchased and operated the Wet ‘n Wild Water Park. (Fun fact! Now you can share your knowledge with your new friends at Universal.)
Volcano Bay opened to the public in May 2017, shortly after they closed Wet ‘n Wild. The entire park was designed with the artificial volcano, Krakatau, in mind. That volcano is 200 feet tall. It is the main feature of this water park.
Krakatau currently features waterfalls all day and night. There is a fiery lava flow once the sun goes down. I say now because Universal could make changes to this volcano at any time. After all, they want to keep things exciting for visitors like us!
Rides at Volcano Bay
This volcano has four different rides/slides. The first is the Krakatau Aqua Coaster. Climb into the 4-person canoe to go uphill. Once you reach the top, you will twist and turn through the volcano until you plunge to the bottom pool through a waterfall.
The Krakatau Aqua Coaster is unique and unlike anything, you’ll see at another water park.
Exploring the underwater sea caves is easy on the Punga Racers. The Kala & Tai Nui Serpentine Body Slides drop guests straight down into the pool below.
The Ko’okiri Body Plunge will have you going down a 125-foot-long slide at a 70-degree angle. I will be honest, I have not done this one, but Kainan has and says it’s fun but terrifying.
Other water rides can be found within Wave Village, Rainforest Village, and River Village.
I could go on and on about the rides, but this wouldn’t be just a post on Volcano Bay tips!
So, to keep me on track, I will start sharing my favorite Volcano Bay tips for first-timers!
Volcano Bay Tips
Here are 15 Volcano Bay Tips and Volcano Bay Hacks on your next Universal Orlando vacation. Check out First Timer Tips for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter for even more Universal Orlando tips!
1. Stay at a Universal Orlando Resort Hotel
You can easily stay at any Universal Orlando Resort Hotels and have a fantastic time at Volcano Bay. But one of my best Volcano Bay hacks is to encourage people to stay at Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort.
You get early park admission half an hour before Volcano Bay opens (you can get this with all Universal hotels), but there’s also a short walkway from Cabana Bay right to Volcano Bay!
It’s worth paying for the “Volcano Bay view” rooms because 1) it’s an epic view, and 2) you’re guaranteed to be close to Volcano Bay!
Although I recommend staying at Cabana for easy access to Volcano Bay, you can’t go wrong with any Universal hotel! Universal Orlando is home to eight resorts; Hard Rock Hotel, Loews Portofino Bay, Loews Sapphire Falls Resort, Loews Royal Pacific, Aventura Hotel, Cabana Bay Beach Resort, and Universal Endless Summer Resorts – Dockside Inn and Suites and Seaside Inn and Suites.
Click on any of the links to check pricing during your vacation dates. Remember that Hard Rock Hotel, Loews Portofino Bay, and Loews Royal Pacific all include free Express Passes for your entire group, which can be A huge savings in both money and time on a busy day.
Pro Tip: Early in the day is when to go on Kala & Tai Nui Serpentine Body Slides, Krakatau Aqua Coaster, and Ko’kiri Body Plunge. There won’t be long lines since everyone staying off-site can’t enter the park early.
2. Purchase a Multi-Day Park to Park Ticket
It can take two days to see and experience everything in Volcano Bay. Therefore, it is best to visit the park at least twice. You can do a full day and then a few hours another day after seeing the other Universal parks.
If you’re visiting during a slow time, it may not be necessary to spend two full days at Volcano Bay. However, there’s hardly any slow times at Universal Orlando anymore!
3. Always Arrive Early When Possible
Arriving at Volcano Bay early ensures you can enter the park. This water park can reach maximum capacity quickly. When that happens, no one else is allowed to enter until later in the day when people begin to leave.
If you are not planning on spending all day at Volcano Bay, you still have options. For later in the day arrivals, I recommend waiting until mid-afternoon for your arrival. This will give you a better chance of walking right in and enjoying the water rides.
You can also call 407-817-8317 to see Volcano Bay’s current capacity before heading to the park.
4. Create a Universal Account
One of my favorite Volcano Bay tips to give first-timers is creating a Universal account. Once you have your account, you must connect your credit card.
Your account will then be used when you utilize Tapu Tapu at Volcano Bay. Tapu Tapu has a tap-to-pay capability. Renting a locker, paying for food and drinks, and shopping are so much easier when you simply tap to pay!
5. Always Choose a Locker Away from the Entrance
The entrance can become quite crowded, especially around the locker areas. If you want to avoid the crowds (trust me, you do!), I recommend choosing a locker away from the entrance area.
Another Volcano Bay locker tip includes only having one person visiting your locker. The lockers can be difficult to reach when entire families are crowded around a single locker. You do not want to be that person who blocks other people from their locker.
Reserve Those Cabanas and Premium Seating Options in Advance
There are plenty of places to sit between being in the water and on the rides at Volcano Bay. One of the best Volcano Bay tips I can share with you is to make sure you reserve a cabana or premium seating in advance.
Those areas are out of the sun, so they disappear quickly!
I prefer the cabanas because they are private. They come with snacks, a personal server, and other amenities. The premium seating is worth it, too, with the attached safe and canopy.
And if you don’t want to reserve seating, all I can say is to arrive at the park as early as possible. This way, you can secure the perfect beach chairs for your day.
6. Have a Plan in Place
One of the biggest Volcano Bay tips is ensuring you have a plan. The worst thing you can do is arrive at Volcano Bay and have no idea what rides you want to go on. Or simply wander and walk past multiple rides as you check the park out.
You must have a plan to know which rides are at the top of your list. Then make reservations through Tapu Tapu to get into virtual lines. Make sure you allow for downtime in one of the pools or your chairs.
7. Always Pack Essentials
Sunscreen, towels, hats, sunglasses, and even waterproof cases for your phones are necessary. You can easily purchase all these items and many more within the stores at the park. However, you will pay a premium for each one. I recommend buying any necessary items, including a fuel rod to charge your phone (there is a fuel rod swap station at Volcano Bay) in advance.
And no, you won’t need to purchase towels. But you will need to rent them if you do not bring your own.
8. Stay When It Rains
As soon as a bit of rain starts to fall, most people will begin to run out to their cars to leave. One of my favorite Volcano Bay hacks is to stay put and wait. You’re probably wet from the rides anyway, so a bit of rain won’t hurt you.
Besides, most rain in Florida ends after a short period. If you leave, you may not find yourself lucky enough to get back into the park.
9. Stay Late at Volcano Bay
Like the other theme parks in Orlando, many people choose to leave Volcano Bay by late afternoon. They are all tired and ready to eat dinner.
You can take advantage of that and see another side of this theme park. The volcano will light up and change colors if the park is open late enough.
Of course, the lines for the rides are much shorter later in the day. So, you should be able to go on a few extra rides when you stay later than everyone else.
10. Be Prepared to Walk a Lot
The rides and slides at Volcano Bay are all spread out. So, you must be prepared to do a lot of walking when you are there. Flip flops are the shoe of choice for obvious reasons.
If you are tempted to walk around without shoes, you can. Just remember that the walkways can get hot under the Florida sun.
11. Beware If You are Claustrophobic or Afraid of Heights
If you happen to be a person who is afraid of tight spaces, or heights, you will want to be cautious of which rides you go on. Anyone who dislikes small, tight spaces will want to avoid the Kala & Tai Nui Serpentine Body Slides.
And any rides at the top of the Krakatau Volcano might be out if you don’t like heights.
These two things may not be amazing Volcano Bay tips. But they are helpful to those people who have those two fears!
12. Bring Pre-Packaged Snacks
Pre-packaged snacks are allowed inside Volcano Bay. So, if you have children that are always hungry, take advantage of this Volcano Bay hack to save a little money.
Remember that you cannot take in coolers unless they are soft-sided and no bigger than 8.5” x 6” x 6”.
You can also take in water bottles, as long as they are not glass.
13. Save Time and Use Mobile Ordering for Food
Sitting down to grab a bite to eat will sound wonderful during the day. The restaurants at Volcano Bay can get crowded, though, especially if you decide to eat during regular meal times.
I recommend using the Universal Orlando app and ordering your food. You can show up when it is ready instead of waiting in line for an hour.
14. Bring a FuelRod to charge your phone
I mentioned this already, but one of my top Universal Studios tips is having a portable phone charger. This is a good tip for Volcano Bay too! Universal has FuelRod rental stations on site where you can swap out your fuel rod for a new one. There is even one station at Volcano Bay inside Waturi Marketplace.
I recommend buying your own on Amazon (it’s cheaper!) and then switching out at the parks if you need to.
15. Volcano Bay Tips for young children
You might think of water parks as more fun for adults or “big kids,” but Volcano Bay has lots of things for the younger kids too!
If you happen to be traveling with little ones, your options for some of the slides at Volcano Bay will be limited.
That doesn’t mean your little ones won’t have fun, though! There is still plenty to keep them happy and occupied for hours.
If you have littles, I recommend checking out Waturi Beach and The Reef within the Wave Village. Anyone under 48 inches must wear a life vest in those pools.
Over in River Village, the Runamukka Reef is a play area complete with slides for kids under 54 inches. The Tot Tiki Reef is another play area for any child under 48 inches. The Kopiko Wai Winding River is a personal favorite. Just make sure your children under 48 inches have their life vests on.
The Puka Uli Lagoon in Rainforest Village is always a hit with the younger kids. Anyone under 48 inches must also wear a life vest in this pool.
Volcano Bay Tips
There you have it, 15 Volcano Bay Tips and Volcano Bay hacks. Which one was your favorite?
Many times, I am asked, “Is Volcano Bay worth it?”. My response is always, “YES!”. This waterpark is truly unique, and I promise there is something for everyone!
Have you visited Volcano Bay? If so, what is your favorite ride or slide? If not, which ride or slide are you looking forward to the most? Let me know in the comments!
You also won’t want to miss the 10 best thrill rides at Universal. (Two of them at are Volcano Bay!)
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