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Should you got to water park with kids under the age of three: Yes or No?

I know a place. Both young and old can have boundless fun there. You can shout as loud as you can. That’s a place where laughter and adrenaline rule. There is also some fear but it’s the one that makes you dare. It’s a venue where the word “boredom” is not listed on the “menu”. I love that place, because I feel like a child again. I believe that most of you tried it at some point, knocked on its door and gave in to its adventures. Let’s give it a go. Knock knock! Who is it? Swimming Dad with his little shark and fish. The door opens, and a pleasant voice says: Welcome to the Water Park!

When I was a child and used to go on holiday with my parents, we would always book a full day for the water park, if there was one nearby. I apply the same rule today. Nothing has really changed when I became a parent. Actually, I am a slightly more careful about a few things:

  • Avoiding crowds: It’s good to avoid weekends, especially with really small children. The crowds will only spoil their adventure. What I tend to do is to take a day off during the week, if I can, because we can have some proper fun then. My advice is to go to the water park as early as you can because the kids are still full of energy, and the sun isn’t that strong.

  • Safety and protection: In order to have carefree fun, we are always head to toe ready. The adventure doesn’t start before we put on the swimming caps, goggles, long sleeve tops, and shorts or speedos. You also need to apply a sun block cream with an appropriate SPF, especially on your nose and ears because they usually and very easily get sunburnt. For some activities and rides you will need to put on the baby life vests to your kids (water parks should have those).

In a nutshell, we managed to adjust to each other, and we are able to have some real fun with younger kids. One could say, yeah right, as if you take all rides with your kids. Of course not. Those adrenaline rides, such as kamikaze, I take on my own, while they are having a rest in the shade in the afternoon. Then I enjoy some “my time”, while they recharge their batteries for the new adventures. On the other hand, there is a variety of things and rides that you can enjoy with your kids who are under the age of three (of course it depends how ready they are for an adventure in the first place), and where you can all relax and have fun. Here are a few that I enjoy with my little shark and fish:

  • Rafting or “lazy” river: Most of water parks have a lazy river where you can get some rest from the adrenaline rush and get ready for a new ride. However, in some parks even those rivers are an adventure on its own. The moment you feel relaxed, you encounter one then the other speed section, or get splashed by the waves, which are sometimes quite strong. Then you must be wondering how can you go there with younger kids? Very easily. Just pun the life vests on your kids, take a floating rubber ring with the solid bottom (like a mini boat), I did that with my 2.5-year-old little shark while my little 16-month-old fish sat in my lap, and off you go. There are well trained lifeguards at each curve to help your kids get through all the “obstacles” if they need it. The water is quite shallow and even if your rubber ring flips over, but your kids wear the life vests, it won’t be a big deal. They just cool down and you all move on. It is important that you don’t panic.

  • Water slides – children’s world: Water slides, nothing can beat them. Most water parks have special water slides for kids where parents can accompany them along the ride. There are also fountains, sprinklers, pirate ship with water traps… Honestly, my kids were not impressed by any of these except the water slides. So, what we usually end up doing after the water slides is to stay in the swimming pool, have fun there and take underwater photos…

Also, be prepared that your kids may not want to try any of these adventures. What should you do when you have already paid for the full day tickets? There are so many pools around you, so use them with your kids to maybe dive or create a boat of their own from all the floating rubber rings and invent your own adventure. For example, just before their snack time, create a story where you are very far from the shore and that you are very hungry and thirsty, and use your hands as binoculars to spot the fruit, biscuits, drinking water and juices… wooow, trust me, they will start pedalling and forget about any potential fear they might have. That’s how I managed to overcome that “I don’t want” moment and move onto a new adventure.

It’s very simple, just take off your parent hat and think like a child and all of you will be able to have fun at the water park, no matter how old you are. Water park is something that is an integral part of any summer adventure and an opportunity to have good time, that’s why I never miss it with my family. What about you?

Some water parks around the world have such a variety of additional fun such as: swimming with the seals or dolphins, etc. You can also take a submarine ride and explore the world under the sea. Many water parks are located near the sea which gives them even more opportunities to create fun adventures for you.


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