Thank You to All Our Fans for Decades of Wet ‘n Wild Orlando

Thank You to All Our Fans for Decades of Wet ‘n Wild Orlando

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Since its opening in 1977, Wet ‘n Wild Orlando has been a place where guests have created wonderful memories. As America’s first water park, Wet ‘n Wild has been the birthplace of numerous innovations that are now considered a common part of the water park experience.

Today, we are announcing that the park will close permanently on December 31, 2016. However, the groundbreaking spirit that has defined Wet ‘n Wild will continue in the development of Universal’s Volcano Bay, a next-generation water theme park that reimagines what it means to be a water park.

We’re grateful to our countless fans and team members for making Wet ‘n Wild such a special place for so very long. Share your favorite Wet ‘n Wild memories with us in the comments below, then click here to sign up for the latest information on Universal’s Volcano Bay and other Universal Orlando content.

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78 comments

  1. witchypoo

    That’s sad, I am from England and I took my two grand sons last month, we had a fab time, I’m sure the memories will be passed onto my great grandchildern at some point in the future/ but still sad its closing

  2. lisa emery

    i am so gutted that W & W will be closing! This is my fav water park! I remember going on the slide where the floor opens and then drops you, and coming off looking for the bottom half of my cossie lol Some brilliant memories here!! xx

  3. Brittany

    I was going to wet n wild for as long as I can remember. I’ll never forget all the birthdays I went there with my family. Concerning “The Black Hole” and just enjoying myself in the lazy river. That place will always hold a special place in my heart!

  4. Bonni B

    This is our favorite water park in the Orlando area, because it is affordable for a family of 4. NOW, it’s going to turn into one of the Park’s over-priced extensions. I’m so glad my kids are grown so we no longer have to save for 2 years to enjoy the Orlando attractions.

  5. KSprague

    My favorite memory at Wet ‘N Wild occurred when I was employed as a server for Universals catering department. While “setting up” for the event one late afternoon, there had been a problem with a chocolate fountain that was on a buffet table. Our catering “captain” was tinkering with it, to try to make it work when I heard a shriek and turned to see that a jet of chocolate had shot out and coated her head and shoulders. Everybody’s mouth dropped and I couldn’t hold back and started laughing. This made my “captain” quite angry which made me want to laugh even more! Good times!

  6. Kathryn

    I grew up in this park. First time I went here, I was still using water wings. And now I’m 20. I’ve been through the changes and the new rides. I’m extremely sad to see it go just for another water park that in order to get in to, you have to buy a Universal ticket.. Way too much money for one water park. I’m really curious as to what is going to replace wet n wilds spot.

    • kafy

      I think you are misunderstanding where the water park will be located. It is not in the theme parks just on the property. So just like Disney you just pay for admission to just the waterpark.

      It’s exciting news, Wet ‘n Wild’s property is too small to expand and needs updates. This takes are of both.

      • Lisa

        Still, it won’t be the same!
        🙁

  7. Andy

    That is such a shame & unnecessary, there could easily be the 2 water parks open together? Orlando has more & more visitors every year, Disney has 2 water parks – why not Universal? Being right on I Drive is great for those staying there too, also Wet n Wild has the best rides & is a great uniquely classic water park. I think you are making a ‘false economy’ misjudgment here. Please keep it open!

    • Phillip

      I agree unvisersal is so dumb for closing down a water park that’s been around for so many years . They will both stay busy

      • Alex

        -
        -26

        Universal is making a brilliant decision. Wet n wild is old, out dated, and has some of the rudest workers I have ever encountered. Harry Potter is stunning so I am sure their new park will be equally amazing. Thank you Universal!!

  8. Nevit

    Disappointing!
    Before the Growth of I-Drive, I-Drive was pretty boring, Wet n Wild is one of the places that kept I-Drive alive. Sad to see it go now 🙁

  9. Brenda Lee

    My friends have done it but haven’t made it yet !!!

  10. Chad K

    Why?! Like Bonnie said, it’s a great park because it’s affordable! I dread seeing what the prices will be for Volcano Bay….

  11. Mrs Tina R

    Wet n Wild is the only reasonably priced amusement park in Central FL! I’m sure the Universal water park with come along with the typical Universal price tag, Universal long lines and Universal food and drink policy… All the things Wet n Wild doesn’t have which is why me and my family love it so much. I have 2 small kids and we can spend all day in the kids area (Blastaway Beach) and even the grown ups have fun. When I take my kids to Universal there are few attractions appropriate for them. I’m so disappointed to know this is going to happen.

    • Harold

      Two weeks ago my family and I went to both Universal and WnW. We had no problem bringing sandwiches in to Universal. WnW let us bring in as many snacks as we wanted, but NO sandwiches. So my recent experience is that Universal is actually more lenient about allowing food than WnW is.

      It is still very disappointing that WnW is going to close. My family loves that place.

  12. Adam Soper

    NOOOOO!!! I have been coming to Wet n’ Wild for over 30 years. I almost 37 now. I first discovered the park from a friend I met while on vacation in florida and she purchased a ticket for me to go. Unfortunately she couldn’t go as well so most of the times I went to the park I went alone. Then I started going with my Boy Scout Troops. Then I met 2 wonderful people at your park 1 of which who is still in my life today. I know you have to move on and up….but I now live in Las Vegas a city which shuns their history. I’d like to see Orlando preserve theirs!

    • Steve

      It’s all universal I’m sure the wet n wild employees will just go to the other water park so you will still get treated rudily

    • Steve

      Ok you said you been going for thirty years you are 37 now that would have made you 7 when you first discovered it on vacation

    • Robert B

      Speaking of Vegas I remember the Wet n Wild on the Strip in the early 90’s…we would finish a trade show close up the booth and spend all evening at Wet n Wild with casino architecture in the background….They closed that one over a decade ago

  13. Kris Ackrell

    Went as a child, 20+ years ago and loved it. Went two years ago and found a run down place with low class clientele. Closing down is a good thing….

    • Harold

      My experience from two weeks ago is the exact opposite of yours. I did not view WnW as ‘run down’. It was clean and there was a new ride that replaced Bubba Tub. As for the ‘clientele’, we didn’t experience any problems with any of the other patrons.

  14. Mariceliz

    WHY DOES WET’N WILD HAVE TO BE CLOSED??????????????????????????????????????????????????????

  15. Tiffany

    I can not wait to go to wet and wild in a couple of weeks

  16. Brett

    22 years ago, I was at W&W and met a gorgeous redhead girl by the name of Clair. We spent the rest of the day and night together there, but fell out of touch afterwards. Ahh, teenage love! Never forgot her, or all the great times at W&W. Sad to see it go :\

  17. Ken Jackson

    We know you can’t stop progress, but it’s easy to slow it down a little. I get that by Universal opening Volcano Bay on property, guests wallets will never have to leave the compound (a la Disney) and don’t want to have water park competition, especially from itself. But by closing Wet & Wild, the company is taking away a piece of the fabric of the lives of longtime Orlando residents. We started going there in our teenage years and before.

    So, next year, New Year’s Eve party?

  18. Deje

    Wow so sad to see this close. I remember I was little when the mound of dirt was the start of this. We wondered what it was going to be. International Drive was a very pleasant street with only the Hilton Inn and a 7-11. Lots of green now looks very ghetto. Have to love progress. NOT

  19. Daniel

    The park is NOT being replaced by another one in the same location. Wet N Wild will be permanently closed and a new park will be open ON UNIVERSAL PROPERTY. Too much confusion. And the new park will be its own entity just within the resort. No universal ticket required.

  20. Mariceliz

    Why is it being Closed??

  21. Jerry

    So in actuality, Wet and Wild is NOT closing, it is just being bought by Universal and re-opening under a different name.

    • Joey

      Universal bought wet n wild in 98 :/

  22. Gian Iglesias

    I was a Wet N Wild Life Guard back in 2002-2003…
    Now Im a Dr…
    This is so sad…
    So many memories…
    Can’t believe it!!
    But Volcano Bay will be great!!
    See you guys soon!!! :*

  23. Kestrel

    I’m from England and visited Orlando in 1993 for 3 weeks at the age of 9yrs With my family. After yrs of hearing about wet n wild from my grandparents who were generous enough to pay for all of us to go woth them. I remember being so excited and couldn’t wait to go swimming with my grandfather and 2 siblings and 5 cousins. We had a tge best time ever and my grandfather was a big kid the whole time we were there. Unfortunately we lost my grandfather just 6 weeks ago. Which has been very hard . So thx u wet n wild for all those wonderful memories x

  24. Debbie

    Very sad. Disney have more than one water park. So why not Universals? Charge a little extra for a 4 park ticket option rather than a 3 park ticket currently offered. It’s an icon of Orlando and I Drive.

    • Debbie

      Seperate entry fee also for those families just wanting to visit wet n wild

  25. Mary

    So Sad 🙁 Had many of summers and memories here!!!

  26. Candice

    Have never been to wet n wild, but have heard wonderful things about it. My family and I have been planning on going to wet n wild hopefully soon…..especially since my husband and I technically owe it to our kids for their amazing job on their report cards this year.

  27. Anna

    -
    -12

    Wet and wild was not Americas first water park. Disney’s River Country was.

    • Joey

      Disney river country was was attached to a resort and was never considered a standalone water park. And was tiny…..

  28. mary

    I am going to miss this place. I use to go here 3 or 4 times a year

  29. Travis

    Growing up in Central Fl in the 80s I had/attended numerous birthdays over the years. Also during this time Hilton would rent out the park for its employees and families. This provided numerous opportunities for a much more pleasurable experience as a kid. Thanks Wet N Wild, and see you soon for one last memory.

  30. Joey

    Been to water parks and theme parks all around the world while I was in the military. Universal parks are horrible and over priced. I’m sure there water park will follow in its foot steps. I have had season passes to wet n wild since I was 16. 11 years later sitting in the park now n wondering wtf universal is thinking. Smh. Guess it’s time to give Disney parks a season pass family.

    • Harold

      Let me get this straight… you’re complaining about Universal’s pricing and then offering Disney as an alternative? WOW!

      A 4-day ticket at Disney without Park hopper or either of the two water parks is more expensive than an unlimited Universal ticket where you get unlimited entries to Universal, IofA, and Wet n Wild (during a 14 day period). Yes, this package is only offered through AAA, but it’s still a much better deal than anything Disney offers.

      If you live in FL and get yearly passes, maybe that’s a different story but for those of us who vacation in FL and can’t get FL resident pricing, Universal is a far, far, better deal than anything Disney offers.

  31. Neely Courtney

    I am so upset that wet n wild is closing. Been visiting since my first visit to orlando as a 10 year old in 94. My fav of all of the water parks in orlando. Very fond memories too many to mention. I am so glad that I am visiting again in August 2016 so that my 2 children will get to share those memories with me before they close it 🙁

  32. Greg M

    My first date was at Wet and Wild, in 1985. I still remember her name. Sad to see you go, happy to see something else that looks really great will be picking up the slack.

  33. Chantelle

    So sad, I used to go to Wet N Wild all the time as a child with my father. It is some of the fondest memories I have with him. I remember learning how to knee board and going to the evening concerts dancing like crazy. I started going more than 30 yrs ago. So last year we decided to a take a vacation to Florida and took my twins that were 13 @ the time to Wet N Wild. We rented a Cabana and stayed all day. They had a blast. What a shame alot of memories!

  34. David

    VERY VERY VERY poor call Universal. W & W means a lot to a lot of people here in Orlando. I will be avoiding your Volcanic Eruption of a new park. The mouse wins another Floridian

  35. Kalix Muangchoo

    This is all property value game, 50 acres of land in Orlando is a lot of money. Closing the park down and selling the land for a HUGE amount of cash makes more sense.

  36. Eric Golden

    Universal is not stupid. The land W&W sits on is now worth more then keeping the park open. Within 1 year of its closing Universal will let everyone know the what they are doing with the land……….it is 30 acres of property.

    • Ken Jackson

      I can tell you NOW what Universal is doing with the land … bulldozing W&W and putting up a resort hotel. As for the land, the plot the parking lot since on across the street is primo real estate, but they get $13 a car to park there.

      Yes Eric the land is valuable but they are making $ hand over fist at W&W. They’ll make more at Volcano Bay so might as well get rid of the off-property water park to protect the asset and put up a hotel.

    • Emily

      They’re opening up a resort where wet n wild is. Universal bought out wet n wild 5 years ago not in 1998. There plan was to shut down wet n wild in 5 years for their own water park and turn that property into a resort.

  37. Aliyah

    This is so sad. I’ve been going to wet n’ wild since I can remember and same with my parents. This water park can probably top all the other parks in Orlando. I loved that something so enjoyable was so near to where I live. Nothing will be able to top the joy I have spent at this amazing place. It will be missed

  38. Christy

    I grew up in Orlando during the 70’s and I would go to Wet n Wild as often as I could. I don’t remember the ride (banzai something maybe?)but I have vivid memories of going on it 29 times one visit and got SO sunburnt. Yes, the burn hurt but the memories are awesome. I only wish my kids could have enjoyed a sentimental part of my childhood. It’s s shame it’s going the same way as the rest of Orlando now.

  39. Bridget, UK

    Really sad Wet n Wild is closing – it was our favourite Orlando water park. Volcano Bay needs a “Rock H2O” ride – like Disco H2O but with Rock music!! x

  40. Ellie

    Sad to see this place go, Believe it or not I met my a boy there in summer of ’07 and we made this beautiful relationship and now we’re married. Sadly our future kids won’t be able to see where their parents met for the first time.

  41. frank

    Closing wet n wild…… 🙁 what a bunch of crap. Only doing it so they can open a new park and charge like 90 dollars a person….greedy bastards

  42. Dean Maher

    Stayed across the road in the point, my girls love wet n wild, sad to see it go, will try to make the trip from Ireland before it goes to say goodbye, some great memories made their with my wife and two daughters , love it

  43. Tania

    My favorite memory was my first time there. My brother and I were 8 and 9 at the time and my mom told us we could go around on the slides together but just to not go on the Derstuka! The big straight down one! And of course we did! We also did the kneeboarding one on the little pond/lake where it took you in a circle. The workers told us we were to small and we said oh no we know how to knee board and waterski behind a boat, please! And the let us go. They were so impressed and kept pointing at us to all the other workers at how little we were and how good we did. We felt so proud and made it all the way around! Great memories!

  44. JT

    Can’t wait for Volcano Bay….Wet & Wild was great and will be missed but its time for bigger and better things. I live in Miami so will be visiting W&W one last time within the next year or so heh. All good things must come to an end 🙂

  45. Keebs

    So sad to see it close. My family shared lots of memories there. It has always been our favorite water park. Some of our family lives here in FL but others live in different states. When we could all get together that is where everyone wanted to go. My brother loved it there and was like a big kid when he was there. He would stand in the lazy river and push everyone that happened by on their tubes under the waterfall. He passed away several years ago and we haven’t been back but now the family is trying to organize a return trip before it closes. A good way to remember our beloved brother!

  46. Richard

    First river country then water mania now freaking wet n wild their goes all the value water parks. 🙁

    • thegreatpl

      To be fair, River Country HAD to close. There were some changes to Floridian Health and Safety Law that meant it needed massive changes or be closed. There is a nasty bacteria that lives in the shores of Florida lakes, and River Country’s main pool came directly off the lake.

      Still, sad to see Wet and Wild go.

  47. terence hughes

    Wet n Wild has been one of the most visited parks we visit during our holidays to Orlando… We absolutely love the place, Both me and my wife have been coming since 1981 and started our family holidays in 2001 with our two young sons and daughter and every time we visit we have our family photo taken in front of the wave pool with the Wet n Wild sign in the background.. 2001, 2003, 2006 and 2010… and again this September (2015)… It will be so sad to see it go as this year we are bringing our 1 year old granddaughter for her first taste of what Florida has to offer….. Its going to be sad saying goodbye this time as we know it will be our last time there…… See you in September xx

  48. OrlandoFan

    Although having a long distance flight to Orlando (being German), I still trying to make it once a year to Orlando.
    And Wet’n’Wild has been always one of my prime choices.
    It is THE difference / alternative to the other ‘fabrique softener’ water parks like Disney and Sea World …
    Both Disney and Sea World water parks have nice things to do etc.
    But Wet’n’Wild was a pure fun park with lots of easy but also intense rides noboday else has in that combination in Orlando.

    Does anybody know what will happen to all the rides ? Looking at Volcano Bay maps it does not look like any of them to be rebuilt … within the Volcano some slide attractions seem to be included…
    Will there be anything close to Disco 2000, ups, Disco H20 ? Love the music and the mirror ball ..

    Is there a second phase for Volcano Bay to include rides like the existing ones ?

    Sorry to hear all that. I guess for fancy water parks like Wet’n’wild Orlando is not #1 place any more (comparing to other parks around the world).

  49. Max

    We got season tickets last year for my family and could not get enough of the park!! Fun times , great memories”

  50. Marcus

    I just don’t see it closing, but maybe see it redone or turned into a themed watermark once the new place opens. With the expansion of international drive and universal basically not having anymore property left, I don’t see how universal would get rid of the prime real estate that wet and wild sits on and close down the park.

  51. Katie

    There are two main themes from these comments; nostalgia and affordability – Universal should take note. Universal always seemed to be the better alternative to Disney, it was fun, innovative and daring. Since the opening of Harry Potter it has turned into Mickey on steroids. Wet n Wild plays a fundamental part to Orlando’s theme park culture and is considered the best waterpark in Orlando. Seaworld tried to make a better water park and it is just awful. For me, I will just miss the hot lifeguards and the party like atmosphere. It’s a shame. Corporate crooks

  52. Jill

    I have had the best times in Wet n Wild its my Son’s favorite theme Park in Florida – I am so sad that it is being taken over – I am from London England but know that Florida residents got great deals for their families and I always thought that tickets were much cheaper than the other parks. Orlando won’t be the same without Wet and Wild on International Drive

  53. Stephanie Johnson

    Universal you are making a huge mistake!! I went here growing up and now I take my kids. We go several times a year and we love it!! You could EASILY operate 2 waterparks. I cannot believe you are going to tear this down to make more of your over priced hotels. WHAT A JOKE!! I will not go to your new waterpark Boycotting Volcano Bay. I know many people in Florida are doing the same.

  54. lilblueidevil

    Been in Florida since 1990 can’t afford to go so guess I will never get to go now. Guess I can’t miss what I never knew

  55. Brian C

    Loved wet n wild, we use to skip school in high school and would all go to the park for the day. It was close and affordable and I’m gonna miss it.

  56. Byron and Christy

    This is very sad. We met at the park on April 30, 1983. I was a lifeguard at the park and she was on a high school band trip from Peachtree City, GA. We were married exactly 5 years later and have been married ever since. We will definitely make a final trip to the park before it closes for good.

  57. Tom mcewan

    was there for the first time this year with my family and we enjoyed it very much ,my grandsons had a fabulous time and cannot wait to go back next year,so it will be sad to know that it will be the last time they will be at wet n wild, we were here on holiday from Scotland in July 2015

  58. Harold

    My family will also miss WnW. We went there twice last week and as usual, had a blast. None of the employees we had contact with were rude…. just the opposite. For slides that use the mats with handles, some of the guards allowed us to do ‘jump starts’ rather than insisting we start from a laying-down position.

    What I will miss is the reasonably priced park food that you could get at WnW. When I take the family to Universal I of A, we always stop to eat before we get into the Park because the food at the Park is so expensive. We didn’t have to do that with WnW as the food prices are reasonable.

    I hope Brain Wash makes it over to Volcano Bay… love that ride. I will definitely go back to WnW during Summer of ’16. Wouldn’t want to miss out on the last chance to experience a piece of Florida history!

  59. JAX

    This is very sad news. I am from the UK and visited this park in 1980 when I was a kid on my family holiday. We stumbled across it while driving down international drive after visiting Disney. I have never even seen a water park before and we all had a fantastic time there and enjoyed it more than Disney.
    I remember there was a big slide called the kamaze which was very tall and fast. You were supposed to raise your legs so you would skim across the water when you hit the long pool at the bottom. My dad rode it and he is a big guy. He was going like a bullet down the slide but forgot to raise his legs as he hit the bottom. He did a big somersault as he hit the pool making an almighty huge splash. Everyone was cheering and clapping at the bottom! Never again he said!!
    I so wish we had a video camera back then.
    I have been back to Orlando a few times recently with my family and while yes there are much better themed waterparks in the area this still has its pros++ as its on international drive so its walkable from many hotels and does not cost a fortune $$ to get in.
    Why don’t they just sell it. There’s room for both volcano bay and wet’n wild. International drive will just not be the same without this iconic park.
    KEEP IT OPEN!

  60. Christine

    My first real crush was a lifeguard that worked there! Would go All summer long!

  61. Turtle girl

    This is a terrible decision! The last thing Orlando needs is another hotel. I went to WnW as a child on family vacations and still go now with annual passes as an Orlando resident. This decision has resulted in my own personal boycott of their parks. Shame on you, Universal! Messing with history, tradition and family memories. Wet n Wild needs to stay! It’s an institution!