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  1. #1

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    Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    Of the three big southern California water parks, Knott's Soak City, Raging Waters and Wild Rivers, which is best for a family with two young children (boys ages 3 and 5)? Which has a lot of areas for the kids to explore and is safe from roving bands of rowdy teens? Which is clean with well-lit and sanitary bathrooms/changing areas? Suggestions appreciated.

  2. #2

    • Darkbeer
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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    I like Knott's Soak City for its location, it relative "newness" (Wild Rivers is run down and is closing this year). Lots of security and lifeguards, and has a nice little kids play area (Gremmie Lagoon) that is seperate from the rest of the park.

    The changing areas were just totally remodeled this off-season, nice and clean. You can see a few shots of it from this photo album from last week.

    http://darkbeer.smugmug.com/gallery/5052291_T4rrt

    And you can check the current discounts here

    http://www.knotts.com/hot/index.asp
    Check out my Theme Park Photos at http://darkbeer.smugmug.com

  3. #3

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    OMG! I was looking at your photos and I will be so pissed at Knotts if they took out the Waterfalls to Bigfoot rapids... while the ride didnt have much theming its always been one of my favorites and its almost as if they took out a lot of the rockwork and trees and made a massively fun ride into something kinda stupid now!

    No offense to Knotts but Bigfoot Rapids without waterfalls in the summer to hope your friends get drenched under totally sucks!

  4. #4

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    You should check out Raging Waters, its very large and has lots to do. It's got the intense stuff for the older people with plenty of stuff for the kids, plus its one of the few water parks that i spent a whole day at and didn't do everything. Lots of slides!!!!!! Check it out.


  5. #5

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    I haven't been to either Raging Waters or Knott's in years but here's how it was when I did go.

    Raging Waters is large and spread out. It has a nice kids area and lots of other slides. It has also been rumored to have a lot of gang members (or those that look like they want to be) in attendance. The baby/kid area water wasn't very clear.

    I specifically remember Soak City being extremely clean and safe. It's much smaller than RW, so it's easier to keep an eye on the kiddies. At SC, they have attendants (life guards) on the lazy river that constantly walk the perimeter scanning the water. There was a strong chlorine smell also which indicated to me that the water had sufficient chemicals to be sanitary.
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  6. #6

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    I live within walking distance of Raging Waters and I can safely report that there are no gang members in the area. A lot of teens AND kids go there in the summer though.

  7. #7

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    Quote Originally Posted by nursemelis374 View Post
    I live within walking distance of Raging Waters and I can safely report that there are no gang members in the area. A lot of teens AND kids go there in the summer though.
    Yes... thats total truth... I lived in Cali for the first 16 years of my life and grew up wth summers at Raging Waters... While I havent been to Raging waters in over 5 years [I moved to Phoenix about 5 years ago] I did grow up with it and took numerous school trips there and even family trips as a young kid, I hope some things about it are still the same... To be honest this is one of the most Kid and family friendly waterparks I have been to out of the SoCal waterparks... plus its one of the few waterparks with an upper and lower section and lots of shade on the lower section of the park [though sunscreen is a must for stuff on the upper section... not to mention Raging waters has a bit of everything in the waterslide variety...

    that and last time I lived in Cali... San Dimas was a pretty good area and the park has an ok location tucked away in the middle of a state park in the foothillls so even when it gets hot you are close to some shade and trees, the park is also built on a hill so some of the slides use this to their advantage... also the state park has a dam nearby if I am not mistaken and the drive to Raging Waters is pretty!

    I would love to go to Raging waters again since waterparks here in AZ suck... they are literally smaller than the upper section of raging waters and feature less slides and less intense slides than the upper section has... plus no variety... I would love to bring some AZ friends who have never seen a waterpark of raging Waters size and I would literally pay to see the look on their faces as they see that not all waterparks are tiny places with a lazy river, large slide tower, and about 7 small slides total accompanied by a dinky wave pool.

    Keep in mind I havent been in 5 years but heres my advice...

    for family friendly stuff at raging waters there is always The amazon adventure, Splash Island playground thing, The Volcano playground thingy, Theres another kids area there too somewhere, then there is the wave pool, Raging Rivers is family oriented since its like a bunch of tiny mini slides put together and you have so many choices to choose from on what slides to take, Thunder Rapids might be ok too since I noticed a lot of younger people went on it and whole families were riding it together

    The dark hole isnt too bad either for families minus that drop at the end of the slide but its no different than a drop on a log ride, then if a family would be up for it, go for some of the other slides like Neptunes fury [if you can do thunder rapids its pretty much the same thing only pitch black and I mean PITCH BLACK] or try High Extreme [its not as scary as it looks... its just high and tall]

    one question... does Raging waters still have the following attractions?

    Neptunes Fury [OMG! My absolute favorite... its pitch black and those 4 person raft slides so you cant tell whats going on but get splashed with water and move all over]

    The Wedge [The halfpipe slide thats so much fun to slide back and forth on... we have one in AZ at Sunsplash but the wedge is better... seriously]

    The Dark Hole [while its old its always been a classic slide and is always fun after doing Raging Rivers]

    Raging Rivers [The most family friendly combination of mini slides and different pathways all leading into different places]

    Thunder Rapids [another classic just like neptunes fury but the rafts fit 6 people and its not enclosed]

    High Extreme [Best slide on the upper section IMO but so freakin high, but so much thrill and so much fun, do they make it tubes only now or did they still have the fun toboggans you ride on]

    The Vortex [its not too special but its always been a favorite, especially the unexpected splashdown underwater at the end]

    Drop Out [I have never and will never...EVER... do it but I am wondering if its still there... I know its a classic but not my thing... I need to have my body on the slide at all times]

    I would love to take a summer trip and make Raging Waters a part of it... I miss that place... I am tempted for my next cali trip ditching Disney and doing some of the other attractions I dont normally get to do since Disney is always my first priority [dare I say that on a Disney board]

  8. #8

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    No Wedge and no Raging Rivers. They replaced Raging Rivers with one of those racing slides where there are like 8 people next to each other.

  9. #9

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    I used to love Raging Waters as a kid, and now that I think back on it, it's because the place was so well landscaped. Wild Rivers is all concrete and not as interesting looking. I haven't been there in years though. Let us know what you decide!
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  10. #10

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    Awww... bummer... the Wedge was always one of my favorites and due to its small size it fit perfectly... but we have a replica of The Wedge at Sunsplash in Mesa only its called the Sidewinder... so its not a total loss to get my Halfpipe water slide fix

    But hearing about Raging Rivers being gone... thats kinda sad I loved it since it was always fun to have all kinds of mini slides and different places and paths to choose... but 8 person racing slide sounds fun too... you cant really complain about that since I was always hoping that Raging Waters would get one of those racers... I guess they did... sadly it happened after I moved from California!

  11. #11

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    With young kids it's Soak City by a landslide.

  12. #12

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    Avoid Wild Rivers. That's all I have to say.


  13. #13

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    Re: Which SoCal Water Park for Families?

    Thanks for the advice everyone!
    Looks like we'll be headed to Wild Rivers first because our Legoland annual memberships allow us a free visit this year so might as well do that first. Then we'll make a choice about visiting Knott's Soak City or Raging Waters after that as an upgraded water park trip.

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