Hong Kong’s Ocean Park Water World and 5 must-visit waterparks around the world

As the city welcomes Ocean Park’s Water World, here are a few of the world’s most exciting waterparks to look forward to when travel resumes

Image: Ocean Park

While you might think of waterparks as featuring tacky themed decor, janky plastic slides and unmotivated teenage staff, that’s not always the case. Resorts around the world have put a creative spin on water spirals wave pools. Often featuring full-service bars, movie theatres, spas, gourmet restaurants and other amenities, these resorts are perfect destinations for families that don’t want to sacrifice a parent’s enjoyment for that of their children. Here’s what to expect at the new Water World Ocean Park and five of the world’s most exciting waterparks.

Water World Ocean Park, Hong Kong

After years of construction at the mouth of Aberdeen Harbour, Ocean Park’s newest addition, the only year-round, all-weather water park in Asia, Water World Ocean Park, is finally welcoming guests. Positioned right on the South China Sea, the park is composed of five sub-areas, 27 attractions, nine waterslides and even an artificial surfing pool, the first in Hong Kong and the second-ever installed anywhere in China.

Atlantis The Palm, Dubai, UAE

The world’s largest waterpark is built on the Palm Jumeirah in Dubai, fittingly the world’s largest artificial artificial archipelago. The Atlantis The Palm resort features a titanic waterpark, ziplines, other adventure activities, some of the world’s only underwater hotel rooms, 23 restaurants, including one by Gordon Ramsey and a Nobu Restaurant, a spa, a nightclub, boutiques, and a kilometre of private beach. It’s marine wildlife care is even accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the first destination in the Middle East to satisfy their standards for animal welfare.

Grand Wailea Resort Hotel and Spa, Kihei, Maui, Hawaii

Located in the Kihei territory of Maui, once a destination for sojourns of the Hawaiian royalty, the Grand Wailea Resort Hotel and Spa is a Waldorf Astoria resort with all the attendant amenities, including nine pools, a spa, a lazy river, seven restaurants, five gardens, numerous event rooms and a wedding chapel, perfect for families.

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Atlantis, Paradise Island, Bahamas

Built around Aquaventure, a seascape including fresh and saltwater lagoons, pools, marine habitats, water slides, and river rides, Paradise Island includes many unique features including a 14th-century French Augustinian monastery from Montréjeau reassembled on the island, a 3,500-seat arena used for concerts and college basketball games, and an 18-hole, par 72 championship golf course.

Baha Mar, Bahamas

The 1000-acre resort of Baha Mar includes the beachfront Baha Bay water park, three hotels, 284 private residences, a casino, a spa, and a golf course designed by golf legend Jack Nicklaus. Baha Bay includes 24 slides, a 500,000-gallon wave pool, and more than 30 attractions total, as well as expansive VIP amenities including 30 private cabanas, a beachfront gaming pavilion and an 8,500 square foot private beach event space.

Royal Dragon Hotel, Side, Turkey

Separated between an adult section including a private beach, four gourmet restaurants and a spa, and a kids section with one of the largest waterparks in the region and a funfair, the Royal Dragon Hotel has much to offer to the whole family. Popular with German vacationers, the Asian-themed resort’s waterpark has 11 slides, seven pools, and an active entertainment team, with a kids’ club, sports facilities, shopping mall, beach, and meeting spaces in the resort itself.

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