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Old 14 Sep 20, 02:51 PM  
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Andy C
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The Quest For Toad - The No Queues Trip 2019 - Day 13 - Volcano Bay

Our last water-park day (now I've adjusted Day 14). We've already booked in advance the premium seating (cabanas were way over our price limit). Premium seating, though, not only guarantees you two sun loungers with shade, it provides a lockable safe, and waiter service for food and drinks.

Which is ideal for us.

Just toast and jam for breakfast (whisper it, but we've possibly had enough Denny's for a year or two), and we're off up the I4 again. Parking up at Universal and transferring to a bus to the waterpark.

We get ourselves sorted out and installed, and DW sends DD1BF and myself off towards the plunge tubes. "You'll be no good to anyone until you've got those out of your systems. I'll take The Lad into the wave pool. You've got one hour - get as much done as you can"

We go and get as much done as we can. The climb up the top of the volcano is exhausting when you're jogging up, but the Ko'okuri Body Plunge is excellent (comparable to the breakaway slides at Aquatica).

We then jog over to the Krakatau Water Coaster, which already has a queue. Now, Volcano Bay has a virtual queueing system. You get a "waterproof" wristband with a display on it - you scan it at one of the queue spots and get a return time. You can now still go on anything without a queue time... so we do. We trot over to Taniwha tubes (a raft ride) and up we go, sampling both before trotting back for the excellent water coaster.

Then it's back to rendezvous with the others, and I take over with The Lad while DW heads off with DD1 (and DD1BF, who gets double goes. Lucky ****)

The day goes on in this vein, with us occasionally swapping the teams. I go on Krakatau again with DW and then onto Honu and Ika Moana (also raft rides), which DW recommends having done them with DD1. I concur.

Snacks ensue, as do drinks.

We all go around the Te'Awa River, which has a twist on the normal lazy rivers: every so often, a massive wave is released and rolls around it. It's awesome. DW could stay on this all day.

More snacks. More drinks.

DD1BF trot off, getting turned away from Punga Racers, which has a 68kg maximum limit. I'm over six feet tall; to drop down to that weight, I'd need to lose a leg. I weigh it up, and I don't think it's worth it.

Instead, we do Ohno. Which is a slide that comes out six feet above the pool. It's brilliant, but it does have the unfortunate side effect of slamming into water hard enough to bung up my Eustachian Tubes (the thin tubes in your ear that link outside to inside), making me a little deaf for the rest of the day.

DD1BF only recently learned to swim, so I suspect the adrenaline impact of blasting out six feet above a 20-feet deep plunge pool may have been a little greater for him than for me.

More rides, more snacks, and mid-afternoon, the weather rolled in - as did the storm. We knocked it on the head as the thunder started to crackle (and they closed a lot of the slides) and headed homewards.

And the storm hit as we drove. Very carefully.
DD1 took a photo or two.

[Editing, because I overruled my faint memory based on my credit card statement of what day we went to Texas Roadhouse. The photo timestamps show my initial memory was correct, so expanding this post)

We were a little worried about going out in the storm, but it was subsiding, so we booked Texas Roadhouse again, but just for four of us: DD2 wanted to rest up, The Lad hadn't been that enamoured of it and also wanted to rest, so DD2 kept an eye on him.

Meanwhile - we had been considering popping in to Islands of Adventure on the way back from Volcano Bay to try to use up those Ruby Tickets for Hagrid's Motorcycle Adventure, but the storm had ended that idea. However, DD1 and DD1BF were (if you recall from the first post) staying out for an extra week, so we handed the Ruby Tickets to them.

DD1 was quite pleased about that.

And DW, DD1, DD1BF and myself went to Texas Roadhouse. Where a small child pulled off a superb photobomb on us.

And DD1BF and I both tried out a couple of epic steaks.

And so back to the villa, where The Lad was snuggled with his Toad and we awaited the final full day of the holiday.

Edited at 11:44 AM.
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Old 14 Sep 20, 07:52 PM  
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Crikey that was a storm and half

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Old 15 Sep 20, 11:46 AM  
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Andy C
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Apologies all; I've edited the post after un-second-guessing my own memory (which I overruled thanks to misreading my credit card statement for when we went to Texas Roadhouse, but checking the date on the steak photos put me right.

I was sure we had gone there after the storm subsided, but overruled myself. Should have stuck with my memory after all!
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