Water inspired activities are a staple of summer, so it was fitting that we kicked off the season at Soak City, the 20-acre water park within Kings Dominion. When we were offered the opportunity to check out the attractions and rides over Memorial Day weekend, I immediately accepted. The kids had actually been begging to visit the amusement park near Richmond for awhile, plus I dig water slides and splashy rides myself. We were all pretty excited for our day there.
And Soak City did not disappoint. Several water slide complexes, a wave pool, a “river” raft ride, and play areas for little ones offer something for everyone — all ages and all levels of thrill seekers. Guests do need to be at least 48″ tall to ride most of the slides, and 42″ for the wave pool, but children who don’t hit that height can enjoy smaller kid-sized slides in the splash areas.
Upon our arrival, we decided to get a cabana, so we’d have a dedicated place to keep our belongings and also chill out when we weren’t going on rides. They also offer lockers for guests to store valuables, and there are plenty of chairs and tables throughout the park, they just aren’t guaranteed.
Since Tidal Wave Bay was right next to our cabana, that was our first stop and a fun way to ease into our water park adventure. We were able to get wet, swim around a bit, and ride the waves. From there, we hit the nearby Hurricane Heights, a colorful tangle of several different slides winding all around and offering a variety of thrills. We rode inner tubes down and through Aqua Blast, which is mostly enclosed until it shoots you out for a steep plunge into the water.
My favorite, though, was the Paradise Plunge, a body slide that starts in an enclosed chamber where you wait for the floor to drop from under your feet, sending you straight down a chute for a fast and twisty thrill ride to the bottom.
After a ’bout of wild sliding, we opted for a more chill ride on the Lazy River, a pool that meanders in a 1/4 mile loop in the middle of the park. A few spins around in the comfort of an inner tube was quite relaxing and a nice way to wind down before lunch, which we ordered at our cabana.
So, while Soak City did not disappoint, the weather, unfortunately, did. A huge storm rolled in while we were eating, and the hourly forecast showed no indication of it letting up, so we had to cut our visit short. But what we did get to do was super fun, and now we have good reason to go again. Not to mention it’s a fantastic way to stay cool on a hot summer day. And when you’re done (or before) playing in the water park, you can enjoy the rest of Kings Dominion, since admission gets you into both!
Soak City is open on weekends May 28 – June 10, then daily June 10 – September 5. Admission to Kings Dominion, which as mentioned also gets you into Soak City, is $45 if you buy tickets online, $66 at the gate. There are also season passes available. Kings Dominion is located just north of Richmond, about 75 miles from Washington, DC.