Gazza

Wild Wadi Update

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When I went to the UK the parks I visited there weren't the end of the story. I was flying Emirates, so I organised my flights so I could have a 24 hour stop over (Much more civilised then trying to do it in one go ;) ) and in doing so, I got to visit a park I have wanted to go to for a long time...Wild Wadi. So here is the latest Parkz update, a gallery of 83 photos showing all the park has to offer. http://www.parkz.com.au/parks/AE/Jumeirah_...otos/page1.html A trip report is to come, but in the meantime, this little map might help in understanding how the park works: post-88-1254063436_thumb.jpg

Edited by Gazza

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Time for the trip report. I landed at DBX at about 7am in the morning, got through their efficient customs very quickly (The whole operation is staffed by people my age…When I got back I asked a student in my course who comes from Dubai…apparently jumping into a government job is a popular thing to do when you finish school there) So I got outside and got a taxi to the park (Cheap!) but it was already 32 degrees and humid at this point of the morning! This had all taken less time then I’d expected, so I found myself at the park entrance with a solid two hours to kill until opening time. I did go for a walk past the Jumeirah beach hotel next door, sat in one of those air conditioned bus stops for a period and got a 2L bottle of water (Which I finished while I was waiting), but most of it was spent sitting by the ticket booths against my backpack. What’s worse, they have family mornings where those groups can go in at 8am, so I was sitting around watching other people going in. Finally, opening time came, I forked out my 70AUD admission (The most expensive water park admission I’ve ever paid…Though it costs this much to get into a place like DW, and Wild Wadi is better than DW :P They have their own version of splash cash, but its actually a plastic RFID wristwatch type thing that everyone gets issued with for money and lockers upon walking through the gates. It was good because each locker had its own reader (Rather than having to go to a control station) and they read a lot faster. But, onto the slides. The way the park works is that half it is on ground level, and half of it is elevated (With the car park underneath). There are two entry points to the master blaster system, and these take you up to the top of the park, where you can then choose your route along the top, before eventually taking a normal downhill slide back to the bottom half of the park, where you land in the lazy river. If you stay in the lazy river you eventually come around to where the start points are. So apart from initial queuing, you can do the master blasters without really leaving the water. (Perfect, because it was the mid 40s in the heat of the day, and I didn’t want to leave the water) The first slide I did was Flood River Flyer, it was the longest slide in the park, and it just keeps going up and up and up seemingly endlessly. It had some cool moments, like when you came around the first bend and got a framed view of the Burj Al Arab. I definitely do prefer master blasters to proslide rockets…They keep their speed up, are much wetter, and each time you hit a set of blasters you get a cool boost. After floating along you get to another choice: Wadi Twister or Wadi Basher, both just simple little slides that really only serve to move you along. You then get to a choice of three downhill slides. Two of them are open, but the pick of the bunch was Tunnel of Doom because it was pitch black inside, and underground so there was no indication of the route it took. This dumps you back in the lazy river, so I just stayed in there to get around to the other entry point. Here you could appreciate the theming efforts put into the park, you float through lush landscaping, caves and canyons. Things were kept interesting by waterfalls scattered along the route…Obviously all the excess water from the master blasters has to go somewhere, so they’ve directed it into waterfalls (Which have massive flows as a result) If you drift near them, look out! White Water Wadi, and the following slides were the other way to get to the top (So you had a few intermediate pool areas compared to the continuous run on Flood River Flyer). It was interesting because it ran along the outside edge of the park, and you’d get some great views of the surrounding suburbs. When you got to the top you could pick between Falcon Fury (A downhill side) or Hos n’ Hurler (A master blaster that turned into a downhill side). Hos n’ Hurler was the better choice, longer for a start, and it had a sharp drop along it with a cool moment of air. Once you got to the bottom of these there was a connecting master blaster (Falaj Fury) and then you wind up at the point where Flood River Flyer ends. I’d seen the master blasters, so it was time to try the other stuff. Summit Surge and Rushdown Ravine are family raft slides. I was by myself, but that wasn’t a problem, they let me on. Summit Surge blasts you up with water jets (How much energy does this thing take!) and it feels kind of laboured. You get to the upper pool area, and then float around to Rushdown Ravine, where its downhill all the way. It’s a fairly gentle slide, and doesn’t go high on the walls like Mammoth Falls at WnW. I guess it did the job of being a family ride, but it wasn’t great so I didn’t bother going back on it. So for a change of pace I did Jumeira Sceirah, the huge speed slide. The walk up is interesting…a winding stone stairwell, a suspension bridge over the park entrance path, then up a tower to the top. The slide is awesome, very fast, and sustained doses of air over the hills. I returned to this one several times throughout the day! I had a go on the FlowRider next, lets be frank, I sucked at it. I sort of just jumped into the water flow, stayed there for a few seconds, then was inexplicably forced backwards and washed out to the side. Once was enough. The balance of the day was taken up going around on the master blasters (They really are a lot of fun!) and going on the Jumeriah Sceirah. I did my usual ‘photo run’ too, this is the first time doing an update for this site has put me in physical pain, so you’d better bloody enjoy it ;) I didn’t have thongs, so I was barefooted…Bad idea! There are some shaded areas, but most paths aren’t covered, so walking around was awful. I can deal with the hot paths at WnW/WWW, but the heat in Dubai pushes it to another level. I ended up carrying a towel and putting it on the ground wherever I wanted to stop and take photos from. The paths did actually have pop up sprinklers that I guess are supposed to cool them down. Except they only ran periodically, and didn’t remain cool for long, so instead of walking along hot paths you were walking through hot water. Needless to say thongs are a must if you are planning on visiting (They have racks for them too) I was too proud to go into the gift shop and buy any because I knew I’d be absolutely fleeced. The food was good, but expensive ($20 pineapples anyone). I think my combo came in around the 17 AUD mark. It got the grilled chicken burger one, and the chicken had this middle eastern style marinade on it…10/10. Overall, I’d rate the park pretty highly. Big points for being unique, having enjoyable rides, and paying close attention to theming. On the last point, you could see they had made a proper effort to hide ugly bits. You never saw exposed electrical boxes or mechanical equipment and all the theming detailing was high quality, so it really was Disney standard. The whole concept for the park is pretty cool, but it does have a few quirks that probably have stopped this style of water park being adopted on a large scale elsewhere…. -In effect, for the majors, they only have 4 slides worth of capacity (The speed slide, the family blaster, and the two entrance points to the master blaster network)…Granted they were sending people into the master blasters every 5 seconds, and you get a long ride for your wait time, but the place wouldn’t come close to WWW even in terms of capacity. This the reason they have removed those family blasters (200pph) since the time of my visit and are replacing them with a tantrum alley and bowling alley slides (+2000pph) -The whole idea of choosing your route sounds pretty cool, but after a while everyone falls into the same pattern, since at the points where you can make a choice there is often one slide that is clearly better than the other. By the end my favourite route was White Water Wadi> Jebel Lookout> Wadi Leap> Hos n’ Hurler> Falaj Fury> Wadi Twister> Tunnel of Doom -Staffing requirements are very high, they’ve got spotters in the watchtowers, people at the slide entrances in the water who grab you and move you along, plus others in the river sections. Staff everywhere basically. -E stops have a huge flow on effect, since a blockage at one point means every slide after it has to stop sending people through . This happened a few times in the day…It wasn’t too taxing because I was floating in the water, but by about the 4th time it was getting annoying.

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