Water parks in Missouri are a prime summer attraction, offering both a release from the heat and a fun family experience. Most parks offer an exciting array of activities from kid-size whirlpools to heart-stopping flume rides for more adventurous park goers. As part of a Huffington Post Travel series on family-fun parks, here is our guide to all the key information visitors need to know about Missouri water parks.
The thrilling White Water, located next to Silver Dollar City in Missouri's entertainment capital, is wet and wild fun for everyone. When not enjoying one of the park's ten main attractions, families can reserve a private cabana for up to 14 people or enjoy shaded areas on the park's ample deck space. The park also has an event called Night Water, in which guests can enjoy the park in the dark, on Fridays and Saturdays in July and August.
Signature Ride: Kalani TowersWhite Water recently reopened fan favorite Kalani Towers, its popular seven-story, six-lane water slide. Body surfers who are four feet or taller can hit speeds of more than 40 mph before plunging into a refreshing pool below.
Aloha River At Hula Hula BayNew to White Water in 2011, Aloha River at Hula Hula Bay transports you to your own personal paradise. You'll ride 800-feet in your own personal inflatable raft through a (mostly) tranquil South Seas-themed river, but look out for unpredictable twists, steep waterfalls and surprise geysers. Be sure to save time for a visit to Coconut Grove, the kid-friendly play structure.
Dining OptionsHigh Tide Hannah's Island Cafe and the Sandwich Island Cafe both serve family fare like sandwiches, salads, hot dogs and tacos. The Big Island Marketplace offers quick bites like cotton candy and popcorn. Treat the kids to an ice cream sundae at Island Delights, or have pizza at Domino's.
Safety RecordOur research revealed no notable news reports of accidents or safety issues at White Water.
Address: 3505 West Highway 76 Branson, MO 65616
Hours: July through Aug. 13, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. or 7 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Weekends only Aug. 14 to 31 and open Labor Day weekend. Closed Sept. 6 through June 30
Price: $38 for adults, $32 for children four to 11 and $27 for seniors. A three-day, two-park pass for White Water and Silver Dollar City is $90 for adults and $70 for children
Big Surf Water Park
Affordable and convenient, Big Surf Water Park has a variety of rides and attractions. Plus, there's discount pricing for folks who don't intend to get in the water and just want to enjoy the park's dry-ground sports area. The park, just south of Lake of the Ozarks, is ideal for family reunions, company picnics and school field trips.
Signature Ride: Zambezi FallsThrilling Zambezi Falls is the park's highest ride and fastest line. Riders who are more than four feet tall drop through a three-story half-pipe of rushing water and are encouraged to scream all the way.
Lazy Rivers, Flumes And RapidsThe 600-foot Lazy River offers a relaxing, leisurely inner tube ride for visitors of all ages. The giant, family-friendly wave pool creates waves up to three feet high. Thrill seekers should check out Challenger Flumes or the rapids.
Dining OptionsThe park's Surfside Grill serves a huge menu including pizza, sandwiches, hot dogs, burritos and barbecue. Return later in the day for ice cream, a pretzel or nachos supreme. Call ahead and the park will prepare a special group menu for birthday parties.
Safety RecordOur research revealed no notable news reports of accidents or safety issues at Big Surf.
Address: 954 State Road Y, Linn Creek, MO, 65052
Hours: June 4 through Aug. 12, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Aug. 13 through Sept. 2 weekends only. Open Labor Day weekend Sept. 3 to 5
Price: $26.50 for adults, $21.50 for children four to 10, $17.50 for seniors and $26.50 with a $13.25 refund for non-swimmers
Other Noteworthy Parks Near MissouriAdventure Oasis Water Park
Timber Falls Water Park at Tan-Tar-A Resort
Coco Key Water Resort
Bluff Falls Water Park & Family Fun Center
Mark Twain Landing
What's your favorite water park in Missouri?
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