AU ABROAD

Theme Park Review: Adventure Cove Waterpark - Sentosa Island, Singapore

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Singapore is hot. It’s that tropical and humid kind of hot. Unless you are one of the lucky ones staying in a fancy hotel or condo building, finding a place to cool down can be tricky. Rather then visiting a public pool or retreating to an air conditioned shopping center, we spent a day at Adventure Cove Waterpark on Sentosa Island and can say with certainty that it is Singapore’s most entertaining venue to get take a cool dip.

The role of ‘Waterpark Reviewer’ should probably be played by someone a lot younger than myself. But to hell with it, even as an adult this park is a damn good time.

Adventure Cove lies amongst Resorts World Sentoa, right next door to Universal Studios and S.E.A Aquarium. From Harbour Front train station, take your pick of the monorail, chairlift or new boardwalk to get there. It can be hard to find as it’s nestled behind the Aquarium, but once you are there you are you are in for a whale of a time. Excuse the pun.

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Let’s start at Rainbow Reef. A unique attraction for a waterpark, the Reef is your chance to snorkel with tropical fish. The cold water is a shock to the system, but worth pushing past as it delivers a peaceful 10-minute swim with the current, letting you peek from above into the lives of over 20,000 very colourful sea creatures. The sheer abundance of fish below gives the feel more like you are swimming in an aquarium.

Understandably sporting the biggest line for the day, the Riptide Rocket delivered the biggest thrill. One of the park’s six main slides, this is Southeast Asia’s first hydro-magnetic roller coaster. With two people to an inflatable tube, it pulls you up ever so slowly building suspense with every click of the belt, and releases you to a gripping drop. But unlike a traditional waterslide it pulls you up and drops you down time and time again. At the end of 225 meters of track you are spat out with plenty of force. The Riptide Rocket is definitely one of the most unusual and unsuspecting waterslides you’ll experience.

One staircase at the park will take you to two giant slides – the Spiral Washout and the Whirlpool Washout. Both are double tube rides with twists, drops and dark tunnels to keep you guessing every second (for your first ride, at least.) A few key surprises set the Whirlpool and the Spiral apart, but you really should discover these for yourself (hint, there namesake is a clue). A sneaky tip is that most people in the line are waiting for the Spiral Washout. The Whirlpool Washout was equally as wild with slightly less waiting time.

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Don’t mistake the Big Bucket Treehouse for cubby for kids, because once inside it becomes a hilarious playhouse for the mischievous. Make your way to the top through a maze of ropes and ladders and there’s a slippery dip to throw you back our to the pool below. However behind every corner is the cheeky grin of a stranger. Watching. Waiting for the right moment to drop a troth full of water on your head or spray you with a hose from two stories above. In the Big Bucket Treehouse, either watch where you are standing or be the one holding the ammo.

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If time permits, check out the Tidal Twister and the Pipeline Plunge. But if speed is your aim, you’ll want to head straight to the Dueling Racer where you can compete against a mate down a straight and steep decent.

Slides aside, there is a wave pool called Bluewater Bay, the Adventure River for a lazy float and plenty of other water-based activities for families, kids and those less adrenaline-seeking. We followed signs to the Wet Maze which lead up a seemingly neverending set of stairs to the tip of a man-made mountain.

The mountain offered views over the park and Singapore Harbour but compared to most other activities the maze under-delivered on our expectations… maybe this one is best kept for the under 10s.

If you are interested in an encounter that is more daring, Adventure Cove offers marine life experiences such as meet and greets with bottlenose dolphins, manta rays and even sharks. Each experience is available at an additional cost with sessions either daily or hourly. Book ahead to help plan your day.

A day pass to Adventure Cove costs $38 (SNG) per adult or $26 for kids and seniors. For a full day of fun and thrills, and the opportunity to escape the city’s heat, the park will not disappoint – both for the young, and those who are pretending to be young. We had a day seriously full of laughs and wouldn’t think twice about a return visit.

Here are our #4 top tips for your visit to Adventure Cove;

1) Do check the weather before planning your visit. Rides may be temporarily shut down during bad weather.

2) Take minimal valuables with you to avoid the $10 (small) or $20 (large) locker charge. There are pigeonholes near each ride for you to leave your shoes and towel.

3) Try to visit on weekdays or off peak times to avoid queues.

4) Take a waterproof pouch for your smartphone or camera so you can take some splash shots for your ‘gram.

All images supplied by Resorts World Sentosa.