Walt Disney World is home to two wonderfully fabulous water parks; Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard BeachTyphoon Lagoon is located near Downtown Disney and has a post typhoon theme where you will find surfboards in trees and boats laying at odd angles (think Gilligan’s Island meets Gidget).  Blizzard Beach on the other hand is located near Animal Kingdom Park and is themed as a one time ski resort that began to melt leaving you with slushy slopes and white-sand beaches.

Both sound like they would be fun but which one is best for a toddler or child that does not swim?  After taking our sons to both, I recommend Blizzard Beach to anyone that asks.  Don’t get me wrong, I love Typhoon Lagoon but for toddlers Blizzard Beach is the place to be.

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Tike’s Peak – base camp for the little ones

Tike’s Peak is a pretty contained area that is just for the younger set.  In fact height restrictions to ride two our of three slides are you need to be 48″ or shorter.  So you can be confident they the little ones can play here without having to compete with the older kids.

The area is split up into a couple of areas and does mimic a small ski hill.  The first thing you will notice upon entering Tyke’s Peak is the abundance of seating.   And most of it is covered either by a permanent structure or by the large number of trees in the area.  If you feel like you need to secure your area upfront you can also rent one of the two cabanas in this area.  No matter what you should find enough space to let your little one take a nap if need by.

At the bottom of the slopes you will find the wading pool and the splash pad. The wading pool is zero entry and at the back wall is at most 6 inches deep.  The diaper set will have no problem crawling around at the entry and will soon be crawling on the water spitting statues spread around the pool.  In front of the wading pool is a large splash pad with three igloos that have multiple water jets to keep the kids running from side to side.

Heading up the hill you will find the ‘thrill’ rides.  There are three water slides: one traditional slide, one tube slide, and one side-by-side racing slide.  The first two you have to be 48″ or shorter while the side-by-side racing allows the parents to join in the fun.

At the tip top of the hill you will find one more slope.  This slope is just for the toddlers and includes two slides. Both start in tunnels so the little ones may be tentative at first.

Most younger kids (5 and under) could make a day out of just this area.  But there is more Blizzard Beach offers.

Ski Patrol Training Camp

Right next to Tyke’s Peak is an area that is targeted for the tweens.  If your child is a bit more adventurous there are a couple of attractions here they could be interested in. The first is Snow Falls, it is a racing slide but the lanes are very close together.   The lanes are close enough for a parent to be able to hold hands with a child in the other lane.  I definitely recommend that the child wear a life jacket just in case as Disney does not allow you to wait at the bottom of a slide to catch your children or to ride tandem.

If the area is not busy you can also take the little ones over to the Thin Ice Training Course.  This obstacle course includes ice shelves that are good for crawling on with a parent’s assistance.  If there a lot of bigger kids there it may not be a good idea but early in the morning it would be a lot of fun.

Melt-Away Bay Wave Pool

Melt-Way Bay is much smaller than it’s equivalent Surf Pool at Typhoon Lagoon. Both have zero entry which is great for the little ones to play in but Melt-Way Bay has much gentler waves that are made more for  leisurely floating on an inner tube or bobbing through the surf.  These waves are small enough that kids can play at the edge of the water with no problems.  A slight undertow is present but it just tips them over rather than the stronger currents at Typhoon Lagoon.  Even though there are plenty of inner tubes to go around they can be hard to find while the wave machine is on since everyone wants to head out to the deep end where the waves are the larges.

Cross Country Creek

The lazy river, Cross Country Creek, at Blizzard Beach is my favorite thing to do at the water park. Parents and kids can enjoy this 3,000-foot-long flowing river that covers the entire park. There are 7 entrances to the creek spread out across the park.  This means you can make a quick exit if anyone gets scared or is in need of a restroom. (there is an entrance directly opposite one of the Tyke’s Peak exits)

Blizzard Beach offers three types of inner tubes to get you around the.  The single rider, double rider and the kids tube that has no hole.  This last inner tube is perfect for the little ones because there is no risk of them slipping through the center.  But even if they do head into the water.  The water is only 2.5 feet deep and there is a lifeguard always visible to assist if needed.  The current and depth are also perfect to swim/wade alongside the inner tube (just in case you need to hang onto someone).

Don’t think this is just your average lazy river, Disney has added some wonderful touches to keep your attention and make children squeal with delight. You will pass through a polar cave that sprinkles cold (VERY COLD) water down upon you.   Other elements (that all shoot water) include a snow machine with leaking pipes and the house of the Blizzard Beach mascot, Ice Gator.  Just so you know, Ice Gator is not feeling well so watch out.

Lost Child Area

Disney is great with the kids and that goes double for any that may have misplaced their parents.  At the front of the park you will find a covered area for lost children filled with games and coloring activities.

If you have lost a child all you need to do is approach any lifeguard notify them and they will know at once if they have been located.

Tip: Once a child has been found the lifeguard will contact all of the other lifeguards with a lost child notice, description/name of child and description/name of parents.

Funny thing is that this is not only for kids.  I was actually lost one night.  I could not find my family and I ended up in the lost child center.  The same process happened for me but unfortunately my husband never contacted a lifeguard.  (so I got some great coloring done instead)

First Aid Station

Hopefully your day goes as planned but if you should need it there is a First Aid Station at the front of the park next to the Beach Haus gift shop.  I say it is always good to know where to find it.

Final Thoughts

I hope you have enjoyed looking at all the photos and it has given you an idea of how the water park would be for a little one.  As mentioned above, there is no real way to go wrong no matter what water park you choose.  But I still think Blizzard Beach has more to offer the younger set.   Enjoy your trip and let me know how it went.