Visited Aqua Park Qatar during Eid Adha holiday, first time since its opening in August 2010. Aqua Park, Qatar’s first water park, is located 16km from the Industrial Area roundabout on the Salwa Road (exit through Exit 29 Rawdath Rashid Interchange, 5 km after Messaieed Interchange).
The park, concept and construction of which is being provided by Cyprus-based Aqua Masters, and operation managed by Kuwait-based Al Jazeera Entertainment Enterprises Company features a giant “wave pool”, a “lazy river”, an “activity pool”, a multiple slides complex, a family pool, an exotic village and a “dry” corner in the first phase. The first phase covers an area of 50,000sqm. Its parking area can accommodate 400 cars. In later phases, more rides and features such as go-carts will be included, I learnt.
Adjacent to the aqua park will be a 300,000sqm resort as well as a shopping complex, currently under construction and expected to be completed in 2012(?).
The drive to Aqua Park is not an hassle thanks to super highway Salwa Road, and well sign-posted Aqua Park. As I enter the park I am welcomed with a tree-lined entrance road leading to parking lots. After buying tickets, and passing turnstiles, I am now in the water park. To the right is changing rooms, gift shops and and Lagoon, whereas on the left is children activity pool then wave pool. In the middle is an island surrounded by lazy river, housing a performance stage and a fried chicken restaurant. At the back is the Slide Towers and Sports fields.
The pirate-themed Children’s Activity Pool, caters mainly for children ages 4 to 14, is one of the favorites with its five slides, and the giant dumping bucket which automatically pours 2,000 gallons of water every two minutes.
But the major attraction and the strongest crowd drawer is Wave Pool. The Wave Pool produces artificial waves in six different patterns and intensity.
Too bad the water is not temperature controlled that it’s too cold during this winter to play with it for long.
A 200m-long Lazy River meanders around the park where visitors may lazily ride on their inflatable floats. Well it’s not a river in fact as the water is stagnant (or may be our definition of “lazy” is different?) so unless you do some paddling then you won’t go anywhere. Minus point.
But topping all the rides is the Slides Tower comprising three levels – 14m, 16m and 20m with multi-lane slides, the most thrilling of which is the 20m-high slide called ‘boomerango’.
The good thing in the park is plenty of wooden parasols built all over the area for visitors to take a shade or to do people watching. The park prohibits entry of all kinds of camera and outside food and drinks but as I’ve seen all visitors take their camera in and snap pictures without any reminders. It’s also possible to “smuggle” food and drink though I saw confiscated food and drink near the turnstiles. Restaurants and food kiosks are however available in the park.
If you forgot your swimming gears a store which sells swimming paraphernalia such as goggles, beach balls, swimwear and other swimming gear is also available.
Business hours of the park will be 10am–10pm seven days a week. Fridays will be earmarked for families. There will also be a ladies’ day on Tuesdays. Entrance fee is QR100, QR60 for people with special needs and QR40 for nannies. Children aged three years and below are free.