For those new to water parks, or used to a very limited number of choices for amusement parks in these Thailand waters, we’ve got news for you! And what could be better than to find this in the Scandinavians’ favourite seaside resort of Hua Hin! Additions in recent years have certainly raised the bar a few notches for what one can get to experience, where Vana Nava Water Jungle in Hua Hin is a flagship entertainment complex in terms of achieving this.
Located at the southern end of town this waterpark is designed as a tropical jungle, where visitors get to spend most of the time in touch with water, be it by the swim-up bar, the manmade beach or bobbing along the 345-metre long Lazy River, where one snakes through the tropical jungle landscape.
And tropical it is; given the location it is remarkable how lush and jungle-like this waterpark feels! The by now full-grown 200,000 trees and plants certainly make things green.
Especially parents will feel concerned about security and safety when entering an entertainment park of this kind, and Vana Nava Water Jungle gives a strong feeling of that this is of utmost concern also to the operator. The strong safety starts already at the entrance where all hand luggage is carefully checked.
Lockers are available and just by topping up one’s smart wristband one can enjoy the entire visit without having to carry cash, credit cards, or even mobile phones (instead order photos automatically captured within the park)!
Once inside, every ride and slide is managed by dedicated lifeguards (holding int. certificates), ensuring that each and every guest ride takes place safely and in an orderly manner, using radio combined with yellow and red flags.
Even the swim-up bar ‘Fisherman’s Tavern’ in the Infinity Pool has a lifeguard overlooking guests chilling with drinks – by the way an excellent spot for adults and a relaxing respite.
In terms of excitement and fun – from toddlers to adults – there is something everyone!
As for the 19 world-class attractions these all come from a world-leading slide manufacturer from Canada, supplier to many thousands of waterparks worldwide.
And what’s with ‘Vana Nava’? These names are ancient Sanskrit, meaning “forest” and “boat” – and forms two creatures, based on a local legend in the small fishing village. You can buy them as souvenirs in the excellent gift and clothes shop by the entrance.
Of course this water park also features its own beach with artificial waves, where one can also rent a private BeachHut or cabana, taking a party up to 8 people.
Rain Fortress is, meanwhile, the child-friendly pool and splash area.
But for those coming here for the thrills there are two main “clusters” where one walks up stairs and often brings one of the inflatable rafts provided. At 13 metres ‘Rattler’ takes you through a series of cylinders. The orange ‘Inner Tube’ takes you through slides, dramatics twists and turns. Or get launched into a giant ‘Super Bowl’ while natural forces keep you stuck along the wall before dropping you down into the pool below. Then don’t miss the ‘Master Blaster’ tunnel, this gravity-defying ride soaring uphill at speeds of up 45 km/h with hair raising drops.
Going further up to the 18-metre platform – for the more daring – things get very exciting, as the “level” of challenge of the rides also increases. ‘Freefall’ drops you straight down at 50 km/h! And then the vertical looping slide, ‘Aqualoop’: here you enter a kind “cockpit” where you are dropped down; reaching a speed of up 60 km/h that takes your body up-side-down through a loop… Weak knees? You bet.
Another climb takes you up to take-off on Vana Nava’s other biggest rides. They are: ‘Abyss’ (green-blue hued and resembling a gigantic version of yesteryear’s funnel gramophone, or a megaphone), where up to six people can soar together to a height of 28 metres, share multiple, near-vertical spins and then plummet into a huge funnel at high speed; and the 179-metre long ‘Boomerang’ where you get to experience weightlessness as you shoot up and down a wall at up to 45 km/h before splashing down into a pool over 20 metres below.
Are you read to ride!?