Thursday, July 21, 2016

Splash! Buccaneer Bay: La Mirada
Splash! A pirate guards the entrance.
Last week my family spent a day at Buccaneer Bay in the city of La Mirada's Splash! Aquatic Center. I've heard such great things about Splash! from friends and family we decided to give it a try.

In typical MontebelloMom fashion, here are all the details laid out so you know exactly what to expect when visiting Splash! and tips for making the most of your trip.

Splash! is the city of La Mirada's awesome aquatic center that is comprised of three areas:
  • a very large Olympic sized swimming pool reserved for lessons and competitions
  • a smaller lap play pool
  •  Buccaneer Bay water park.
Splash! admission grants access to Buccaneer Bay and the play pool. The lines for entering the park were a bit confusing so let's save you some time and lay it out for you here as there is little signage directing visitors, and there are three lines.
Line #1 Outside the facility: This line is for anyone that does not have a ticket. If the line is very long you can go online and buy tickets with your smart phone.

Line #2 Splash! Lobby: Regular water park guests can ignore this area and walk right through. 
Line #3 Buccaneer Bay: For everyone with tickets in hand or reserved via phone, this is the line you want. Once out of the lobby, turn left. The entrance is past the food lines and on the right.

At the Buccaneer Bay entrance your bag will be checked (no outside food allowed), and staff members will check kids for the slide height requirements.
LOCKERS: The facility has lockers available for a daily $5 rental fee. Pay for the lockers in the Gift Shop, which is adjacent to the lobby.
The locker "key" is a micro-chipped wristband. You put it on and wave it in front of a control panel on the set of lockers you want. An available locker will pop open.

There are three sets of lockers by Line #3, and more inside the locker rooms. The lockers are pretty big and held my family's three drawstring bags, 5 beach towels, sunscreen and water bottles.

Splash! GIFT SHOP: Besides being the place where you can rent a locker, the gift shop also stocks sunscreen, goggles, swimsuits, swim diapers, and water shoes.

LOCKER ROOMS: I arrived at Splash! around 11:30, and the locker rooms were totally empty. The locker room has private curtained showers, private curtained dressing rooms, stalled toilets, a bench by the lockers, and a diaper changing station. The women's locker room is right across from Line #3, the men's locker room is on the other side of the lobby.

LIFEVESTS: Mandatory for kids under 48". Three sizes are available. Free to use with admission.

MAIN WATER PLAY AREA: There are two water slides for little kids with access via a rope-net course, and the other is stairs. The net side gets the splash from the giant bucket overhead about every minute-and-a-half, so kids have to time their climb correctly, or test their bravery if they chose to enter from that side.
There are valves that kids can spin to control some of the water flow, and I saw many little kids gathering their courage and jumping off the edge into the foot-deep water, or practicing their swimming skills in the deeper sections. 
The depth of this water play area ranges from zero to just about 3 feet over by the lazy river, but on average it's 1foot deep. The zero-depth means that there is one side where the entrance is a gentle slope. A lot of parents are camped out on the free Splash! beach chairs surrounding the main water play area and watched their kids play.

LAZY RIVER: Has four entrances; the main entrance is connected to the main water play area, while the other three are stairwells. The depth is 3'6" throughout and there are some fun water features to pass through. There are single & double tubes available to use at no cost. We visited on a weekday and had no trouble getting a tube.

WATER SLIDES: There are three water slides at Buccaneer Bay all of which are accessed by one set of stairs. Riders can chose from the yellow slide which offers the longest ride, the green slide which is all enclosed and not very fast, or the steep blue slide that shoots riders out in a few seconds. My kids rode all three slides, and each time the lines were about 10 minutes long.

TODDLER WATER PLAY AREA: Specifically designed for little ones, this splash pad has a tiny slide, and water play tables with toys.

PLAY POOL:  This area is right outside of Line #2, and separated by a gate from Buccaneer Bay, but is included with Splash! admission. The pool is divided into two sections: the shallow end at 4 feet deep, and the deep end at 6 feet 7 inches. Kids are required to take a swim test to access the deep end. 
This shaded area surrounds the play pool.

ADULT SPA: A fenced in area open to adults 18 years old and older only. There are a few loungers and beach chairs inside. The spa was the least crowded area in all of Splash!


SPLASH! FOOD:  There are two places to buy food at Splash! Above is Captain Jack's Grille where meals are served, and below is Pirate's Treasure for quick snack items. A full Splash! menu is available here.

Only food purchased at Splash! is allowed. Families that want to bring their own food can store it in a locker, and eat outside of the Splash! facility near their cars, or in La Mirada Regional Park just south of the main entrance.


One thing I noticed about Splash! is that everyone was happy and having fun. I highly recommend purchasing tickets online and heading directly to Line #3. Arrive before the water park opens to claim a table and chairs, or if they are all taken there is a wide grassy slope that surrounds about half of Buccaneer Bay where families can lay blankets and towels.
I think a day at Splash! Buccaneer Bay would be great for all families, but families with toddlers through early teens would have an especially good time.
13806 La Mirada Blvd., La Mirada, CA 90638

Open Daily through August 19, 10:30am-5:30pm
Open Weekends from 8/20-9/25
Open Saturdays 10/1, 10/8, & 10/15
General Admission (over 48") $19.95
Junior Admission (under 48") or Seniors $14.95
Monday-Thursday Twilight Swim (3pm-5:30pm) $9.95
Family Friday Nights (3pm-8pm) $14.95

 A special thanks to Splash! for providing my family with complimentary tickets for review purposes.
Although tickets were provided, all opinions and images are my own. 


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