Summer is in full effect and in our house I’m to the point where I’m trying not to lose my mind. That being said, I also want to give my kids a fun summer break instead of being glued to their electronics but the problem with that is that it’s 1,000° in Florida. During our recent mini staycation trip to Daytona Beach, we discovered a fun indoor and outdoor park that was calling our name from the getgo!
Daytona Lagoon is conveniently located in the heart of Daytona Beach at Oceanwalk Village. I instantly knew this was a good decision when we walked in. My kids are 13, 7, and 4 and all three of them were screaming and so excited to start exploring. Daytona Lagoon promises to offer hours of fun-filled excitement for the entire family. With attractions to suit anyone’s tastes, there is truly something for everyone. Daytona Lagoon is split into two different parks with two separate costs. I’ll go over that and more below. Disclosure, Daytona Lagoon did invite my family out to check out the two parks but that did not influence this review.
Indoor “Dry” Park
The dry park is filled to the brim with activities to keep your kids busy for hours. The price for a full day of fun is $39. For that, your kids can enjoy the outdoor go-karts, sky maze rope course, rock wall, miniature golf, and laser tag. To play the arcade games you’ll have to load money onto a card to play as they are not included in that price. They were much too expensive for me to justify so we stuck to the activities included during our visit.
What bothered me is that the employees didn’t seem to eager to help. I had to track people down for my girls to get up on the rope course. The attendant for the rock climbing and “Island Hopper” was outright rude. Other than that, the kids had fun. Now is it worth the $39? Probably not but it’s a nice to have an air-conditioned space for the family to play and spend some time away from the heat or rain.
Our experience outside at the waterpark was very different and enjoyable! We had a medium size private cabana (there are 3 sizes) which we loved. During our visit it started pouring but we took the time to eat lunch in our covered space. Our cabana came complete with an overhead fan, locked safe, two lounge chairs, bench seating, and a dining table with 4 chairs. I wish they also had fabric drapes so we could close it for privacy or to get changed. The bathrooms are quite a ways away and the cabanas are on the 3rd level so it’s not ideal when you have little ones that need a quick change.
There are currently three slides Daytona Lagoon waterpark most of which your average 4-year-old can enjoy with a lifejacket. The fourth slide was broken during Hurrican Irma but since our visit, they have gotten further along in the construction of the new slide. There is also a lazy river that isn’t too intense so you can relax and soak up the sun as you softly drift away. A favorite of the kiddos is Castaway, a water play structure with huge buckets that drop water!
Treasure Lagoon Wave Pool is great fun but the floor is rough at points the waves were pushing me and I made out with some nice scratches. I strongly recommend that they refinish the bottom of the pool. As far as the waves themselves, they are are not too intense and with a life jacket, most kids should be able to enjoy themselves.
Complaints. Yep. I Have Some.
My one big flaw with the park is that absolutely no outside food or drink is allowed inside. With so many people have dietary restrictions, I don’t believe this is a good move on the park’s part. Whether you allow it or not, people will still purchase food on property so I think they really need to lift this rule. I was told that you can always leave and come back but quite frankly, once I leave a theme park type place, I don’t return. We dry off or get changed, go eat at a fast food place or even sit down, then we’re tired and don’t want to hassle with driving back, finding chairs, getting settled again, etc. I was also told that “that’s a hard rule with all waterparks” but again, that’s just not true. Local waterparks to me including both Disney water parks, LEGOLAND waterpark, and Universal Orlando’s Volcano Bay all allow small (non-rolling) cooler bags with outside food and drink.
What I will say is that the food at Daytona Lagoon is really tasty and enjoyable. We ordered the 14″ cheese pizza and a basket of french fries. My family gobbled it down in no time. The fries are almost like steak fries – crispy outside and chewy inside and seasoned very well. The pizza wasn’t overly greasy and when I asked about it, I was told that the dough arrives fresh from New York and they hand throw it at Daytona Lagoon. At $14.99 for the 14″ pizza, it’s priced very comparably to other fast food pizza places but dare I say, I liked Daytona Lagoons pizza better.
Also, another complaint is that I wish the park was kept up better. After thinking about it, I wonder if being directly across the street from the ocean has anything to do with it but there was rust all over the place. The metal equipment was covered in some places and I just couldn’t understand why that would be allowed. We even left early because I wasn’t comfortable with the condition of some areas. The cabanas were nice but could definitely use some upgrades.
Is It Worth It?
At the end of the day, we all had a great time. The cabana was a great escape from the sun and rain at times and ability to have a locking safe was great so I’d 100% suggest renting one of them when you arrive. If you’re in Daytona and looking for something other than the beach or resort pool, Daytona Lagoon is a great option. If you time it right or go later in the day, you can get some great deals on tickets as well so make sure you visit DaytonaLagoon.com for specials before planning your trip. The best value is to purchase the All Inclusive MultiPass which includes all indoor activities (not arcade) and waterpark. It is only $52.99