Splash Jungle Phuket
Splash Jungle Water Park opened in February 2010. It took them a few months to find their feet and settle on their pricing structure. They now seem to have found a level at which they are satisfied they can do business so it seems like a good time to give the water park a full review.
The water park is part of the West Sands Resort. This is a 5-star hotel located at the north-western end of Phuket next to Mai Khao Beach. It is a fabulous hotel with wonderful facilities and plenty of great pools, even excluding the Splash Jungle water park. So we suppose it is fair to say that even if the water park does not prove to be a commercial success, it is always going to be an excellent facility for the hotel guests.
In fact you can get deals with bookings at the resort that include free entry to the waterpark. This is a great deal if you want to visit the waterpark. You can have a night at this excellent hotel by Mai Khao beach and then have a free day in the waterpark.
The water park itself is impressive. From the moment you arrive, you have the feeling that you are at a well-organised facility. You pay your entrance fee and they give you a wristband. This has your locker key and a small swipe charge card for all your purchases within the park. So there is no need to carry money around to buy your refreshments, you just pay the charge card balance when you leave the park. Then change and store away your possessions in the locker room before entering the park.
The first water ride you come to is the Lazy River. It meanders around the water park so you can sit down on a float and bob along to get your bearings as a nice gentle introduction.
Then over the bridge and you quickly see the park is strongly set up as an all-the-family attraction. Small children are well catered for at the two kiddie's pools. Small slides, medium slides, tubes, water jets, waterfalls and all kinds of entertaining water gadgets will keep your little ones entertained for hours. Parents have the re-assurance that there are attentive lifeguards carefully watching all the pools so they can take a relaxing break on the sun-loungers lined around the pools.
There are 5 big slides for the more daring thrill seeker. We must say that none of them is actually very scary but the Boomerang and the Super Bowl will give a quick adrenaline rush.
Once you have been down the big slides several times each there is still more to keep you entertained. There is a nice little wave pool with lifejackets available for children and non-swimmers. Then there is the relaxing hot spring pool where you can shower under refreshing waterfalls or take a high-pressure water jet massage. Finally, you could head for a cold beer or cocktail at the pool bar.
So we like the park. It is not huge, the rides are not super-scary but it is all nicely set up and there is plenty to do for a good day's entertainment. They have a shaded refreshments area with a good selection of food and drink. You can definitely spend a good day here.
You can book tickets in all the tourist resorts and they run shuttle buses from the main tourist towns, which is good because the park location is a bit out of the way. Still the bus ride is a chance to see a bit of the island.
The park is open from 10am to 6pm.
Splash Jungle seems to have now settled on a pricing level they are happy about. They initially tried the often-used Thai pricing policy of testing the market with the highest prices they thought they could make work. This simply resulted in low visitor numbers for the first few months the park was open so they soon adjusted prices down. They are still calling these special introductory rates as if they might go back to the original prices but we have to say we think even these prices still seem rather high.
- Adults THB 1795
- Children 1050 (Height 100-130cm/Complimentary under 100 cm)
- Thai Residents THB 1500 (foreign Thai residents need to show a work permit or Thai driving license)
It is not cheap by any standards, certainly not by Thai standards. The refreshment prices within the park are also on the expensive side so for a family day out this could be an expensive day. We are not saying it is not worth it. It is a nice park and we are sure the initial investment must have been high. We just have our doubts as to whether they can make a commercial success of the park at those prices.
It is a nice water park, no doubt about it. The problem is the prices and the slightly remote location mean it is the sort of place that most local residents will only visit once a year, if not only once. That means the park will be highly reliant on tourist customers but can they get enough tourists to pay those prices and take the long bus ride? Well maybe. We will see and we wish them the best of luck with the project.
There is one other cloud on the horizon for Splash Jungle. There has been a long-running project to build a water park in Kathu for several years now. The work on this project has stopped and started so many times that it is hard to say if it will ever become a reality. If they ever do open a good-quality water park in Kathu it will surely be a massive blow for Splash Jungle. Kathu will be a much more central and convenient location for the majority of visitors to Phuket.
In the meantime Splash Jungle seems to have found its range and visitor numbers are healthy. The park is a welcome addition to Phuket's attractions.