Universal Orlando Resort first announced its new water park Volcano Bay over a year ago, but details have been scarce in the months since its first unveiling, with Universal only releasing a single piece of concept art and giving excited fans the vaguest of descriptions about this upcoming park.

However, Universal has finally taken the wraps off of Volcano Bay, and you might be surprised by some of the big moves Universal is planning on making with its newest park... 

1. Universal is now referring to Volcano Bay as Universal Orlando Resort's third theme park 

Image: Universal

Though water parks and theme parks serve a similar purpose, these two types of parks are typically thought of as very different things. For example, most guests know that Walt Disney World has four theme parks, and two water parks. Though you'd be technically correct in saying that Walt Disney World has six parks, few guests lump these parks all together because of the distinction between the two.

However, it looks like Universal is trying to blur the lines between water and theme park, and has officially announced that Volcano Bay is the third theme park at Universal Orlando Resort. This is a surprising move, but Universal seems confident that Volcano Bay will provide a full day experience, and can hold its own with Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida. 

2. The park is being designed without wait times in mind

Image: Universal 

A few days ago, we reported on a new virtual queue system that was being tested at Wet ‘n Wild, and hypothesized that this new system was being tested in preparation for Volcano Bay, which could be the world’s first water park designed without lines.

Though Universal hasn’t yet confirmed that it will be using the MagicBand-like technology currently being used at Wet ‘n Wild, it did confirm recently that Volcano Bay is indeed being developed without long queue lines, which suggests that virtual queue will indeed be an integral part of the Volcano Bay experience. This is certainly a historic development, as no theme park or water park has ever been constructed with the assumption that queue lines will not be needed. Though we’ll have to wait until the park opens to find out whether this big gamble will pay off, it won't be that long of a wait... 

3. Volcano Bay will be open by next summer

Image: Universal

Although Universal has not released an official opening date for Volcano Bay, the company confirmed at a recent event that families looking forward to next year's summer vacations can plan for Volcano Bay to be open by June 1st, 2017. Though the park may actually be open before that date, June 1st seems like the working deadline for this park to be 100% completed by. 

So what can guests who visit Volcano Bay next year expect? We’ve got newly released descriptions of over a dozen new attractions as well as the park’s four distinctly themed lands....



If it is indeed Universal's "third theme park", then entry should be included with a universal base ticket, right? And Universal should start offering 5 and 6 day admission tickets as well, right? And, again if this is their " third theme park", what if the "new queue system" is just a rehash of Universal Express?

They can call it whatever they want to, to satisfy managerial and creative egos or whatever. But it's a water park. And it's not the first water park in Orlando to incorporate a theme...

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