This post may contain affiliate links. This means that I may receive a small commission if you purchase something at no cost to you. Please read my disclosure page for more info. All opinions are my own.
Summer waves waterpark is located on Jekyll Island, a Georgia State park. Jekyll Island is also considered part of what is referred to as the Golden Isles. The Golden Isles is an area off the southern coast of Georgia that is comprised of several small barrier islands and includes St. Simons Island also.
Whether you are a local, semi-local, or a tourist in for a weekend or a week-long vacation there are so many fun summer activities to explore in this area for you and your family including the Georgia Sea Turtle Center, the beach, a new museum MOSAIC, the historic district, trolley tours, horseback rides, dolphin cruises, and tons more.
One of our family’s favorite activities in this area is Summer Waves waterpark. If you have read any of my other posts then you know I am exceptionally partial to Jekyll Island. If I had to name a favorite part of this coastal area it would likely be Jekyll.
It is worth noting that since Jekyll Island is a state park it will cost you $8 dollars for a one day pass onto the island. You can buy a pass for a week or if you plan to visit several times a year it may make sense to grab an annual pass. I recently purchased a year decal for under $60 dollars and we have already gotten our money’s worth by using it frequently. More information on the car decals can be found HERE.
Things to do
One of the things that I love about Summer Waves is that there is something for everyone in your group. For all of the big kids in your group there six big slides with a large thrill factor. One of the most popular is the pirates passage which is the tallest slide in the park. The older kids and teenagers like this one and there is a fantastic view of Jekyll Island at the top.
In addition to pirates’s passage, there are five more water slides for everyone to enjoy. We have ridden each of them and they are all tons of fun! There are two additional enclosed slides as well as three open slides with one of the three using a tube and allowing two rides together.
The wait has never been too bad for any of these rides. I like to go very early, very late, or hit the slides during lunch time and you can ride everything a few times without much wait at all. Another tip is try to hit SW during the week if possible as the crowds seem to be smaller then.
Another fan favorite is the Frantic Atlantic which is a huge wave pool with large swells that are activated every 15 minutes or so. This is a big hit with my kiddo and we usually hang out there for awhile.
You can also kick back and relax some on the lazy river. This is a fun attraction where you can hop on an intertube and enjoy a nice long float around the park for as long as you like. I am a huge fan!
Recently SW added a brand new kid area, Shark Tooth Cove, which has been insanely popular with everyone, especially the smallest visitors. There are TONS of lounge chairs, shades, umbrellas, and a concession area within this area which is wonderful for families and especially us moms.
Also there are tons of lifeguards!! Love it ! Shark tooth cove is perfect for babies and enjoyed by older kids too. This entire area rests in about 1 foot of water and so it is perfect for those who aren’t swimming yet. There are also TONS of water features that the little ones go crazy for.
Across the park there is another large water pad area with every kind of water spraying apparatus one can imagine including an enormous buckets that dumps tons of water every few minutes. The kids can just run around here and don’t even need swimmies or anything as there is not standing water.
If all of this is too much and you need a quick afternoon nap then you can check out this summer’s newest addition of multiple huge private cabanas for rent next to the wave pool and in Shark Tooth Cove. When you rent these you get all sorts of extras you can read more about HERE.
You may get hungry while you are having so much fun and if so there is a Larry’s Giant Subs on site which is one of my personal favorite sandwich shops.
If Larry’s isn’t enough then there are also three concession stands throughout the park that carry ice cream, dipping dots, chips, sodas, nachos, pretzels and more.
In my opinion the prices are much more reasonable that what you typically see at theme parks. No matter what kind of snack you want there is something there sure to hit the spot. You can also purchase a souvenir cup for $10 dollars and receive free refills the first day and .99 cent refills each visit thereafter.
One of the things I like most about Summer Waves and why we have been such devoted fans over the years- the price is so affordable!
PLUS Kids three and under are totally free with a swim diaper! Hallelujah! This can save you a wad of cash if you have lots of littles in your group.
Also, make sure you check Groupon because I have seen discounted tickets for Summer Waves there many times.
You can buy a full day ticket for adult for $22, a child’s ticket is $19, senior ticket is $11, and there is even a night swim option for $13-15 which allows you to enter the park at 3pm or 4pm( depending on the day) and stay until closing. A two day ticket can be purchased for $29.
If you are local or semi-local then a great option is to get the annual pass. The annual pass runs around $79.99 per person for the season. This allows you to come and go as much as you would like as well as discounts at other Jekyll Island activities. I did the math last year and I only need to go four times to break even. In the first two weeks we went three times. As much as I love Disney, and please believe that I REALLY mean that, you can buy a one day ticket to one of Disney’s water parks for $65 if this helps you see what a great value the annual pass at SW really is.
1.Try to visit on week days as they seem less crowded,
2. Freeze bottles of water to stay hydrated and save some $$$$ ( allowed).
3. To save some cash pack a lunch and go out to the picnic tables outside the entrance for lunch.
4. Bring TONS of sunscreen, water shoes, and a rashguard, and a floatation device if needed.
5. Consider a night swim ticket to save some bucks! Especially if you have to buy a lot of tickets.
Make sure to check out my other posts on Jekyll Island HERE AND HERE for more suggestions. Please drop me a line a let me know what you are loving this summer with your family!! I can’t wait to hear about all of your adventures:)