Having spotted this once-glorious Olympic venue re-imagined as a Wonka-fied water park dubbed the Happy Magic Water Cube, giving a second life to an international showpiece that had quietly fallen into disuse by bringing a fantastical variation of a day at the beach to the landlocked residents of Beijing, we couldn’t help but wonder what other wet, wacky parks exist in the world.
The original Imagineer and creator of the happiest place on Earth, Walt Disney, once said that “it’s kind of fun to do the impossible.” Surely the bizarre water parks of the world are testament to that statement. From a giant King Cobra water slide meant to mimic sliding down a snake’s slippery back to the most crowded wave pools in the world to lazy rivers in a land before time, click through to check out the strangest feats of aquatic, pleasure-seeking imaginations around the globe. Let us know in the comments which you’d like to visit, if any!
Happy Magic Water Park — Beijing, China
Image credit: CRIEnglish via Inhabitat
It’s pretty bizarre that a revered Olympic venue designed by a world-renowned architect would be turned in to a rainbow-colored water land adorned with giant suspended fake jellyfish. Whatever works, right?
Six Flags Hurricane Harbor — Jackson, New Jersey
Image credit: Theme Park Review
This giant King Cobra water slide looks pretty great, but we’re wondering, why would anyone want to experience what it might feel like to slide through the slippery innards of a giant reptile?
Seagaia Ocean Dome — Miyazaki, Japan
Image credit: SuperTightStuff
The largest indoor water park in the world boasts a sizable, faux-sandy “beach” and waves you can surf. It might be more wonderful than weird if it didn’t happen to be about half a mile from the actual beach.
Tropical Islands Resort — Krausnick, Germany
A massive indoor reproduction of a tropical paradise, complete with a white-tent camp in – wait for it – Germany.
Suoi Tien Park — Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
If Tim Burton and Dr. Seuss were to collaborate on a life-size water-themed pinball machine, it would look like this. Cool but weird.
Summerland — Tokyo, Japan
Image credit: Michael Yamashita via My Modern Met
So, obviously indoor water parks are a thing, but what’s bizarre about this one is how crowded it is. Even more bizarre is it actually looks like a lot of people are enjoying it.
Beach Park — Fortaleza, Brazil
Image credit: Gadgoz
At first glance, this probably doesn’t look that strange, but take a closer look at the slide. Dubbed the Insano, it’s the steepest water slide in the world. Apparently you can reach speeds up to 65 miles an hour riding down it. Scary weird.
Kalahari Indoor Water Park — Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
Image credit: 10000Likes
In the grand scheme of wacky water parks, this is definitely the least bizarre of the lot, but that giant water-spewing lion of a totem pole qualifies it for a mention.
Cacheuta Water Park — Mendoza, Argentina
Image credit: Ana Lisa Alperovich via Inhabitat
This is definitely the most bizarre water park we’d like to visit. Built out of natural hot springs in the mountains of Argentina, its prehistoric vibes are entirely manufactured. There’s decidedly something slightly off about floating down a fake natural hot river in a pseudo land before time.
World Waterpark at the West Edmonton Mall — Edmonton, Canada
Image credit: Women’s World Wrestling
It’s a giant water park in a mall in Canada. Shop. Eat. Float. In Canada. Bizarre.