Updated: May 21, 2015
REVIEW - Valcartier Water Park:A family trip to Quebec City in July 2010 sounded great, but our kids were wondering what we would be doing there. I decided to surprise them with a nice sidetrip to the Valcartier Water Park which is roughly 20 minutes from Old Quebec. The water park is huge with waterslides, lazy rivers, a wave pool, an artificial lake, and lots of play areas for kids that don't really swim yet. Unfortunately the day we went the weather was overcast and rained on and off, but we all had a good time nevertheless. I have been to water parks in the United States, but few compare to Valcartier in terms of waterslides and prices. The crowds were minimal on a Friday afternoon and it seemed that with all the various water attractions, the people were pretty well dispersed amongst them leaving few with long lines. We hung out at the Pirates Hideout and my 9 year daughter went on the waterslides there with little or no lines for about 1 hour. We also did the Rock n' Roll and Amazon river with zero wait at all.
As you enter the park, you pay for your tickets which are wrist bands that attach to your wrist and stay securely in place. Just show your wristband to the staff and you get into the waterslide area or wave pool region. We forgot our swim towels and had to shovel out $17/each at their shop - don't forget them when you come. A locker was an additional $4 and we were able to keep our change of clothes in there until we were done for the day. The lockers are no were near the actual waterslides, so be prepared to at least carry your towels with you and leave them on a bench or picnic table if you want to get dry after using the water. The food was back at the main entrance so we came back to the front of Valcartier to get dryed off and have lunch before going back out to the slides. There are lifeguards on duty at the kids pool area and at the top of most of the slides they have staff that tell you when to go. Some slides had a red light/green light system which also helped keep things moving along. Most slides will tell you what height is required to ride it and others can have kids go with adults (like the Amazon lazy river ride). A few require that you go head first - such as on the Rock waterslide where you lie on a mat/carpet and speed down the waterslide. Some kids and adults find the head first system a bit intimidating and don't like it. Let your kids watch at first and then decide. Plus, you have to climb up a huge flight of stairs to get to the top of slides like this one, so be prepared. The Amazon tube ride was fairly harmless most of the way, but the wave section and waterfalls scared my 5 year old. He was riding with me which helped, but still be forewarned. Other rides and activities include the Dungeon City (indoor and outdoor ride on a tube), Everest - a huge sloped slide that sends you down a steep slope, the wave pool - nice change of pace from the actual waterslides, Spirals - a two person tube ride which was a blast, the Daredevil Drop which puts you into the lake, and many more. The rides are endless and when the weather is sunny this place is perfect. You can find the main website at http://www.valcartier.com - there is an English version for those that are not French speaking. Weather can be a bit unpredictable in the summer months as thunderstorms roll through. We were told when we entered that our tickets would not be refunded if the park had to close due to severe weather.