Waterparks are great places for young folk to spend hot summer days, and these three destinations are definitely popular.
All three of the Lower Mainland’s main water slide attractions were open in the summer of 2020, although with modified conditions due to COVID-19. As of mid-June, they are all set to open for the 2021 season by the beginning of July.
Water Slides in the Lower Mainland
Of the three main water slide facilities in the Lower Mainland, Big Splash is the most recently renovated. Bridal Falls, meanwhile, is the smallest and least expensive. Cultus Lake is the largest (and arguably the most fun).
Water Park Comparisons
Big Splash, Bridal Falls and Cultus Lake are all water slide parks, but all fairly different. Bridal Falls is better for little kids than older youth, and Cultus Lake is the largest facility with the widest range of slide options.
As of the 2021 summer, prices between the three facilities are similar, ranging from around $29 for an all-day pass at Bridal Falls up to $38 at Cultus Lake. Big Splash and Bridal Falls charge everyone over age 3 or 4 the same rate. Admission to Cultus Lake is free for all children under 36 inches tall (when accompanied by a paying adult).
Water Park Food Policies
In 2019 Bridal Falls and Big Splash both had “no outside food or beverage” policies, which meant you either had to buy your lunch and snacks from their facilities or leave the premises to eat your picnics (which needed to be stored in your car).
That does not appear to still be the case at Bridal Falls as they now advertise picnic areas on-site to take your own lunches. In 2020 Big Splash allowed guests to bring one cooler of snacks and beverages so hopefully that continues for future years as well.
Cultus Lake, meanwhile, has a wide range of food options for purchase and also permits outside food and drinks (as long as they aren’t from restaurants). Drinks need to be in their original sealed containers (so they know you haven’t spiked it with something).
The Bridal Falls and Cultus Lake water parks are both located in the Fraser Valley, so closest to places like Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Harrison Hot Springs, Maple Ridge and Langley. Bridal Falls is at the base of a large beautiful mountain range, and Cultus Lake is at the edge of a forest, yet not far from a popular lake.
Big Splash, meanwhile, is located in Tsawwassen, so closest for people in Delta and Richmond, or folk traveling to or from the nearby BC Ferries‘ terminal. The water park is in a flat, open area across the street from a major shopping mall.
For most other folk in the Lower Mainland, the different venues require between a 30-minute and 2-hour drive to get to, which is arguably worth doing for families with kids on hot summer days.
Below is additional background information about each of the three different water slide parks.
(Note: Details are subject to change. Check facility websites for the most up-to-date information.)
Big Splash Water Slide Park
Formerly called Splashdown until a few years ago, Big Splash is the medium-sized water park near the BC Ferries terminal in Tsawwassen. Its address is 4775 Nulelum Way which is just past the Tsawwassen Mills outlet mall.
Splashdown was an older water slide park which was purchased a couple of years ago and given some upgrades.
Admission Prices at Big Splash
As of the summer of 2021, an all-day pass at Big Splash cost $35 for anyone age 4 and older. Twilight passes were good from 3:00 pm until closing and cost $25.
Parking costs $5 extra. Lockers are available for $5 as well, plus a $10 deposit that is refunded when you return the key. Typical menu items at BV’s Sports Bar & Grill include chicken strips & fries, hamburgers and chicken burgers for around $12 each. Pizza by the slice is around $5 and onion rings are $7. Picnic tables can be rented and reserved in advance for $20.
For more information see the Big Splash website.
Bridal Falls Waterpark
The Bridal Falls Waterpark is a smaller waterpark facility that’s good for families with younger children. It’s located at 53790 Popkum Road South in Rosedale, which is close to Bridal Veil Falls Provincial Park just off the Trans-Canada Highway and about halfway between Chilliwack and Harrison Hot Springs in the Fraser Valley.
Bridal Falls isn’t a big place. It has 4 advanced slides, 2 intermediate ones, 1 tubing slide and 5 little kiddie slides and play areas. The facility also has a large hot tub, which is nice on cooler days.
As of June 2021, Bridal Falls Waterpark had a 3.5 rating on TripAdvisor and a 4.1-star rating with Google Reviews.
Admission Prices at Bridal Falls
Also as of the summer of 2021, all-day passes at Bridal Falls cost $29 for folk ages 3 and older. You can also buy a pass valid for just the last hour of the day (from 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm) for a reduced rate.
Adults wanting to supervise young children in the kiddie slide area (and not use the hot tub or larger slides) can pay just $12 for the day. There is also a free viewing area (but without access to the actual facility).
Click Bridal Falls Waterpark for more details.
Cultus Lake Waterpark
The largest and most famous water park in the Lower Mainland, Cultus Lake also has the highest online reviews. It has a 4-star rating on TripAdvisor, 4.5 on Google Reviews, 4.1 on Facebook and 3.5 on Yelp as of June 2021.
Located in the Fraser Valley at 4150 Columbia Valley Highway in Cultus Lake, about 15 minutes from the Trans-Canada Highway, the Cultus Lake Waterpark is the largest water slide park in the province. It’s huge and features a wide range of slides suitable for all ages.
Admission Prices at Cultus Lake
As of the summer of 2021 a day pass for adults cost $33 on weekdays and $38 on weekends. Folk less than 3 feet tall though are free. Twilight passes are good for the last 3 hours of the day and cost $21 on weekdays and $26 on weekend. All-day parking at Cultus Lake costs $10.
While the hours of operation at Cultus Lake are 10:30 am to 6:30 pm at the end of June and first half of July, they are extended to 9:30 am to 7:30 pm in the second half of July and August. When this switch happens a half-day pass (good for five hours) becomes available. This new pass costs $27 on weekdays and $32 on weekends. These dates and hours are for 2021 specifically.
For more information see our article about the Cultus Lake Waterpark.
For further details about the various parks, check out the following:
Other articles that might be of interest include the following:
- Best Places for Children
- Vancouver Summer Activities
- Vancouver’s June, July and August Event Calendars
- Metro Vancouver’s Top 100 Places
- Vancouver on a Budget