Ok, let me be completely honest with you. I did not visit Hawaiian Falls all summer long because I am not a waterpark gal. But being that Austin’s newest place to play in the water is less than 15 minutes away from our house AND the fact that the kids have been wanting to go all summer, I planned a day to check out the new Hawaiian Falls in Pflugerville. And I’m glad I did.
Despite the rush to open and hearing all the complaints that came out earlier in the summer about it, I wanted to go with an open mind. I was lucky enough to get a tour of the park and meet with the General Manager. Truthfully, I was overwhelmed with how much there was to do at Hawaiian Falls. Not only do they have a lazy river, one of the biggest wave pools in Texas, and several different types of water slides, they recently opened their Adventure Park with a 7-story ropes course and zip lines that zig-zag all over the park.
We had a great day and I would recommend Hawaiian Falls as a fun place for the big kids to cool down & have fun. It is convenient for those that live in the Austin area and a fairly inexpensive day. There is more to do for the big kids than there is for the little ones (see below). My 11 & 13 year old loved it and can’t wait to go back. My 5 year old is a beginning swimmer and was not tall enough to do most of the slides, so it wasn’t as full of a day for him. Next year, he’ll be ready for it.
If you are planning to go to Hawaiian Falls, here is your complete guide to know before you go:
Tickets - The best prices I have found are at HEB or if you bring in a Coke can to the park. Both of these deals offer you $7 off the Big Kahuna ticket. Also, there are some coupons on the Hawaiian Falls website that offer great deals:
- MauiMoms Mondays - Free Kids Admission with a full price Big Kahuna ticket on Mondays before noon.
- MauiMoms Meal Deal – Free Kids meal with the purchase of a meal on Mondays.
- Tuesdays 2Fer – Buy One, Get One Free Big Kahuna ticket on Tuesdays.
If it rains continuously for 15 minutes or if the attractions are closed due to bad weather, all paid guests will receive a complimentary ticket good for any normal operating day through this Labor Day. You receive the free return ticket even if the park stays open.
*Make sure to keep your receipt or ticket stub. YOU MUST PRESENT YOUR PROOF OF PURCHASE TO RECEIVE THE FREE TICKET. (Guarantee excludes season passes and rain or bad weather starting after 4 p.m.)
Parking – Parking at Hawaiian Falls is $5 or you can buy a season pass for $20.
Cooler Policy – If you would like to bring in a cooler with food, snacks, & drinks, you will pay a $10 cooler fee ($30 season pass). Don’t bring with you outside fast food or pizza, alcohol, or glass bottles. If you don’t want to pay the cooler fee, you can leave it in your car. There are shaded (with umbrellas) picnic tables in the parking lot. Also, unopened, clear water bottles are allowed.
Food - Food is available for purchase. As of last week, the Surf Side BBQ sells brisket sandwiches, burgers, hot dogs, sausage on a stick, and corn dogs. I think the prices are reasonable too – the 4 of us ate for under $25 and it was pretty good. They also offer large Hawaiian Ices. Another restaurant is planned to be built for next summer.
Cabanas – Hawaiian Falls has around 15 cabanas for rent for the day. A cabana can fit up to 8 people and it includes a locker rental, free drinks all day and a server to wait on you. We had a cabana for the day and it was great to have our own shady spot to hang out in. Make sure to reserve the cabana in advance, as your admission tickets are discounted too. ($125 weekday/$150 weekend)
Lockers – There are lockers available for rent for $10 ($2 refunded when you return a key). It is such a small park, that I felt completely comfortable leaving my bags on the chair.
Where is the Shade? – For obvious reasons, get there right when it opens. While there are many umbrellas for shade over the tables and chairs, you need to get to the park early to claim them. When we arrived at 11:30, they were all taken.
Is the park good for Little Kids? – Most of the slides require a height of 48″ or taller. There is the lazy river, wave pool and a kiddie splash pool for the little guys. I would have liked to have seen the inner tubes for the wave pool and lazy river have a bottom, as my 5 year old kept slipping out of them. Unless you have some strong & brave swimmers, I think this park is geared more toward the big kids. And that is GREAT – think about the multitude of splash pads and kiddie pools we have in the Austin area, the big kids need a place to play in the water too.
Lifejackets - Lifejackets are available all over the park to use for free. You are not allowed to bring in your own personal floatation devices and floaties, so it is nice to have these available.
Adventure Park – The Adventure Park at Hawaiian Falls features a 7-story Big Island Adventure Trail for the little kids, a 3-level ropes Challenge Course, and 3 zip lines that fly over the water park (Pineapple Zip Tour). Everything within the Adventure Park is included with the waterpark admission with the exception of the Pineapple Zip Tour.
Is the Ropes Course Safe? - The 3-tiered, 7-story Challenge course is for 48″ and above. A full body harness and Smart Belay System is used. There are 2 lobster-claws that attach to the ropes. When one is off the rope (as when you move from one rope to another), the other is locked in the “clipped in” state. In other words, you will always have at least one claw attached to the rope at all times. This gives a mom a great peace of mind when it comes to seeing you 11 year old seven stories high in the sky!
What do I Wear in the Adventure Park? – You are not allowed in the Adventure Park when sopping wet, but you don’t have to wear completely dry clothes. Shirts & shorts are required as well as closed toed shoes (no flip flops). My son wore his bathing suit with a shirt.
Pineapple Express Zip Tour – The Challenge Course has 2 zip lines, but the really big zip line is the Pineapple Express Zip Tour. You need to sign a waiver to go on it and pay an additional cost. The price is less expensive if you buy it online before getting to the park. My 11 year old did it and said it was AWESOME!
When will the Adventure Park be open? – The Adventure Park will be open year round on weekends after the water park closes. It was very hot to climb the Challenge course, which took about a half hour to 45 minutes, so I can imagine it will be an awesome winter and spring activity. The Adventure Park will also be open for team building during the week.
I love the size of Hawaiian Falls. I felt very comfortable allowing my kids to go off and do a slide or the lazy river and check in with me. I also felt fine leaving my bag on the table of the cabana and getting in the water. As big and exciting as it is for the big kids, as a mom, I felt like this was a small, hometown park. We ran into several people we knew throughout the day. And I really like how close Hawaiian Falls is to home. I could see us buying a season pass next summer and really getting good use out of it.
I think Hawaiian Falls rushed to open and in that time received a really bad rap. I think the company did the best they could to rush to provide a fun, family option this summer. The organization is family-owned based on Christian principles. They strive to bring families closer together in a fun way. I think they succeed with the Pflugerville location. Now that the summer season is coming to a close, they will have ample time to finish construction and make improvements before next summer.
Hawaiian Falls Pflugerville Water Park will be open daily through Sunday, Aug. 24, and also Labor Day weekend Aug. 30-Sept. 1 from 10:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. The Water Park will also be open 11 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 6 and Sunday, Sept. 7.
This Friday, August 22, 2014 – Hawaiian Falls presents a Luau with Live Music, Hula Dancers,
Fire Dancer Performance, Special Menu items and more. Luau activities are FREE for all guests to enjoy. Delicious Luau Meals will be available for only $10. Luau begins a 6 pm.
Disclosure – My family & I were invited to visit Hawaiian Falls Water Park & Adventure Park. I was not compensated to write this article. All opinions are my own.