It's hot in Hanoi in April and after a couple of days of shopping and wandering round the old city we were looking for a way to have some fun and keep cool – and avoid a mutiny from the children. The Vinpearl Water Park in the Royal City shopping centre was the perfect solution. We saw some good reviews on Trip Advisor and got a great rap from our hotel so we piled into a taxi and set off. From memory the fare from the old city was about $5 –the taxi drivers used the meter both ways - it wasn’t much.
The Royal City is an upmarket shopping complex. We went on Tuesday and there seemed to be more staff than shoppers but that didn’t matter to us as we weren’t there for the shopping. The Water Park is downstairs and at the back of the complex. Right next door to the Vinpearl ice skating rink: we almost went in there by mistake which would have been a shame as none of us can skate.
On weekends admission is 220k dong, 170k on weekdays. Students are half price on weekdays so our children got in for 170k between them. 510k for the family – about $25! We paid 50k for a locker, but this is refundable, so don’t lose the receipt. There are free showers and you can hire towels (but not swimming costumes).
There weren’t very many people there on Tuesday morning, probably not more than 40 all together with us as the only Westerners, which meant no queues. The further in you go the more challenging the rides. My advice would be to do them the way we inadvertently did them. Start with the tamest and work your way up to the scariest. Even the tamest rides are thrilling, and if you do them this way you get the maximum thrill. After we’d had a go at all the rides – and the ones at the back of the hall are truly terrifying – we went back to the ones we started on and they felt easy and comfortable. At the time we did them for the first time they were pretty challenging.
I’d say begin with the slide where you lie on a mat on your stomach, then do the twisters where you sit in a single or double tube, then the quad tube and end up with the (almost) vertical slide and finally “the drop”. I can’t remember the name – maybe Kamikaze Loop? It’s as near as I ever want to get to a hanging. You climb to the top platform, get in a capsule and wait. The operator pushes a button and the floor drops away and you plummet about 10 feet and then zoom around in a tube for a couple of circuits. I have no way of knowing how fast you go, but I’d seriously say you hit 80 kph. At the time I had my eyes tight shut so couldn’t say but I watched plenty of others coming down and the speed is terrific.
It was a great day for young and old and we will definitely go back next time we are in Hanoi.
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