At the time of writing in February 2021, there are still plenty of restrictions in place around Bali, including curfews, masks and temperature checks. So, rather than writing just another review of Waterbom Bali, this is a look at what to expect if you visit during the COVID-19 pandemic.
You don't have to wear a mask inside If you don't like the idea of wearing a soggy mask all day long, don't worry. Once inside the park, there is no requirement for visitors to wear a mask, although all the staff continue to do so.
It's really quiet As you would expect at a time when tourism on the island is almost non-existent, the number of visitors to Waterbom is far below normal, even for off-peak season. As a result, it doesn't feel at all crowded and there are barely any queues for the slides. This in itself is a really great reason to visit now, if you have the chance.
Climbing the stairs in one go is hard work! One good thing about it being busy is that you only have to climb halfway up the stairs before you hit the end of the line. When there is no queue, you've got to do the whole lot in one go, unless you decide to stop half way and admire the view. Fortunately, you have all the time you need to catch your breath when you reach the top, before beginning your descent.
Some restaurants and stalls are closed There are several restaurants and other services scattered around the park, but many of these are closed while visitor numbers are so low. The main food court is still open, as is the bar at the main pool and several stalls around the park selling ice cream, popcorn, drinks and other snacks.
Other services like massages, mani/pedis and hair braiding are all closed too, for now.
They are still very well staffed
It's really great to see that Waterbom management haven't skimped on staffing, even while the park is so quiet. The kids' play area has 4-5 lifeguards and assistants present throughout the day, and everywhere you go there are sanitation staff spraying disinfectant on surfaces and keeping the park clean and tidy.
Talking of the kids' area, it's not just a climbing frame with slides but has all kinds of ropes to pull, wheels to turn and channels to block - so kids can actually have fun experimenting with water as well as splashing around in it.
There are plenty of COVID precautions in place Waterbom water park has been cash-free for many years, instead using electronic wristbands for purchases and locker access.
There are other measures introduced more recently to make it COVID-safe, including distancing markers and hands-free hand-washing stations. Hand sanitiser is available wherever you go, and there's a one-way system when you want to order food.
There are some great discounts available!
Waterbom Bali has been running various discounts for the last few months, usually offering at least 25% off the standard ticket price and also allowing flexible visit dates. Occasionally the discount increases as high as 50%, so look out for special offers.
Do be aware that they may have to change their opening days and times at short notice, depending on government regulations to control the pandemic. For example, at the time of writing, the park is only open from Friday to Sunday, 10am to 5pm.
Some other good things to know about Waterbom Bali, aside from all the fun slides it has, are:
-Over 50% of the park is green space, and they really have made an effort with the small details to make it a beautiful tropical environment as you walk around.
-The food is not too expensive (most meals costing 75-100k) and there is a nice selection of different cuisines. The health-conscious can choose from a range of salads and juices, so it's quite different to some other water parks in Bali where you're limited to a menu of fried junk food.
-They're working hard to be sustainable, from advanced water filtration systems to careful waste management. You'll notice the little things like cardboard straws and organic waste bins as you enjoy your day out.
Waterbom park has always been a great day out, and the current situation takes very little away from the experience. If anything, you'll have even more fun with zero downtime in queues. Just be prepared for your legs to ache the next day!