Infinity Falls lives up to its promise. “You and your belongings will get soaked,” read signs at SeaWorld Orlando’s new raft ride, which officially opens Oct. 4. That was certainly my experience, one in which I was all but drenched by the second turn of the water ride.
The attraction is in its soft-opening phase, a dress rehearsal of sorts, so theme-park visitors may or may not get a chance to ride during their visits before Thursday. On this sunny Sunday afternoon, we waited 45 minutes in the Florida heat before people were allowed on Infinity Falls. So, really, it was a blessing to have water spewed from every direction during our first trip through the Falls.
Patience is a fine quality to have when it comes to Infinity Falls. The ride was scheduled to open sometime this summer, but the park experienced an extended delay in the preparations.
Read more: Oars rafting
Now that’s its running, you get a decent idea from dry ground what’s ahead: A sloshy stretch that leads to a straightaway drop for all to see.
The list of what you can’t see, unless you’re aboard one of the eight-person rafts, includes a flock of flamingoes, an impressive archway with the Infinity Falls logo carved into it and a series of curves and small-but-effective drops that occur after the vehicles climb to a higher, hidden level.
I’m going to say “spoiler alert” here, which is weird since the following sentences cover an element that SeaWorld Orlando has touted since the ride was announced in the spring of 2017: the straight-up lift hill. The thing is, you can’t really see how rafts get up to the ride’s apex, which is adjacent to a large blue, Tinkertoy-ish structure. After achieving the upper level and getting even wetter, the rafts appear to come to a tall wall of dead end.
Or do they? After mechanical jostling – Infinity Falls wants the rafts arranged just so – you go straight up, elevator style. It’s dramatic. My co-riders were wide-eyed but immediately pronounced it as “neat.”
Read more: Lake powell rafting tour
Then you’re ceremoniously dumped down the other side of the hill, the drop that bystanders can see. There’s a big splashdown, but by this point you’re too wet to care and heading back to the loading station.
A quick poll of the folks in my raft revealed that everyone considered themselves to be in the “soaked” category. On a scale of 1 to 10, I’d say we were a 9 in the drench factor. And our vehicle wasn’t particularly heavy: Only five adults, one teenager and one kid.
Additional Infinity Falls notes:
• I was almost immediately glad I had wrapped my phone in a plastic bag, but there are lockers (and full-body dryers) available for rent.
Read more: Acali raft santiago
• You don’t exit through a gift shop, although there’s one nearby. And SeaWorld’s Terrace Restaurant has been rethemed into the Waterway Grill (menu includes steak, roasted chicken, pork and seared tofu). Just like in the old days, there’s beer in there … and some brewery relics from the Busch ownership days.
• Height requirements: You have to be at least 42 inches tall to ride, and if you’re less than 48 inches tall, you must be accompanied by a “supervising adult.” Oh, and you can’t be taller than 6-foot-5.
• The rafts are somewhat of a tight squeeze and slightly awkward to get into. “Larger guests may not be able to ride,” the signage states. Also: “Guests must have full upper body mobility and have the ability to grip with one hand and brace with one functioning leg.”
• Unlike some similar rides in the region, there is no storage built into the middle of the raft. Plan accordingly.