Our Family Fun Adventure today comes from Casitas Water Adventure located inside the Lake Casitas Recreation Area and Park. I apologize in advance for the lack of photos in this post, I went solo with some of the kids to the water park and Brecks smashed up his finger pretty bad while camping earlier that morning, so he needed constant attention and calming
I had planned on a two night camping trip, but when we arrived on a Thursday night, there was only one night available. I made the mistake of not making a reservation, I thought for sure there would be space as its a huge campground. The ranger said we could try asking after check in time to see if there was cancellations or pitch our tent in a giant overflow field for $40. We paid $25 for a basic (no electric or water hook ups) tent site for one night. There are several little playgrounds around the campground and our tent site area (area C) had two flush toilets (no showers, though maybe there are some in other parts?) One bathroom was out of order, there were two porter potties available and there was always a line to use the facilities. All the campsites in this area were nice and shaded by large trees. You can fish and boat on the lake (no swimming though) and we have come to watch the meteor showers and star glaze a few times. Anyhoo, after the littlest monkey somehow smashed his finger while playing with rocks in the dried riverbed by our site, I didn’t feel like staying another night. After packing up in the morning we headed over to the water park. It’s only open during the summer, so check their website before going
Entrance fee to this park is $12 per person, so not the cheapest thing to do with a big family. I have wanted to bring the little boys here for a few years now and I’m glad I waited until this year. More on that in a minute. One big brother came along to hang with Azure, which turned out to be super helpful, as Brecks needed my full attention. Parking is $10, or you can park outside the campground and walk in. Though it may be difficult to find parking outside on a busy day. If you stayed at the campground you don’t have to pay for the day use fee. No food or drinks inside the water park but they will stamp your hand so you can go out to use the picnic tables or buy food at the snack booth (expensive though). There are showers/changing rooms, bathrooms, life jackets, some shade, lounge chairs, lockers and water fountains available. Bring sunscreen, sunglasses, and water shoes if you have them. The pavement is scorching hot and get there early to get a good spot in the shade. There are basically three areas in this small, but fun park; The Lazy River (with tubes available, though you will have to wait quite some time to snag one if its real crowded), a Kiddie Slide/Fountain area and a tiny Kiddie Spray area
Taking a little rest in the shade
We visited in July and the park was really full, though the crowds thinned a bit an hour before closing. Azure (age 7, loves water) could have gone non-stop the whole day. Cole (age 14, doesn’t like swimming much) was happy for about 3 1/2 hours watching his brother. And Brecks (age 4, loves water) lasted about 3 hours, but I imagine if we hadn’t camped (he woke up extra early) or had another adult to take a turn with him, would have lasted longer. I had to persuade him to take a nap and then Cole sat with him while I took Azure back out
Azure is 7 and swims very well was able to team up with Cole (14 years) and go off on their own. There are tons of life guards to keep everyone in line and safe. Since Brecks doesn’t swim well enough without a floaty and is too small to climb into and hold on to a tube on his own I had to help hold him up. There were a couple other moms with two littles trying to grab tubes, whilst holding small kiddos and trying to get the kids in them. In my opinion, you need one adult/or older kid per little guy. The water is moving current, you have to help a little guy quite a bit. I would have been really stressed if Azure didn’t swim like a fish
Next Brecks wanted to go to the Slides/Fountain area. It’s real fun for kiddies, freezing water for me 😦 Brecks is 4 and isn’t great at following directions yet. He didn’t understand to wait until the lifeguard said he could go (he saw no one on the slide, cause they were waiting for the ok, and just thought he could go down), to clear the bottom of the slide immediately, don’t try to climb back up, don’t walk in front of the slides. Good and bad thing is the lifeguards are hyper paying attention and ready to give the kids instruction. Great for slightly older kids that need a reminder, not so good for little guys that don’t really understand/remember too well. Basically, I had to go to the top and wait with him until it was his turn, then race down the stairs (no adults allowed on the slides) against all the up coming kid traffic to get to him at the bottom. Fast as I was trying to go, the lifeguards were already admonishing him before I could reach him. That part was really stressful, as I didn’t want to be a pain in the behind to the lifeguards. I think in another year he will be fine and it will be much funner for me to stand around just keeping an eye out from the bottom. There are also lots of older/fast moving kids all over, so if your kids are too small it can be a bit scary and you’ll just have to go everywhere with them. I guess with two parents it might be done easier.
In closing I will say that I will definitely bring the little kids again and this park is certainly worth a visit, especially if you are staying at the campground also.
What fun activities did you discover this summer?