Raging Waters: 12 Top Tips To Make the Most of Your Visit

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What is Raging Waters? Where is the water park located? What are some tips for a day at Raging Waters in Los Angeles?

Situated in San Dimas, approximately 30 miles east of Downtown Los Angeles and 21 miles east of Pasadena, Raging Waters is one of the largest water parks in California. The park spreads across 50 acres and features 36 diverse attractions, including slides, a wave pool, and a lazy river.

Raging Waters offers a mix of family-friendly splash pads and exhilarating thrill slides for those seeking an adrenaline rush. For dining, visitors can enjoy a variety of options, such as Pink’s Hot Dogs, pizza, burgers, and ice cream.

Our visit to Raging Waters on a warm August day was incredibly fun. Having spent the previous day walking around and enjoying the rides at Universal Studios Hollywood, we were eager to cool off at a water park—and Raging Waters did not disappoint. Opinions on Raging Waters in Los Angeles vary, with some less favorable than others; however, we believe it’s an excellent choice for a family day out if you’re looking to beat the heat and enjoy some fun.


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In this article, we’ll share tips to help you make the most of your visit to Raging Waters and answer some frequently asked questions to prepare you for your trip better.

view of raging waters san dimasPin

Where is Raging Waters located?

Raging Waters is located in San Dimas in Los Angeles County. Its address is 111 Raging Waters Dr, San Dimas, CA 91773.

Tips for a Day at Raging Waters

1. Plan to Go on a Weekday

volcano fantaseas at raging watersPin

Weekends are typically the busiest times at Raging Waters. To avoid the crowds, consider visiting during the week, especially in the summer months. Additionally, the park offers discounts on weekday tickets, which you can find on their website

2. Arrive Early

This is one of the most important tips for visiting Raging Waters. The park opens at 10 AM, and it’s wise to be at the gates ready to enter as soon as they open. Arriving early gives you several advantages:

  • Scout a Prime Spot: Secure a shaded area with chairs to leave your minimal belongings. This ensures you have a comfortable spot to relax later in the day unless you’ve booked a private cabana.
  • Plan Your Day: Study a map to familiarize yourself with the park’s layout. Although this can be done before your arrival, getting your bearings on-site is beneficial.
  • Locker Rental: Rent lockers close to your chosen spot for easy daily access.
  • Beat the Crowds: Tackle the most popular slides early to avoid longer lines later, leaving more relaxed activities, like the wave pool or less crowded rides, for the afternoon.
  • Enjoy Quieter Kid-Friendly Areas: The areas designed for children are less crowded in the morning, providing a more enjoyable experience before they get busier as more families arrive.
raging waters san dimas park mapPin

3. Bring the Bare Minimum

Visitors relaxing in inner tubes on the lazy river at Raging Waters, surrounded by tall, lush palm trees and shaded areas.Pin

Tubes are available in limited quantities at the park. You may need to wait for someone to exit the lazy river to access a tube, or you can purchase a tube at the park of your own.

Only a few essentials are necessary to enjoy your day at Raging Waters in San Dimas fully. Pack a bathing suit, a cover-up or shirt, sunscreen, a towel, and flip-flops or water shoes. While water shoes are optional, they are recommended for comfort and safety.

Note: If you wear water shoes or any type of footwear, you’ll be required to wear them at the side of each attraction, along with everyone else’s.

4. Bring Your Own Food and Drinks

Raging Waters prohibits outside food or drinks within the park, except sealed water bottles, sports drinks, baby food, and formula. Coolers are not allowed inside. However, you can bring a cooler packed with lunch and drinks and leave it in your car’s trunk. Consider leaving the park at lunchtime to enjoy your meal, especially if you’re visiting with a large family or group. This strategy can significantly reduce your expenses.

Inside the park, combo meals typically cost between $10 to $15 per person, excluding drinks. Drinks are available for an additional charge.

Tip: Freeze a bottle of water the night before your visit. Place it in the bag you’ll carry inside the park. It will have thawed enough to drink later in the day.

5. Invest in Preferred Parking

Parking Costs at Raging Waters Los Angeles: Preferred Parking at Raging Waters in San Dimas costs $50, while General Parking is available for $25. It’s advisable to purchase parking passes online in advance.

Benefits of Preferred Parking: Preferred Parking is located directly outside the entrance to Raging Waters, providing convenient access to your vehicle throughout the day. This is particularly beneficial if you plan to return to your car for meals, allowing you to avoid the tram rides required from General Parking.

General Parking Considerations: While General Parking is more economical, it is farther from the entrance. Guests must wait for a tram to travel to and from this parking area, which can be less convenient, especially if multiple trips must be made to retrieve items like a lunch cooler.

Evaluating the Cost: While investing in Preferred Parking might seem equivalent to buying meals inside the park, especially when considering the park’s meal prices of $10-15 per person, the decision often depends on the size of your group and the number of meals needed. For our visit, the convenience of Preferred Parking was worth the cost, given the hot weather, long lines for the tram, and the hassle of general parking. We found it especially worthwhile for a one-day visit during the summer.

6. Store Any Valuables in a Locker Rental

If you’re bringing valuables, consider renting a locker for $15 for the entire day. This allows you to safely store your items, such as a backpack with towels and other essentials, and access them as needed.

We opted for a locker rental during our visit, which let us enjoy the park without worrying about our belongings. The usefulness of renting a locker may vary depending on the size of your group and whether you can secure seating in an area that feels safe for leaving important items unattended.

Always better to be safe than sorry.

Tip: Remember your locker number and password. To help, take a photo of the locker number with your cellphone before walking away, especially if you plan to carry your phone with you in the park. This simple step can prevent any confusion later in the day.

7. Set up Apple Pay

Raging Waters is a cashless park, so cash transactions are not an option. To prepare:

  • Set Up Apple Pay: Ensure Apple Pay is configured on your device before your visit. This will streamline your transactions throughout the park.
  • Bring a Credit Card: Carry one credit card as a backup payment option.

These digital and card payments are ideal since you’re advised to bring only the bare minimum. You can securely store your credit card and phone in your rented locker, using them only when necessary

8. Waterproof Solutions for Your Small Belongings

Waterproof Phone Case: A waterproof phone case is a smart investment for those who like to keep their phones accessible for photos and other uses. These cases are affordable and practical for various water-related activities, including beach days and cruises. You can comfortably wear the case around your neck, ensuring your phone and a credit card (if needed) stay dry and secure.

Waterproof Money Belt Pouch: Waterproof belt pouches are another great option for those who prefer a different style. They offer protection and convenience, allowing you to keep essential items without worrying about water damage.

9. Book Cabana Rentals in Advance

Beachcomber Bay Cabanas at Raging Waters featuring sandy areas lined with tall palm trees and relaxing cabanas in the backgroundPin

If you’re considering renting a cabana at Raging Waters, book it in advance . Cabanas are in high demand, particularly on hot days, and often sell out quickly. Prices start at $150 for the day, and options range from a basic private shaded area with seating for four to larger cabanas with more seating and a designated server.

Is it worth it? Renting a cabana can be valuable if you really want a guaranteed shaded spot for you and your family. Remember that while they offer comfort and shade, they don’t provide luxury amenities. They tend to be sold out whenever we visit.

10. Consider H2GO Passes

Colorful water slides looping around each other at Raging Waters with a clear blue sky in the backgroundPin

If you plan to spend the day tackling Raging Waters’s most popular attractions, the H2GO passes might be a worthwhile investment. These passes, which start at $40 per person per day in addition to your ticket, allow you to bypass regular lines and save time. You can check here for more details on the benefits and how to purchase an H2GO Pass.

Popular attractions covered by H2GO passes include:

  • Dark Hole
  • Aqua Rocket
  • Dr. Von Dark’s Tunnel of Terror
  • Ragin’ Racer
  • Thunder Rapids
  • High Extreme
  • Dragon’s Den

11. Treat Yourself to Ice Cream

Hand holding a Dole Whip float with whipped cream against a backdrop of Raging Waters' vibrant water slides and palm treesPin
Dole Float

When at Raging Waters, don’t miss out on the Dole Soft Serve—a creamy, pineapple-flavored treat that’s particularly refreshing on a hot day. It was the best food item at the park. We indulged in a cone and a Dole Float and enjoyed them immensely.

12. Leave the Park Early

Arriving early at the water park allows you to enjoy less crowded attractions and gives you the option to leave early. As the day progresses, the park gets hotter and more crowded, which can diminish the overall experience.

We recommend staying until about an hour before closing and then returning to your car. If you’ve opted for Preferred Parking, you’ll find it especially convenient since your car is parked near the main entrance. This makes your departure quicker and smoother, helping you avoid the rush and long waits for the tram that comes with General Parking.

Leaving slightly earlier can prevent the chaos of the mass exodus at closing time.

What’s better Soak City or Raging Waters?

If you plan to split your day between a water park and an amusement park, consider Soak City. It offers combo tickets with Knott’s Berry Farm for a varied entertainment experience in Orange County. Raging Waters, located in San Dimas, Los Angeles County, features 36 rides and is ideal for dedicating a full day to water activities, although it does not include an amusement park.

Vibrant scene at Splash Island in Raging Waters, featuring bustling water activities with children and families enjoying various slides and pools, surrounded by lush palm trees.Pin

Is Raging Waters good for toddlers?

Yes! Raging Waters is a family-friendly park, including toddlers. The family-friendly areas are much nicer and less crowded. There are smaller pools and slides for them to enjoy. And lifeguards are posted at every corner.

Do I bring a towel to Raging Waters?

Yes, bring a towel from home to dry off. Rental lockers are available to store your belongings while you are in the park, but it is more convenient (and cheaper) to bring a small bag with your towel and sunscreen. We like these packable beach towels.

Can you wear water shoes at Raging Waters?

While water shoes are not mandatory at the park, we highly recommend them. The park’s concrete surfaces can heat up, making slides slippery. Water shoes protect your feet and make navigating the park more comfortable. Note that some rides may require you to remove water shoes before boarding.

What is the best time to go to Raging Waters?

The optimal time to visit Raging Waters is right when the park opens. Arriving early helps you avoid crowds and long lines, as the park becomes more crowded as the day progresses.

Is Raging Waters dirty?

We noticed that the grounds and pools at Raging Waters were well-maintained throughout the day. However, remember that the park is in the middle of the San Gabriel Mountains, which may influence certain conditions. While the bathrooms are clean initially, they can become less so over the day as they are frequented by wet visitors.


Kathy Ava

Meet Kathy Ava, a food, travel, and cruise writer based in Los Angeles/Pasadena, and the owner and main writer of Tasty Itinerary. With over 20 years of experience planning trips and logistics at her full-time job and for herself, she's become a pro at crafting unforgettable tasty itineraries. She's always on the hunt for delicious, fun travel destinations and cruise itineraries. She firmly believes that life is short and we must make the most of it, so always say yes to dessert.

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