Dear Steemit friends :
The Land of Legends in Antalya, Turkey is a new concept resort combining a luxury themed hotel suitable for families with young children, as well as a shopping arcade and water park to boot. It is the largest of it's kind in Europe and looks to be a compelling attraction to visit for all travellers to Turkey.
Although Turkey is known for it's Greco-Roman cultural attractions, the Land of Legends offers something completely different and more importantly, something the children would likely appreciate whilst parents can takee a break from intellectual stimulation for a couple of days. I remember as a child, I thought cultural travel was a very painful experience, whether it was museums, art galleries or visiting historical sites, I couldn't hold my attention to them, even when I knew how important they were. All I wanted to do was wade in a sunny place with pools of water everywhere, and fun activities to indulge in. Growing older, that desire hasn't really changed, but the difference now is I appreciate the cultural side just as much.
So, with that said, today we'll be having a look at the water park at Land of Legends and what activities and attractions you can expect find in this all-in-one resort.
This is the map of the entire resort. As big as the hotel is, it is but a small part of the resort, the larger part belonging to the water park. This is the main attraction of the Land of Legends. In-fact, more than half of the visitors to the water park do not stay at the resort, and are either coming from the Rixos Downtown Antalya, or other hotels in the catchment area.
The water park cost around $1 Billion dollars to construct and occupies approximately 280,000 square meters. The wide array of attractions mean that there is something of interest to everyone, whether you're a 5, 13, 30 or 50!
Probably the most striking feature on the map is the huge wave pool in the very heart of the water park, around it are many different adventure bases, dolphinariums, and safari parks.
At the Land of Legends, there are exactly 72 water slides or water chutes. Some of them are constructed high in the sky and resemble roller coasters, winding around like giant snakes in the air. Other slides are more akin to water flumes, with gushing flows of water pushing the riders at immense speed down the slippery pipes.
In many ways, the design of the water park compliments the hotel. It's adventure theme coupled with greco-roman architectural elements help to keep the entire resort consistent in it's look and feel, but also gives the designers a great deal of freedom to experiment with crazy rides, slides and wave pools.
Children under a certain height have their own area with their own downsized water rides. Parents only need to lightly supervise their children whilst they paddle in the shallow pools, and get splashed by the overhead bucket of water which tilts over once it is refilled.
Shallow pools of water can be found in each of the areas. After-all, who doesn't enjoy lounging around or paddling in the water whilst cooling off? With the temperatures soaring north of 40 degrees Celsius, each pool becomes like an oasis for those seeking a sanctuary from the blistering heat.
Other rest areas are also available, for example, this little area in the center of the park is where you'll find some shade from the sun, but also many refreshments from ice cream, slushies, to regular soft drinks. Even this area makes use of outrageous numbers of colours. The roof, the tiles, and even the pillars, all extremely contrasting in design as well as usage of colour.
This little corner is called the Secret Lagoon, it's the less garish part of the park without any of the large rides or water slides. It's perfect for people who want some peace and quiet. Naturally most of the people will congregate around the big water slides and big pools.
This is Wave Shock, the tallest slide in the park and one which starts from inside the rock.
Beside Wave shock, it's younger and more tame brother, My dive.
Magicone, the cone shaped slide which makes you rock from side to side like a skateboarder on a half pipe. It was really fun but the queues were immensely long!
There are also a variety of rides with floats; river rapids, sea voyager, flow rider, tower falls, and the abyss are all very good options. A good way to 'break the ice' is the river rapids. It's a very light 'ride' which involves doing nothing but sitting on a float, and drifting around the fast flower river around the park.
Two of the pools in the resort have the ability to create waves. The first, is called Wave Ball and is a miniature pool for the younger children under the age of 10. The waves here are as shallow as the pool which even for me is only knee deep. This is a taster for the larger version..
Named Wave Shock, this is the larger pool and the one which the majority of people will hang around. Not only does it have the most amount of "space", it is also where the largest waves are created. They are so large infact, that "shockwaves" can be felt right to the edge of the pool.
This is an apparatus made for little children, although I did see a few adults having a try as well. The idea is move through without getting wet. The bucket at the top is constantly being filled and when it reaches a certain amount, will tip over and splash everybody below.
Another one of the pools you can visit is the Stingray pool. Although you have to pay for this opportunity, I think it's worth it to have a swim with these very friendly and tame animals. They will even come over and eat from your hand if you offer them food.
This water fountain features Poseidon, the god of the Sea and Water. His statue is very large, colourful and formidable. Since the park has elements of Roman and Greek history, it is quite fitting to have the Greek God of the Sea and Water watch over this mini water kingdom.
This was a really interesting pool within a pool. It's called the Infinity pool because from the side of the entrance, it looks as if the water runs off to the edge into infinity. In reality, the opposite edge uses a sheet of see through glass instead of the black curbs to form the pool walls.
This of course means some really interesting picture opportunities!
Aside from the water park and it's respective rides, the park also sports several wildlife enclosures for some exotic animals. We've already seen the Sting rays, so now lets take a look at what other animals you can see.
First up, the the gorgeous Siberian Tiger. Watching it from far, I realised that they are not too different from my little family of cats at home. Each idiosyncrasy of my cats would be mimicked by the tiger, except on a much bigger body.
Next we have a small colony of penguins. If you book in advance, you can have the opportunity to feed them some fish and pat their heads. Of course, I couldn't turn that opportunity down. They are remarkably intelligent, lining up and taking turns to be fed. Once you obtain a certain level of trust, you can touch them and they'll even reciprocate with a head butt!
Probably the star of the animal kingdom atleast at Land of Legends, is the big friendly Walrus. Two long teeth with a Chaplin-style beard, the Walrus looks almost like an artist. His eyes are big and exude friendliness.
He also knows a lot of tricks, such as waving his flippers..
Doing push-ups (kind of!)...
And even sit-ups!
With such so many talents, of course I needed to get up close and congratulate him personally, as well as get a fan-girl picture with him! I'll be happy to report (and show) that he was happy to oblige!
Perhaps the most unexpected animal encounter was with these two Beluga whales. Prior to seeing them here, I had no idea that these species even existed. I was particularly surprised by the sounds they could make, resembling almost a birds tweet.
When you move your hands above their head, they rise up to meet your hands as if they want to feel you touch them. Given they were about 10 times larger than myself, I was a little frightened at first, but they were so friendly and even welcoming that the unnerving experience quickly became a thing of the past.
I'm glad the Beluga whales came over to say hello, otherwise, I wouldn't even know about their species!
Check out the video!
And that wraps up our visit to the Land of Legends water park and aqua kingdom! Perhaps the most impressive feat of the resort, is making the entire water park accessible to people of all ages and backgrounds and does so, with a strong sense of style and consistent theme. I loved the Greek and Roman history in Turkey, and I'm glad they've chosen to keep this their main style.
Of course, the most appealing attractions to me were the animal interactions. It's not everyday that you can come that close to Penguins, Walruses and Beluga whales, and so, it was a treasured experience getting to know them intimately.
Whether you're looking to splash in a swimming pool, take a ride down a slide, or get to know some of natures most beautiful animals, the Land of Legends has it all.
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