Second Day, Second Park.

The Williamsburg hotel rate that I booked through AAA was so affordable that we booked two adjoining rooms, one for the kids and one for my husband and me to relax in. After all, a little space is nice. While the kids were excited for the “kids’ only” room, my husband and I were excited to have our own beds. We felt like Lucy and Ricky Riccardo, and regrettably told the kids just that, only to have them ask who they were. Sigh.

I remember when my husband and I would use one hotel bed for our bags and the other bed to sleep. Now, we run through the door to claim the bed closest to the bathroom. Aah, marriage.

Our plan was to relax for the evening, but what kid can relax when there are two queen-size beds to jump back and forth on? And how about a fluffy pillow to the head, followed by lots of giggles? Sometimes it’s fun to let things slide that aren’t necessarily allowed at home. It makes the trip memories even better.

After a great night’s sleep, we headed to the hotel restaurant. My kids love breakfast, and I love hotels with free breakfast! The kids loaded their plates with pancakes, bagels, sausage and fruit. I ate fruit…loops. I don’t typically buy sugary cereals, but I’ll be darned if I don’t eat them at every hotel breakfast I can.

On today’s agenda: Water Country USA. I had tried to get VIP parking online, but it was sold out. Thankfully, we arrived at the park before it opened, so we were able to park relatively close. Who needs VIP when you can get V-I Free?! Well, minus the standard $17 parking fee, that is.

Getting to a theme park right as it opens is hands-down the best thing you can do. We were able to ride a few water rides, play in the wave pool, and float in the lazy river, all before noon. After that, the lines got long. And the sun started beating down on those lines. Water Country USA is probably awesome. The rides we experienced were so much fun. But, there is a lot less shade at this park than there is at Busch Gardens, and definitely not as many fans blowing on the lines to keep everyone cool. We didn’t even get to experience half of the rides before we started witnessing other people’s kids passing out. So, we decided to take a break from the lines and just get into one of the pools. When we got into the water and it felt as warm as bath-water, we suggested to the kids that it might be time to leave. Not one child protested, which is a rarity in itself, so off we went.

Would Quick Queue tickets have been worth it? The answer is both yes and no. Before we left for the trip, my finger was hovering over the checkout button to buy these add-on tickets for Busch Gardens. As it turns out, I would have been really annoyed to have spent money on them because there were not any lines at that park that day. But Water Country USA? They would have come in very handy, but at $99 a person, it was a little too steep for us to spend on a day that was just too darn hot. My advice to anyone who is going to one of these parks and thinking about Quick Queue tickets, is to wait until you arrive at the park to assess the crowd situation.

The end of a fantastic weekend came before we knew it, and our ride home was filled with talk of everyone’s favorite moments. Despite the shorter day, my daughter favored Water Country USA, while the rest of us preferred the ease of riding all the rides at Busch Gardens. We unanimously agreed the best ride at Water Country USA was the Cutback water coaster, but in fairness to all the rides we didn’t experience, we decided that we need to visit again before we pick a favorite for certain.

After we dropped the van keys at the Hertz drop-box, our weekend fun was officially over. Now that we are home, I’m back to reality, which is also known as my laundry room. I’m pretty certain we will all sleep soundly tonight!

Have you visited Busch Gardens or Water Country USA? What’s your favorite ride? Would love to hear from you!

Sweet Dreams!



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