With 111 play elements, four water slides, and three tipping buckets dispensing a combined 1,300 gallons of water, the newest water-play attraction at Sesame Place San Diego is fit for, well, a Count.
The newly renovated Count’s Splash Castle officially reopened on June 30, with the notoriously numeric muppet making a cameo to the cheers of the crowd. As families gathered for the grand opening ceremony, the multi-color, multi-level (yet-to-be-played-upon) splash zone loomed behind the stage, its myriad water features twisting and turning and tantalizing those patiently waiting on the edges.
Within moments of the ribbon cutting, the structure’s unsullied status was no more, as kids rushed the several entrances, climbing aboard and engaging with interactive features, all while squealing with glee. Soakers, flow pipes, hose jets, spray jets, water shooters, water curtains, tipping troughs, and spinning and sliding buckets — these are the types of things you’ll find here, things one might dream up for a fantastical episode of Sesame Street.
With so many features packed onto one structure, the Count’s Castle can be a bit chaotic — but it’s an aquatic madness to love on a sunny summer day at Sesame Place.
For our daughter (3.5), who tends to favor order to chaos, venturing into the heart of the medieval-style park was not on the agenda.
But that’s not to say she didn’t enjoy it. In fact, quite the opposite.
She was more than happy wading in the ankle deep water that extends far past the perimeter of the castle itself, watching the marine madness unfold from a distance. (She especially enjoyed watching multiple buckets dump their contents on squealing park-goers — both voluntarily and unsuspecting.)
From gentle sprays and bubbling fountains to thrilling water slides and tipping buckets, there’s something to captivate every water-loving adventurer. Little ones like my daughter can explore the shallow pools and discover water streams that trickle down from various points in the castle, or interact with different water features designed to stimulate the senses and encourage imaginative play. Those seeking bigger thrills can head to spray guns and waterslides.
A few of my personal favorites:
- A second-story splash pad with water guns mounted mere feet apart to spray friends and foes at humorously close proximity. Enter at your own risk of being caught in the crossfire.
- Troughs of water strategically positioned above walkways that surreptitiously fill up and then dump on unsuspecting passersby. No one is safe. Ever.
- A variety of waterslides spread throughout the Castle with varying grades and lengths appropriate for all ages. These were closed during our trip, but scheduled to open soon.
- The buckets, of course, that dramatically splash gallons upon gallons of water once full, giving the park an ever present sense of pent up kinetic energy. It’s great just to be the spectator — who doesn’t love watching a torrent of water descend upon someone else?
The castle’s layout is designed with both active play and areas for parents to unwind, with seating areas to take a rest while keeping a watchful eye on children.
Though I wouldn’t quite consider a trip to Count’s Splash Castle relaxing, there’s something comforting about knowing your kids are sure to find something to entertain them among the 111 play features. Or, if they’re like my daughter, enjoying the frenzy from the calm, cool shallows.