Florida Guide > Disney General
Waterskiing and Tubing at Disney
We’ve been going to Florida for years and wanted to try something a little different to normal during our stay. Our boys have never had the opportunity to water-ski so we looked on the internet and found that Sammy Duvall’s Watersports Centre, based in Disney’s Contemporary Resort marina on Bay Lake, offered water-skiing for beginners.
Booking was very easy - we phoned the number given and booked a morning slot with them – our first choice of day was not available but we were able to get a slot for the day after, and we had checked that the weather forecast was looking good for that day. In July we thought it would be better to book a morning slot as the afternoons tended to cloud over with a high possibility of rain.
The day arrived and the sun shone down with a little breeze so was ideal weather. To get to the Disney Contemporary Resort, we needed to drive through the far right Magic Kingdom toll booth, telling the guard where we were headed, so there is no parking charge and on arrival at the Contemporary Resort we told security the same thing and we were directed to the parking and the location of the marina.
We were advised to arrive 15 minutes beforehand to get the paperwork sorted out (signing the waiver forms) and had plenty of time to explore the marina and await our boat. Both boys were meant to take part but my youngest decided he wasn’t going to try, so yours truly was roped in instead. The four of us met our instructor (Brad) and climbed onto the boat. The slot was for an hour and Brad decided I should go first. He drove out from the dock to the middle of the lake, stopped and gave me a pair of skis (which are adjustable for various size feet) and I climbed out onto the platform at the back of the boat to put them on. He then told me to fall back into the water with them on (a very strange experience) gave me the rope and instructed me how to position myself in the water and various safety items. I signalled to go and we were off. I nearly managed to get on my feet and ski, but my legs had other ideas – and after three attempts I admitted defeat and let my eldest son have a go. He didn’t fare much better – but it was great fun trying. My youngest son then decided that he wanted to try after all. Needless to say, he was a natural – up first time and skiing a short distance without effort.
It seemed like seconds, but 40 minutes had gone by and Brad suggested we had time to do some tubing if we liked. This seemed like a great idea and he guided the boat to a jetty in the middle of the lake and grabbed a couple of tubes (round in shape and about 6 feet in diameter). The boys got on one – laying flat next to each other with hands grabbing on to handles – and I got the other one. This was amazing fun, with the tube skimming over the surface of the water and Brad manoeuvring the boat so that the tubes skipped over the boat’s wake, trying to make us part company with the tube – which I managed to do spectacularly, with a huge splash. I decided to get back in the boat and let the boys have a tube each and Brad managed to dislodge both boys as well. They climbed back on and were towed back to the jetty to put the tubes back and we took a leisurely boat ride back to the dock.
Afterwards, we used the facilities to get showered and changed and we had a chance to walk around the Contempory Resort, inside and out, before driving back to our villa. We would definitely recommend this and can’t wait to go back again next year to try parasailing – I think I will be a spectator like my husband next time though.
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Page added on: 19 August 2014
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Contemporary Hotel grounds
Not quite skiing
View from boat
Lake views and docking
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Contemporary Hotel gardens
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