Are you thinking about bringing the family to Greenville Rec’s Discovery Island Water Park for some summer fun? The park, located inside Southside Park in Simpsonville, SC, has a little something for everyone. Find out about each of the park’s attractions and all the details you need to know for a fun day at Discover Island.
For more suggestions of where to swim this summer, see our list of places to Splash & Swim in Greenville.
Thank you to Greenville Rec for providing passes so we could bring this information to our readers.
Greenville Rec’s Discovery Island
Discovery Island is a few minutes off 385 in Simpsonville at Southside Park. There are playgrounds, soccer fields, and volleyball courts there, as well, but to relieve the heat, head to the water park.
The water park features two large water slides, a zero-entry pool with a play structure featuring a small water slide, a climbing area, lots of sprayers, buckets, and water cannons, a lazy river, and the FlowRider.
Things to Know When Visiting Discovery Island
When you arrive you’ll likely need to wait in line to enter the park. The line for admission moves pretty quickly, but do keep in mind that once the park reaches capacity you will not be able to enter until others leave. Of course, weekends will fill up more quickly. We visited the park on Monday at about 10:45 am and there was plenty of room in the park.
Once inside, there are tons of chairs where you can drop your things, some of them are located under a large shade canopy. These, of course, go first. So get there right at opening if the shade is your goal. There are also lockers that you can rent to store valuables if you would like.
Life jackets and puddle jumpers are provided for kids. They are required for kids under 42 inches tall and are available for all.
The water park hosts birthday party rentals in huts and cabana rentals. Season passes are available to either one particular park or all of the Greenville Rec parks.
No outside food or drink is allowed in Discovery Island. We did bring in our water bottles without any problem, but they cannot be glass bottles. Clyde’s Cafe offers pizza and snacks or you can exit the park to enjoy a picnic and then re-enter. NOTE: If you leave the park when it is at capacity, someone else will take your spot and you will have to wait in line again before re-entering.
We visited the park for about 2 hours, which gave us ample time to do everything multiple times. On a more crowded day, we might have needed more time to play. The kids really could have stayed longer, but, I’m a fan of ending things on a high note before the kids get cranky.
Attractions at Discovery Island
While Discovery Island is not a huge park, there is a little something for everyone to enjoy. It’s perfect for a few hours of family water park fun without the long drive and expensive ticket price of the water parks at large amusement parks. Here are the attractions you’ll find at Discovery Island.
Grab a tube and float down the lazy river. It’s slow. It’s floating around in a vaugley oval shape. We’re not talking high adventure here. But, it’s perfect for grown-ups kicking back and relaxing or young kiddos who want to use the tubes.
And, if your older kids are on the slides, you can keep an eye on them from here. Whoever planned that out was smart. So smart.
We thought the clear tubes were pretty fun, too!
Water Playground and Pool
In the center of a zero-depth entry pool is a playground structure with a small slide, sprayers, places to climb and mounted water cannons and splayers kids can use. Note that one sprayer can actually reach a few of the lounge chairs, so, if you pick that as your spot, plan on some wet towels.
This area is definitely designed for younger kids, and they will most definitely have a blast here.
Just want to swim? There’s a pool area behind the water playground, between it and the water slides. You cannot bring the tubes here, but if you just want to practice a little swimming this is the place. The pool area is 3 feet deep.
There are two larger water slides at Discovery Island. One is a tube slide which allows both single tube riders and double tube riders. The tube slide is pitch black for about half the ride and it’s really fun. A life guard will give you your tube at the bottom and then you’ll need to climb up 3 flights of stairs to get to the top of the slide.
Or, you can choose the yellow body slide, which of course does not require a tube. For part of the ride the slide is enclosed but not dark becuase of the lighter color of the slide. It’s a bit slower than the tube slide, but with most twists and turns.
The Flow Rider is a surfing and boogie boarding wave simulator. Kids have to be 4″ tall to ride the FlowRider and a waiver must be signed. New riders will get a little instruction from the life guard on duty at the bottom of the Flow RIder and then their off riding the waves.
My teens/preteens really enjoyed this attraction. My 13 year-old said he enjoyed it because it required some skill, not just a ride. There were decisions to make about steering as he tried to stay on the board. There were expereinced riders at the park on the day we visited who were able to do all kinds of twists and barrel rolls and stay on the FlowRider. It was pretty impressive.
While we didn’t enjoy lunch at Discovery Island, we did check out the concessions offered. Clyde’s Cafe offers pizza, Uncrustables, candy, chips and other pre-packaged snacks. The pizza comes from Papa Johns.
You can enjoy Discovery Island, too!
$9 under 48” and seniors
2-years-old and under are free
2022 Summer Hours:
Monday – Saturday: 10:30 am – 5:30 pm
Sunday: 1:00 pm – 5:30 pm
Open seven days a week through mid-August, then on weekends through Labor Day
417 Baldwin Road, Simpsonville, SC
Discovery Island website
Has your family ever visited Discovery Island?