Cruise Activities

Making a Splash: Royal Caribbean’s Category 6 Waterpark

Last Updated on March 28, 2024

Royal Caribbean is making waves with its latest cruise ship attraction, the Category 6 Waterpark. Sure, many cruise ships have had a water slide or two for the past two decades, but for Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas and the upcoming Star of the Seas, they introduced a full-on water park. It provides an adventure-packed haven for thrill-seekers and families alike.

Category 6 Waterpark is located in Thrill Island

Category 6 Waterpark is located in the Thrill Island neighborhood on Deck 16 of the ship. Nearby are the Flowrider, Adrenaline Peak climbing wall, and Crown’s Edge attraction. It’s a great place to get your thrills on a sea day. 

icon of the seas category 6 waterpark
The Category 6 Waterpark consists of six record-breaking slides. There are no pools or splash pads in this area.

The name “Category 6” is a playful nod to the intensity of hurricanes, and the waterpark lives up to this with six record-breaking slides that promise to deliver a rush of adrenaline. Split between two different slide towers, this area offers a variety of fun family slides. 

That being said, it’s not a “true” waterpark. There are no lazy rivers, pools, or splash park in this specific area, and it doesn’t even have a dedicated entrance. Still, it has more water slides than any other cruise ship. With a footprint of 17,010 square feet, it’s easily one of the largest water areas at sea. 

storm chaser and frightening bolt water slides on icon of the seas
The racing slide Storm Chasers and the drop slide Frightening Bolt.

What slides are in Category 6 Waterpark?

On a record-breaking ship, Royal Caribbean had to put record-breaking slides. 

category 6 waterpark slide sign
Category 6 Waterpark has 6 slides to choose from.

Frightening Bolt – the tallest drop slide at sea

Frightening Bolt is the most intense of the bunch and will intimidate even the bravest people. You get in the slide, and the floor drops from under you, sending you 46 feet down and through a full 360-degree loop. 

category 6 waterpark frightening bolt tube
With Frightening Bolt, you step into the chamber and the floor drops out beneath you.

Storm Chasers- first duo-mat racing slides at sea

Sliding down a water slide face-first on a waterslide just feels different. It’s much more exhilarating, and you feel the water splash your face as you speed down the inclines. Storm Chasers is a dueling mat slide so you can challenge your friend or family member to see who’s fastest. 

category 6 waterpark storm chasers entrance
Storm Chasers is a mat slide where you can race against an opponent.

Hurricane Hunter – first family raft slide at sea

Hurricane Hunter is a family raft slide that can seat four people per tube. That’s right; Royal Caribbean managed to pack a large-format waterslide on a cruise ship (technically two if you read below). Hurricane Hunter is a mostly enclosed tube and will send your family through 425 feet of twists and turns.

family slide
Hurricane Hunter is a 4-person family slide

Storm Surge – first suspended family slide raft

The second family rate slide, Storm Surge, has an open slingshot element. Towards the end of the ride, the slide shoots up an open lotus leaf, giving guests an amazing ocean view while experiencing near-zero gravity.  

Category 6 waterpark storm surge
Up to three people slingshot over the side of the ship on Storm Surge

Pressure Drop – first open freefall slide at sea

Sometimes you don’t need anything fancy to make a slide exhilarating. Pressure Drop is a straight 108-foot drop, but what sets it apart is that it’s an open slide that has a 66-degree incline. Guests will have to push themselves into a near-vertical drop with an open tube. 

How much does Category 6 Waterpark cost?

Category 6 Waterpark is included in your cruise fare and has no additional cost. Guests can enjoy the slides as much as they want while on board. 

icon of the seas flowrider and category 6 waterpark

What are the restrictions for the slides in Category 6 Waterpark?

Guests are not allowed to wear jewelry, watches, GoPros, cameras, swim vests, or shoes on the slides. 

At a minimum, guests must be at least 48 inches tall to ride the slides, although each one has its own requirements (for those without children, that’s typically around eight years old). 

SlideMinimum HeightMaximum WeightNumber of People
Hurricane Hunter48″595 lbs4 max
Storm Surge48″441 lbs3 max
Storm Chasers48″300 lbs1
Frightening Bolt52″300 lbs1
Pressure Drop52″300 lbs1
Category 6 Waterpark Height and Weight Restrictions
royal caribbean category 6 slide tower.

Is Category 6 Waterpark crowded?

The level of crowds will depend on the specific sailing. For lighter crowds, try visiting the park on port days when most guests are off the ship or on embarkation day. 

One thing that helps with the crowds is that Category 6 Waterpark is just the water slides; there are no pools or splash pads in the waterpark. That means people are less likely to stay on the slides all day. If they want to swim, they’ll have to go to one of the many other pools around the ship. Also, younger children will spend more time in SplashAway Bay in the Seaside Neighborhood, which helps with the crowds. 

Which ships have the Category 6 Waterpark?

The waterpark can be found on the following Royal Caribbean ships:

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Randy Young

Randy Young is the founder and editor-in-chief at Cruise Spotlight. He has been in marketing for 19 years and has been cruising for just as long. Over the years, he's worked with products like TVs, copiers, light bulbs, and EV chargers, but cruising has always been his passion. There's nothing Randy likes more than the first couple of hours on a ship, exploring every nook and cranny and seeing how it's different from everything else out there. He's known for providing detailed and analytical coverage of cruising to help cruisers get a comprehensive picture of a ship's offerings.