When you're planning a trip to a water park, it's tempting to spend as much time as you can researching the park and picturing yourself zipping down a slide on a hot day and splashing into a pool of refreshing water. Take a moment to snap back to reality, and consider what clothing you'll need to pack for your park visit. Having the right attire can be the difference between a happy day and a forgettable one.

Bathing Suit

You'll spend much of your water park visit wearing a bathing suit, and for the sake of comfort, select a suit that fits correctly. For women, bikinis and one-piece bathing suits are typically acceptable at water parks -- but a bikini may not be practical unless it's in a sports cut. For men, shorts-style and brief-style suits are acceptable. On high-speed rides, you'll move quickly down the slide and hit the pool below with considerable force. Select a bathing suit that won't come off during the impact -- the last thing you want is an unfortunate wardrobe malfunction. To confirm your choice of bathing suit adheres to the water park's dress code, check the park's website before your visit.

General Park Attire

At some parks, guests are required to wear appropriate clothing when they leave the water park area and visit the general theme park. In this case, sandals or sneakers, shorts, and T-shirts or tank tops are acceptable. If the weather is cool, a sweatshirt or track pants are ideal to slip over your bathing suit. In parks where the entire complex is designed for water-based activities, you're typically permitted to remain in your bathing suit for the duration of your stay.

Other Items

Always consult the water park's website or call the park before your visit to determine which items are permitted. Some parks allow you to wear goggles on the slides and in the pools, while others do not. If you prefer to wear swimming shoes as you walk around the park, check to confirm whether they're permitted on the slides and in the pools. If not, check and see if lockers are available.

Prohibited Items

In most cases, water parks frown on guests wearing such items as wet suits, life jackets, flotation devices and bathing suits with metal buckles, zippers or decorations. Many parks also prohibit you from wearing glasses or bulky jewelry while using the slides or pools. If you discover you've visited the park with a prohibited item, consider renting a locker to store the item until the end of your visit.