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Best Indoor Waterparks for Cold Weather Fun

by Susan Finch

Oct 29, 2017

© Jeff Whyte | Dreamstime


Cold weather vacations conjure images of skiing and snowboarding, but not all kids can take the cold and snow for too long. Meanwhile, it’s not always practical to gather up the kids to go on a weeklong beach vacation. You could settle on an in-between compromise with an indoor water park that rivals the world’s biggest amusement parks and roller coasters. Here are five to get you inspired.


World Waterpark, Alberta, Canada

It’s hard to remember you’re even indoors when shooting down slides at the World Waterpark in Alberta’s West Edmonton Mall. Despite the roof over your heads, this tropical paradise holds the distinction of housing the world’s largest indoor wave pool. It also features more than 21 waterslides and play areas. There’s a long list of things you can do at World Waterpark including surf lessons and SkyFlyer zipline just in case there’s not enough adventure going on.


Great Wolf Lodge, Various Locations

Great Wolf Lodge makes an ideal cold-weather destination with a kid-friendly resort and indoor waterpark in one place. Its family of resorts features kids’ activities like a character tuck-in with milk and cookies. The indoor water park is warmed to an optimal 84 degrees and has thrill slides and toddler areas so everyone is entertained. A wave pool, lazy river and zero-depth entry also makes it reasonable to navigate for Mom and Dad whether you have experienced or pre-swimmers on your hands.


Kalahari Indoor Waterpark, Ohio

Ohio isn’t exactly known for its warm winters, so its largest indoor waterpark at Kalahari is perfect for active kids who need a break from the snow. There’s a Texlon transparent roof so you can still see some sunshine above a 12,000-square-foot wave pool. Kids can expect thrills on the Swahili Swirl 60-foot diameter bowl raft ride, zip coaster and Victoria Falls raft rides. For lower key fun, there’s also a lazy river and swim-up bar for a snack.

Indoor Water Park

Photo: Ildi900 | Dreamstime


Avalanche Bay, Michigan

Head to the mountains for some snow, but stay for indoor water play at Boyne Mountain Resort. Its Avalanche Bay Indoor Waterpark is the largest in northern Michigan and comes outfitted with 88,000 square feet set to 84 degrees for optimal cold-weather swimming. For adventurous families, its Big Couloir attraction sends riders down a vertical capsule via a trap door. There’s also a lazy river, raft rides and Glacier Hot Springs for an authentic apres ski dip just to remind you you’re swimming indoors in the middle of a cold Michigan winter.


Wilderness Resort in Wisconsin

The Wilderness Resort in the Wisconsin Dells features four indoor and four outdoor waterparks so you can enjoy both when weather permits. With 70,000 square feet, you can both swim and sunbathe at the same time under a see-through roof to let in plenty of natural sunlight. Kids can splash in the nation’s largest indoor wave pool, hop a raft at Dueling Mammoths or rest in a rented cabana in between water play. And if you can’t find your significant other, they’re likely at Margarita’s Swim-Up Bar.


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