FX Excursions

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Family Fun in Wisconsin Dells

by Eugenia Lazaris

Jul 24, 2018

© Pamlewis | Dreamstime.com

Destinations / North America

One of the best parts about being a kid is summer vacation. With a break from school and great weather, it’s the perfect time for a family trip to the Dells, Wisconsin, the Waterpark Capital of the World, where more waterpark fun is packed into one spot than anyplace else in the world.

The Dells, made up of the city of Wisconsin Dells and the nearby village of Lake Delton, is located along the Wisconsin River, making the most of the natural landscape. This popular tourist haven is jam-packed with dozens of year-long attractions — the ultimate destination for families looking for summertime fun.

Waterparks are the star of the show and help keep fun-seekers cool during those hot summer months, but there is plenty more to do here. Outdoor activities, top-notch entertainment, great shopping and stunning landscapes are all part of what makes the Dells an ideal family vacation destination.

Don’t Be Afraid To Get Your Feet Wet

Water adventures are what made the Dells famous and a great way to soak up the sun while keeping cool. The Dells, where the idea of the indoor waterpark was born, offers countless indoor and outdoor parks to choose from. Parks like Great Wolf Lodge, Kalahari Resort Waterpark and Mt. Olympus Water and Theme Park give your family plenty of options for fun.

waterpark in Dells, Wisconsin

Noah’s Arch Waterpark © Rhbabiak13 | Dreamstime.com

Noah’s Ark Waterpark is not only one of the most popular attractions in the Dells, but also the world’s largest. It has tons of fun waterslides and rides for kids of all ages, but its newest attraction, Raja — the World’s Largest Cobra, is a thrill like no other. This six-story water slide sends riders through the cobra, twisting and turning tail at speeds more than 30 mph before dropping 37 feet into the cobra’s waiting mouth.

Dry Land Adventures

When you’ve had all the water you can handle, head to dry ground for some of the Dell’s unique attractions, like the Lost Canyon Tour. This horse-drawn carriage ride takes guests through a stunning natural canyon that winds through Wisconsin’s deepest gorge. The mile-long ride gives guests an up-close look at some of the state’s unparalleled beauty.

Pick your thrill at Dells Adventure Park. The Bigfoot Ropes Course allows adventurous kids to explore the aerial rope and obstacle course before soaring through the sky for more than two hours on the Bigfoot Zipline Tour.

Wizard Quest is an imaginative scavenger hunt in a fantasy world of mazes, puzzles and hidden rooms. Guests use a tablet to play this interactive game in a live setting where they follow clues and solve puzzles to free a wizard — the collaborative activities are perfect for family bonding time.

Catch A Show

The Dells Lumberjack Show lets guests experience some of Wisconsin’s rich lumberjack history. Daily shows involve teams of lumberjacks competing in log rolling, speed climbing and canoe jousting. Comedy, crowd interaction and competitive sportsmanship ensure everyone in the family enjoys the show.

The Tommy Bartlett Show shows guests see a different side of the Dells. Two shows, daily during the summer months, transform Lake Delton into a watersports extravaganza. Tommy Bartlett shows are known for daring and dangerous stunts seen by audiences around the world. The show consists of athletes, acrobats and performers putting on an extraordinary water show the whole family will enjoy — there is even a waterskiing clown to entertain the kiddos!

Make Some Furry Friends

There are plenty of attractions for the animal lovers in the family. At the Timbavati Wildlife Park guests can roam the park or take a safari train ride around the property to experience its beautiful and exotic species of animals, like giraffes, kangaroos, penguins and more. Wildlife presentations by park staff allow guests to interact with the animals, which always thrills little ones. For a more unique experience watch a pig race or take a camel ride.

Canyon Creek Riding Stables lets families enjoy a leisurely horseback ride through some of Wisconsin’s most beautiful woods and countryside. The one-hour ride tops off with a visit to the petting zoo where little ones cuddle with some snuggly farm animals.

Enjoy the Great Outdoors

While there are tons of well-equipped resorts and hotels in town, what makes the Dells a true outdoors destination is Mother Nature herself. There’s no better way to enjoy Dells than camping. Whether you want to camp in comfort in a log cabin or pitch a tent, there is something for everyone.

Families with young children should definitely check out Yogi Bear‘s Jellystone Camp-Resort. This kid-friendly campground has a variety of camping styles available, from tent sites and RV parking to cabins and yurts. There are Yogi Bear-themed sites along with plenty of fun activities for the kids, like mini-golf and water play areas specially designed for kids aged 3 through 12.

Step Out on the Town

The downtown area of Wisconsin Dells is the place to be in the summertime. Gift shops and specialty stores line the streets, making for a great way to spend an afternoon. Grab a bite at one of the many delectable eateries or indulge your sweet tooth at one of the many candy shops like Goody Goody Gum Drop or Dells Fudge Company.


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