COURTESY SAHARA SAM'S
En español | The kids and grandkids are back in school, Labor Day has passed, and soon it will be too cold in most parts of the country to be in the pool. But as we’re about to show you, there are still plenty of places to splash, slide and float down a lazy river!
Kalahari Water Park
Taking the title of America's Largest Indoor Water Park is Kalahari Pocono Mountains in Pennsylvania. Just this year the park nearly doubled its size when it expanded to 220,000 square feet. From water slides to a wave pool, it's a wet and wild experience at every turn. One of the biggest attractions is FlowRider, where you can ride a 5-foot wave, thanks to 50,000 gallons of water that flow per minute under you. The resort also has locations in Ohio, Texas and Wisconsin.
COURTESY SPLASH LAGOON
Age doesn't matter at Splash Lagoon. From spinning in the new Aqua Tumble to floating down the lazy river, there is plenty to do at this waterpark in Erie, Pa. Splash Lagoon has nine water slides, a wave pool, rope courses and much more. And to prove it's a park for all ages, there’s Paradise Cove, a secluded whirlpool for adults only.
Great Wolf Lodge
Courtesy of Great Wolf Lodge Resorts
With 16 locations in the United States, you're likely within driving distance of a Great Wolf Lodge. No matter what time of year you visit, the temperature is 84 degrees at these water parks. The resort setup makes it a one-stop shop for the weekend. When you're done in the pool, there are plenty of activities to keep the kids busy and places to eat and drink too. A 17th location could be opening in Florida, as an affiliate of the company recently bought 50 acres of land near Disney World in Orlando.
ANDY WAKEMAN/AVALANCHE BAY
When you think Michigan you probably don’t think winter water park, but each year families flock to Avalanche Bay near Petoskey to play in the water! Appropriate for its state's reputation, the park’s winter theme compliments the great Michigan skiing. The park's latest attraction is the Big Couloir. You begin in a launch capsule, then a trap door releases you through a tunnel — instantly accelerating you 38 feet per second.
Wings & Waves Waterpark
GEORGE ROSE/GETTY IMAGES
Slide out of a Boeing 747 plane at Wings & Waves Waterpark in McMinnville, Oregon. The indoor water park, themed after aviation, also has rides such as Sonic Boom, Tail Spin and Nose Dive. The park says its water complex is "fun for young and old, inquisitive and adventurous alike." Other attractions include a wave pool and interactive exhibits.
COURTESY SAHARA SAMS
Since opening as an indoor water park about eight years ago, Sahara Sam's in West Berlin, N.J., has continually added to its resort. The newest attractions are Tut's Twisters, a head-first mat-race slide that's five stories tall, and Cleopatra's Cove, an indoor leisure pool. One of the most popular family rides at the park is Mount Kilimanjaro, with a circular raft that holds three or four people at a time.
COURTESY WILD WATERDOME
Watch the snow fall while lying poolside at Wilderness Resorts’ WaterDome in Wisconsin. The indoor waterpark’s see-through roof makes year-round tanning possible—as long as there’s sun! The park’s giant wave pool and swim-up bar make it a winter getaway for people of all ages.
Claiming the title of the Largest Water Park in North America, World Waterpark in Canada has 21 unique waterslides and play features under one roof. A bonus for moms and grandmothers: the indoor “tropical paradise” is located inside West Edmonton Mall in Edmonton! The mall opened in 1981, and added the water park as part of a third phase development in 1986.