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Top Midwest Waterpark Resorts
Planning a vacation to America’s Midwest can be a lot like planning any other vacation: what should we do? How will you keep everyone entertained? It also presents some challenges you may not find for other destinations, namely: what will the weather be like? Fortunately, there’s a solution for all of this. Spectacular waterpark resorts are located all across the Midwest, and many of them offer far, far more than just a swimming pool and a waterslide. You’ll be surprised. You’ll be thrilled. You’ll be motivated! Here are our Top 10 Midwest Waterpark Resorts!
View Website +1 (877) 545 - 8156

Splash down at Castle Rock Resort and Waterpark, conveniently located in Branson, Missouri!

The indoor waterpark at Castle Rock Resort and Waterpark offers you the perfect vacation whenever you visit. Always 84 degrees, rain or shine, this weather-proof vacation destination offers fun for the whole family. They offer two different three story thrill water slides, two 500 gallon dump buckets, Multiple Indoor and Outdoor activity pools, lazy river and more! When you need a break from all that waterpark fun, stop by the on-site Tower Grill for breakfast, lunch, or dinner with classically American options like catfish nuggets and foot long corn dogs. And, at the end of the day, your room is waiting with cozy beds and plenty of comfort.


3001 Green Mountain Drive Branson MO 65616

Number of runs/trails/roads/etc.

Castle Rock offers you two different three story thrill water slides.

Related activities

Castle Rock's location in Branson, Missouri, offers you the perfect opportunity to see live shows like New Shanghai Circus's Acrobats of China.


Double JJ Resort

Rothbury, Michigan

View Website +1 (877) 796 - 4919

We know what you’re thinking – a ranch means horseback riding, and you generally don’t find horses anywhere near a waterpark. At Double JJ Ranch, that’s part of the magic on your Rothford, Michigan family vacation.

If you want to get technical, the Double JJ has horseback riding, a 60,000-sq.-ft. indoor waterpark and an 18-hole championship golf course. But clearly, the waterpark is a main attraction with its crazy/lazy river, water basketball, water fort and the tallest indoor waterslide in western Michigan. That’s especially true in the winter, when it’s tough to golf but still just as much of a thrill to get wet. That’s not to overlook the ranch, either. The Double JJ offers horseback riding year round, with trail rides for all ages and levels of experience. And the accommodations are just as varied as the activities, including the Lofts Hotel with Deluxe, Jacuzzi and Studio rooms and suites, family cabins and log homes, plus condominium lodging. What more could you ask for?


Experience a real-life cattle drive at the Double JJ as you move the cattle from pen to pasture! These two-hour adventures are available spring, summer and fall.

Getting there

From Chicago, take I-94 East to Benton Harbor, MI. Travel N north on US-31 to Mile Marker 136, and take the Winston Rd./Rothbury Exit. Turn right onto Winston Road. Approximately 1/2 mile later, turn left onto Water Road. You have now entered Double JJ Country!

Related Onsite Offerings

The Thoroughbred Golf Club at the Double JJ Ranch features an Arthur Hills designed 18-hole championship course with bent grass tees, fairways and greens – the only golf course in Michigan where horses have the right away on cart paths!


Chula Vista Resort

Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin

View Website +1 (866) 967 - 3009

For quite some time now, Chula Vista Resort has been inviting you to “Vacation Better” in Wisconsin Dells. And we can certainly see why. Many people recognize the destination as the waterpark capital of the world, and Chula Vista is certainly a big reason why.

Start with Lost Rios – the 80,000-sq.-ft. indoor waterpark. This alone, with features like the Flyan Mayan roller coaster, Mount Montezuma’s Mayan Temple and the Rio Rapido Action River, is a Wisconsin Dells vacation. But there’s also the breathtaking 120,000-sq.-ft. Adventure Lagoon outdoor waterpark here, which features an incredible assortment of thrills and relaxation. The Wavepool is one; the Sport Pool and the Kiddie River area ensure that everyone of every age can have a blast at Chula Vista. A major difference between Chula Vista and any other Dells waterpark is its location. Instead of in town, where the parks are often across the street from one another, Chula Vista is located a discrete distance to the east, along the Wisconsin River and surrounded by nature instead of bustle. Vacation better, indeed.


Highway 13 North, Wisconsin Dells, WI 53965


Jungle Adventure, within the Lost Rios indoor waterpark, lets you swirl and twirl inside a giant bowl ride to your choice of three light and music shows!

Related Onsite Offerings

Superstition Springs Miniature Golf Course is a lot like real golf: it’s a challenging course among ponds, rivers and even waterfalls. Tons of fun!


Zehnder’s Splash Village

Frankenmuth, Michigan

View +1 (800) 863 - 7999

Our No. 4 pick is the result of a long family history in Frankenmuth, Michigan. The Zehnders have been operating hotels and inns here since 1927, and every bit of their Bavarian history shows through – even at the modern waterpark at today’s Zehnder’s Splash Village.

It must have been kind of strange for people in 2004 to see part of the 137-room Bavarian Haus being demolished, but they were amazed afterwards. Zehnder’s Splash Village is now a 152-room hotel with a 30,000-sq.-ft. waterpark. We’ll leave it up to the wildest imaginations to figure out how they got the 400-gallon dumping bucket in there, or who designed the four-story tube slides and named them the “Perilous Plunge.” But even in minds like this, there was obviously room for more. There’s also an arcade, and refreshments at Elf Hollow Café. For good measure, check out the tree in the hotel lobby – complete with a gas fireplace built into the trunk. Actually, elves and such seem to be a recurring theme at Zehnder’s Splash Village. All part of the fun!

Related activities

The Fortress at Zehnder’s is a Scottish-style 18-hole par 72 golf course that’s both challenging and breathtakingly beautiful.

Fun facts

Zehnder's is the second-largest independent restaurant in the U.S., and America's largest family restaurant.

Related Onsite Offerings

Zehnder's Splash Village offers 146 deluxe accommodations, including family suites with fireplaces, sitting areas and flat screen TVs.


Kalahari Resort

Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin

View +1 (877) 525 - 2427

Africa is calling you. And if you choose to answer, you’ll be surprised to learn that it’s actually in Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin. That would be the Zambezi outdoor waterpark at Kalahari Resort, one of the crowning glories in the waterpark capital of the world.

It’s not just the themed twist you’ll find here, with attractions including the Splashdown Safari interactive play area and imaginative waterslides like Swahili Swirl, Zimbabwe Zipper and the Wild Wildebeest. The African fun continues at Kalahari’s indoor theme park – featuring an African-themed carousel and a six-story glass-enclosed Ferris wheel. Together with mini-golf, a sprawling arcade and a 24-lane bowling alley, this is the kind of environment that has put Kalahari on the tip of many people’s tongues for waterpark vacations. The theme even continues into the spacious rooms and suites. You’ll never doubt where you are in a Nomad or Desert Room, not to mention the African Queen or Safari Suites. Actually, you may not doubt that you’re in Africa. But the whole time you’ll be in Wisconsin Dells on an unforgettable waterpark vacation!

Related activities

You can also find a Kalahari Resort in Sandusky, OH. An additional location is scheduled to open in Fredericksburg, VA.

Fun facts

Kalahari staff travels annually to African markets and hand selects the authentic art and artifacts on display at Kalahari Resort.

Related Onsite Offerings

Kalahari Resort in Wisconsin Dells offers 100,000 sq. ft. of flexible event space including an elite executive boardroom and multiple ballrooms.

View Website +1 (877) 601 - 0931

Holiday Inn Express Brainerd/Baxter leaves other waterparks in its wake! Boasting 250,000 gallons of heated water, the Three Bear Waterpark has plenty of space for recreation and relaxation. Thrill-seekers can shoot down the Grizzly Express, a 300-foot tube slide, or zip along the Polar Express’ 300 feet of body sliding fun. Have twice the fun on the Grizzly Express on a double tube. The kids can make a splash at the Cub Express, a 125-foot slide designed for the little divers. If that’s a little too high, the plunge slide will please the younger children and the Tot Slide is perfect for toddlers. Slow down the speed and kick up your feet at the relaxing family and adult hot tubs, which can accommodate up to 18 people each. Forget your worries drifting down the lazy river and munch on a post-pool snack at the Three Bear Grill & Bar. Stay dry in your room, which features a flat-screen television, wireless internet, and much more! Aquatic adventures abound!


15739 Audubon Way, Baxter, Minnesota 56425


You'll find big fun at the Activity Pool, which features two basketball hoops, an animal water walk, and a floatable snake. Soak in the fun at the Big Splash, a 1,000-gallon splash bucket that’s fun for all ages.

Related activities

Find more water-fueled fun in the surrounding Brainerd area, where 400 lakes are teeming with northern, muskies, walleye, and more trophy fish!


Great Wolf Lodge

Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin

View +1 (800) 559 - 9653

Great Wolf Lodge is our No. 1 choice for Midwest waterparks for a variety of reasons, but one of them is certainly its admirable coverage of the Midwest. Of its 12 waterpark resorts, three are in the central U.S. including the Wisconsin Dells, Traverse City, MI and Sheboygan, WI.

Another good reason is that Great Wolf Lodge has defined and redefined the concept of a family waterpark vacation. Along with its immense indoor waterparks – the Traverse City location alone has a 51,000-sq.-ft. entertainment center with six swimming and activity pools, eight waterslides, a 100-game arcade and more – each Great Wolf Lodge offers full-service spas for adults and tweens, a variety of onsite restaurants and whimsically themed suites. It’s a total vacation, without ever leaving the resort. If you’re looking for Great Wolf Lodge in Sheboygan, you’ll find it under the name of Blue Harbor Resort. While the other Great Wolf locales feature a grand yet charming Northwoods theme, the Blue Harbor experience is slightly upscale and definitively nautical – a fitting casual elegance on the shores of Lake Michigan.


Great Wolf Lodge Wisconsin Dells now features MagiQuest, a four-story, live-action adventure game with an enchanted kingdom, puzzles, hidden treasures, dragons and more. It’s a combination of video gaming, role-playing and story-telling!

Fun facts

Great Wolf Lodge is known as "America’s Largest Family of Indoor Waterpark Resorts."

Related Onsite Offerings

The Wolf Den Suite is just one of the themed family suites you’ll find at Great Wolf Lodge, featuring an in-suite cave-themed area with a bunk bed, movies, Nintendo and a TV just for the kids!


Key Lime Cove

Gurnee, Illinois

View +1 (224) 656 - 8685

If you live in the Midwest and you’re craving a Florida Keys-style getaway, here are the directions. From Chicago, take Interstate 94 northwest for 42 miles. You’re there! Well, you’re not actually in the Keys. But at Key Lime Cove, you might as well be.

This is a tropical island-themed getaway under one roof, and the roof happens to be in Gurnee, IL. The waterpark is known as Lost Paradise, but it’s hard to believe it’s all that lost considering its proximity to Chicago, Milwaukee and Rockford. The only time you won’t feel positively Floridian is when you’re spinning through the Hurricane Vortex or flying down the gigantic Wahoo and Screaming Banshee tube slides. Which means plenty of tropical fun in the wave pool, on the lazy river or somewhere within Toukie’s Big Deluge play structure. Being a boring adult is great, too. Shopping and live entertainment abound at Key Lime Cove, and the full-service Paradise Mist Spa has a full menu of services for women, men, groups and even teens and tweens. That doesn’t include the face painting, stilt walkers, fortune tellers…the list goes on and on.


1700 Nations Drive, Gurnee, IL 60031


Splash Down and Slip-Slidin’ Away are two giant body slides, each more than 500 feet long – no tubes or rafts required!

Related Onsite Offerings

KeyLime Cove is a kid-friendly hotel featuring 414 resort-style guest suites and staterooms in nine different configurations.


Avalanche Bay Indoor Waterpark

Boyne Falls, Michigan

View +1 (800) 462 - 6963

Boyne, MI is known for many things – chief among them downhill skiing, snowmobiling and golf. That balance is about to change, given the presence of Avalanche Bay. At a whopping 88,000 sq. ft., it’s the biggest indoor waterpark in Michigan.

What do you put inside a structure so large? In this case, it’s a Swiss-Austrian village. In the winter. With lots of snow. The only disruption to this atmosphere is the fact that it’s always 84 degrees at Avalanche Bay, perfect for year-round Michigan family fun. And if you’re wondering why it’s called Avalanche Bay, you’ll soon find out as you climb the Splasherhorn, hear the horn blow and get doused by 800 gallons of water cascading down the mountainside. There’s also the Vertigo tube slide – the name speaks for itself – along with a vertical climbing wall, floating icebergs, a Super G slide and Rip Zone, and a surf simulator. Surfing in Switzerland? You bet! There’s also a wide range of more relaxing pursuits, wet and dry, and after a full day, your lodging awaits in the Mountain Grand Lodge and Spa connected to the waterpark. Could you ask for more?


The Haute Route Water Crossing lets you test your balance as you grab a rope net from above and step across floating icebergs – hopefully without falling into the pool!

Related activities

The Avalanche Bay Arcade has more than 100 of the most modern arcade games.

Related Onsite Offerings

The Avalanche Bay Arcade has more than 100 of the most modern arcade games.