Chicago is a city that offers a variety of activities for families to enjoy, no matter the season. However, during the colder months, outdoor activities become less appealing. This is where indoor water parks come in. They provide a way for families to have fun and stay active while staying warm and dry.
Fortunately, there are several indoor water parks near Chicago that offer a great way to escape from the cold weather.
What’s the best indoor water park near Chicago?
Chicago doesn’t have indoor water parks within city limits but there are several great options nearby. Some of the best indoor water parks near Chicago include the Great Wolf Lodge in Gurnee, lL, Kalahari Resorts in Wisconsin Dells, and the Water Works in Schaumburg, IL.
These water parks offer a range of attractions, from thrilling water slides and wave pools to lazy rivers and kiddie areas. Most indoor water parks in the area are part of larger water park resorts, which offer additional amenities such as restaurants, arcades, and spa services.
Whether you are a local or a visitor to the Chicago area, indoor water parks provide a great way to have fun and stay active during the colder months. They are perfect for families looking for a day of fun, or for those looking to spend a weekend away. With so many options to choose from, there is sure to be an indoor water park near Chicago that will meet your needs and provide a memorable experience for everyone.
Top Indoor Water Parks Near Chicago
Chicago may be known for its cold winters, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy some water park fun all year round. Here are some of the top indoor water parks in this part of Illinois.
Great Wolf Lodge Illinois
Great Wolf Lodge Illinois is a popular indoor water park located in Gurnee, just a short drive from Chicago.
With over 80,000 square feet of water park fun, Great Wolf Lodge Illinois has something for everyone. From the thrilling Howlin’ Tornado water slide to the relaxing lazy river, there’s no shortage of things to do here.
Kalahari Resorts is another great option for indoor water park fun near Chicago.
Located in Wisconsin Dells, about a three-hour drive from Chicago, Kalahari Resorts features over 125,000 square feet of water park fun. In fact, Wisconsin water parks are some of the largest and best in the country!
The park boasts America’s largest indoor wave pool, as well as a variety of water slides and rides.
The Water Works
The Water Works is an indoor water park located in Schaumburg, just a short drive from Chicago.
With over 60,000 square feet of water park fun, The Water Works is a great option for families looking for a day of fun. The park features a variety of water slides, a lazy river, and a wave pool.
Located in Wisconsin Dells, about a three-hour drive from Chicago, Wilderness Resort features over 500,000 square feet of water park fun. The park boasts a variety of water slides and rides, as well as a wave pool and lazy river.
Blue Harbor Resort
Blue Harbor Resort is an indoor water park located in Sheboygan, about a two-hour drive from Chicago.
The park features a variety of water slides and rides, as well as a lazy river and wave pool. Blue Harbor Resort is a great option for families looking for a day of fun.
Pelican Harbor Aquatic Park
Pelican Harbor Aquatic Park is an indoor/outdoor water park located in Bolingbrook, just a short drive from Chicago.
The park features a variety of water slides and rides, as well as a lazy river and wave pool. Pelican Harbor Aquatic Park is a great option for families looking for a day of fun.
Best Indoor Water Parks In Chicago Comparison Chart
|Water Park||Location||Unique Features||Distance from Chicago|
|Great Wolf Lodge||Gurnee, IL||Howlin’ Tornado water slide, lazy river||50-minute drive|
|Kalahari Resorts||Wisconsin Dells, WI||Largest indoor wave pool in America||3-hour drive|
|The Water Works||Schaumburg, IL||Wave pool, lazy river||45-minute drive|
|Wilderness Resort||Wisconsin Dells, WI||Variety of water slides and rides, wave pool, lazy river||3-hour drive|
|Blue Harbor Resort||Sheboygan, WI||Water slides, lazy river, wave pool||2 1/2-hour drive|
|Pelican Harbor Aquatic Park||Bolingbrook, IL||Water slides, lazy river, wave pool||45-minute drive|
Features of Indoor Water Parks
Slides and Water Attractions
Indoor water parks near Chicago offer a wide variety of water slides and attractions for visitors of all ages. From thrilling drop slides to twisting tube slides, there is something for everyone.
Some parks even offer virtual reality slides for an extra immersive experience. For younger children, there are gentle slides and play areas with interactive water features.
Lazy Rivers and Wave Pools
Lazy rivers and wave pools are popular features of indoor water parks. Visitors can relax in the slow-moving current of the lazy river or ride the waves in the pool. Some parks even offer surf simulators for those looking for a more extreme wave experience.
Spas and Lap Pools
For those looking for a more relaxing experience, indoor water parks also offer spas and lap pools.
Visitors can unwind in a hot tub or take a leisurely swim in the lap pool. Some parks even offer adult-only areas for a more peaceful experience.
Dining and Arcade
Indoor water parks also offer a variety of dining options, from fast food to sit-down restaurants. Visitors can refuel with burgers, pizza, and other snacks throughout the day. Many parks also have arcades and other games for visitors to enjoy when they need a break from the water.
Water Slides and Play Zones
In addition to traditional water slides, indoor water parks also offer play zones with interactive water features. Children can climb on water structures, splash around in shallow pools, and play with water toys.
Some parks even have obstacle courses and other challenges for older children and adults. Indoor water parks near Chicago offer a wide range of features and attractions for visitors of all ages. Whether you’re looking for a thrilling water slide or a relaxing spa experience, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
Day Passes and Events
If you’re looking for a fun day out with family and friends, the indoor water parks near Chicago offer day passes that allow you to enjoy all of the park’s attractions for a full day.
Day passes are a great option for those who don’t want to commit to a longer stay at a resort or hotel. Some parks offer discounted rates for groups, so be sure to check if you’re planning to go with a large group.
Many indoor water parks also offer special events throughout the year. From holiday-themed events to live music performances, there’s always something going on at these parks. Some parks even offer birthday party packages, which include admission to the park, food, and decorations. These packages are a great way to celebrate a special occasion while also enjoying all of the water park’s attractions.
If you’re interested in attending an event at an indoor water park, be sure to check the park’s website or social media pages for upcoming events. Some events require advance registration, so it’s important to plan ahead.
Overall, day passes and events are a great way to experience all that indoor water parks near Chicago have to offer. Whether you’re looking for a fun day out or a special celebration, these parks have something for everyone.
Frequently Asked Questions
Visiting an indoor water park near Chicago can be a fun and exciting experience for the whole family. However, it’s normal to have some questions before you go. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about indoor water parks:
What should I bring to the indoor water park?
It’s important to bring towels for everyone in your group, as the water park may not provide them. You may also want to bring sunscreen and any necessary swimwear, as well as a change of clothes for after your visit.
Are there lifeguards on duty?
Yes, most indoor water parks have trained lifeguards on duty at all times to ensure the safety of guests.
Can I have a pool party at the indoor water park?
Many indoor water parks offer party packages for groups, including birthday parties and other special events. Be sure to check with the water park for availability and pricing.
Are there any discounts available?
Some indoor water parks offer discounts for military personnel, seniors, or large groups. Be sure to check the water park’s website or call ahead for more information.
What is a tipping bucket or dump bucket?
A tipping bucket or dump bucket is a large bucket that fills with water and then tips over, dumping its contents onto those below. It’s a popular attraction at many water parks.
Is there a snack bar or food court?
Many indoor water parks have a snack bar or food court where you can purchase food and drinks. Some water parks also allow you to bring your own food and drinks, but be sure to check the park’s policies before doing so.
Are there diving boards or drop slides?
Some indoor water parks have diving boards or drop slides for more adventurous guests. However, these attractions may have age or height restrictions, so be sure to check with the water park before participating.
What are tumble buckets?
Tumble buckets are large buckets that fill with water and then spin, creating a whirlpool effect. They’re a popular attraction for younger guests.
Is the indoor water park environmentally friendly?
Many indoor water parks are committed to sustainability and use environmentally friendly practices. Some water parks use solar power or other renewable energy sources, while others use water-saving technologies or recycle water.