The Wisconsin Dells aka The Waterpark Capital Of America!

Halfway through our Wisconsin roadtrip, we left beautiful Madison for the Wisconsin Dells, an area known as the ‘Waterpark Capital Of The World’.  We had already had a lot of fun on our trip, after four days in Chicago, 3 days in Milwaukee and 3 days in Madison.  Yet the Wisconsin Dells is something else; a playground of kitsch fun for all ages.  The drive from Madison to the Dells takes just over an hour. You know you’ve arrived when you start spotting the enormous waterslides poking out the sides of hotels.


Before checking in to the Wilderness Resort, we hit up the main drag for a spot of lunch.  We chose the High Rock Cafe based off the glowing Yelp reviews and our lunch was delicious.  The food is fresh and relatively healthy. Dining alfresco we also the had the bonus of watching a local magician entertaining the crowds.  The Broadway is home to numerous eateries and shops.  There is also a paved River Walk allowing you to soak up some nature before soaking up the fun of the waterslides.


With one night to play with at the Dells, we chose to base ourselves at the best resort in town, the Wilderness Hotel & Golf Resort.  I have never seen anything like it.  This property houses a huge variety of accommodation and EIGHT indoor/outdoor waterparks!  Yes a big fat eight!  We stayed in a Double Suite Wet Bar which had ample room for the 4 of us, with two queen-size beds and a semi-privacy wall with a sleeper sofa and a wet bar with stools. Plus some fancy towel art.img_8589

Best of all, when we stepped out on to the balcony, this view awaited us….


Our kids (ages 7 and 4) were in heaven.  After check-in, we immediately ran down to ‘Lake Wilderness’. We spent the afternoon hopping around from indoor to outdoor waterpark (thank goodness for the sunshine).  The Wild WaterDome is home to America’s largest wave pool and is such good fun, none of us wanted to leave.  


The waterparks really do offer something for everyone and it was so nice to have my 4-year-old plucked up the courage to accompany us on the waterslides in ‘The Wild West’ and ‘Klondike Kavern’.  For ages we remarked at the big funnel looming outside of Klondike Kavern. Then we realised it housed ‘The hurricane’, one of the most unusual waterslides I have ever been on!

The Wilderness Resort is not just about the waterparks, there’s plenty more fun to be had on dry land. Our Extreme Fun Passes gave us admission to mini-golf, bumper boats, lazer maze and more.  We had also intended to visit a show or go on one of the famous wagon rides. Unfortunately we just couldn’t drag ourselves away from the waterparks which are typically open till 7/8pm.

As for food, we munched on ice-cream at Pistol Pete’s and got take-away KFC (located over the road) for dinner in our room that night (we couldn’t miss the Olympics!). For breakfast the next morning we grabbed muffins and coffee at Bean Bodega in Glacier Canyon Lodge.

We only had one night in the Dells but we definitely could have stayed for longer. The beauty of the Wilderness Resort is that the waterparks are for use by the hotel guests only.  Which means that even at its busiest (and it was super busy), there were still times in the day when the queues were small and there was room for all in the lazy river.  I have never heard my two daughters giggle and squeal as much as they did during our visit to the Wilderness Resort.  The ‘Waterpark Capital of America’ is indeed one of the most fun places on earth.

Leave comment