It was my son’s birthday recently and being a water lover we decided to do some fun water-activities with him. The weather of Southern California is soo beautiful year-long that the concept of an indoor water park is rather alien to the residents. That is why when my good friend mentioned this park I didn’t know a great deal about it. After an online search, we decided to surprise my son by celebrating his birthday at the Great Wolf Lodge.
Great Wolf Lodge is Southern California’s first and only indoor water park. It is part of a chain of 15- water resorts spread all over the country.The 603-suite hotel and 105,000-square-foot water park opened its doors earlier this year and since then has been the talk of the town. It is located at 12681 Harbor Blvd, Garden Grove, CA 92840 just 5 miles from Disneyland and 17 miles from Knott’s Berry Farm.
The only way to enjoy the water park is to book a room in the hotel or if someone you know is already checked-in, you can go to the park as their guest after paying and getting a day pass.
The best part is that even if you plan to stay for one night, you can enjoy the water park after you check out too.
Upon arrival we headed for the hotel lobby which was decorated with the Halloween Theme. A giant spider-web and ultra giant spider adorned the lobby. The front desk staff was super friendly and we all got wolf headbands as a welcome gesture. The birthday boy got a special birthday headband.
Great Wolf Lodge water park wristbands are RFID (Radio Frequency Identification Device). No need to carry cash or room keys. The wristband is used to open your suite door as well as charge food and beverages on your account. How cool is that? No more kids fighting that its my turn to use the card to open the door 🙂
You can choose between standard rooms and themed rooms. The themed rooms have bunk beds and a separate TV just for the kids.
Throughout the hotel there are interactive stations which are triggered by wands (need to be bought separately from MagiQuest Shop). You can become a Master Magi by playing three levels of this interactive game. The kids can keep the wands as souvenir when they check out and can always bring them back with them if they revisit.
The water park is located on the lower level. Besides the water park there a lot of activities on the dry land too like Howly Wood XD Theatre which is a 4-D thrill ride, Ten-Paw Bowling Alley with half-length lanes for young kids, a full-fledged gaming arcade and loads of other fun activities. There is a cute Scoops kids Spa for mommy-daughter bonding time where they can enjoy manicure and pedicures. Kids can enjoy storytime and other fun activities with special appearance by the Great Wolf Kids characters like Wiley or Violet.
There are a lot of dining options including Lodge Wood Fire Grill, Hungry as a Wolf Pizza, Loose Moose Buffet Style Family Kitchen and to go eateries like Dunkin Donuts and Bear Paw Sweets & Eats. Buckets is the only restaurant located inside the water park serving burgers, sandwiches, salads and other goodies if you want to eat without leaving the water area.
And there are lovely shops like Buckthorn Exchange and Bear Essential Swim Shop to get awesome swim gear or lodge-themed clothing and accessories, jewelry, totes, books, kitchen ware, frames and toys as memories when you leave.
There are loads of attractions within the water park which will cater to all ages. From slides like howling tornado, coyote canyon, river run canyon, to floating lily pads to check out your balance while walking on water, to lazy river where all you need is a tube to chill in, to wave pool where artificial waves are made every 5 minutes, to flow boarding. There are soo many water activities to choose from. There is towel area where you can get fresh towels so there is no need to bring your own towels. Lockers are available for rent to store your valuables. There are showers and restrooms inside the park.
Not in a mood to go on the slides? No problem. Chill in the Cool Rental Cabanas or head outside to the Racoon Lagoon for a zero-depth-entry paradise offering a four-foot deep end, geysers, fountains with plenty of poolside seating for soaking up the sun.
I highly suggest getting their Breakfast package. Breakfast is served 7-11 am on the weekends and is buffet style in the Loose Moose Lodge Dining Area. There is a large variety of food options to choose from. You can get an omelets made fresh according to your own liking or enjoy oatmeal and other delicacies.
So if you haven’t already put Great Wolf Lodge on your “Must Do” list, now is the time to do it. A great indoor water experience where the whole family will have fun. Be it for a celebratory reasons or just for a relaxing family weekend getaway, Great Wolf Lodge is one fun place to try.