When you think of a wild water ride at Niagara Falls, your first thought might be of going over the waterfall in a barrel. That’s not recommended for a number of reasons — primarily that it’s illegal and probably not going to have a happy ending — but you don’t have to use a barrel to enjoy the feeling of splashing down after a twisting, turning ride through thousands of gallons of water.
The Niagara Falls area has one of the highest concentrations of indoor waterparks anywhere. By moving the slides and pools indoors, visitors to the region can enjoy all of the fun and excitement of a water park all year around. Given that Niagara Falls isn’t exactly known for balmy temperatures for at least half of the year, indoor water parks allow for at least the illusion that it’s warm and sunny outside, even when the temperatures are well below freezing and the snow is piling up.
All of the indoor water parks have their own themes and features, but all are wildly fun. When it comes to finding Niagara Falls hotel deals these resorts offer one of the best values in the entire region. By combining admission to a major attraction with comfortable lodging and delicious dining options, staying at an indoor waterpark resort helps you stretch your vacation dollar.
Fallsview Indoor Waterpark
Located on the Canadian side of the Falls, directly across from the Falls and the rainbow Bridge, Fallsview Indoor Water Park is the centerpiece of an entertainment and tourism complex. The 125,000 square foot waterpark can be accessed via connected walkways from three hotels: the Sheraton on the Falls, the Crowne Plaza Niagara Falls-Fallsview Hotel and the Skyline Inn. You’ll find the Clifton Victoria Inn at the Falls located directly behind the park within walking distance. The park itself features a full-size wave pool with beach-style zero entry, body and tube slides, a multi-level water play area with cannons, buckets and splash area and a special play area specifically designed for the littlest swimmers. While hotel guests who have purchased a package that includes water park admission get priority, day guests can purchase single-day tickets when they are available.
Americana Waves Waterpark Resort and Spa
At 25,000 square feet, the Americana Resort packs a lot of fun into a compact area. What makes this park unique is its retractable roof. During the summer months, the roof opens to allow for outdoor water play. The park features multiple water slides of up to three stories high and in a toddler play area with swings, a wave pool and multi-level play structure. Parents love the Waves waterpark because its small size allows them to watch their children from anywhere in the facility — including the oversized 16-person hot tub.
Great Wolf Lodge
Part of the chain of Great Wolf Lodge resorts dotting the U.S., the Niagara Falls location offers the same family fun and water adventures as the others. Great Wolf Lodge is more than just an indoor waterpark — although that part is impressive, with 103,000 square feet filled with 13 slides, a play structure, lazy river and wave pool — it’s an entire kid-friendly entertainment complex. Kids can enjoy stories and activities with costumed creatures each day, play games in one of Canada’s largest arcades, enjoy their own spa and more. While other indoor waterparks allow day guests to purchase passes, in order to use the Great Wolf’s facilities you must be staying at the Lodge. Not that doing so is a bad thing: all of the rooms are spacious suites, and some of them are themed. Where else can the kids say that they slept in a bear cave or an explorer’s tent?
When you want to experience watery thrills beyond the majestic waterfalls, Niagara Falls offers plenty of water park fun. So no matter when you’re planning to visit, pack your swimsuit and get ready to slip, slide and splash at one of Niagara Falls’ indoor waterparks.
About the Author: April O’Malley blogs about family and adventure travel ideas.