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Best waterpark resort for 4 and 3 year old

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Chicago
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77 posts
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Best waterpark resort for 4 and 3 year old

Looking at booking midweek end of June and not sure which one best fits our family. We have a 3 and 4 year old that love water. Don't know how to swim, but love the water. We are torn between Kalahari, Atlantis, Polynesian, CopaCabana, and Great Wolf Lodge. One of our concerns is knowing we are going during summer peak season, we would like to keep the crowd to a minimum if possible. We understand some of the resorts' waterparks are open to the public. Will / Should that matter in our decision? Any suggestions on where to stay, go, etc??

Also, any other recommendations on attractions and restaurants for our kids (3 and 4 yr old)?

Wisconsin
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1. Re: Best waterpark resort for 4 and 3 year old

If you are going mid-week, such as Tues.-Thurs., the crowds usually are less. July and the first two weeks of August are usually the busiest up there, especially around the 4th of July. I would stay away from the Great Wolf and Kalahari as there will be a lot of older kids there. If the weather is nice during your stay, people that might get a day pass would probably go to Noah's Ark instead. If the weather is cold or rainy, they may be buying day passes to the indoor parks that sell them.

The kids might like the Wisconsin Deer Park. We liked taking our son to Storybook Gardens, but I hear that it hasn't been kept up well. A year or so ago they added the African animals from Kalahari over there and called it Timbavati Wildlife Park at Storybook Gardens, but I have not been there. They do have a website if you want to check it out - http://www.storybookgardens.net.

The kids might like Moose Jaw Brew Pub. It's decorated like a northwoods lodge and has a large menu with kids meals and pizzas. River's Edge is an out of the way bar/restaurant with several huge freshwater fish tanks with native species the kids might like to watch. There's Beaver Springs if you want to take them fishing. Riverview Park is geared a little toward the younger kids with their rides. There are boat trips and duck rides if you think they would be into that kind of sitting for an hour or two. Downtown has several fudge/candy shops where you can watch them make the fudge. It's been awhile since I've had to entertain kids that age, so I'm probably missing the good places to do, but I'm sure other people will have suggestions.

Have a good time!

Sarasota, Florida
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2. Re: Best waterpark resort for 4 and 3 year old

The big hotels like Kalahari, Great Wolf, and The Wilderness can be VERY expensive in peak season. I would reccomend staying at the smaller hotels such as the Alakai or Atalantis hotels as they will be much cheaper. These hotels will most likely have less big kids because they only have water activities for smaller children. I have taken my children(2yrs,4yrs,7yrs) to the bigger hotels and the smaller ones and to tell you the truth, they loved everyone of them. These hotels should be less crowded as they are not open to the public. If you go directly to the hotels websites you can also get great coupons expecially if you are going midweek. Check out www.wisdells.com the site will direct you to each hotels own website. This site will olso have a list of all of the attractions in the dells area and a price list. Hope this helps.

3rd Chaise to the...
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3. Re: Best waterpark resort for 4 and 3 year old

For kids 3 and 4, I'd book the Polynesian. They have a decent indoor waterpark -- in case of rain -- and a really nice outdoor that's geared for younger kids. For a price that's close to what you'll pay at the Atlantis or CopaCabana, you'll get much more at the Polynesian. Kalahari and Great Wolf will overwhelm them so wait until they are older.

Pizza Pub has a great lunch buffet and is very kid-friendly.

As far as attractions, while I have not been there in a while, it does look like they've done some work on Storybook Gardens and the wild animals are a nice addition. Otherwise, as mentioned there's the Deer Park. The kids might enjoy the Tommy Bartlett Ski Show -- it's a new "pirate" theme this year. You might also check out Wiley's Woods at the Great Wolf -- interactive games, ball crawls, etc that your kids might like.

Watertown, Wisconsin
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4. Re: Best waterpark resort for 4 and 3 year old

I agree with all the suggestions listed so far. I just wanted to add that we went to Storybook Gardens last summer and it was very nice with the new additions of the animal shows and exhbits. Kids can even ride the camels and pet and feed the animals. We had a really fun afternoon there and we plan to return soon. Admission was very reasonable and they offer coupons for even more savings if you keep an eye out for them. Have fun!

5. Re: Best waterpark resort for 4 and 3 year old

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