Great Wolf Lodge in itself can be a mini vacation spot for families. You will need to plan ahead in order to keep your budget under control, but that can easily be done. In order to do that you probably need to talk with your family ahead of time and determine how you want to spend your time and what you will spend your money on. (Don’t wait until you are there and have kids pleading to do things that are expensive.) I would really recommend that you bring snacks and drinks for your stay. If you eat all or most of your meals elsewhere, don’t visit the Arcade, SPA, or shops, and don’t get caught up in the miscellaneous additional things like “building a bear” or “hair wraps,” etc. you can do this quite reasonably. If you do want to do some of these miscellaneous things, they do have some packages you can buy that combines some of these– which will save quite a bit of money.
My recommendation would be some sort of combination like:
Eat breakfast off site. The front desk can give you a list of local restaurants. There is a lot of options from a quick breakfast (like Pantera Bread Company) to sit down restaurants. You are not going far, so it won’t take a lot of time (walkable…but a long walk).
Mornings and evenings - Take advantage of the free activities for the younger kids ages 5-8 (sometimes adults think these activities are not worth it or stupid…kids typically do not). The Great Clock Tower Show, Wolf Walk, Story Time and the ones offered at Cub Club (note they have kids bingo games, a play kitchen, books, etc. BUT they also have a number of crafts to make that each cost in supplies). To us this was a good way to interact more with other kids and do calm activities.
½ days of Water Park - Large indoor water park (note this is only available to guests and it is complimentary for your stay). Be sure to keep your wrist band on during your stay to access it. The water park is good for all ages. It has an area for toddlers that is only a few inches deep with water spouts, etc. For older kids, it has slides that are nice. Then it also has a fort (structure to climb on nets, crawls through short tunnels, walk through several levels, spray water, and of course a slide) and a large bucket dump. The structure is good for kids (5+) - adults. It has a small lazy river, hot tubs or whirlpool (one for adults only and then a family one), and a number of large slides. There are not enough pool chairs spread around, so you need to stake yours out as soon as possible. There is also a small eating area with tables & chair and a bar and grill (note the bar & grill is really just a snack place with mostly unhealthy food that is just okay). Towels are provided but they cannot be taken out of the swimming park so you may want to bring your own or a change of clothes, or something to keep you warm when walking back to your room. Outdoor swimming area - Because we went in March, this was not open. However, they do have an outdoor area that has a zero depth entry pool, play areas for kids (water spouts and sprayers), and other pool activities.
On and off throughout your stay - Indoor Game Type Activities - There is a pretty good size Arcade but you can spend a lot of money there for not much time. Magic Quest - this was worth the price to us. It has 2 costs to it. First, you need to buy a wand ($15+), then you pay $10 (that was the rate in 3/2012) to play for the duration of your stay. (You keep the wand and can use it at any Magic Quest nation-wide at any time but you will still have to pay the game price.)This, I think, is quite fun for kids and some adults. It primarily takes place down a number of hallways that are painted with leaves, trees, designs, You walk down the halls looking for treasure chests, stars on the ceiling, pictures and objects to waive your wand at to either open, have them talk to you, or makes noises and collect points, and objects that are needed to (easy to see) to collect points and objects to enable you to battle a goblin and outwit a dragon. (Then if you do that there is an additional level Compass Quest.) This seemed to be enjoyed by kids of all ages. The little ones seem to really enjoy opening boxes, making sounds, and the environment of it all…but they need a parent with them to help them spot things and waive the wand correctly. The concept was also harder as well as finding all the items needed for the younger kids. The older kids got more into the game of it, so did many of the parents. But it isn’t super easy and can get monotonous.
Lobby fireplace and area. They have a very nice place in the lobby to sit by a fireplace and read to or play games with kids. We found that enjoyable. (Sometime kids needs to be reminded that relaxing and reading or playing games can be an enjoyable part of a vacation.)
Then of course, there is mini golf, ice cream parlor, etc.
As for lunch and dinner, I recommend eating off site at least part of the time. There are theme restaurants within minutes. We ate at a dinosaur one where the decorations and atmosphere were really neat. The food was also good, not exceptional but good. It is in a nearby outdoor shopping center. For young boys, it is worth taking them to at least walk through the restaurant…don’t get caught up in the gift shop!
The staff are very very pleasant and good with kids. They stop the kids numerously times just to chat and see how they are enjoying the stay. Rooms are large and nice. Beds are good but not exceptional. You do have a microwave and a min fridge in all rooms.
Hope this gives you some insight!
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- Also Known As:
- Great Wolf Hotel Kansas City
- Great Wolf Kansas City
- Great Wolf Lodge Kansas City