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“Better than I expected!”
Review of Wilderness Resort

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Wilderness Resort
Ranked #8 of 73 Hotels in Wisconsin Dells
Certificate of Excellence
Moline, Illinois
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Better than I expected!”
Reviewed 26 March 2011

I am a single mom who took 3 teenage girls 15 and 18. They had a great time and I did too! It was VERY crowded, but I that's what I expected. Halls were noisy at night, but that's what I expected. Food and drinks were overpriced, but that's what I expected. I thought the check-in was easy. They do send you to concierge to get coupon book...they, in turn, try and get you to come to time share. I was not with a "husband" so we didn't get the high-pressure pitch! Our room was very nice....nothing fancy, but nice and clean. We were on the 3rd floor and it was noisy until about midnight, so I can't imagine how noisy the second level would be. We only did the waterparks...none of the other attractions. MY favorite was the wave pool area...felt more open and less crowded. Girls LOVED the hurricane and funnel slide. We did eat at Sarento's---very good Italian food...not cheap, but nice and well done. If you go with the right attitude, I can't imagine anyplace nicer in the Dells. Loved the outlet mall too!

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank pezfor2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Pontiac, il
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 March 2011

We made some last minute reservations for spring break, March 23rd to the 25th and were booked in a 2 bedroom room at the very end of the Glacier Canyon Lodge. The room was beautiful! Very clean. Nicely set up. We really loved the room. The problem starts when you want to go do something. We decided to walk the first time. Goodness, what a walk! Not very scenic either, you get to stare at hotel room after hotel room to get to anything fun. Once to the water parks, they were pretty neat, although crowded. It was spring break for us, though, to be fair. Water was decently warm in 2 of the 3 water parks we visited. The one with the lazy river was so cold I decided not to go in. That was disappointing. My daughter was shivering. Not something I'd expect at an indoor water park. The water parks were very clean.

My biggest issue was the distance to everything. This resort appears to actually be 4 hotels linked together by a little sky walk. If you're at one of the far ends it's a LONG walk that you will not do more than once. We started to take the trolley, which was nice. However, since it was 30 degrees out we had to get dressed in our coats, etc to go outside to get on the trolley. Then at the water park you'd have to go into the locker room to get your suit on. The locker rooms has NO changing rooms. I'm not a fan of getting naked in front of people so I used a bathroom stall. Ick.

Everything was expensive, as you'd expect at a place like this. A little cup of ice cream was 4.99. The mirror maze that lasted 5 minutes was 8.99. Etc.

Over all the place was clean, but way too much walking and trolleying. I felt exhausted before I even got to where I wanted to go. I probably won't visit this place again unless it's summer time and the outdoor water parks are open to spread out the people.

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank IllinoisFun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Des Plaines, Illinois
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 24 March 2011

We have gone to the Wilderness for several years now. We have had good experiences with this hotel in the past, but on our most recent trip, we found we were disappointed. The pools were crowded and smelled terrible and everything was overpriced.
To feed a family at one of the restaurants in the resort costs a minor fortune We rent one of the villas with a full kitchen so we can save on the cost of the food by cooking ourselves.
We always bring our wii so the children can play while the adults get to relax in the room. This year, we found that they have disabled the wii hook up. If you want to play video games, you can pay to play the nintendo games they have.
After this last trip, we have decided we will not be returning.

  • Stayed February 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Tommy096
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Minneapolis, MN
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 March 2011

We've stayed at most of the larger indoor water parks in the Wisconsin Dells area, and Wilderness does not compare favorably to most of them. We had very mixed feelings about our stay -- there was certainly some fun, but also lots of costs and several other issues. What we enjoyed: the arcades had very good choices for all ages, so our kids had a nice time playing games and winning tickets; the rooms were clean and laid out nicely for our purposes; the Wild Canyon breakfast buffet was above average; the 3D mini-golf was very fun. What we didn't care for: the water park layout, the crowdedness, the behavior of the crowd, the costs, and the timeshare pressuring. The design of Wilderness is not ideal -- there are 3 separate relatively small water parks, one of which is quite a hike from the other 2. They offer shuttles to all areas of the hotel, but let's face it - no one really wants to wait for a shuttle in wet bathing suits in the winter. The other choice is to hike it, which most folks do, but it's really quite a ways to walk (again, in wet bathing suits in the winter). We were surprised at the relatively small sizes of the water parks and the lazy river -- we had expected it to be much larger (and it would be if all of the water park square footage was together; splitting it into 3 separate spaces is NOT an improvement). Because of the large crowds, it was a 40 minute wait to ride the hurricane slide each day -- too long. And the lazy river was so crowded that there wasn't much relaxation to be had there. It felt like tubing the Apple River on the 4th of July -- huge numbers of teens and young adults, mostly drinking, using language that wasn't really appropriate for the younger patrons to hear. We're not huge prudes about it and we know that our kids will hear those words at water parks, but we were surprised at the large amount of poor behavior we encountered -- more than at other water parks we've been to. We were also surprised by the prices -- everything is about 15-30% more expensive than most other water parks. For example, $7 for a fast-food cheeseburger seems excessive. For that price, at least throw in fries instead of charging $3 more for them. And the cheapest ice cream cone is $5? Really? The haunted mine and mirror maze was fun, but not a deal at $9 - better to spend $17 to get admission to the haunted mine and mirror maze, the 2 mini-golf courses, some arcade credits and the bumper boars.

The real bummer, though, is the timeshare pitch, which we got 3 times in 2 days. They want you to attend the presentation, and they will offer you as much as $300 to do it -- but you have to sit through the high-pressure pitch on the timeshares. We didn't do it -- even $300 isn't compensation enough for sitting through that. We felt like we were in Cancun getting the hard sell, and really, once is enough -- we don't need to be pitched repeatedly. I just read an article about 5 luxury items never to buy, and number 1 on the list was timeshares. Getting hammered 3 times just made the place feel cheap -- despite the high prices.

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank fkaJames
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Madison, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
23 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 March 2011

We have stayed at Wilderness one other time. We chose to come here agin because we could get into the waterpark at 11 am unlike other Dells resorts where you have to wait until 1 to get in. We knew what to expect. Dirty rooms, loud hallways and loud neighbors all hours of the night, and dirty waterpark areas. I have to admit that the waterpark was cleaner than 2 years ago. We did check our beds for bed bugs and did not find any-which was good! If you stay here make sure to pack food and drinks because everything here is way overpriced. Also, if you are waiting for your room to be ready make sure you check in with the front desk rather than wait for the call or text they are supposed to send you. We were at the waterpark for 3 hours and finally got fed up with waiting and went to the front desk and, what do you know, our room was ready-why didn't they call us!!! If you know what to expect you will enjoy your stay like we did.

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank Beardster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bettendorf, Iowa
Level Contributor
118 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 March 2011

We've stayed here our last three spring breaks and have had a blast each time. 12 of us stayed in a 3 bedroom condo. It was a little disapointing not getting the same one we've had the previous two years but the location was only about 70 yards different.

PROS - spacious condo, fireplaces, shuttle service, grills, lifeguard attention

CONS - they shorted us one band at check in so I had to wait in line again for over 10 minutes. All pools were extremely crowded but what do you expect with spring break. hot tubs with parents with under age 6 kids lying to lifeguards about kids ages. TVs were outdated.

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank QCbulldog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 March 2011

Nice rooms and nice water parks. However the place is VERY overcrowded. The halls are narrow, and there is always a constant stream of people moving both ways in them. The waterparks are nice, but if you don't get there within 45 minutes of them opening, you have no chance of getting a table or chairs. Also, the wave pool is very popular, but it is also quite dangerous for kids. The pool is very crouded and they allow tubes in it which are constantly smashing into each other and running over smaller kids. It is only a matter of time before someone gets seriously hurt there.

If you heed no other advice, do not accept a room on the second floor. There is constant traffic at most hours of the day and night. This is no exaggeration.

Overall, I think there are better values out there for your vacation dollars. Sometimes bigger is not better.

  • Stayed March 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank sjdaud
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Wilderness Resort

Property: Wilderness Resort
Address: 511 East Adams Street, Wisconsin Dells, WI 53965-9648
Region: United States > Wisconsin > Wisconsin Dells
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Wisconsin Dells
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Wisconsin Dells
#13 Romantic Hotel in Wisconsin Dells
#14 Family Hotel in Wisconsin Dells
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 108
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Come play the day away in America's largest waterpark resort! The Wilderness has 4 indoor and 4 outdoor water parks totaling nearly 500,000 square feet (that is over 12 football fields of water fun!) We also have two indoor, 3-D, black light mini golf courses; outdoor mini golf; zip lining; go-karts; laser tag; Wild Rock Championship Golf Club; and award-winning spa services at Sundara Spa. Amazing lodging options include Wilderness themed guest rooms, condos, villas and cabins. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Wilderness Resort Wisconsin Dells
Wilderness Hotel Wisconsin Dells
Wilderness Wisconsin Dells
Wilderness Wi Dells
Wilderness Resort Wi Dells
Resort Wilderness Wisconsin

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