Great Wolf Lodge is a family favorite; traveling to one location that has many different activities under one roof and a lot of locations just a short drive away. We’ve been a couple times and each time we’ve found something new to enjoy. Like any vacation you learn something new and ways to make the most of your trip. I would love to share what I’ve learned over the years, maybe it’ll help your family.
Watch for deals – save a little $$
Because yes, a night at GWL can be very costly when you’re paying full price. But if you aren’t able to find any deals, keep in mind you are paying for a hotel stay AND water park admission for all in your party, among any of the other free activities.
Get on Great Wolf Lodges newsletter to find out when they are having deals.
Groupon and Living Social have deals a couple times a year, so watch for those. I’ve recently seen a deal at our local one for $159 for a family suite for 6 people.
Length of stay
If it’s in your budget I’d say to get the most out of the place book two nights. There is just so much to do in only one night. Although if it’s not in your budget to swing two nights, you will have plenty of fun and still be able to do a lot. We’ve never stayed two nights but I do feel rushed and we never get to experience more than half of the stuff there. Check in is around 3:00pm and you are allowed to stay the entire next day playing at GWL, you just have to check out of your room at 11:00.
All ages; there is something for everyone to do. The water park is suitable for everyone, not to mention all the rest of the attractions. If naptime is still on the agenda it is a short walk to your room to rest.
Bring your own food & drinks
This is a big one; not only will it save you money, everyone gets to eat what they like and you get a moment of clarity while you enjoy your food. Each room is equipped with a mini fridge and microwave, you can haul in your own cooler if the fridge isn’t big enough. Bring plenty of snacks for those tired moments, you can also rent a locker down at the pool to store some water and snacks. Located in our GWL(Grand Mound, WA) is a Starbucks, small little store with snacks/drinks, a few restaurants which we’ve tried a couple and in our opinion weren’t very good (and costly). So, we usually will bring our own meals to make/put together or order from the local Figaro’s Pizza which is both good and reasonably priced.
Tips for the water park
+ If you’re looking for less crowds opt to visit during the off season(no holidays, school breaks, weekends), or swim first thing in the morning and around dinner time until closing
+ Lifejackets are available first come first serve, so plan to arrive early if your child needs one or bring one from home
+ Arrive early and place a towel or something to reserve a chair and/or table
+ Bring water shoes if you don’t like to walk around barefoot
+ Bring a small bag with a light change of clothes, suits and snacks/water if your room isn’t ready and/or you plan on staying the next day after check out time
+ Towels are provided at the water park, but they need to stay at the water park
Different activities besides the Water park
Our location Grand Mound, WA has MANY different activities, so make a list of your top activities you want to do. Chances are you won’t be able to do everything!
* Not Included, cost extra
*MagiQuest & ShadowQuest & CompassQuest (Mason’s favorite but can take up the WHOLE time you are there)
Shows & Story times right in the lobby – Especially fun for little kids, don’t miss the pajama show if you have little’s that need to head to bed by a certain time. If they don’t give you a detailed schedule of events during your stay ask at the front desk.
*Great Forrest Challenge
*Cabana Rentals & Adult beverages at the water park! Like I said all ages :)
Fitness Center – just in case you need more of a workout then the water park & running up and down stairs playing the Quest games with your children ;)
*This is not a sponsored post, nor did we receive anything in exchange for this post. All opinions are my own.
Christina Almond says
So fun! I’ve always wanted to go to one of these and my friend and I often think of visiting the one up in Dallas, Texas! Maybe we’ll manage to do it this summer!
wen budro says
Those are some really useful tips. It’s such a painless way to save money by just bringing your own snacks.