Let me start by saying I’m not normally a fan of water parks. They’re hot, wet and crowded so when my mother gave the kids a gift certificate to Great Wolf Lodge water park I was excited but hesitant. I booked the trip and hoped for the best. Well we just got back and I have to say it was amazing! We had an awesome time, all of us.
We decided to stay at the Great Wolf Lodge water park in Williamsburg so that we were close to other activities if the the lodge didn’t fill our time, or entertain the kids, and because we’re homeschoolers we were able to go during the week which was great.
- The rooms are spacious and comfortable. We went with a fireplace family suite with a balcony which had plenty of space for the 4 of us. All the rooms have microwaves and refrigerators which is great. The convenience of eating in the restaurant can’t be beat but it does come at a price. The first day we splurged and ate all 3 meals at the lodge establishments (lunch was bread sticks from the on site Pizza Hut Express) but it cost us a lot so I ran out and got bagels and snacks that night for the next day.
- The water park is amazing. There were several water slides of all speeds and variety. My oldest’s favorite was the Howlin’ Tornado water slide. This was far more than a water slide, it starts out calm and “normal” until you drop straight down into a gigantic funnel with a beautiful stained glass looking end and slosh from side to side until gravity flushes you out the end. She was also a huge fan of the Flowrider® which is a wave simulator where you can try your hand at surfing or body boarding. My youngest preferred the wave pool and the giant playground like Fort Mackenzie which houses a giant bucket that dumps 1000 gallons of water down on excited water park goers every few minutes.
- It’s not just a water park. Great Wolf Lodge is so much more than just a water park it’s a full featured resort for kids and parents alike. We got a Paw Pass for each of our kids (definitely worth it) and were able to experience all that the resort had to offer. Our girls loved the MagiQuest® and the wands were included in the price of the Paw Pass. It took us a couple of hours (and a lot of running up and down stairs) but we now have two Master Magi in the house. Since the wands can be reactivated we’re looking forward to visiting other Great Wolf Lodges and going on more adventures. There was also an arcade where we spent tons of time along with a race zone where we rented RC cars and Cub Club where the girls colored their own t-shirts. Also included in the Paw Pass was a discount throughout the lodge, a free lunch in the restaurant, wolf ears and a free stuffed animal.
- The staff is friendly and accommodating. We checked in really late our first night (11pm) because we live about 5 hours away and left after work. Despite the late hour the woman behind the desk was extremely nice and took the time to explain the wrist bands (which is your key and can be used to purchase items at the lodge) and details of the Lodge with us. Our room was quite far away from the main part of the building but we didn’t think much of it because it was late. The next day we realized just how inconvenient it was to be so far away and on a whim I asked if we could move closer. They looked and were able to move us to a room on the main floor much closer to the center of activity, I was amazed. Everyone we passed in the hall said hello and they were all so kind and respectful to the kids.
- You’re close to all that Williamsburg has to offer (though it might not matter) We live much closer to the Great Wolf Lodge in the Poconos but we decided to visit the Williamsburg one for our first trip to a Great Wolf Lodge because it was less expensive and it was only 15 minutes from down town Williamsburg so there was plenty to do if we got bored with the Lodge. Well it tuns out we didn’t need it the two full days we spend at the Lodge we were busy the whole time and never board. After we checked out on Saturday we spent some time doing some more non water park activities and then we headed to Colonial Williamsburg for a little bit. It was a nice way to cap the trip but really the Lodge itself was enough.
Here’s a little bit of advice on how to get the most out of your stay and some things that I’m going to do next time; when booking ask for a room close to the water park and other activities it really does make a difference, pack food and snacks to cut down on meal costs, if it’s your first time going buy the Paw Pass it’s totally worth it (the MagiQuest® wands can be used at other resorts) and if you’re going to the Williamsburg GWL get a Richmond Mom Savvy Saver’s card and use discount code “RICH230A” for a 20% discount.