Centrally Located Hotel with Indoor Water Park
It’s likely that Wisconsin Dells has more water slides per capita than any other spot on the planet. The area’s multitude of water parks includes more than 20 indoor facilities that stay open all year round. Just a few miles south of town, you can splash around in one such park at the Atlantis Waterpark Hotel. The onsite Aqua Kingdom is equipped with two 40-foot-long tunnel slides as well as gentle spray features that are perfect for younger kids. You can also soak in the whirlpool or perfect your backstroke in the lap pool.
Your stay includes free passes to the massive Chula Vista water park, located 5 miles away. Here you’ll enjoy 80,000 square feet of indoor attractions, including a high-speed water coaster, a languid tropical river, and a Mayan temple with an enormous tipping bucket.
After a day spent water-park hopping, towel off and retire to your room. Mermaid suites continue the hotel’s aquatic theme with en suite whirlpools, shell-shaped headboards, and mermaid artwork. The two-bedroom Neptune suites also have whirlpools, as well as balconies and fireplaces.
Wisconsin Dells: Picturesque Scenery and Family Entertainment
Before the Dells became synonymous with water parks and amusement rides, the Midwestern destination’s claim to fame was its scenery. Visitors in the mid-1940s came to see the craggy rock formations that frame both sides of the Wisconsin River. These bluffs—or dells—are still visible today from the downtown area, which is rife with kitschy attractions, from mini golf courses to go-kart tracks.
But it’s safe to say that most visitors nowadays come for the water parks. In fact, the Dells area likely has more water slides per capita than any other spot on the planet. The fun doesn’t stop in the cooler months, either, thanks to a slew of indoor aquatic centers, many of which are nearly as elaborate as their outdoor rivals.
For a break from all the chlorinated excitement, take a stroll along the river, where you’ll find antique stores, candy shops, and a Bavarian-themed village. At a handful of German restaurants, you can wash down plates of schnitzel with pints of lager to the sounds of glockenspiels. The H.H. Bennett Studio museum makes for an interesting side trip. Exhibits recount the early history of the Dells through the life of the 19th-century landscape photographer whose work originally attracted tourists to the area. Just down the road, in the town of Baraboo, Victorian buildings and quaint shops lie on the outskirts of Devil’s Lake State Park, where 500-foot bluffs present a challenge for intrepid rock climbers.