Did we have a good time? Umm, YES! Our kids are just old enough now to appreciate all the fun activities, and January is really the perfect time to escape the cold Canadian winter, so all we wanted to do was hibernate for three days in their beautiful lodge. And no, we were definitely not bored, because there is so much stuff to do!
We checked in around 1pm, which is when they let you use the waterpark and facilities, although check-in is technically at 4pm. There are change rooms that you can use if you pack a separate little bag. We decided to just go to lunch and leave all the luggage in the car until check-in time and explored the facilities.
Our Family Suite was a nice upgraded size so we didn’t feel cramped. They have really cool suites with “wolf dens” where the kids can hide in bunk beds but our kids are too young for that right now. When they are a bit older we will go that route for sure. The suite also had a microwave and larger fridge which came in quite handy.
We bought the Paw Pass which, in my opinion, you HAVE to do! It involves the following:
- One MagiQuest game and classic wand
- Two games of bowling at Ten Paw Alley or one game at Wacky Wilderness Mini-Golf
- One 5×7 Paw Prints Water Slide Photo
- One gift at Scoops Kids Spa
- 1/4lbs of fudge at Bear Claw Café
- One Great Wolf Kids build-your-own item in the Cub Club
- One pair of wolf ears from The Trading Post Gift Shop
- 30 paw points and a game card for Northern Lights Arcade
If you decide you don’t want the Paw Pass (which you really should because the kids will be sad to see other kids doing it), I recommend you purchase the wand or rent one to participate in the MagiQuest. It’s a very cool interactive feature!
We also purchased the all-inclusive meal plan for the duration of our stay which includes the buffet breakfast and dinner, and lunch at two different spots by the water park. This is not necessary and there are a couple of other options to choose from but I’m glad we chose this option as it was easy for us and probably the best deal if you do the math.
What I loved and wouldn’t have known had I not known someone that visited already, is that you can bring your own alcohol and literally drink it throughout the resort in a non-breakable glass. Talk about parental paradise! Furthermore, if you don’t have that or you just don’t feel like going back to the room you can still get a glass from many of the bars right on site. We may have just opted for that a couple times! Upon check-in they give your waterproof wristbands which are connected to your account for all purchases. So convenient!
The waterpark is awesome and my guys were big enough to do some of the cool slides at the kid pools as well as the Wooly Mammoth, a large round tube slide for 2-4 people. For all their larger slides you can scan your wrist band before hopping on and you’ll get to see and purchase your photos if you wish. We spent most of our two full days at the waterpark and when we weren’t there, we were at the arcade. Hours of fun for everyone!
They had so many other activities, like dance parties (my personal fave), face painting, story time, no parents allowed PJ parties (for ages 4 and up), character meet-and-greets, and much more!
Babysitting is also available in their Cub Club which comes in handy if you want to visit the spa or just do some of the crazy slides for just the grown-ups. Awesome coffee shop as well as a super large gift shop with lots of cool things for everyone!
I was super impressed with my first visit to Great Wolf Lodge, and we will definitely be returning. I just wish there was one closer to me – it’s about a 6 hour drive from Ottawa! Tell me, have you visited one and what was your experience? Also, any questions about my trip please don’t hesitate to send me a message! I can’t wait to hear from you!