My family just got back from a really fun trip to Great Wolf Lodge in Grand Mound, WA. I have put off going to GWL for a long time, mostly because I thought it was really expensive and was probably just incredibly obnoxious and not worth it. Then I started to hear story after story of families who went and had a lot of fun-- and not just the kids having fun, but the grown-ups, too. Hmmm. I looked in to it and got a discount code and booked us an overnight on a Monday night-- it made the rooms cheaper and I hoped it would make the place a little less busy.
I booked the trip several weeks ago, but we decided not to tell the girls about it until about 24 hours before we left. They were, of course, really excited!
Checking in at Great Wolf Lodge.
The lobby all decorated for the holidays.
We got there on Monday around 2:00 and luckily our room was ready (official check-in isn't until 4:00, but you can go early and use the water park). We played in the water park until we were ready to eat our "senior citizen dinner". We got ready to go to dinner at one of the resort's restaurants at 4:30. It was a wise decision as it took forever for the food to come (or maybe it just felt like forever), and the restaurant filled up quickly. Finished eating at 6:00, played in the arcade for a while and then headed back to the water park at 7:00 and left when it closed at 9:00. A quick stop for ice cream, then a round of showers and a snack and we were all in bed by 10:30-- which is SUPER late for us!
Hamming for the camera.
The next morning we were up and to the waterpark right when it opened at 9:00am. We played there until 3:00pm. Check-out time was 11:00 so I loaded up the car with our gear, got a locker for our change of clothes, and we were good to go for the rest of the day!
The wave pool.
View of the rest of the water park from the same spot I took the picture above.
The front side of Fort Mackenzie. If you stand in this spot an 1100 gallon bucket will dump water on you.
Eloise under Fort Mackenzie.
Matt and Iris finishing a ride on River Canyon Run.
The girls had an absolute blast. I am sure their only complaint would be not getting to stay longer or not getting to go to the spa or play Magiquest. I am a little bit of a cheapskate, so I wasn't excited about the idea of paying a bunch of extra money to go there and then spending a bunch more on other activities. Staying one night meant we were more than busy enough just doing the water park. If we had stayed two nights I might have shelled out more for other activities. MIGHT.
Eloise crossing the lilypads.
The stairs up to the big water slides. Got quite a workout going up these so many times!
The basketball part of the pool.
Eloise surveying the scene.
The surprising part was that Matt and I also had a great time. We felt like everything at the resort was run really well. The room was average sized and clean. The resort amenities were plenty, the restaurants we tried were decent and not overly priced. In fact, the only thing I found to be over-priced was the in-resort Starbucks. The drinks were more like airport prices. Annoying, but obviously you could stay away if you were so inclined. The line for the Starbucks on Sunday morning was long, I waited about 15 minutes, but that was the worst of it. Going to dinner early meant we got seated right away. Bringing a lot of food from home meant we had healthy-ish snacks available when we needed them. It was definitely money well spent.
We are definitely looking forward to going back again!
Have you ever been to Great Wolf Lodge?