There’s a few things that are inexorably linked with Summer: barbecues, fishing and, of course, hitting the road in your RV.
But there’s one thing that kids love to flock to when the weather gets warm: waterparks. With wave pools, lazy rivers and more, kids can have a blast, get wet and messy and put down the iPad for a change.
The Midwest is peppered with great waterparks, all within a few hours’ drive of Iowa. And, just nearby, there’s some great scenery and RV parks. There are plenty of places to have some family waterpark fun—and all you have to do is hit the road in your RV.
KALAHARI WATERPARK, WISCONSIN
Our neighbor to the north, Wisconsin, has more than bratwurst, football and beer. It has one of the largest waterparks in the country and all the fun under the sun (and a good deal of indoor fun, too) your family can handle.
Kalahari Waterpark is Wisconsin’s largest water park, and Indoor waterpark fun includes the FlowRider, Master Blaster uphill water rollercoaster waterslide, Victoria Falls family raft ride, huge indoor wave pool and much more. The outdoor park offers slides, lazy river, spas, activity pools and plenty of places to soak up some rays.
Where to Stay: Arrowhead Camp Resort
Arrowhead Camp Resort is located in the heart of the Wisconsin Dells and is the perfect place to take your RV on a vacation you won’t forget. Featuring a camp store, gift shop and plenty of extra LP, it’s great for the discerning RVer.
GREAT WOLF LODGE, MICHIGAN
While Great Wolf Lodge is a resort, it’s also a great place for RVers to check out and bring the kids. Nestled in the scenic shore of western Michigan, it’s the perfect place for the whole family to enjoy some fun in the sun—and in the pool.
This great park features 38,000 square feet of water-packed excitement, including jaw-dropping slides for thrill seekers or zero-depth entry areas for little ones. Outside the water park, the fun continues with plenty more activities for the whole family.
Where to Stay: Traverse Bay RV Park
This park features 217 Spacious Oversized Lots, paved streets, full hookups, fitness center, RV washing service and more. It’s truly the most luxurious spot for RVers in Michigan!
WATERPARK OF AMERICA, MINNESOTA
Not far from the largest mall in America (The Mall of America), the Waterpark of America is one of the biggest and best parks of its kind in the world. With over 70,000 square feet of fun, the tallest indoor water slide in America and more than 2 dozen thrilling rides, there’s really something for the whole family.
Adults will love the Waterpark of America for its leisurely pools, relaxing hot tubs and on-site restaurants. Not to mention, there’s plenty of places for Mom to sneak in some shopping while the kids are having fun at the pool!
Where to Stay: LeBanon Hills Regional Park
Lebanon Hills Regional Park is the largest park in the Dakota County park system. Containing almost 2,000 acres, the park offers miles of trails and many lakes for year-round outdoor sports, recreation and environmental education.
It’s also the closest RV park to the Mall of America. At just over 15 minutes away, it’s convenient to access the waterpark and shopping fun, but still nestled in nature.