The much awaited Great Wolf Lodge in Scottsdale is now open. The entirely indoor water park is a great option for families who want an staycation that for year round fun. Not only is there a huge water park, but there are also wonderful dry land activities for land lubbers as well.
Planning your Stay
I know many of my readers will ask “Can I just go for the day and not stay overnight?” The simple answer is no, however, the Great Wolf Lodge website does mention that one addition guest per suite can be added if there is availability to a suite. But, generally there are no day passes given out. You must be staying at the Lodge to use the waterpark.
Sign up for their Member deals, book at least 60 days in advance or saved at least 30% when you stay at least 2 nights. Also, staying on weekdays is cheaper than weekends.
A few different options for your stay:
- Standard Suites-Family Suite- for Four-6 people
- Themed suites with bunk beds- For Four to 6 people
- Kid Cabin Suites, Family Wolf Den Suites, 6-8 people
- Premium Suites for up to 13 people
We went for a media event and didn’t not stay for an overnight, but met some friends who were staying there for the night!
Giggles and Dimples were super excited to head inside!
For parking, there is limited on site parking. There is off site parking with a shuttle and valet parking for an additional cost. We were able to use the on site parking.
The Entrance truly felt like we were swept into a cabin up by Lake Tahoe. I felt like I was transported north. The entire lodge was decorated for Halloween. I didn’t know that in addition to the media night, they were also having trick or treating that night, a dance party and a lot of other activities. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to stay the night and had to get back to Surprise. My kids could have stayed up all night, however this mom needs her sleep!
Before our media event started on the outdoor pool patio deck, we did a little tour of the indoor area. And, I should not say a “little tour” as there is a TON of things inside.
I checked out all the food ( I was hungry from the drive from Surprise).
- Hungry as a Wolf-Pizza, Pasta, Salads
- Timbers Tacos-Quesedillas, nachos, Tacos and Mores-Also available inside the water park
- Freshwoods Market-Grab and go Pre made Meals
- Dunkin Donuts (I felt like I was back in the Northeast!)
- Barnwood-small shareable plates and craft cocktails-we tried meals from here for the media night. They were amazing! I had ahi tuna and smoked salmon
- Buckets Incredible Craveables-Inside the waterpark-burgers, sandwiches and salads
- Campfire Kitchen-Salad bar, mac and cheese, grab n go, chicken finger and American breakfast, regional favorites
- Watering Hole-Bar inside the water park
- Ben and Jerry’s-Ice Cream
- Paddle Board Outfitters-Need swim gear, flip flops or other things related to swimming? Find it here!
- CAMP HOWL Kids Store-Inside is a Build a Bear Workshop, baby and toddler clothes and a small kids room. On certain nights there is even parent free activities. When you check in, make sure you ask about this or when you call for a reservation.
- Great Wolf Candy Company-Make sure they are sugared up and ready to roll!
- Buckhorn Exchange shop-bring home souvenirs
Land Lubber Entertainment
One of the first things we saw when we arrived (because I had to use the bathroom) were kids flashing wands around. I was a little confused, so I watched for a little while and then figured out when another blogger friend and the CEO of Great Wolf Lodge explained Magic Quest.
If you have a child who loves Magic and/ or Harry Potter, this might be for them. Grab a wand (it does cost extra) and go on an exciting adventure around the resort finding different places to wave the wand. At the end of this quest, fight the evil dragon, Charlock and defeat the Goblin King to earn the title of Magic Magi.
You can find more about this fun game here.
Ten Paw Alley
When I was told there was a bowling alley at Great Wolf Lodge, I was like “WHAT? They fit a bowling alley in here too?” I figured they meant a full sized bowling alley, but then I realized that with everything else going on, there really isn’t a need for 15-20 lanes. Four lanes is plenty for everything that is available. We didn’t play, but it was definitely a fun, cute set up for kids and adults. No special shoes are required. Extra cost.
Discover Gemstones Minerals and More. Panning for gemstones and other fun! And, behind this was the maze. I didn’t even realize there was a maze in the same place while we were there. Honestly, there was just so much to see (that’s why you read this blog!)
The Northern Lights Arcade had lots of great games for kids of all ages. Lots of fun lights made it super enticing for my kids to play!
For kids 48″ or taller, this wall is great for kids who want to climb. Make sure you bring closed toe shoes for heights of 21′ off the ground!
The Howlers Peak Rope course looks similar to ropes courses at Urban Air. Please bring closed toe and closed heel shoes for this and guests must be 48″ or taller. There is a mini version for smaller children.
Howl in One Mini Golf Course
The mini golf course has 9 holes and is fun for the “hole” family.
Additional fees apply
Outdoor Pool Area-Racoon Lagoon
There was a small hot tub with a infinity edge that was absolutely gorgeous. We didn’t go into the outdoor pools. The media event we were at took place outside, so we hung out outside. The outdoor pool was shallow (I believe it went to 5′. There were lounge chairs that were permanently affixed into the pool. There were also cabanas available for rent outdoors.
From our view at the outdoor pool, you can also see one of the awesome slides!
Are you saying to me “Enough with everything else, I just want the indoor waterpark area?”
I’m getting to that, I promise!
If you, like me, find the blazing hot sun in Arizona, sometimes mildly problematic in August, Great Wolf Lodge is definitely the place you will have an amazing time.
Temperature controlled at an awesome 84 degrees, this facility makes water fun again! Make sure you have your wristband on to gain entry into the waterpark.
No need to layer on the sunscreen and wonder how you will carry your flip flops down the slide without having them fall off, you will have an amazing time enjoying this amazing indoor water park.
Looking up, it really is amazing to see all the ductwork and fans that keep this place going. When it hits 115+, keeping a huge building cool is really an awesome feat of engineering!
Ok, but now you want to see the fun!
But First, A few things. Life Jackets- They are provided free. You can also bring your own, as well as they are lifeguard certified. Also, towels are provided too, and can be retrieved from a station by the food court in the pool area. There is no charge for the towels.
Chairs and tables are available for no charge and are not reserved. There are a few cabanas available and they have lockers and some even have TVs attached to them. They can be reserved and have an additional fee.
Two bathrooms and changing rooms are available at either side of the water park. I could not take pictures inside of the bathrooms. There were a lot of stalls for changing and showering, but I wished there were more for using the bathroom. Lockers were also available for rent. Since you can use the water park starting at 1pm the day you have a room, but cannot check in to your until 4pm, a locker may be helpful. The day you check out you can use the water park until close (9pm) but room check out is 11am.
Big Foot Pass/Chinook Cove
Big Foot Pass has a lily pad crossing with a rope to hold onto. You can see Giggles going for it! She was holding on tight and eventually made it across. There is also a log to try to hold onto and push on. Further down in the same pool was a three sided basketball hoop. The basketball hoops were of all different heights.
Giggles wasn’t really taking it lazy on Great Wolf Lodge’s version of a lazy river.
Diamond Back Drop
The Diamond Back Drop is the first of its kind in Great Wolf Lodge History. And, its all in the Dark! Giggles was at first very nervous to do it, but once she saw her friend from school, it was game on. She and I went on it together, and it was tons of fun!
Slap Tail Pond
The Wave pool was one of my kids favorite things to do. I was seriously amazed that I did not smell the usual “chlorine” smell that accompanies an indoor water park. The wave pool was 5 minutes on, five minutes off. The maximum depth of the wave pool was about 5′.
The Totem Towers is where Dimples had most of his indoor stay!
At Totem Towers, this tree house feel play area had dump water areas, slides galore and lots of fun water experiences.
These slides were perfect for the 4 and up crowd, or the beginner swimmer. Dimples really had a blast on these slides. The slides went into water less than one foot deep. Kids cannot ride on an adult’s lap, but adults can ride on the slides too! Kids must be at least 36″ to ride on these slides, but there are a few teeny slides that the little ones can go down on the Totem.
A huge Dump bucket from above made all the kids scream every couple minutes!
Alberta Falls, River Canyon Run and Wolf Tail
All of these slides dump out and have the stairs over by the “Crooked Creek”. Giggles was the only one to ride a few of the slides. Next time I go, when I have my husband, I will ride them all. I was on mission “watch the children”.
Alberta Falls -one rider on a tube that you bring up yourself. Each stair case has a reminder on whether you need to bring up a tube or not.
River Canyon Run-Up to Four People-Tube is brought up for you and runs next to the Diamond Back Drop.
Wolf Tail-for 48″ and taller. Vertical Drop and 20 foot free fall and 360 degree loop.
For the Toddlers in your life that need something slower than the Totem Towers, this is the place to be!
A huge area to splash for the toddlers in your life! And, its pretty well fenced in! YAY!
A toddler sized water play table was available for the kids! The small, spilling areas was a perfect sized for little ones to play and splash.
Fun water slides were available for tots to go down too! If you have a brave tot, this is the place for them to go! Plus, again, it was fenced so they couldn’t escape this area! Can I get a sigh of relief!?
We had an amazing time at Great Wolf Lodge and can’t wait to go back for a full stay. I was really amazed by what they had to offer. As we were leaving, they were having bedtime stories and offering yoga, and a dance party. My kids would have stayed for everything, but we had to head back to Surprise!
I highly encourage signing up on their list so you can see their deals and specials! There is just a lot to offer the whole family for a great staycation!
7333 Pima Rd
We Received complimentary admission. All opinions are 100% our own.