If your children are anything like ours, there is nothing better than the hotel swimming pool, no matter the destination. Our kids actually said they loved the hotel pool more than they loved the theme parks we took them to one year! Many hotel swimming pools have become the main vacation destination these days, complete with wave pools, lazy rivers, water slides and splash buckets. Here are 10 of our favorite hotel swimming pools across the country.

Written by Lissa Poirot

The Waverton Hotel

Formerly the Holiday Inn Chicago-Elmhurst, The Waverton Hotel features an indoor water park. The 24,000-square-foot Mayan Adventure Indoor Waterpark features tube and body slides, a lazy river, splash park, activity pool with games like water basketball, and of course, a regular pool in which to splash and play. There's even a Mayan-themed restaurant on hand -- you might never make it to the nearby attractions of Chicago if you stay here!

While not filled with endless waterslides and splash zones, the allure of the Hot Springs Lodge's pool is in its name: Hot Springs. This pool, so large it expands two city blocks, is indeed a hot springs mineral pool, averaging temperatures of 104 degrees, even in the dead of winter. Not just therapeutic, but fun, the gigantic pool includes a kiddie section, a diving pool, and yes, even a couple water slides. The pool even welcomes rafts, floats, masks and snorkels, reminding guests that "feeling this relaxed is fun!"

Read our review of the Hot Springs Lodge & Pool.

What's better on a hot day, deep in the heart of Texas, than a chance to cool off in an old-fashioned swimming hole in your hotel's backyard? The Hyatt's four-acre "water playground" features a 950-foot Ramblin' River for lazy floats. Cascading waterfalls, an activity pool with sports like water volleyball, a kiddie pool, a sandy beach and two lagoon-style pools nestled around shady trees were enough for my kids to rank this spot better than the SeaWorld across the street!

Read our review of the Hyatt Regency Hill Country.

The resort with plenty of room options for families of all sizes is also the home of America's largest indoor water park -- 173,000 square feet in size, to be exact. A transparent roof overhead will make you forget you're indoors (unless, of course, it's snowing) while the kids ride the waves in the 12,000-square-foot wave pool. A lazy river, pools, water slides, uphill water rollercoaster and raft rides, including a swirling bowl raft ride, complete the park. Need more? In the summer, enjoy the outdoor water park with activity pools and hot tubs.

Read our review of the Kalahari Resort Sandusky.

Your kids already get laughs from the family-friendly TV shows on Nickelodeon, so you know they'll get a few more when staying at the Nickelodeon Suites Resort. Decorated in a myriad of colors with characters providing entertainment throughout the day, it's the water park that will win your kids over. The zero-entry Lagoon pool features seven waterslides and flumes and a splash playground with water jets, climbing nets and--what else--slime dump from the 400-gallon dump tank. Not enough? Head over to the more intimate Oasis Pool for more waterslides and flumes and a preschooler-friendly splash zone.

Read our review of the Nickelodeon Family Suites.

You've guessed right: This hotel is part of Six Flags Great Escape and offers the thrills and fun of a Six Flags theme park, but all within the grounds of the resort. Cross the street to enjoy the land-based coasters and rides at Six Flags before returning to the lodge and enjoying its water park. The 38,000-square-foot indoor White Water Bay water park includes the Avalanche family raft ride, a kiddie pool, Tak-it-Eesi-Creek lazy river, Lott-A-Watta-Bay and the Tall Timbers Treehouse play structure with water slides. For an additional fee, kids can surf (or learn how to!) at Boogie Bear Surf.

Read our review of the Six Flags Great Escape Lodge.

The sprawling resort complex features 11 pools, including the Grotto Pool with its cascading waterfalls, the zero-entry River Pool that connects to a lazy river and kiddie pools like Splashers Water Playground, a Mayan-themed water play area with slides, rope and net bridges and plenty of ways to get wet. But that's not all! Atlantis' pools are just one component of Aquaventure, its 141-acre water park that is free to all guests. From slow-moving or fast-churning river rides to waterslides of all heights, it's easy to forget there is a beautiful blue ocean just steps away.

Read our review of the Atlantis Resort.

With a name like Disney, you know you're going to be in for a treat at one of its hotels, and the Grand Californian near Disneyland doesn't disappoint. The Redwood Pool, centered around a Redwood Tree-themed and shaped waterslide is almost good enough to make the kids say "Mickey, who?" It's also just one stop in the resort's water complex, which also features the Fountain Pool and its artisan turtle fountain, and the Mariposa Pool and its private cabanas and hot tub.

Read our review of Disney's Grand Californian Hotel.

Sure, you could enjoy the massive surf along Wailea Beach, but why would you need to with the Wailea Canyon Activity Pool? The 25,700-square-foot, 2,000-foot-long pool complex is made up of nine pools connected by a river that varies from lazy to rapids. Four jungle pools, a Tarzan rope swing pool, six waterfalls, an infant pool, five waterslides, three hot tubs and the world's only water elevator round out the fun.

Read our review of the Grand Wailea Resort.

In the self-proclaimed "Water Park Capital of the World," the Wisconsin Dells' multiple water parks are enough to turn your kids into prunes. Still, the Great Wolf Lodge, located in the heart of the Dells, provides a place to rest weary wet heads after a day splashing indoors or out in its water parks. Fort Mackenzie is a four-story, super-soaker, treehouse-themed indoor water park with rope bridges, soaker buckets and water slides. In Coyote Canyon, ride the enclosed 436-foot water slide before landing in its splash pool, or hit Crooked Creek for a lazy river ride. During the summer months, families can play at the outdoor Thunder Bay water park.

Read our review of the Great Wolf Lodge Wisconsin Dells.

1 of 12

10 Best Hotel Swimming Pools
 
Glenwood Hot Springs Reviews
Be the first to write a Glenwood Hot Springs review!
Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort & Spa Reviews
SirQL8 - Oct 29th, 2012

My 3 year has been on 2 cruises, countless traveling vacations and more weekend trips than most children her age. She has never more thoroughly enjoyed a stay as much as this one. After realizing we weren't returning to 'our room' and were, in ... read more
Caliste - May 28th, 2010

We love this place and make it a point to visit each summer. Our whole family goes and we range in age from 73-5 and everyone has a blast. The lazy river winds through the property with the perfect balance of sun and shade. There is even a beach ... read more
Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort & Spa reviews
Kalahari Waterpark Resort, Ohio Reviews
hopesmom - Jan 20th, 2014

This was our first and last visit to Kalahari. For the price, We had expected SO MUCH MORE, it is a BIG park, but that is about all. Also, beware it is NOT 86 degrees inside as the brochures and websites state, it was COLD. The Lazy River ... read more
kkosch - Apr 30th, 2013

We have been to Kalahari numerous times and they never disappoint. They always add more attractions and seems it gets bigger each time. Although not cheap, the private cabanas you can rent will make for a relaxing water park experience. We stayed 2 ... read more
Kalahari Waterpark Resort, Ohio reviews
Nickelodeon Suites Resort Reviews
barbiedc - Apr 1st, 2013

My family enjoyed staying at the Nickelodeon family suites the pools were great the staff there was fun and entertaining, the food was a little expensive not many choices. We had a rental car for the time we were there. The grounds were pretty ... read more
jeannettej1009 - Aug 20th, 2012

BUYER BEWARE!!!!!! This place is awful and not worth a penny of what you pay. They will charge you a resort fee upon check in totaling $31.50 per night that includes pool use, parking, buses and internet. Yes, that is correct-.you have to pay to use ... read more
Nickelodeon Suites Resort reviews
Six Flags Great Escape Lodge & Indoor Waterpark Reviews
kbudd103 - Feb 25th, 2014

This was our second trip here. The first time we visited in June 2013 and had a nice time with our 2 year old. This time, we visited in February 2014 which also happened to be vacation week for Vermont schools and there was a big living social ... read more
Six Flags Great Escape Lodge & Indoor Waterpark reviews
Atlantis Resort Reviews
trentorley - Mar 31st, 2014

This was my fourth visit to Atlantis and the resport service has gone down considerably over the last two years. Basic things such as clean towels and face cloths not being refreshed were an every day occurence. The prompt response team did not ... read more
dtjensen7 - Jan 6th, 2014

Atlantis Review: Incredibly poor customer service: everyone on staff has become an expert at passing the buck. If you have a problem, you will be passed from indifferent person to even more apathetic person for the first 30 minutes until finally ... read more
Atlantis Resort reviews
Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa Reviews
BonnieMae - Jun 29th, 2011

We just love Disneyland, every last one of us. We range in age from 1 to 59 and there is not a single person who doesn't LOVE this place. If you have the opportunity or chance, try to stay at one of the hotels on the property. We've tried all of ... read more
lurcherm - Apr 22nd, 2011

We've traveled to Disneyland several times and have stayed at both the Disney resorts and local hotels. Last year we decided to splurge and stay at the Grand Californian Hotel. Location, location, location - we literally had to only take 20 ... read more
Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa reviews
Grand Wailea Reviews
jaymike310 - Jun 28th, 2012

This hotel was amazing!!! There were so many water slides and pools, and the beach was so clean and perfect that we debated that it was artificially created! The grounds of the resort were immaculate, and the chapel area where our room was located ... read more
HEFFNER - Nov 30th, 2011

I have been going to this hotel for 10 years in a row now, from the time I was 12. There has never been a dull moment. They provide plenty of supervised activities for kids 5 and up, and adults can go off on their own to do what they please. ... read more
Grand Wailea reviews
Great Wolf Lodge Wisconsin Dells Reviews
lrennison - Apr 29th, 2013

My 8yr old and 10 yr old boys LOVED the indoor water park at the Great Wolf Lodge in Wisconsin Dells. One thing you should know is that you need to request to have your linens changed if you would like them to do it everyday. I know they are ... read more
fashun - Apr 17th, 2012

We had a family gathering in one of Great Wolf's suites. It was the first of its kind. My wifes mother arranged it with her sisters family as well. Great time for a while. The rooms were nice and everything was provided. We brought 8 Papa ... read more
Great Wolf Lodge Wisconsin Dells reviews


  •  
    FREE Family Travel Newsletter
  • Family Travel Tips   (8 New)

    Family Planning and Tips

    • Carnival Miracle Travel Tips
      OverviewCabinsDiningActivitiesTravel Tips All About the Extras Sail & Sign Card Carnival ships feature Sail & Sign cards, which make life so much easier. All you do is link a debit card or credit card to your Sail & Sign Card at Guest Relations or a kiosk on the ship. You'll then use your Sai...
    • Carnival Miracle Dining
      OverviewCabinsDiningActivitiesTravel Tips During the cruise, I quickly learned that cruise food is every bit as big of a deal as the cruise itself. And when it comes to dining, the Carnival Miracle does not disappoint. Bacchus Restaurant Thousands of purple, bubble-like lights embellish Bacc...
    • Carnival Miracle
      OverviewCabinsDiningActivitiesTravel Tips One of four Spirit class ships, Carnival Miracle made its magical debut in 2004. While it's certainly not Carnival's grandest ship, it's definitely something of a "miracle" for families, who find an ample amount of amenities and activities on board. Amid ...
    • 10 Best Orlando Resorts for Families
      So many hotels and resorts to choose from! Which ones really are the best for families in terms of theme-park access, amenities, and accommodations? Here are our favorites in the Orlando area! 1. Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creak Maybe it is the Hilton's water park with two zero-entry pools, a 3-acre ...
    • 10 Best Disney World Resorts for Families
      When it comes to Disney, they certainly know how to cater to families, and families who want to visit Disney's Orlando theme parks will find a large selection of resorts and hotels to accommodate families of all sizes. But which ones are the best? Take a look at these 10 favorites of our editors and...
    • Skip This: Do That!
      Deciding where to go for your next family vacation? Often it's the most popular destinations -- from mega theme parks to world-famous beach towns -- that come to mind first. It's tempting to pick a familiar place and just go with what you know, but do this and you could be missing out on some fantas...
    • Disney Wonder Alaskan Cruise
      Join us onboard Disney Wonder's first exploration into Alaskan waters and ports as Family Vacation Critic Editor Lissa Poirot and her two tots take you on a tour. Be the first to see a sample of Disney's Alaskan Port Adventures, as well as glimpse the Disney Wonder's onboard fun, in our first-ever d...
    • Family Volunteer Vacations
      Away from the hectic pace of our everyday lives, any vacation is a chance for families to reconnect. There's no soccer game, no piano recital, no working late, so finally you have that precious day together. Yet, if you really want a meaningful break from your usual schedule, one that might change t...
  • Twitter
  • Facebook