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The Wilderness Resort in Wisconsin Dells, WI Review

Updated on April 29, 2012

The Wilderness Hotel & Golf Resort is located in Wisconsin Dells, WI.

I've been here more times than I can count. The first visit was many, many years ago. My entire extended family went to celebrate my father's birthday. There wasn't a lot at the Wilderness at that time. A few small waterslides, a pool. I remember my niece and nephew riding in the Flintstones car (one of those little quarter machine rides). This was back in the 90's.

This place is H U G E now and immensely fun for adults and children!

There are thousands of things to do and see in the Dells. It's not labeled a tourist trap for nothing! Even though it has the tourist trap rap, it's a great place to go with the family. We're lucky enough to live about 2 hours from there, so we typically visit the Wilderness Resort a few times a year for a day or two of family fun time.

Accommodations

Where to even begin? The Wilderness Resort has just about any type of room accommodation you could possible need.

From traditional hotel rooms (they often run $99 specials on these rooms in the off seasons), to 2 & 3 bedroom condos and villas, to 3, 4, and 5 bedroom cabins.

The Wilderness Waterparks are included in your room charge and the waterparks are reserved for registered guests of the resort only.

I've stayed in traditional rooms, condos, and villas. The photo to above is from the last time we visited, it's in what the Wilderness calls Glacier Canyon Lodge. It's my favorite type of room here. 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, kitchen, dining/living area...very nice, clean, and spacious.

The rooms are clean, well stocked with necessary amenities, and the waterparks are also clean and modern. I've never run into any issue with rooms or cleanliness in the waterparks here. The staff has always been friendly and helpful and will quickly accommodate requests for extra pillows, blankets, towels, etc.

Waterparks

The Wilderness has quite a few indoor and outdoor waterparks. This means family fun can continue into the winter season!

While there are many hotels & resorts with waterparks (both indoor and outdoor) in the Dells, I prefer the waterparks at the Wilderness. The reason is simple, they're spread out throughout the resort. You don't have hundreds of people all crammed into one area waiting an hour to ride a waterslide. Yes, it's a bit of walking to switch parks mid-day, but they offer FREE shuttles around the resort that will take you from one park to another or back near your room at anytime. Just pick up a hotel phone, let them know where you're located, and they will send a shuttle for you.

Indoor Waterparks

Wild WaterDome

  • The Great Wave, measuring 15,450 square feet this unbelievably cool attraction is capable of generating waves up to 5 feet tall!
  • The Dueling Mammoths, family raft racing ride that allows families to race against each other through twisting and turning tunnels to see who is the fastest.
  • A 2,200 square foot 'zero-depth' play lagoon for the smaller ones.
  • 9 “cave-themed” private cabanas available for rent.
  • Plenty of deck space for kicking back, relaxing and catching a few rays.

Klondike Kavern

  • A 180-foot body slide
  • Two 500-foot tube rides which drop five-stories
  • Bonanza Brook, a 400-foot lazy river
  • Sulfur Springs pool and hot spa, both with indoor-to-outdoor access.
  • Bonanza Bluff, a huge play feature which includes 50 play & spray features, a 750-gallon tipping bucket, a 20 foot body slide and a 4 foot side by side children's slide.
  • The Hurricane, 4-person, family raft ride which plummets 58 feet before dropping into a funnel where you spin around and then splash into a landing pool below. Fog machines, strobe lights and sound effects add to the thrills of this amazing ride.
  • Plenty of lounging space, patio furniture and televisions.

Wild West

  • "Wild West Bumper Boats:" Crash into your family & friends and have a splashing good time
  • "The Black Hole," Tube slide
  • The "Fantastic Voyage," a 4-person raging raft ride that takes guests on an exciting journey through a twisting and turning tunnel.
  • Ransack Ridge, a four-story interactive play feature
  • The area also has four speed slides and indoor/outdoor hot spa

Cubby's Cove

  • An interactive multi-level aquatic kids play structure complete with play and spray features as well as two smaller body slides that are perfect for introducing toddlers and young children to waterparks.
  • Indoor/outdoor hot spas
  • Water basketball pool


Outdoor Waterparks

Lost World

  • The Lost World Adventure River that includes fast rapids, uphill currents, twisting slides, swirls and run-offs.
  • Halley’s Comet Racers, the riders gain speed as they enter onto four open racing lanes that streak down to a finish line below.
  • Several swimming pools with lily pad bridges and little slides.
  • Dinosaur-themed play ‘n spray structure
  • Water basketball pool
  • Outdoor hot tub
  • Several food & beverage outlets including: The Big Dig, Dinosaur Crossing, T-Rex Retreat and Jurrassic Joe's
  • A WildKid’s Club activity area
  • 15 private cabanas available for rent

Lake Wilderness

  • Island Pool: a 13,000 sq. ft. lazy lake complete with sideline play activities and built-in lounging ridge
  • Rafter’s Rage Tube Slide: a 300-foot tube slide complete with twists & turns
  • Rafter’s Rage Body Slide: a 220-foot body slide built for speed (Must be 48”)
  • Lil’ Chutes: Two 100-foot body slides with plunge pool
  • Lap pool & water basketball
  • Hot spa pool
  • A children’s wading pool with hands-on water activities & spray features
  • 9 private poolside cabanas available for rent.

New Frontier

  • Prospector's Creek, a 600-foot lazy river.
  • Gold Rush Tublide, a 400-foot tunnel slide that launches off a 40-foot high tower.
  • Timber Falls, body slide that starts out on a 40-foot high tower
  • Bear Foot Island, a kid's area that features 50 hands-on play-and-spray devices as well as a 300-gallon bucket that tips and soaks anyone in its path.
  • 3 pools, with huge waterfalls and overhangs.
  • Toddler's Cove, zero-depth play area with tree swing, smaller slides, bubbling geysers and other fun activities.
  • Two activity pools complete with slides, waterfalls and bubbling geysers.
  • New Frontier Springs: Large hot spa
  • Over an acre of deck space with lounge chairs and tables

Cubby's Cove

  • An Infinity pool with vanishing edge that overlooks Lake Delton
  • A small play and spray zero depth area perfect for small children
  • A large, well-furnished deck with umbrella-covered tables
  • Loon's Landing Patio & Grill




The area that I love the most is the Wild WaterDome. It has a huge wave pool area and is almost like being outside, very nice in the winter!

The waves are enormous! The kids love it also!

Another favorite is the KenDUCKY Derby. The rubber duck race in the lazy river each morning for the kids. They win prizes if their ducks win the race! They also get to keep their duck and bring them home.

Lazy River KenDUCKY Derby

Other Attractions

Water just isn't your thing, well guess what, there are "dry" attractions at the Wilderness too!

  • Two 3-D indoor mini golf courses
  • Sky ropes course (indoor)
  • Tombstone town (haunted hotel & mirror maze)
  • Lazer Tag
  • Wild kids club (crafts, activities)
  • 3 Mega arcades
  • Polka dot pots (pottery painting)
  • Timberland play park (30,000 square foot, 4 story interactive play area)
  • Bumper boats (mostly dry activity)
  • Wild Rock golf course (championship golf course)
  • Canyon zip line tours
  • Jurassic mini golf (outdoor course)
  • Cosmic go-karts & kiddie karts
  • Horse drawn wagon rides

Restaurants

There are some restaurants located right on the resort property. The free shuttles will pick you up and take you to restaurants also.

  • Wild Canyon Cafe (Decent food, prices a bit high, but that's expected in the Dells, kids eat free with each adult meal)
  • The Thirsty Buffalo Saloon (I've never eaten here but have had a few drinks, a-ok on the drinks)
  • Survivor's Bar & Grill (Great happy hour margaritas!)
  • Field's at the Wilderness (Steakhouse, I've never eaten here)
  • Sarento's at the Wilderness (I have ordered here twice, both times I was disappointed with the food)
  • Monk's Bar & Grill (Awesome food & atmosphere!)

So as you can see, this resort offers something for everyone. From lazy rivers, for those of us with a more sedentary lifestyle, to zip lining tours for the more adventurous. You barely even need to leave the resort property unless you want to, everything you could possibly need is already there!

We always look forward to our next family adventure at The Wilderness Resort in Wisconsin Dells.

If you're looking around at different resorts in the Wisconsin Dells area, you may want to check out my review of the Mount Olympus Water & Theme Park Resort


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