My family traveled to the Wilderness Resort this past week as our first family vacation since our 2 1/2 year old and 1 year daughters were born. We traveled also with my parents and adult brother. We stayed at a 4 bedroom Frontier Condo at the Wilderness.
LODGING: The Frontier condo had a great amount of space, which was key for us. I wasn't sure how the kids would sleep or nap, but it worked out great. We each had our own space and with 3 baths, we never fought for bath space. The master bath had a double jacuzzi tub which was luxurious and also fun for the kid baths. We brought a lot of our own food, doing breakfasts and lunches at the condo to save money. The condo was quiet and the view was nice across the Wilderland park area.
Pros: Quiet, spacious, clean, includes all kitchen essentials
Cons: NO INTERNET (!!!!!), a very long walk to the parks (we didn't shuttle cause we wanted to have our double stroller with us), unclear about when trash pick up / housekeeping would come. On our last day they pounded on the door during afternoon naps and scared our 2 1/2 year old. Oh, and the beds are terrible...
A comment about the internet. In a way, I was personally glad we didn't have the internet to distract us from just relaxing, however, it would have been nice to use in order to plan our days. If you needed internet, you would have to walk up to the Wild West Lobby. As for the rest of the media - the TVs in the rooms were all nice, the main TV was small. The DVD had never been used and the cords were so short that it wouldn't fit in the console. We had to get creative to get the DVD player situated to run our kids DVDs. (Can't leave Dora at home...)
THE PARKS: For the under 5 crowd, the waterparks are perfect. At each park, there is a child/toddler area, that usually included a couple small slides, some jumper/swing type chairs, some sprinklers/bubblers in zero depth water. My 1 year old loved it. My 2 1/2 year old had no fear by the end of the week and wanted to do everything.
The parks are for guests only. We found very little crowds and were generally able to find chairs where we wanted them. The resort is very spread out and we either walked and stayed at one park, or took our car if we started at the Wilderness on the Lake or Glacial Canyon, as they are quite far. During the peak times, driving/parking might be difficult, and the resort wants you to take the shuttle. There are plenty of parks to choose from, but my comment would be - except for the Wild Water Dome, if you've seen one park, you've pretty much seen them all. The themes are similiar and don't differentiate your experience much.
Pros: Very Infant/Toddler friendly. Plenty of lifeguards. Indoor/Outdoor options.
Cons: HOURS. They open too late for families with little kids and close to early for any after dinner fun. Most mornings we had to sit around to wait until the 9am parks would open, and in our week, only 2 opened at 9am, and one of them was at Wilderness on the Lake - a hike from the main Wilderness Territory. FOOD - the food options were standard theme park options and expensive. Healthy food options were few and far between. The Pool Surface - the texturizing on the pool surface tore up my kids knees, each day we left with skinned bloody knees. Very chlorinated, and the indoor parks seem particularly chemical smelling.
SPA: My husband and I hired a babysitter from our town to come up for the day so that we could spend the day at Sundara Spa. I was thrilled to death about this - since I love the spa, and it was the first trip for my husband. Sundara is lovely and peaceful, just what we needed at the end of the week at the Wilderness.
PROS: The Ritual Bath is gorgeous. You move thru 5 stations that include exfoliation, rain shower, steam room, another rain shower, and then alternating between the hot/cold pools. The hot pool is gorgeous and fragranced with essential oil. My hubby and I were in love with this - however....
CONS: We spent the day outside at the infinity pool. It was also very nice, just what you would expect from a high end spa. We ate lunch on the pool deck, which was yummy, but the selection was limited. We enjoyed a half bottle of wine and a couple of Mojitos from the bar. The staff was attentive and friendly.
The spa is oriented off the front of the building, so that the infinity pool overlooks the road to reception and the deliveries to the resort go right next to the pool deck / bar / lounding area. During our afternoon at the pool there were 3 truck deliveries, UPS, a 16 wheel Coca-Cola truck and another food service delivery. What architect thought that designing a high end spa that sat next to a loading dock was a good idea? It just doesn't make any sense at all.
Other small things were confounding - of all the toiletries provided for you by the Spa, there is no facial lotion. In the locker rooms you can get Sundara Spa's signature body milk, and facial cleanser, but no face lotion. Just odd.
My parents did golf the Wild Rock golf course and enjoyed it a lot. We also ate at The Fields and had very good meals. Pricey but yummy. The best meal we had was probably breakfast at Mr. Pancake on the strip. Moose Jaw pizza is a fun night out as well.
All and all we had a great week, but The Wilderness was missing those last couple of items / details to make it absolutely mind boggling excellent so that we wouldn't consider ever going somewhere else....
- Also Known As:
- Wilderness Hotel
- Wilderness Resort Wisconsin Dells
- Wilderness Hotel Wisconsin Dells
- Wilderness Wisconsin Dells
- Wilderness Wi Dells
- Wilderness Resort Wi Dells
- Resort Wilderness Wisconsin
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Come play the day away in America's largest waterpark resort! The Wilderness has 4 indoor and 4 outdoor water parks totaling nearly 500,000 square feet (that is over 12 football fields of water fun!) We also have two indoor, 3-D, black light mini golf courses; outdoor mini golf; zip lining; go-karts; laser tag; Wild Rock Championship Golf Club; and award-winning spa services at Sundara Spa. Amazing lodging options include Wilderness themed guest rooms, condos, villas and cabins. ... more less