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“The kids had fun, but it was costly”

Grand Harbor Resort and Waterpark
Ranked #13 of 62 things to do in Dubuque
Attraction details
Iowa City, Iowa
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“The kids had fun, but it was costly”
Reviewed November 17, 2009

We drove up for an overnight getaway. It was almost $200 for one night with pool passes for us and our three children. The rooms were clean and basic. The water park did seem older, somewhat grimy, equipment not in the greatest of repair (ie the staff didn't know how to inflate a raft for the water slide). In the morning, the kids played at the part for 45 minutes, then half the facility was shut down - again (gasp!) something floating in the water. That half with the big slide was closed for the next two hours until we left. I know hygienic standards must be maintained and the hotel has the right, etc. etc., but we've been to lots of waterparks and this has never happened. For the $200 it would have been another $30 for breakfast at the adjacent restaurant. I'd think for the price there would be a basic continental breakfast like at economy motels. The kids enjoyed themselves, but they would have been just as happy at our Rec Center pool. On the plus side, Dubuque is a charming, beautiful city. The hotel is adjacent to the Mississippi River walk where we saw two barges passing!

1 Thank midlifemalenurse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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121 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Southeast Iowa
2 reviews
“Fun but small”
Reviewed July 29, 2009

Very small indoor waterpark. I am a grandmother traveling with 10 year old granddaughter. We stayed at the attached hotel which included free passes to waterpark. If it had not been included in the package, I would have been very disappointed based on the size of the park and the admission price. We attended the waterpark all three days we were there, (S, M, T) which would have cost $42 dollars. We had a lot of fun, but not $42 worth. The lazy river should be billed as the shortest waterpark lazy river imaginable. 1 tube ride and 2 slides. No water deeper than 4 feet. Lots of play area for the very young.
Our main destination was the Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium, which was worth the trip.
We have been to Hucks Harbor at Fun City in Burlington Iowa and found it to be more economical and much larger, including a long lazy river, a separate swimming pool and more slides. The price for the summer is only $6 per person midweek and $10 on the weekend. Better value.
The park was not too crowded which was nice. Price might have something to do with that! No waiting for the slides.
Staff was indifferent in the park area. Bored teenagers without smiles. Hotel staff was friendly.

Thank red53angel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
13 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Older waterpark - good location”
Reviewed December 31, 2008

Grand Harbor has beautiful views and lots of on-site amenities including restaurant and lounge. The waterpark is a bit grimy and worn. The netting in the climbing area has quite a few breaks in it and there is a line of grime along the waterline in the kiddie pool area. The lazy river is tiny and there is no actual swimming depth pool. That said our kids had a great time. Also remember that there are many children up late and loud in the hotel rooms and if you need quiet to sleep you might want to check with the front desk when you check-in. We were here in December and might stay again when we come back in the summer. Dubuque itself is very beautiful and lots of fun.

1 Thank midwesttravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Wonderful gettaway!!”
Reviewed October 5, 2008

The Beautiful area brought us to this hotel and not to forget the great price we got for our room. The staff was great, they were so helpful to any questions we had, offered us directions and recommendations to different stores, restraunts and places to take the kids. My children loved the water park and the food was excellent. We loved the area so much that we plan to move to Dubuque soon. We stayed at the hotel for three days. Our room looked over the Mississippi river which was a big hit with the kids, they enjoyed watching the barge go by each morning. The river walk behind the back of the hotel along the Mississippi was both beautiful and enjoyable. The hotel is also close to shopping and downtown fun. We would recommend this hotel to everyone.

2 Thank busywithkids27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Good place for kids...”
Reviewed January 13, 2008

The water park is fairly basic. There are four slides. The first is a tiny one meant for little ones. Then there are two body slides and one tube slide. The tube slide has a stair case devoted to it. The body slides require you to go through a small portion of the kiddie jungle gym to get to them. Thus those with a bad back or who do not want to walk all bent over for a few steps will have a hard time going on those slides. The slides are all pretty short, but fun. There is a place to play basketball in the water and a "lazy river" that is absolutely tiny. There are two hot tubs that can get pretty full in the evenings. Overall some fun can be had here at the Grand Harbor, but it may only be for a couple hours.

The hotel is near the downtown area, the Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium, and a casino. All are walkable from the hotel.

1 Thank whenwasit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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