We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Good Experience with Young Kids” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Great Wolf Lodge

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 2 more sites!
Great Wolf Lodge
Ranked #11 of 72 Hotels in Wisconsin Dells
Certificate of Excellence
Chicago
Level Contributor
49 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“Good Experience with Young Kids”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 13, 2010

This is the first time visting the Wisconsin Dells. The Great Wolf Lodge was about what we expected. . . a family friendly place with a great water park. We had a standard queen suite and the room was nothing spectacular. It was clean and had all the normal ammenities that most hotel rooms have. The heater was the only complaint we had because it would either be too hot or too cold due to a malfunctioning thermostat.

The waterpark itself was great. We were there in February, during the middle of the week. So the crowd was minimal with no lines to any of the slides or rides. (We spent some time a the wilderness as well and that was jam-packed with people)

Suprisingly, my kids (6 & 10) really enjoyed MagicQuest which is attached to the hotel. They spent several hours there running around solving quests and would've stayed longer if we didn't have to be elsewhere.

I only have two gripes with GWL. One is that everything shuts down at 9:00pm -- the waterpark, restaurants, shops, everything. No late night snacks or entertainment. The other minor gripe is storytime. It is performed by a annimatronic clock which was obviously broken. Many of the robotic animals sat idle as they talked. Not a big deal, but my kids thought it was lame.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Butchboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

2,690 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    1,108
    828
    424
    225
    105
See reviews for
2,262
50
3
25
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (329)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 10, 2010

This was our third trip to Great Wolf Lodge in the Dells and we were not disappointed. This time we brought 5 other families and we all had rooms next to each other which was a plus. Having the microwave and fridge really helps out with meals. We enjoyed New Years Eve so much we are booked for next year. The duck decorating, magic show, crafts and DJ was so nice. The breakfast buffet is very good and affordable. Since had such a large group and I wake early I did go to the waterpark when it opened and put a few tables together so we could all sit together. There are tables available but we all wanted to sit together. The cabanas were full so if you need one, book early. Even though there was a full house, we never waited more than 10 minutes for a slide which is quite different than other waterparks in the area that allow outside guests. I really wish they would have constructed the Tornado differently where the rafts did NOT need to be carried up - this is very difficult. If you plan on going on all the water slides and are over the age 30, start getting your legs in shape prior since there are many stairs for the slides. The adult only hot tub is a wonderful idea.

Tips - robes help as the hallways can get cold after leaving the water park. We bring plastic water bottles and bring our own drinks around the resort (save money!). The bucket of beer from the bar is a great deal and they make a great Bloody Mary. Water shoes really help as you are barefoot all day and who want to use the bathroom barefoot? We bring 2 bathing suits so one can dry before you have to use it again. The Tornado at night (when it is dark) is awesome. If you want your younger children to try the Tornado, do not tell them what it is since some scare easy and it is really a great ride. When you board the ride, you can not really see what you are in for. In the winter, we put a cooler full of water, soda, etc on the balcony and it stays very cold. The ability to use the water park the day of check in and the day of check out is great, pack wisely - bring a bag that contains all the water park supplies so you do not have to dig the day you check in and you can bring the day of check out. Before returning to our room at night, we wash the children's hair in the showers and dry off. The showers outside the waterpark are far less crowded than the actual water park showers. The amusement park at Buffalo Phil's has half off wrist bands that start at 5pm, we eat at Buffalo Phil's and then enjoy the amusement park at night (chicken and fish are great, ribs and fajitas not good). And don't forget the outlet mall across the street (there is a coupon book for $5 in the restroom hallway at the mall)... Look at the lobby for coupons for local establishments.

Have fun!

Stayed December 2009, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank LaurenChicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wisconsin
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 1, 2010

We had booked a children's birthday party through the Magi-Quest and it was supposed to include pizza and drinks for all children. The food was two hours late and the short-handed staff new nothing of it. I was completely embarassed not to mention the children were hungry and crabby. And if this was not enough, i was charged $1,146..00 the next morning for the party! After talking to a manager who said it would be cleared up, the following morning I was charged $880.00! I would never recommended this resort to anyone. You would have better service at your local McDonald's!

  • Stayed January 2010
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank baffledWisconsin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
cfranklingw2005, General Manager at Great Wolf Lodge, responded to this review, February 12, 2010
I am disappointed to hear about this experience. Although this is not the typical review we see, we do appreciate you sharing this information with us. Your comments will be shared with the team and we will work hard to ensure that these issues are addressed. I would encourage you to speak with a member of our management team if there is anything we can do to rectify this situation. We hope that you choose to give us another opportunity to show you what Great Wolf Service is.

Regards,

Angie Brown
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Illinois
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 28, 2010

We've been to the Dells 4 times now and are trying out a different waterpark each time we come. The time is was the Great Wolf. Lots of slides to keep the kids and us grown-ups happy. Water temp was fine, little cool by the little "lazy river". The park seemed a little under staffed and we found one worker that was not very friendly, but she was running 6 slides by herself. One BIG negative is, there isn't many places to eat in the hotel. One choice for breakfast and one choice for lunch. Even tho the sign in the lobby says Pizza Hut is open for lunch when in fact it doesn't open til 4:00 so you're stuck with the Loose Moose (kinda pricey).
Overall, the stay was pleasant, not crowded, rooms and halls were not noisy but you will here the trucks on the interstate while trying to sleep.
So far we've hit the Copa Cabana, Chula Vista, Wilderness and now the Wolf. Next time will be the Kalahari.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank strat4me
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 4, 2010

Just returned from a stay there. Made sure we started trip after New Year's Eve as we figured the hotel would be near capacity and we didn't want to deal with people up all night partying...
Pros: Staff was very attentive and professional. From the check-in to the life guards to the restaurant staff everyone was very helpful and did a great job. Park is great and has lots of things to do for younger children. Only problems I had were the water temperature -- a bit cool for young children in parts and the crowds -- people everwhere -- old kids running and pushing -- initimidating to my three year old.
Cons - Noise -- this was probably just bad luck but both nights we stayed there we had noisy neighbors. The first night, kids were running down the halls, slamming doors, running up and down the stairs in their lofts until past 1:00 a.m. -- called security a number of times -- they came by but it didn't last. I asked to move after the first night -- and moved to the other side of the hotel and to the fourth floor. Of course, this was even a worse move. Same thing but until almost 2::00 a.m. - I moved in the middle of the night just to get some sleep. Blame the so-called parents but after several calls to security each night there should be more something done about the 'guests'.
If you care about noise you might try the first floor -- third or fourth floor rooms are probably the worst because of the fourth floor lofts.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank creakyboard
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
cfranklingw2005, General Manager at Great Wolf Lodge, responded to this review, January 25, 2010
Thank you for the nice compliments regarding our pack members. We appreciate you noticing how hard our team works. Being that we are a family resort, children and parents alike enjoy the time that they spend at the lodge. As a result the hallways do bustle with laughter and fun. We do our best to adhere to hibernation hours between 11pm and 7 am. I hope your family chooses to return again soon!
Best,
Angie Brown
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 29, 2009

Traveled with a 10 & 13 year old. The staff was friendly and helpful. The resort was well maintained and very clean. Kids LOVED the Magic Quest adventure and spent almost as much time doing that as they did in the water park. I have no complaints on these items.

However... I must say I was disappointed with the water park in the resort. We stayed at Great Wolf based on our experience at the sister property in Grapevine TX. The Great Wolf in TX. we would certainly give 5 stars! This resort has a very small and cramped lobby area. It doesn't take many people in the area to then make it difficult to navigate
and hard to move about.

The water park at this resort is divided into 3 "rooms". I'm not sure if that is to give the illusion of being bigger or not but it makes for lots of "back tracking" to get to different attractions. It also makes it more of a challenge to keep an eye on the kids who want to be going from one room to another. Lots of running back and forth. The Lazy River ride
is VERY short.. in fact one of the shortest I've seen at the indoor parks. There also seemed to be a shortage of tubes or rafts. Much of our time was spent waiting in a line to get one.

The biggest hassle of all was riding the Howlin' Tornado. You had to carry the large 4 person rafts to the top of the ride yourself. Those rafts are bulky and not exactly lightweight. It can even make an adult quite winded. The Great Wolf in Texas had a mechanical lift that took the rafts to the top of the ride. I have seen such lifts at other resorts as well. These folks seriously need to look at getting one installed.

All in all, while the resort was nice, the water park was a bit of a let down given the price
paid to stay at one of the "Mega-Resorts" . Not the best value.

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Luv2trvlAA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 22, 2009

We recently stayed at the Great Wolf Lodge during December's "Snowland". I've broken my review down into several areas.

HOTEL
The hotel was very clean, along with the room. I've read previous reviews on this site that indicated that the room was like Motel 6 - it was not, it is more along the lines of a Country Inn & Suites, which believe me is a big step up. I liked the fact that there was a lot of space so that we were not all on top of each other.

Noise - the walls aren't paper thin, but there were some kids jumping up and down on the floor above us on check-out day. Had we not been checking out, I would have called the Front Desk to complain.

FYI - for those of you who are budget travelers, they hold $110 per night on your credit card for incidentals though they did tell me when I'd called before the trip and in person at check-in, that you don't have to do it that way.

I thought that the lobby was very festive with the lights and snowflakes, the area where the nightly storytime is very small though and it got VERY congested during story time.

Front desk check in was very easy, we didn't have a long wait and everyone was very friendly. I also want to add that many of the employees were quite friendly and many of them readily said hello, they (management) must be doing something right.

The food outlets were OK. We didn't really want to come and go, though there are a great number of options very close to the hotel. Pizza Hut is well, Pizza Hut. The Moose Jaw was pretty good, we did like the "Wisconsin Nachos" made with waffle fries instead of tortilla chips. Prices were super expensive, a pulled pork sandwich for instance was about $9.95. My sister did balk about paying $9.95 for spinach dip though. The dessert place was just ok, though I did really enjoy my chocolate eggnog coffee from Starbucks. We didn't do the buffet at Camp Critter because there were too many kids hacking and coughing!

The arcade was small, and I didn't see a lot of people in there. MagiQuest seemed very popular and many kids were playing. We didn't have time for this trip, maybe next time.

Wolf Walk - Overall, pretty good, maybe about 5 minutes too long. I did learn that Moose shed their antlers (one at a time) in February - who knew? The kids made an oragami wolf at the end, not easy, some of the kids looked a little frustrated, though it is cute.

WATER PARK

I think that it's definitely for the 9 and younger crowd, though there were quite a few tweens during our stay. Favorite rides included the Howlin Tornado, though it is a PAIN to lug that heavy 4 person raft up the several flights of stairs. I was really huffin and puffin when I finally reached the top. It would be great if there was some elevator or conveyor system that sent the rafts back up to the top of the landing (i.e. IKEA).

The waterpark is supposed to be 84 degrees and it was about 27 degrees outside during our stay. There were a few areas that felt very cool to me (near the wave pool and the top of the Howlin Tornado landing), my son even looked cold and was shivering at points. We all did much better on the 2nd day though and I didn't notice it as much.

The only part that looked like it needed more cleaning was the stairs leading up to the slide that goes into the lazy river. Other than that, no issues, nothing floating in the water. The lazy river is VERY short, but just keep going around and relax - your on vacation!

I would like to suggest that the hotel purchase one of those swimsuit dryers that suck out the water of a wet swim suit. You do have use of the facilities on your day of check out and that would be a nice option. In the parking lot, I saw many cars from Illinois, Minnesota and a few from Indiana and Wisconsin. The travelers are from cold places and hauling around a wet swimsuit is not fun. There is a huge people dryer for $2 that you stand in, but the swimsuit dryer should be free, especially in the winter.

It's not difficult to find your way around the 3 rooms that make up the waterpark, so that is a big plus and there isn't anything to scary (well, other than the Howlin Tornado).

SNOWLAND ACTIVITIES

I have mixed feelings about the activities. I'll start with the disappointments and end on a better note.

#1 - Why no Santa? He only makes appearances on certain days - why? We were there on the 20th, surely he could have been there daily at that point.

#2 - The web site indicated that it snows 3x a day in the lobby during Snowland. We were expecting a lot of snow, we could barely tell that it was snowing it was so light. We weren't sure if that was an area that they cut back due to the economy, but it sure felt that way - big disappointment!

#3 - Candy Cane Lane was also advertised. It was much, much smaller than I had envisioned. There were 6 trees to vote on, a small craft area and hot chocolate. I was thinking - is this it?

#4 - Santa's Toy Station. The brochure described being able to make gifts, wrap them and write a letter to Santa. However, it was just a small table in the Kid's Club area. It should have been more festive and larger. Signage would have been nice.

#5 - North Pole University was another advertised activity. Upon check-in, we received a little card with 5 activities that kids could complete. This consisted of chimney climbing (going down the water slides), checking out a toy from Patch Products at the Front Desk and playing with it - we played Toss Up, coloring a Christmas picture, participating in Rowdy the Reindeer reading time and going on a Wolf Walk in the AM. After completing all 5 tasks, my son received a "diploma", 8 tokens to the arcade and a card game from Patch Products, cute. This was one of the better activities.

#6 - Reading with Rowdy the Reindeer, cute and festive with a sing-a-long of Christmas tunes, but gee that lobby was super packed!!

Management should re-think the location of some of the Snowland Activities, so they don't feel so cramped. And please, if it's going to snow, let it really come down!

We had a great stay and would definitely come back.

I always read reviews extensively before I travel so I hope that readers find this review helpfu.

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ChicagoLuv2Travel07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
cfranklingw2005, General Manager at Great Wolf Lodge, responded to this review, January 13, 2010
We appreciate you taking the time to share your experience with others. Great Wolf Lodge prides itself on promoting family togetherness. I think it is wonderful that you were able to join us for our Snowland festivities and it sounds like your family was able to participate in most of the activities. Please note that we will be looking into your suggestions as a means to make the Howl-i-days more fun for everyone. I am thrilled to hear that you enjoyed the visit and we look forward to welcoming you back again.
Warm wishes,

Angie Brown
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these Wisconsin Dells hotels
2.0 mi away
Hilton Garden Inn Wisconsin Dells
Hilton Garden Inn Wisconsin Dell...
#3 of 72 in Wisconsin Dells
4.0 of 5 bubbles 972 reviews
3.9 mi away
Polynesian Resort Hotel
Polynesian Resort Hotel
#54 of 72 in Wisconsin Dells
3.0 of 5 bubbles 601 reviews
0.7 mi away
Grand Marquis Waterpark Hotel & Suites
Grand Marquis Waterpark Hotel & ...
#14 of 72 in Wisconsin Dells
4.0 of 5 bubbles 576 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
3.6 mi away
AmericInn Lodge & Suites Wisconsin Dells
AmericInn Lodge & Suites Wiscons...
#22 of 72 in Wisconsin Dells
4.0 of 5 bubbles 354 reviews
3.6 mi away
BEST WESTERN Ambassador Inn & Suites
BEST WESTERN Ambassador Inn & Su...
#6 of 72 in Wisconsin Dells
4.0 of 5 bubbles 800 reviews
2.6 mi away
Atlantis Waterpark Hotel & Suites
Atlantis Waterpark Hotel & Suite...
#33 of 72 in Wisconsin Dells
3.5 of 5 bubbles 460 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Great Wolf Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Great Wolf Lodge

Property: Great Wolf Lodge
Address: 1400 Great Wolf Drive, Wisconsin Dells, WI 53965
Location: United States > Wisconsin > Wisconsin Dells
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Wisconsin Dells
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Wisconsin Dells
#15 Family Hotel in Wisconsin Dells
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Great Wolf Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 204
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Orbitz, Hotels.com and Expedia so you can book your Great Wolf Lodge reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Great Wolf Lodge Hotel
Wisconsin Dells Hotel Great Wolf Lodge
Great Wolf Lodge Wisconsin Dells
Great Wolf Hotel Wisconsin Dells
Black Wolf Lodge
Great Wolf Wi Dells
Great Wolf Hotel Wi Dells
Great Wolf Resort

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing