Splash Around at Michigan’s Waterparks

Child in the pool at Avalanche Bay.

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Float along a lazy river or race through a twisting water slide, watch the little ones shoot water guns or compete with your peers surfing an indoor wave pool. Whether your ideal waterpark heats up in the summer sunshine or sits comfortably indoors year-round, Pure Michigan promises an aquatic adventure for the whole family. 
 

Indoor Waterparks

A child in the water at Avalanche Bay.
Avalanche Bay | Photo courtesy of Boyne Mountain Resort

  
Avalanche Bay ranks as Michigan’s largest indoor waterpark. Located at Boyne Mountain Resort, this winter-themed park includes 88,000 square feet of rides and slides, from tame to adventurous, as well as four activity pools. A variety of accommodations fit all budgets and make it easy to enjoy the resort’s outdoor recreation as well. When the crew gets hungry, take your pick of the resort’s ten restaurants.  
 

Children in the lazy river at Great Wolf Lodge.
Lazy river at Great Wolf Lodge | Photo courtesy of Traverse City Tourism

 
The waterpark at Great Wolf Lodge in Traverse City, like the rest of the resort, follows a Northwoods theme. Explore a watery treehouse, splash through totem pole-themed water slides or ride a 4-person boat with the entire family at River Canyon Run. Accommodations are available onsite, as well as restaurants and spa services for both adults and kids.
 
The Soaring Eagle Waterpark and Hotel in Mount Pleasant offers 45,000 square feet of water slides, a wave pool and other attractions geared for toddlers through adults. A complimentary shuttle is available to transport guests to the nearby Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort, one of Mount Pleasant’s most popular attractions.
 
The Holiday Inn Hotel Waterpark in Dundee offers an attached indoor waterpark with water slides, a lazy river and a children’s interactive playground. The hotel sits near a large Cabela’s store, where kids can also enjoy their 48-foot mountain, a 65,000-gallon aquarium and more.  
 
At the Lakeside Resort & Conference Center in Houghton Lake, a three-story waterslide makes the hotel’s indoor pool more exciting than a standard stay. Visitors will find the small waterpark includes two swimming pools—one for kids and one for adults—as well as hot tubs for kids and adults and a lazy river.
 

Indoor/Outdoor Waterparks

A family playing in the children's pool at Zehnder’s Splash Village.
Zehnder's Splash Village | Photo courtesy of Frankenmuth Convention & Visitor’s Bureau

  
Zehnder’s Splash Village Hotel & Waterpark ranks as one of Frankenmuth’s most popular family resorts with a fantastical, elf village theme to explore. Two adjoining water parks create a single 50,000-square-foot facility, one of which has a retractable roof that allows the outdoors inside when the weather is warm. If you book a stay at Zehnder’s, ask for a room overlooking the excitement of the waterpark.
 
At Double JJ Resort, you’ll discover two distinct waterparks. Indoors, the Rothbury property features the 60,000-square-foot Gold Rush Waterpark, home to West Michigan’s tallest waterslide, as well as a wave pool, thrill slides and other water rides. Outdoors, Double JJ offers the smaller Back Forty Swimming Hole, with a waterslide, two pools and a splash pad.
 
Indoor and outdoor waterparks keep visitors happy and fit at Flash Flood. Part of the Full Blast Recreation Center in Battle Creek, the park features twisting waterslides, a zero-depth entry pool and an expansive water playground. Other attractions include a bounce house, batting cages and a full-service fitness center.
 
The Fairview Beachfront Inn & Waterpark sits near the ferry docks, shopping and historic fort that make Mackinaw City famous. Entrance to the hotel’s indoor/outdoor Cast-a-Way Bay is included with all overnight stays and includes water slides and an interactive play structure overlooking Lake Huron.
 

Outdoor Waterparks

Waterslides and a lounging area at WildWater.
WildWater Adventure | Photo courtesy of Michigan’s Adventure

 
At WildWater Adventure in Muskegon, you’ll find squirt guns and twisting water slides, water geysers and a mammoth tipping water bucket, all designed to keep you cool in the heat of the summer. Admission is included with a visit to Michigan’s Adventure, the state’s largest amusement park.
 
The Park at Water’s Edge offers a full acre of outdoor water play, including an aquatic playground, a zero-depth pool and water basketball. Located at Thompsonville’s Crystal Mountain, which is best known as a ski resort, the park provides a fun summer excursion for families.
 
At the Red Oaks Waterpark in metro Detroit’s Madison Heights, you’ll find a wide array of water attractions: a wave pool, a triple-flume waterslide, a lazy river and separate interactive play areas for toddlers and larger kids. The park’s sister property, Waterford Oaks Waterpark in Waterford, features a tropical wave pool, a bubbler fountain and an interactive children’s water playground.
 
When temperatures rise, families cool off at Turtle Cove Family Aquatic Center, a Huron-Clinton Metropark in Belleville. The park features waterslides, a lazy river, splash pad, zero-depth entry pool and a dump bucket.
 
The Rolling Hills Water Park draws Ypsilanti families to its wave pool and waterslides, lazy river and squirty toys. The zero-depth activity pool also includes a bubbler, geysers and a waterfall.
 
Action Wake Park focuses on wakeboarding. Located in Hudsonville, the park is Michigan’s only full-size cable park, allowing visitors to learn to wakeboard or water ski with expert advice, and even without access to a boat.