Pictured Above: The Smoke That Thunders at The Kalahari
If your idea of summer fun is whipping down a waterslide, cruising down a lazy river or anything in between, then good news — you’ve come to the right place!
Known and loved as the “Waterpark Capital of the World”, Wisconsin Dells is home to the largest concentration of indoor and outdoor waterparks on Earth — over 20 different parks. Here, there’s a ride or a slide to delight even the least adventurous, but if thrills are your thing then you’re in for a special treat.
Spread across these waterparks are some of the most heart-pounding, jaw-dropping, gravity-defying waterslides you can find anywhere, and there’s enough to keep you riding all day. From wild water coasters to massive free-fall slides, the Dells is a must-visit for families with a daredevil or two looking to test their nerves against some of the most fun, exciting water rides out there.
20 waterparks + 200 slides + 16 million gallons of water = 1 awesome vacation. Check out some of the thrills you can’t miss this summer.
The Smoke That Thunders – Kalahari
Can you conquer this giant at Kalahari? The first of its kind in the country, this thriller is a combination of two wild rides into one: first, a steep drop sends you spinning around giant funnel, then a second fall shoots you up a wall, hanging nearly vertical until splashing down to the end. Ride up to four at a time, so you don’t have to go it alone. Hold on tight!
Raja – Noah’s Ark
This king cobra-themed slide is one of the most extreme rides at Noah’s Ark. Grab a friend and race side-by-side through a path of twists, turns and drops, before you’re both plunged 37-feet down into the mouth of the massive snake. Starting from six stories high and reaching speeds up to 32 mph, this one’s not for the faint hearted!
Medusa’s Slidewheel – Mt. Olympus
This brand-new addition to Mt. Olympus is the first slidewheel in America, combining the fun of a Ferris wheel with the thrill of a waterslide. The tangle of tubes — think Medusa’s serpentine head — continuously rotates, bringing 4-person tubes through while sliding back and forth. While not a super scary kind of thrill, this kid-friendly slide may be the wildest design on our list!
Black Anaconda – Noah’s Ark
At over a quarter of a mile long, Black Anaconda is one of America’s longest water roller coasters. You’ll be going up, down and all around as the coaster’s rushing waters blast you up six humps, sending you spiraling down through pitch black turns. You’ll be white knuckling this one for sure!
Flyan Myan – Chula Vista
Speaking of water coasters, the Flyan Myan is one of the fastest there is, so you know you’re in for a wild ride. Your heart will be racing as you soar across the ceiling of this massive indoor waterpark – just don’t look down!
Howlin’ Tornado – Great Wolf Lodge
Your whole crew can slide together on this four-person raft ride, a family favorite at the Great Wolf Lodge. Shoot down one big drop and you’ll be plunged into a six-story funnel of fun, gliding up and down the walls until the final splashdown.
Scorpion’s Tail – Noah’s Ark
Starting with a trapdoor-style drop, you’ll plummet nearly ten stories before zooming around a near vertical loop. The Scorpion’s Tail has a translucent slide, so the rest of the family can watch from below as you reach gravity-defying speeds!
Screaming Hyena – Kalahari
Lots of waterslides start up high…but how many start through the roof? That’s right – you’ll climb 60 feet above the waterpark floor to take on the Screaming Hyena, all the way up to the park’s roof. Step inside, hold your breath and wait for the trapdoor to open below your feet, sending you plummeting at 25 mph back down to the park!
Black Thunder – Noah’s Ark
We’d tell you to just close your eyes and go down Black Thunder, but it doesn’t really matter – you won’t be seeing anything anyway! Prepare to be engulfed in total blackness on these four tube slides, where twists, loops and drops lurk around every corner.
Sahara Sidewinders – Kalahari
3…2…1…Go! When the countdown ends, it’s off to the races on these side-by-side looping slides, each shooting you down an almost vertical drop before spinning around a 360-degree loop. Whoosh past flashing colors and rushing water as you see who can make it to the finish line first!