Water Parks In And Around Charlotte: A Huffington Post Travel Guide

08/17/2011 04:47 pm ET | Updated Oct 08, 2011

Water parks in and around the Charlotte area are excellent choices for families looking to add a splash of fun to their itineraries. Whether parents are searching for the perfect getaway at a water park-themed resort or a daycation to break the monotony, water parks in the Charlotte region offer many options for discerning aquatic thrill seekers. As part of a Huffington Post Travel series on family-fun parks, here is our guide to all the key information visitors need to know about Charlotte water parks.

Great Wolf Lodge Charlotte-Concord

The indoor water park at Great Wolf Lodge offers 12 slides, three pools, and hours of fun. There's also an outdoor pool section to explore. The water parks also have a number of water themed activities for kids. Younger children can jump from lily pad to lily pad at Big Foot Pass, while older kids can climb up high on a cargo net above the pool.

A Four-Story Tree House

Fort Mackenzie a the four-story, interactive tree house equipped with suspension bridges, treetop slides and swinging cargo nets. The 1,000-gallon bucket always makes a big splash. Families can also enjoy a raft ride on River Canyon Run, one of the signature slides at the resort.

Whooping Hollow

Younger visitors can enjoy Whooping Hollow, a waterslide designed for children 54 inches and shorter. Competitive siblings will enjoy challenging each other to a race on the Mountain Edge Raceway. This set of mat racer water slides ends in a series of thrilling twists and turns, and posts each racer's track time. After a soak, park goers can opt to go to the Northern Lights Arcade, play a round of mini golf, or enjoy an adventurous game of MagiQuest.

The Loose Moose Lodge

The Loose Moose Lodge restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. They offer tasty buffet and made-to-order options. Fast food options such as Pizza Hut Express and Dunkin' Donuts are also available.

Safety Record

Great Wolf Lodge has extensive safety guidelines explained on its website. Our research revealed no notable news reports of accidents or safety issues at Great Wolf Lodge.

Address: 10175 Weddington Road Concord, NC 28027
Phone: 704-549-8206
Hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily
Price: Admission to the park is included in an overnight stay, which ranges from approximately $210 per night for a family suite sleeping up to 6 people to $360 per night for a themed family suite accommodating up to 7 people. Passes are good from 1 p.m. on the day of arrival until the park closes. Day passes to the water park cannot be purchased.

Ray's Splash Planet

This small waterpark offers year-round fun at a very affordable price. Ray's Splash Planet is owned and operated by the Mecklenburg County Parks and Recreation Department. From water slides to Moon Beach, a gradual, beach-like entry pool, this water park offers hours of waterlogged excitement.

Thrilling Rides

Park visitors will have a blast sliding down the three-story Blue Comet water slide, being spun in the Vortex, a quick current pool, or playing on Moon Beach, a gradual-entry pool. There are tons of fun activities at Ray's Splash Planet for park-goers of all ages.

Get Fit

Adults can also enjoy time in the fitness center at Ray's Splash Planet. They can choose to participate in group fitness activities or work out on their own.

The Snack Shack

The water park is home to Ray's Snack Shack. The shack has a menu of favorites like pizza, corn dogs, hot dogs, ice cream, potato chips, and candy. They also have a selection of healthy snacks and drinks.

Safety Record

Certified lifeguards are always on duty at Ray's Splash Planet, and rules are clearly posted to keep patrons safe. Ray's Splash Planet is a safety advocate and has hosted training sessions and fairs based around aquatic safety. Our research revealed no notable news reports of accidents or safety issues at Ray's Splash Planet.

Address: 215 N. Sycamore St. Charlotte, NC 28202
Phone: 704-432-4RAY
Hours: Monday and Friday, 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.; Tuesday through Thursday, noon to 7:30 p.m. (Opens at 10 a.m. on Mecklenburg County no-school days); Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.; Sunday 1 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Closed New Years Eve, Easter, Thanksgiving, day after Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Christmas. Holiday hours (Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.) New Year's Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Good Friday, Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day.
Price: Youth 17 and under, $6 county resident day pass and $8 non-county resident day pass. Adults 18 to 54, $8 county resident day pass and $11 non-county resident day pass. Seniors 55 and over and the disabled, $6 county resident day pass and $8 non-county resident day pass. Dry Ticket (Splash Park Adult/Child Escort/Chaperone/Nonswimming Entry Ticket), $3 county resident day pass and $5 non-county resident day pass.

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