Summer Water Escapes: Man-Made Water Fun

Stress-reducing, affordable ways to beat the heat.

Courtesy of Kings Dominion

Busch Gardens/Water Country USA
The largest water park in the Mid-Atlantic region features a vintage rock and roll theme. Tubing down the Lazy River is a relaxing way to enjoy a hot summer day. If you’re looking for more of a challenge, try Virginia’s biggest wave pool or zipping through one of the flumes listening to music from the ‘50s and ‘60s. You can spend all day here, catching rays on a lounge chair, relaxing under a beach umbrella, or sampling treats from one of many food vendors. Water Country will provide free life vests and inner tubes with entry fee.

Great Wolf Lodge
Families seeking water activities can enjoy them year-round at Great Wolf Lodge near Williamsburg. The resort offers family-friendly accommodations and dining options all within the Lodge itself. The indoor water park has 79,000 square feet of water features, including the Howlin’ Tornado, surf simulator, heart-pounding slides and sprawling hot spring tubs. Character appearances and live performances will keep guests entertained day and night.

Kings Dominion
Kings Dominion is just north of Richmond off I-95. Known for its first-class collection of roller coasters and its 275-foot high mock Eiffel Tower, this park also contains a 20-acre water park called Soak City. Notable water features include Tidal Wave Bay, Lazy Rider, Zoom Flume and the 65-foot slide tower, Hurricane Heights. Access to Soak City is included with park admission.

Massanutten Waterpark
Play in the water year-round in Massanutten Resort’s water park. Located inside a light-domed playground filled with climbing structures, waterfalls, a giant wave pool, hot tubs and lots of room to run, adventurers delight in the indoor and outdoor water features. Highlights include the wave pool, racing slides and a gentle lazy river. It was voted the third best indoor water park in America in a USA Today poll.

Ocean Breeze Waterpark
Ocean Breeze is located 2 miles from the Virginia Beach Boardwalk; you’ll find it when you spot the giant Gorilla at the entrance. This water park is most notable for its million-gallon wave pool and 16 water slides. Kids love the water features in the playground, and there’s plenty of shade when you need a break from the sun.

Green Ridge Recreation Center & Splash Valley
This Roanoke-based rec center has both an indoor and outdoor aquatic facility. The outdoor water park, called Splash Valley, features two 34-foot high slides, a current river and splash playground with numerous water features. The year-round indoor pool has slides, ropes course, hot tub and shallow area designed for younger children.

(July 2018)

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