Indoor Water Parks in New England for Easy Family Getaways
Dreaming of warm waters and balmy temperatures? A tropical vacation may be out of the question this year, but an adventure to an indoor water park in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, or Vermont will feel just as thrilling for kids. Some big and splashy and others small and convenient, these water parks are all within a one- to five-hour drive of Boston and Connecticut. Whether you’re looking for a quick Boston-area day trip or a weekend escape, there are plenty of options for sneaking in some water fun even when outdoor pools are closed.
If you live closer to New York or are traveling there, these water parks in Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey are work checking out, too. No matter where you go, be sure to check with each park directly about special rates and current safety policies, and consider planning a trip for a weekday or weeknight outside of school vacation to steer clear of crowds.
2021 update: Call ahead about masking and social distancing policies at each park. All photos in this post were taken pre-Covid.
1. Great Wolf Lodge—Fitchburg, MA
2021 update: The lodge opens June 24. Day passes are not available. To access the water park you must book a room.
Great Wolf Lodge New England is the newest and splashiest arrival on the regional water park scene. Great Wolf keeps the water temperatures at a constant 84 degrees and offers all kinds of rides. Try out the raft built for four, the water fort tree house, five water slides, or various pools for the whole family. Great Wolf Lodge also offers activities beyond the pool—including a climbing wall, ropes course, XD theater, bowling alley, mini-golf, character appearances, arcade—and more. Great Wolf also has a kid spa and a fitness center if you’re looking for downtime after your water adventure.
Costs: Room rates start at $179.99 for a deluxe queen suite for four people. Day passes are now offered, starting at $120 for a full day and $85 for a half-day. Free passes for children aged 2 and younger.
This water park has a seaside theme. Photo courtesy of the Cape Codder.
2. Cape Codder Resort & Spa—Hyannis, MA
2021 update: Day passes are not available. To access the water park you must book a room.
The only indoor water park on Cape Cod, the Cape Codder is about an hour and 45 minutes from Boston. The Cape Codder has four water slides, a shallow wading area for small children with small water slides, climbing structures, and a dumping bucket, a 24-person Jacuzzi, and a lazy river with a waterfall, rapids, and a spouting whale. Visitors love the wave pool and the heated outdoor pool. Guests of the resort can enjoy the Beach Plum Spa, fitness center, and the nearby beaches and towns. Check it out around the winter holidays for visits from Santa, lights displays, and gorgeous decorations. The pool-side cafe with kid-friendly food and seating is a handy plus for families.
Costs: Daytrippers can buy passes for $40 per person, or $30 per child under 48” tall. Children aged 3 and under are free.
Kahuna Laguna is the biggest water park in New Hampshire. Photo courtesy of Kahuna Laguna
3. Kahuna Laguna—North Conway, NH
2021 update: Day passes are not available. To access the water park you must book a room. Entry to the water park is first-come, first-serve for hotel guests.
Kahuna Laguna is New Hampshire’s largest indoor water park, and about a three-hour drive from Boston. Part of the Red Jacket Mountain View Resort, Kahuna Laguna offers four water slides for kids over four feet tall, as well as a wave pool, basketball court, and 25-person hot tub. An adventure tower offers slides, with water cannons and a tipping bucket that will drench kids completely. Little people will love the Little Kahuna play area with its slides and shallow pool. Children aged 2 and under are free.
Costs: Visitors to Kahuna Laguna (age 3 and up) can buy day passes online beginning at $40 (exact rates are dependent on season) or visit as part of their stay at the Red Jacket Resort or its sister property, Fox Ridge Resort.
There is a lazy river along with thrilling slides at the Pump House. Photo courtesy of the Jay Peak Pump House Indoor Water Park
4. Pump House Indoor Waterpark—Jay, VT
2021 update: The water park is only open on Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets are released for day passes on the 1st of each month and can be reserved in advance for hotel guests.
At more than four hours from Boston, Pump House is definitely the farthest north of the parks featured here, but the trip would be well worth it. Located at the cushy Jay Peak ski resort, The Pump House offers water slides, indoor and outdoor hot tubs, and even a poolside bar. Thrill-seekers will love La Chute and its 65-foot drop at 45 miles per hour, and visitors seeking a more relaxing experience can try out the Big River (a lazy river). Pump House also has an arcade, surf shop, and snack bar, in addition to all the activities to be found at Jay Peak (from skiing to an indoor climbing wall). Be warned: the only way to ensure admission is by scheduling in advance online or booking a lodging package. Be sure to reach out to the park before making the drive.
Costs: Day passes begin at $41 per day, or $31 for kids 4-14.
5. Pilgrim Cove Indoor Theme Pool—Plymouth, MA
2021 update: Day passes are available Monday through Thursday. Weekends are reserved for hotel guests only.
Located approximately one hour from Boston at the John Carver Inn & Spa, this themed water park is full of fun nods to its hometown's prominence in American history—such as the life-size replica of the Mayflower with an 80-foot water slide winding through it, as well as an island whirlpool set in a replica of Plymouth Rock. The water park also features lap lanes for those looking to get in a workout, as well as a sauna. If you're bringing very little ones, make sure to note that the facility requires swim diapers for children not yet potty-trained; if you happen to forget them at home, you can purchase some at the hotel front desk. The family-friendly Hearth and Kettle restaurant inside the John Carver Inn can complete your trip. Visitors to Plymouth can also enjoy nearby the Brewster Gardens with a bridge, stream, and with ocean views across the street.
Cost: Day passes are available for $20.
Looking for some simple water fun for little ones? Ships Ahoy is a secret gem in the suburbs. Photo courtesy of the Rama Athletic Club.
6. Ships Ahoy Indoor Water Sprayground—Norwood, MA
2021 update: The water park is still CLOSED as of press time.
Perfect for little ones, this indoor splash pad is located inside Norwood's Rama Athletic Club, around 45 minutes from Boston, and is open to the public. The splash pad features a small slide ideal for young children, waterfalls, geysers that shoot water, and more. Parents and caregivers are encouraged to bring flip-flops so you can more easily assist your children while they're playing. Note: It can get quite warm inside the splash pad, so consider wearing layers! Note the hours below, and consider calling ahead to confirm the splashpad hours and let them know you are coming, if you are close to the closing time. The hours are 8am to 12 noon and then 4pm to 8pm Monday through Friday. Saturday and Sunday 8am to 12 noon.
Costs: $10 per child.
7. CoCo Key Water Park Boston North Shore—Danvers, MA
2021 update: The water park is still CLOSED as of press time.
CoCo Key is the closest water park option for Bostonians, clocking in at just under an hour from the city. Attached to the DoubleTree by Hilton in Danvers, visitors can make CoCo Key a day trip or an overnight. Younger kids will love the kiddie pool with its theater and the lazy river options, while older kids will enjoy the four wild waterslides and the obstacle park area. CoCo Key has a snack bar and cabanas for rent, and an arcade for when you get sick of the water. If you decide to make it a day trip, don’t forget to bring your own towels–the park doesn’t offer them. Also, CoCo Key doesn’t have cubbies and charges $7/$10 for small or large single-use lockers, so plan accordingly.
Costs: Day passes are available for $45 per adult or $35 per child under 48” tall.
Places featured in this article:
Pilgrim Cove Indoor Theme Pool at John Carver Inn & Spa