Best Water Parks for Toddlers In and Near Connecticut
We've shared some of our favorite water parks in Connecticut with you before, but now we're going to focus on our favorite water park destinations in our region for younger set, including toddlers, preschoolers, and even babies. These parks have all the conveniences toddlers need: a separate play area, 12-18" of water a place to sit down with mom or dad. They come with wading pools and zero-entry pools, spray-grounds and splash pads. Don't forget to check out some of our other toddler-approved destinations!
Crocodile Cove at Lake Compounce – Bristol
Crocodile Cove is the water park portion of Lake Compounce, the oldest continuously operating amusement park in the United States. There are several pricing options available. Young children will enjoy Clipper Cove, a play area with smaller water slides and water buckets (although this is not an age-restricted area and can draw bigger kids as well). Anchor Bay, a small wave pool, is reserved strictly for visitors under 48", and in this pool as well as Bayou Bay, which is open to all, young children must wear life jackets (available for free in the park). Opening this year is the new Venus Vortex, the largest water slide yet at Lake Compounce!
Splash Away Bay at Quassy Amusement Park – Middlebury
Splash Away Bay at Quassy Amusement Park is an old-fashioned and very manageable park to visit with young kids. My kids love Saturation Station, a modular play unit that includes a huge tipping bucket that dumps more than 300 gallons of water onto the guests below. There are also fountains, water cannons and other activities. There is a toddler-only Fish Pond that includes more gentle fountains and sprays. Kids will also enjoy Slide City, where there is a selection of water slides perfect for the younger set. There is also a small beach right next to the water park.
Nature's Art Village Splash Pad – Oakdale
The Splash Pad at Dinosaur Place is a popular place in the summer. Although season passes are all sold out (wow!), you can still get a daily ticket for a visit. Billed as "New England's Largest Splash Pad," has tunnels, whirly-gigs, water guns and sprays laid out on a large play space with only about an inch of water on the ground. There is seating and umbrellas for parents. Admission to Dinosaur Place gets you access to the Splash Pad (as well as all the other attractions).
Good to know: kids need water shoes for the splash pad. Children under the age of 2 are free.
Photo courtesy of Water Wizz
SplashDown Beach – Fishkill, New York
SplashDown Beach, which refers to itself as "America's Biggest Little Water Park," is my kids' favorite water park, and it truly has something for kids of all ages AND their parents. The youngest park goers (under 48 inches tall) will be happy at the Bob the Builder Splash Works, with mini water slides, soaker sprays and of course Dizzy's Water Whirler ride.
Slightly older/more adventurous kids will enjoy the Shipwreck Lagoon which has still more slides, fountains, and fun. Park goers of all ages will enjoy the Croc Creek Wavy Lazy River and the Monster Wave Pool.
Good to know: Kids 2 and under must wear a reusable $9 swim diaper that must be purchased at the park (that diaper can be reused on future visits when admission is free). Outside food and beverages are not allowed (and bags are thoroughly checked), but food is available for purchase at various locations throughout the park.
Great Wolf Lodge New England – Fitchburg, Mass
Open year round
See website for a full description of all attractions.
A favorite destination for my boys and I, an overnight at Great Wolf Lodge offers lots to do for the kids and a relaxing atmosphere for the parents. Kids love the indoor water park and littles will especially love Cub Paw Pool with its water guns and mini slides, Crooked Creek's relaxing floating fun and Tadpole Pond, located outdoors and often less-populated.
Good to know: Admission is only available to guests staying in the hotel. Accommodations are very pleasant with 2 restaurants on-site as well as a Dunkin Donuts (it is Massachusetts after all).
WaterWizz - East Wareham, Mass
Best place to hit in this water-park is Little Neck Beach. Considered "low thrill" (but high enjoyment), this destination in the park is only 18" of water with pink frogs, dancing dolphins, a cool yellow submarine to play in and a mini water slide. This play area is reserved for children ages 7 and under.
Good to know: Children under 48" must wear a life jacket at all times. Children 2 and under are free.
Originally published 8/15/15.