North America's Largest Indoor Water Park Opens Near NYC This March

Get your bathing suits ready: The highly anticipated DreamWorks Animation Water Park is set to open March 19 at the American Dream entertainment and retail complex in Rutherford, New Jersey. Billed as North America's largest indoor water park, American Dream's newest family attraction clocks in at just over 370,000 square feet—more than 100,000 square feet larger than the previous record-holder, Kalahari Resorts and Conventions in the Poconos. 

The massive indoor water park will feature 40 water slides, as well as the world's largest indoor wave pool, a lazy river, interactive play structures, two surf riders, and lots more—all featuring favorite characters from DreamWorks animated films including Kung Fu Panda, MadagascarShrek, and How To Train Your Dragon.

Originally slated to open in November 2019, the water park will join a growing roster of American Dream's indoor attractions, including Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park, Big SNOW ski and snow park, an ice skating rink, and a candy department store. Its opening is being touted as a preview, and a limited number of tickets are currently available. 


Thrill water slides are sure to wow the big kids.

Housed under a glass atrium with views of New York City, DreamWorks Animation Water Park will offer attractions for both kids and grown-ups alike, including a 1.5-acre wave pool, King Julien's Pineapple Jam Swim-up Bar, and Soakin' Surfari, a bodyboarding and stand-up surfing experience.

Younger kids can splash around on two play structures: the Kung Fu Panda Temple of Awesomeness, featuring six slides, dump cups, geysers, and a giant tipping bucket; and the Penguins Frozen Fun Zone, with six child-friendly body slides. 

Family-friendly water slides include a variety of four- and two-person tube rides, including Dragon & Donkey's Flight, Swamp n' Splash, and Madagascar-themed flume slides. There's also an eight-lane racing slide called Dragon Racers. 

Thrill-seekers can test their mettle on the world's tallest indoor drop slide, featuring a (gulp) 50-foot freefall, or the world's tallest and longest hydromagnetic water coaster. Other high-speed attractions include Mad Flush, a body slide into a giant spiral that finishes with a 3-foot drop into a 6.5-foot pool, and Penguins Plummet & Majunga Jump, which finishes with a 5-foot drop into a 10-foot pool (strong swimming skills are required for both).

Those who want to relax in style can rent one of the indoor water park's luxury cabanas, designed by Jonathan Adler. 


Relax by the pool under the glass atrium.

Age and Height Requirements for Water Park Attractions

All children under age 14 must be accompanied by a supervising companion age 14 or older. 

  • Under 36”: Lazy River, Wave Pool, and features on the KungFu Panda Temple of Awesomeness Play Structure.
  • Under 42”: The six slides in Penguins Frozen Fun Zone and three of the slides in KungFu Panda Temple of Awesomeness Play Structure.
  • Between 42” and 48”: All children’s play activities/slides, and five other family slides with a supervising companion.
  • Guests 48” or taller: All of the rides/slides/activities except those designed for the youngest children.


Splash around with Shrek and more fun characters.

DreamWorks Water Park Tickets, Prices, and Hours

Prices to the new indoor water park are not cheap. See below for tickets, admission info, and hours.

  • Ages 10 and up: $99
  • Ages 3-9: $89
  • Ages 2 and under: FREE
  • Twilight Tickets: $74 (valid two hours prior to closing time)

*Tickets are non-refundable

Hours vary; check the website for up-to-date info.

Photos and video courtesy of American Dream

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