Wilderness Vacation – Wisconsin Dells, WI

Tight budget and two small kids make it challenging to travel. Kids are just old enough for a full price airline ticket and not old enough for everything else. The other problem I have (and some of you will agree with me) – I hate going to busy places with my kids. My little guy is very active (like his sister was a year ago) and a trip to a grocery store might become hide-n-seek at any point of time. That is why I was thrilled to find Wilderness Territory in Wisconsin Dells as a possible getaway destination.

Wilderness Territory-Wild West

This time of the year all outdoor activities are closed, but there is plenty of stuff to do inside – several water parks, arcades, haunted hotel, lazer tag, and more. This place gets crazy busy during the summer, but since all I want is peaceful way to relax – I usually take my family here in December. Number one activity for the kids – water parks. There were two open while we were staying there. We spent hours in and around the water and kids wanted to keep coming back.

My 5 year old spent some quality time with her father at the Polka Dots Pottery. There you can pick a pottery piece and paint it. Last year one of the pieces we made wasn’t finished on time (technical problem) – the matter was handled super professionally and our kitty was shipped to us few days after we left the resort. They even gave us a coupon that we used a year later. 


And let me tell you about all the decorations. Because we visited this place in December, everything was decorated for Christmas. Being a creative person I loved the style – everything was so pretty.

Wilderness decorations

New this year – there is an indoor rope course. My kids are too young for it, but I saw older kids having fun under the high ceiling. I love the creative space use.  

Wilderness Territory-Rope Course

One of the highlights of our trip was a Timberland Play Park is a spectacular, 30,000 square-foot, four-story DRY interactive area that features countless foam ball blasters, a ball fountain that launches hundreds of balls into the air at once, interesting crawl spaces and slides that are guaranteed to make your stomach flip-flop. This place is fun for overly active 2 year old  and still big enough for an adult, so while my son was having fun roaming around, I was getting sweaty doing the same thing.

Wilderness Territory-TimberlandI took my son for a hike few times and we had lots of fun walking around and we had lots of fun.

Wilderness Territory-Hike

Let’s talk about lodging: You can stay at one of the resorts (the Wilderness Hotel & Golf Resort or Wilderness on the Lake or Glacier Canyon Lodge). However, if you are a fan of family travel or like your privacy, you might want to look into staying in one of the condos, cabins or vacation villas on the property. Another option – timeshare at the Wyndham Timeshare property, which is attached to Glacier Canyon Lodge – just a short walk to all the attractions. TIP: I found that I can score a great deal by renting from someone who has a timeshare - we stayed in a two bedroom unit with a living room, dining room, kitchen and Jacuzzi. There is no tour required, but they do try to convince you with dinner certificates and free vacations. If you know how to say “no”, you can get a great deal on accommodations.

Want to know more? Check out Wilderness Territory and you might be telling me soon how much your family loved it.

 This post was NOT sponsored by Wilderness Territory or any other company. I just really wanted to share my experience.


  1. That ropes course looks awesome! So does the water park… and the pottery thing! All of it is right up my alley. Now I wanna go!
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  2. I have heard of the Wisconsin Dells but never been there or seen pictures. Thanks for sharing.
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  3. Wow, that place looks AMAZING. I would love to take my kids, but it’s a little far for us. I’ll need to see if I can find something closer. We do have one indoor water park that is pretty cool.
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  4. Jenna Wood says:

    I wish we had an indoor park like this near us- I’d still love to plan a getaway to Wisconsin Dells someday, I love all the interactive childcare, shopping, and indoor water park. I never knew they had such a big DRY activity park inside as well. That’s great for those less confident swimmers.

  5. It looks like an amazing time. My kids and I would have blast in the water park, hubby would like the dry section. He is not a fan of water.
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  6. That looks like an awesome place to take children on vacation. I agree that it can get scary at a really busy theme park if you have active little ones with you. I love going during off season. No lines, less people, more attention from staff.
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  7. i love painting pottery! it is SOo fun!!
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  8. Oh my goodness – that looks like an AWESOME time! We have a Wilderness pretty close to us and we’ve been once. It’s a little price-y, but totally worth it!
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  9. i have heard wondrful things about this place, it’s on my list to go!
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  10. You make that look so fun. I don’t have any kids to worry about but it looks like grown up kids might enjoy that too. And I have wanted to take a trip up that way for a long time. I haven’t ever been to Wisconsin.
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  11. That looks like a fun getaway! I wish we had something like that near us – it would come in handy for the cold winter months!
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  12. A really nice hotel with lots of activities and a water park can be a great vacation all by itself, in my opinion!

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  13. This is all at one place?? I love that idea of not trying to map out find places and December sounds like a perfect time to go!
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  14. I have often fantasized about taking our kids to a quiet little cabin but I’m sure they’d prefer this!

  15. Wow! Looks great! Too far WI is far, far away from us. ;)
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  16. Liza @ Views From the 'Ville says:

    I visited the Dells once and I think it would be a great family vacation spot! I think going in December, like you do, makes it even better because the crowds would be much smaller (like going to Disney during the off season). Water parks are perfect for a family with kids of different ages because there are so many different types of activities that everyone is sure to find something they like.
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    • Way 2 Good Life says:

      Haven’t been in Disney. Do they really have off-peak season? But this one is definetly nice in fall-winter

  17. That indoor playground room looks super fun! I love that it’s big enough for an adult. It seems like so many places forget that we like to climb and explore too, especially with our smaller children! Those hats your son is wearing are adorable, by the way!
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  18. That looks like a lot of fun! I’m always looking for places that are within driving distance to take my daughter.
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  19. Growing up not far from the Dells I’ve spent a lot of time there but not as much in the past few years. I am liking all the activities available at this place! The last time we went to the Dells was a few years ago in February… great rates, not as crowded, and indoor fun! Can’t beat that :)
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    • Way 2 Good Life says:

      You should. The first I went there my daughter was 2 and my son was few months old. Maybe we can meet there some day

  20. we are fans of water parks and indoor playgrounds, and all those places look amazing.
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  21. This looks like a fabulous vacation for a family. I think I’ll add it to my bucket list.
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  22. What an awesome place especially with kids who’re 5 and up. Looks like there’s lots of physical challenge activities they can go on.
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  23. We passed through the Wisconsin Dells during our honeymoon! That’s been several years ago, so I’m sure it’s changed since then. We went during the summer, and the thing I remember most is the para gliders and the Duck Boat trip. It was a fun time!

  24. Really amazing place especially for children, Many family vacations have not been too good. The reason is that kids have anything to do. Make fun and activities for children should be an important aspect on any travel plans.

    Great Pictures.
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  1. […] One of our favorite places to go to is Wilderness in Wisconsin Dells. Only a few hours away from Chicago, it is fun for the whole family any time of the year. […]

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