Great Wolf Lodge

great wolf lodge
great wolf lodge arizona

Great Wolf Lodge in Scottsdale, Arizona is the newest resort in the pack for this family-friendly destination. Great Wolf Lodge is a definite bucket list item for families. Las Vegas families are lucky to have a Great Wolf Lodge within driving distance, actually two of them, in neighboring states of Arizona and California. 

Great Wolf Lodge Arizona may be the newest member of the pack, but the Great Wolf Lodge Anaheim is reportedly the biggest waterpark. Take your pick and book a stay the kids will definitely howl about.

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Great Wolf Lodge Arizona

This resort location is in Scottsdale, Arizona, about 4.5 hours from Las Vegas, and potentially a time change depending on the time of the year. This location is actually  located in the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community and thus is at times subject to some different rules than other properties. There is a 3% Sustainability Fee at this location and you can learn more about how it helps fund the seven generation stewardship here

Great Wolf Lodge Arizona has 350 family-friendly suites and 85,000 square feet of indoor water park fun for the entire family. The resort also boasts another 27,000 square feet of family entertainment including an arcade, miniature golf, bowling, a mine experience, a ropes course, gem panning, and Great Wolf Lodge’s legendary MagiQuest game.  There are also areas for story times, yoga, family dance parties, and more to make your vacation the most fun!

Great Wolf Lodge Garden Grove

Great Wolf Lodge Garden is located quite close to another famous family destination, and less than 4 hours from Las Vegas. This Great Wolf Lodge location near Anaheim, California,  has an indoor water park that spans an impressive 105,000 square feet with more than 16 water attractions for the family. This property features seven restaurants and more than 600 family-friendly suites. For convenience, the Garden Grove location offers Disney Land tickets for sale at the resort in case you want to venture out while you’re visiting.  You will also find the signature MagiQuest game at this California location along with other indoor attractions during your stay.

We have only stayed at the Great Wolf Lodge in Arizona so our experience is limited to that resort, but below you can find a comparison of the Arizona and Garden Grove properties to help you make an informed choice when booking your family’s next vacation to Great Wolf Lodge.

Tips for your Great Wolf Lodge Vacation

Sign Up For Emails
Join their email list. Subscribers will be sent special and exclusive offers. Great Wolf Lodge runs amazing sales and often rooms can be booked as low as $99 per night, before taxes and fees. Of course, this will depend on the dates, the number of people in your party, and the family suite you choose for your stay at Great Wolf Lodge. We try to post deals on our social media pages to keep our readers up to date on the best deals, but the emails direct from Great Wolf Lodge are the best bet if you’re looking to save on your vacation planning.

How Long Should You Stay?
In my opinion, you need at least 2 nights to really enjoy the resort. This may vary for families with younger kids and one night may be enough. If your budget allows, I’d do three nights with older kids so they can finish MagiQuest and take advantage of everything at the resort.

When to Stay
I know it’s not possible for everyone, but I’d always choose a stay during the week.  Weekends and holidays will be busy everywhere, so we try to take advantage of time during the week to avoid crowds and lines. We did a Sunday – Tuesday stay in February and it was great. I don’t think Great Wolf Lodge has an off-season because it’s so versatile as an indoor water park. 

Get the Wolf Pass
Actually, the pass you choo
se will be dependent on your children’s age and interests. My boys are 7 and 12, so the Wolf Pass at Great Wolf Lodge Arizona was perfect for them. Sam loved the ropes course, Henry loved the mine, and the both were obsessed with MagiQuest. 

Use Online Check In
Check-in time for Great Wolf Lodge is 4pm, and you can begin using the water park as early as 1pm on the day you check in to the resort. But, using online check-in can often get you a little earlier check-in time. For our visit in February, our family suite was ready for check-in at 1pm.

Download the App
The app will help you see the hours of restaurants and activities around the resort, plus you can order food ahead for pick up if you want to eat in your room.

Take advantage of the activities
My boys felt too grown to do a lot of the free activities, but they looked so fun and are perfect for the 6 and under crowd. Check the app for times for story time, yoga, a nightly dance party, and more depending on the season. 

Bring Your Water Bottles
Water is the only beverage (or food) you can bring into the water park area. It’s a comfortable, but warm 84 degrees in the water park, so having water on hand is convenient, and a money saver too.  Family suites are equipped with refrigerators so you can also buy bottled water and keep it cool in your room.

Take advantage of snack deals
You can get a bucket of popcorn for $19.99 that is refillable throughout your entire stay. There is a similar deal for soda with souvenir cups, but the popcorn deal is the greatest. 

 

Packing Tips
Great Wolf Lodge provides towels at the water park and life jackets are available for children. Don’t forget your goggles, and bring a good lotion and conditioner, because a lot of time in the waterpark can take a toll on your hair and skin. You can leave the sunscreen at home unless you plan to use the outdoor pool. It’s honestly so nice to not have to worry about rash guards and sunscreen when getting the kids ready for the water park! If you have younger kids, pack a bubble gun! The dance parties are full of bubble fun so if you have one, pack it, but don’t worry, the gift shop has themed ones that your littles will adore!

Quick Packing List

  • Lotion
  • Conditioner
  • Water Bottles
  • Goggles
  • Bubble Gun 
  • Water Proof Phone Case

Give your kids a souvenir budget
I feel like this is Parenting 101, but if it is, I missed that part. Give the kids a souvenir budget BEFORE you get there. Setting a budget, especially for older kids, helps with the “I wants” and makes them focus on what they really want. The boys had so much fun so they wanted everything and wanted to bring back souvenirs for friends too. We left with a lot of memories both tangible and intangible thanks to my lack of budget for them, and I had a hard time with no.

What does a Great Wolf Lodge Stay Include

Unlimited splashing in the indoor water park. Your admission to the water park starts at 1pm the day of check-in and is good through close on the day of check out. 

Spacious family suites perfect for your entire pack

Towels and lifejackets at the water park. 

Free and fast WiFI throughout the lodge

A line up of family fun events through your stay

A lifetime of memories

And of course, wolf ears for your entire pack

We spent the day at the waterpark, open 10am – 8pm in Arizona, then we’d shower, have dinner and explore the rest of the activities that were offered. There are lots of kids running around in matching pajamas and wolf ears close to bedtime. It’s super cute to see all the kids so excited and it’s such a fun and safe environment. Great Wolf Lodge was hands down the easiest vacation we’ve had as a family. The water park had so much to do and at night my boys were old enough to run around and play MagiQuest while my husband and I relaxed with a scoop of ice cream. Even if you have younger children, the nighttime dance party is a great way to close out the day and the wiggles out before you settle in for the night.

Great Wolf Lodge offers themed events & add-on packages throughout this year. 

From May 27 – August 28 you can take advantage of the Summer Camp In event.

Pick up a Trailblazer Challenge card from one of our Ambassadors of Fun and collect merit badge stickers for participating in Summer Camp-In events. Earn all of the merit badges to achieve the greatest title a camper can have: Trailblazer! 

You can add a Summer Camp In Package to your stay!

Great Wolf Lodge

 

Family Game Night Packages are available year round! 

Howl-o-ween Packages will be offered starting September 28.

 

Great Wolf Lodge Comparison

Great Wolf Lodge Arizona

Opened in October 2019, this is the newest Great Wolf Lodge Location 

Travel Time: 4.5 hours

Indoor Water Park: 85,000 sq feet

Water Park Attractions: 14

Outdoor Pool: Yes, seasonally

Dining Options: 9

Dry Land Attractions:

  • Magiquest
  • Rustic Ridge Climbing Wall
  • Oliver’s Mining Go
  • Ten Paw Alley
  • Howl in One Mini Golf
  • Howler’s Peak Ropes Course
  • Northern Lights Arcade
  • Moonstone Mine
Shopping
  • Build-A-Bear
  • Great Wolf Candy Company
  • Buckhorn Exchange Giftshop
  • Camp H.O.W.L

Events
Events may vary by day/season

  • Yoga Tails
  • Character Appearances
  • Arts & Crafts
  • Smarty Paws Trivia
  • The Northwoods Friends Show
  • Story Time
  • Dance Party

Passes: Pup Pass, Paw Pass, and Wolf Pass available 

Rooms: 350 family suites

This resort has a 3% sustainability free, read more about that here. There is a $39.99 resort fee per night.

Great Wolf Lodge Anaheim

This Great Wolf Lodge opened in 2016 and has the largest indoor water park.

Travel Time: 3.5 hours

Indoor Water Park: 105,000 Sq Feet

Water Park Attractions: 16

Outdoor Pool: Yes, Seasonally

Dining Options: 7

Dry Land Attractions: 

  • MagiQuest
  • Ten Paw Alley
  • Northern Lights Arcade
  • Howl at the Moon Glow Golf
  • Build-A-Bear Workshop

Shopping:

  • Buckhorn Exchange Gift Shop
  • Great Wolf Candy Company
  • MagiQuest Marketplace
  • Bear Essentials Swim Shop

Events:

  • Yoga Tails
  • Character Appearances
  • Arts & Crafts
  • Wiley’s Howlin’ Bingo
  • The Forest Friends Show
  • Story Time
  • Dance Party 

Passes: Pup Pass, Paw Pass, and Wolf Pass available

Rooms: 600 family suites

This Great Wolf Lodge location has a $22 per day parking fee. Resort fee is $39.99 per day. 

Cute Matching Pajamas to take to Great Wolf Lodge

Lazy One makes the coziest pajamas and these pants and nightshirt for moms and dads are perfect for a stay at Great Wolf Lodge in any season. I couldn’t find matching kids but they would pair well with plain grey or navy pajamas and wolf ears. Below are some of our favorite sets for kids from Lazy One. The Happy Camper set on the far right is what the boys wore on the last trip.

 

 

Burt’s Bees makes the coziest pajamas at an affordable price. These 2 piece sets are available in sizes 12 months to 14 years covering almost everyone in the family. You can order them on Amazon for as low as $12 per set. How fun would these be for your Great Wolf Lodge family vacation?

Order these pajamas on Amazon

 

 

These Leveret pajamas are made of stretchy cotton. Sizes 12 months to 14 years are currently available on Amazon. We do recommend sizing up one, maybe two sizes with this brand and they are a tight-fit pajama. BUY HERE on Amazon 

Have fun! We can’t wait to see your adventure!

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