When it comes to Midwest Winter Getaways, Wisconsin Dells in Wisconsin is a great option. There’s a huge range of indoor activities and attractions that are fun for the whole family. Anyone from the Midwest will know how touch and go the weather can be in the winter! I’ve personally visited in December and I’m now sharing my favourite things to do in Wisconsin Dells in Winter and the best Wisconsin Dells winter activities!
Things To Do In Wisconsin Dells in Winter
When visiting the Wisconsin Dells in winter, several of the attractions and things to see and do are shut during these months. However there is still plenty to keep you busy!
Indoor Waterparks and Resorts
You can’t talk about Wisconsin Dells and not mention the awesome indoor waterparks and resorts! They are jammed packed with multiple indoor activities. Two of the largest resorts are the Wilderness vs The Kalahari. A plus with the Kalahari is that they offer day passes, meaning that you could potentially stay at a cheaper hotel. The Wilderness is spread out across several different buildings, however they are all connected via indoor walkways.
When staying at the resort, you have the benefit of having your room close to the waterparks. It doesn’t matter if you’re wet, everywhere is heated! I personally think the Kalahari has the best indoor water park, especially if you’re an adult visiting the Wisconsin Dells. They have a large selection of extreme water slides!
If you want to pretend you are somewhere warmer than the Midwest, the Wild WaterDome at the Wilderness has some fun features. It has a see-through roof, filling the park with natural light and apparently you can tan year round! There are many sun loungers, a swim-up bar, indoor private cabanas to rent and it is home to America’s largest indoor wave pool.
*Note – The Wild West waterpark at Wilderness Resort is sometimes shut Monday to Thursday during the winter season. The other 3 parks are open daily. Check the website for opening hours.*
As well as the indoor waterparks, there are plenty of other indoor activities at the resorts. Each resort has their own ‘selling’ points but they all have a wide variety of things to do on offer. These include: indoor amusement parks, indoor go karts, mini golf, arcades, escape rooms, pottery painting, play areas and more! There’s easily enough things to do without even leaving the resorts! The waterparks are included as part of the room rates, however the other indoor activities often have an additional surcharge.
If it happens to be snowing, having everything under one roof is very handy. There’s no need to keep clearing snow off the car or to go out on the roads. They all have eating and drinking options too.
In the lead up to Christmas, many of the Wisconsin Dells resorts have special offers and winter activities. These include: meeting Santa, cookie decorating, making ornaments and Christmas dinner buffets. Of course the resorts also have their Christmas decorations on display!
For adults, a spa break in the Wisconsin Dells could be an option for a great winter activity! The Kalahari has it’s own spa on site or somewhere like the Sundara Inn & Spa is a whole spa and wellness resort.
💰Adult (12yrs+): $19.99 | Child (3-11yrs): $15.99
One of my personal favourite Wisconsin Dells indoor activities, is Wizard Quest! Wizard Quest is moving to a brand new bigger location in late November 2021. It’s an interactive scavenger hunt that uses tablets which display riddles and clues. There are 3 different quests with different levels of difficulty. It’s unique in the way that everyone is playing within the same magical labyrinth, yet they could be on a completely different quest! There are hidden passage ways, tunnels and slides. Even if visiting as just adults, the Freedom Quest is HARD.
Wizard Quest can be combined with Ripley’s Believe It of Not. Purchasing a combo ticket for both indoor attractions will save visitors $10.
Tommy Bartlett’s Exploratory
💰Adult: $15 | Child (5-11yrs): $12
🕖Winter hours: 10am – 4pm
Another indoor attraction is Tommy Barlett’s Exploratory. This is a hands on science museum with lots of fun activities and experiments. There’s just a short outdoor walkway that connects the buildings together, but the rest is all inside. A whole area of the museum is dedicated to space exploration and the space station.
Asgard Axe Throwing
💰30 minutes: $25 per person
🕖Hours: 11.30am until 11.30pm (may close earlier on league days)
A sport that is increasing in popularity is axe throwing! At Asgard Axe Throwing, anyone over the age of 10 can take part! They have different graphics/targets that are projected onto the wooden board. This gives you plenty of choice from different challenges! I tried axe throwing, but I wasn’t very good. For 2 people we found that 30 minutes was plenty of time for us sharing a lane. If you are a larger group or family, 1 hour may be a better option. They also have an ‘unlimited’ arcade, pizza and sandwiches and 28 beers on tap!
Wisconsin Dells Winter Activities
🕖Hours vary during winter season
Bigfoot Zipline Tours operates year round. However during the winter tour times vary so you will need to ring up to see which tours are running. There are 7 zip lines all together and tours last approximately 2.5 hours.
Vertical Illusions also has zip lining tours year round. They even have a ‘Zip Line Snowshoe Tour’ that includes snowshoeing and 14 zip lines! This tour is approximately 3.5 hours.
Wisconsin Dells Ski Resorts
If you’re looking for outdoor Wisconsin Dells winter activities, look no further than the ski resorts. There are a couple nearby: Christmas Mountain and Cascade Mountain.
Christmas Mountain has 16 ski runs and 2 terrain parks. For people like me that are useless at skiing or snowboarding, there’s also a tubing hill! Adult lift passes start from £39 (kit rental is another $39) and a 2-hour tubing ticket starts from $15. On the first Saturday in February Christmas Mountain holds its winter carnival. There are various competitions and races throughout the day.
Cascade Mountain is a little further away (25 minute drive) but is a larger ski resort. It has 47 trails and 11 ski lifts! Being bigger than Christmas Mountain, it is also more expensive. Adult lift passes start from $66 (kit rental from $45). They also have 900′ snow tubing chute, which starts at $29 for a 2-hour pass.
Reasons to Return in the Summer!
I’ve shared some of the things to do in Wisconsin Dells in winter, however there are LOADS of reasons to return in the warmer months! The outdoor waterparks are one big reason (open from Memorial Day to Labor Day)! I’ve mentioned some of the resorts that have indoor waterparks but these same places also have large outdoor ones too!
The wildlife parks are open during the warmer months. The outdoor mini golf courses aren’t filled up with snow, they close around early November until the middle of March. For river adventures, the Duck Boat tours operate between mid-March to mid-November. One of my favourite restaurants for a buffet breakfast is ‘Paul Bunyans Cook Shanty‘, however this is closed during the off season.
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