Eight Tips for Taking Toddlers To Great Wolf Lodge

If you’re planning a vacation, with your young children, to Great Wolf Lodge, here are some tips that we found helpful:

(1) Dress tots in colourful tops

The lodge is quite neutral (hence the outdoorsy, lodge theme) so if you pack bright tops, your children will standout against the background.  When there are a bunch of kids running around, you’ll want to make sure it’s easy to spot your own little cubs.  Planning a family colour scheme (all blue shirts for example) can help them locate you as well.

Grand Lobby, Great Wolf Lodge, Niagara Falls, ON

(2) Dress for a water park (not a sunny beach)

Family Travel Guide

Great Wolf Lodge Water Park

We saw quite a few children wearing those one-piece sun suits in the waterpark.  While we’re firm believers in these ensembles for beach attire, they appeared more cumbersome than useful in an indoor water attraction.  You’ll spend quite a bit of time climbing stairs, in treehouse type attractions and waiting for your turn on a slide.  The long pants/long-sleeved sun tops can make children feel cool a lot quicker (meaning they’ll shiver and fuss).  A simple swimsuit or a pair of swim shorts will suffice.  The actual water park space is kept quite warm so they’ll be fine in terms of temperature.

(3) Place wrist band on your infant’s ankle over a sock

If you’re bringing along a young toddler or infant, they might not like the feeling of the guest wristband (made of plastic).  To avoid them tugging and fussing, try placing it over top of a comfy, fitted sock on his/her ankle.

(4) Bring a compact stroller

The rooms are plenty wide enough to accommodate a stroller as are the hallways.  If you’ve got toddlers, an umbrella stroller or compact stroller (like a City Tour, Valco Baby Snap Duo or Uppa Baby G-Luxe) are perfect.  Kids can take a break and/or nap.  And if your kids aren’t using it, it’s a convenient place to set down your bag.

(5) Rent a pool side cabana

Cabana rental at Great Wolf Lodge

Along with the cabana being convenient and fun, they’re also a great safety feature when vacationing with young children.  Our toddlers knew exactly where our cabana was located so if, for some reason, you get separated, they’ve got a focal point amongst the crowd of matching chairs and towels.  A cabana can function as your meeting point throughout the day and it doubles as a great storage area when you want to try a new activity.

 (6) Bring child-sized robes

Changing a toddler pool-side, after a fun day in the waterpark, isn’t always fun or doable.  But, wrapping kids in a cozy robe at the end of the day is a great alternative to having to dress them.  So, if you have room in your luggage, bring along some little robes for those commutes between the pool/water park and your hotel room.

(7) Pack fun pyjamas

Family Travel Guide, Toddler fun

PJ Dance Party at Great Wolf Lodge

Your kids will spend a lot of time in the grand lobby in their PJs.  It’ll either be because it’s an organized PJ dance party or because they’re just too excited in the morning to get dressed.  This is one place where you’ll see parents openly wearing their plaid pants, sipping coffees first thing in the morning and kids running about in their comfy cozies.  So don’t try to fight it by dressing kids in skinny jeans and button downs.  Instead, pack up their favourite pyjamas and let them enjoy “no rules” in terms of their attire.

(8) Opt for the meal plan

Going all-inclusive in terms of your meals is one less thing to think about as vacationing parents.  We opted into the plan for one day and out for the next (to test the difference) and it’s a lot easier and cheaper to bundle it all in.  If you’ve got young kids, try taking “to do” things off your list as parents so that you can enjoy your time away too.  Not having to think about where and when to eat is one less factor to worry about each day.

Overall, Great Wolf Lodge is designed for families (and infants) so rooms, hallways, restaurants…they’re all ready to serve your little wolf pack.  Toddlers (and their energy and noise) are more than welcome at a place like this.

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