Wisconsin Dells

We love water parks! Who doesn’t? So we were very excited for our day of adventures the Wisconsin Dells offered. Unfortunately, our day felt eerily similar to our wasted day in Branson. Just like the Ozarks, The Dells have been commercialized to the point of annoyance, and are now, at best, bordering on a tourist trap.

We though we did enough research, and selected Noah’s Ark as our day’s water park adventure. It was billed as the largest water park in America and featured both an upside down water slide (what?) and a water coaster – a coaster that propels riders not only down hills, but also UP hills. We were surprised that it only cost $35 per person, and the park was not yet packed, even though we were 30 minutes past open.

After dropping our towels we rushed to the water slides. After a few confusing moments, we located the entrances to the dozen or so slides, and found access to the two lazy rivers and wave pools. We rode a number of the water rides and enjoyed the wave pool. However, this water park was mediocre at best with the most recent ride – the upside down slide – added in 2006. We were ready to roll by 1:30 p.m. As the saying goes, you get what you pay for.

Also on our list was the Upside White House – the description was vague and promoted the fact that the tour changes based on your guide. Intriguing. This attraction had some authenticity, in that the rooms were upside down, but it depended on cheap thrills and scares like a traditional haunted house. This upside White House attraction cost $25 each and was a complete disappointment – except for the 10 or so Middle Eastern children who seemed only to be able to communicate with one another through loud bursts of horror movie screams.

The Wisconsin Dells were known for their unique landscape, as described quite beautifully in John Steinbeck’s Travels with Charley, but it has lost its connection to its roots – beauty.

Maybe a great place for kids, but adults… skip it.