These epic indoor water parks near NYC boast loopy slides of all kinds, water spouts and sprinklers, watery play scapes and other amazing stuff for kids of all ages. Some of the parks on our list are geared towards the younger set, while many are perfect for families traveling with their tweens and teens, too. Your crew can feel like they've headed out on a sunny family beach vacation from NYC for as little as you'd spend on a tradtional amusement park, or if you're in it for a weekend, many spots on our list offer accompanying hotel packages. Don't forget to check out our favorite water parks in NJ, too!
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Looking for more family fun? Embark on these stellar winter getaways from NYC, the best family ski resorts near NYC and amazing all-inclusive family resorts. Read on for some entertaining options just a short car ride away from the city.
The best indoor water parks near NYC
Camelback Mountain Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark
Travel time: 1hr and 40min by car
This beginner-friendly mountain resort in the Poconos is a top destination for families who want to hit the slopes, but the indoor waterpark is a must after ski school. The 125,000-square-foot facility is open throughout the year, drawing little ones in with their multilevel splash center. Even while the snow is falling on the picturesque mountains outside, the kiddos can splash around in a wave pool or brave 13 different water slides, including the Venus Slydetrap. Big kids will love facing off in H20-fueled activities like the aqua-play structure at Kartrite’s Quest, The Great Ka-Na-Gawa Wavepool and the Bombora FlowRider, while tiny tots chill out in the shallow wading pools. If the kids get water-logged, try tubing, fly down a zip line, get a rush on the 4,500-foot-long Mountain Coaster, or hit up the adventure park. 193 Resort Dr, Tannersville, PA (855-515-1283, camelbackresort.com).
Rocking Horse Ranch Resort Big Splash Indoor Waterpark
Travel time: 1hr and 50min by car
This all-inclusive resort offers up family entertainment year round, but the onsite indoor waterpark is always a guaranteed kid pleaser, even if the weather doesn’t cooperate for your horseback riding excursion or ski trip. With awesome features like the 250-foot long Gold Rush Flume and the Dynamite Alley Water Walk Challenge, your youngsters will be doing much more than splashing around in a pool. There are tons of slides, plus interactive fountains at the Fort Geyser Aqua Station to keep them entertained all day long. If Mom and Dad want some alone time, programs like the Wild Buckaroos Day Camp (ages 6–12) or Little Tykes Nursery (ages 5 and under) keep the kids busy with tons of activities. 600 State Rte 44/55, Highland, NY (800-647-2624, rockinghorseranch.com).
Great Wolf Lodge Water Park
Travel time: 1hr and 40 min by car
Carved bear sculptures and faux raw-wood siding lend a rustic, log-cabin feel to this lodge. But don’t get too cozy: The state-of-the-art water park and recreation areas make this spot anything but a sleepy retreat. Little ones will delight in splashing around in the 84-degree water park—especially in the wintertime when there’s snow falling right outside. You’ll see a 1,000-gallon tipping bucket, a roller-coaster water-slide hybrid, on-water agility course and activity pools for smaller ones, plus a brand-new, interactive Slideboarding challenge. Once they’ve dried off, try mini golf, a wizard-themed scavenger hunt that comes with an electronic wand or an ice cream–themed manicure at Scoops Kids Spa (including a scoop of ice cream and a bottle of nail polish) while Mom and Dad treat themselves to a massage at Elements Spa. The kids will feel like they’re on an outdoor adventure as they watch a Forest Friends sing-a-long show, go on a Wolf Walk through the Grand Lobby and meet the Great Wolf Kids characters. 1 Great Wolf Dr, Scotrun, PA (800-768-9653, greatwolf.com/poconos).
Split Rock Resort
Travel time: 2hrs by car
Split Rock Resort is packed full of fun for the whole family. Look into the Splash & Stay Package that includes accommodations for four at Split Rock Resort and two single-day passes to the H2Oooohh! water park. Little ones will love splashing around in 53,326-square-feet of wave pools, activity pools, slides and climbable jungle falls playground. Don't miss out on the Komodo Dragon flow rider where agile kids can hang ten or the Amazon Blast slides that drop brave tots four stories! Apart from the amazing water park, Split Rock also has plenty of fun activities offered on premises or nearby—you can try golf, biking, whitewater rafting, ATVs and, in winter, snow tubing, skiing and snowboarding. 100 Moseywood Rd, Lake Harmony, PA (800-255-7625, splitrockresort.com).
Travel time: 1hr and 45min by car
If it’s non-stop excitement you seek, you’ve come to the right place. This indoor Amazon boasts uniquely thrilling aquatic adventures. Bodyboard or surf five foot waves all day every day on FlowRider, experience the dramatic dips, tumultuous turns, and gushing geysers of the Anaconda water roller coaster, zip down the Zimbabwe Zipper at 40mph, or just relax in the lazy river and whirlpool spas. There’s plenty of entertainment for younger kids too, including Splashdown Safari with a slurry of slides, water guns and tons of interactive fun, or check out Tiko's Watering Hole for the little ones, with a play area, activities, a lazy river and pint sized slides just for tots! 250 Kalahari Boulevard, Pocono Manor, PA (570-580-6000, kalahariresorts.com).
Travel time: 2hrs by car
If you're torn between a water park and an amusement center, consider heading to Sahara Sam's Oasis, outfitted with surf-and-turf entertainment for families. Hydrophilic kids can zip down slides like Snake Eyes and Mount Kilimanjaro, float along the Congo Bongo lazy river and even hang ten on the FlowRider surfing simulator at the indoor splash center. Wave through the Crocodile Flats obstacle course and sink some three-pointers at Sam’s Slamdunker water basketball area. While most of the excitement and watery fun is available year-round, there are a few cool features you have to wait until Summer to experience, like the wave pools and H20 game areas at the outdoor Beach Club, and when the little ones want to dry off, they can get their fill of fun with trucks at Diggerland, the construction-themed amusement park behind Sahara Sam's. 535 North Route 73, West Berlin, NJ (856-767-7580, saharasams.com).
CoCo Key Water Resort
Travel time: 2hrs by car
A short drive to New Jersey will transport you to a family getaway so memorable, you’re sure to return for a day trip or two during those long winter months. The thrills are plentiful in this water resort: Take a peek at Parrot’s Perch, featuring an interactive aquatic jungle gym, countless water cannons and a 300-gallon dumping bucket for loads of drenching wet fun. If you’re feeling brave, you can barrel your way through the enclosed winding darkness of Barracuda Blast, or venture to the chill inducing Shark Slam, a four-story-high slide that will whip you through 300 feet of wet n’ wild fun. For a little friendly competition, try the Lily Pad Adventure, a challenging activity pool for kids and adults alike. And for the wee bunch, the Dip-In offers entertainment of miniature proportions: hours of fun for the tiniest guests, with a foot deep wading pool overlooking the park, complete with baby slides and even a little bungee! 915 Route 73, Mount Laurel, NJ (877-494-2626, mtlaurelcocokey.com).