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Every winter my family and I spend a few days at an indoor waterpark. With winter being cold and snowy in our neck of the woods, come February we start to feel cooped up and antsy, anxiously waiting for summer to arrive. So a few years ago we decided that a good way to break up the winter is to visit an indoor waterpark. This is a great time for you to put on your swim suit and enjoy the water, making it feel like summer.
This has really helped with our winter blues and a winter trip I recommend for any families with kids. The kids will love it.
Last winter, in February, 2020, we visited Camel Beach Aquatopia at Camelback Resort in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania. It first opened in 2015, being only 5 years old. We have been to their outdoor waterpark in the past, but this was our first time visiting the indoor waterpark. And we greatly enjoyed our time there.
Arriving at Camelback Resort
Once we arrived, I went to check-in. To my surprise, I was met with a long check-in line that I couldn’t believe. I have never waited in such a long line to check-in before. I might as well been waiting in a line at Disney for how long it was.
Tip #1 – If you arrive at Camelback Resort on a Sunday, be prepared to possibly wait in line for 45 minutes to check-in. It seems many guests are checking out and checking in on Sundays.
Please Note: Currently, Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark is closed until January 4th.
Besides the long wait to check-in, our room wasn’t ready until 5:00. This is the latest I have waited for a hotel room. Normally, we tend to arrive early hoping to get into our room, which we usually do. But not this time.
Tip #2 – Be prepared for possibly waiting around for a while before your room is ready. However, you can go into the waterpark while you wait. The waterpark tickets are good for the day you arrive, days you’re staying, and the day you’re checking out. So when packing make sure you put your bathing suit in an easy accessible place in your suitcase.
Lastly, when you arrive, not only will you receive waterpark tickets, but you’ll also receive skiing tickets too. So you can enjoy the best of both worlds, a waterpark with the feel of summer and skiing in the frosty winter. Neither my husband or I are skiers, so we just enjoyed the waterpark with our son.
Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark
Penguin Play Bay
Upon entering the waterpark, we immediately headed to the kids area, Penguin Play Bay, for our son to play in the water. Penguin Play Bay is a kids shallow pool play area with splash pads, baby swings, and kiddie waterslides. This area is for your littlest ones to splash around in. My son especially loved to go down the waterslide over and over again.
Tip #3 – Any little ones that play at Penguin Play Bay needs to be accompanied by an adult.
This is another kid’s multi-level water adventure play area. Some of Kartrite’s Quest is for bigger kids with the Out ‘N Back Trek & Silkroad Runner Slide that requires you to be 40″ tall to ride and the Lava Luge Bowl Slide that requires you to be 48″ tall. And your bigger kids will also enjoy the water basketball pool adventure.
But that doesn’t mean your little ones won’t have fun here. There is a shallow spot with a smaller water slide for the little ones, waterfalls, and splash pads that your kids will love.
Tip #4 – Make sure to watch out for the huge water bucket that will be sure to fall and cover a whole area of Kartrite’s Quest. If you have little ones, watch for when this bucket is about to fall.
What kid doesn’t love the wave pool? Adults and kids alike will love this. I know it’s one of my favorites. After putting a life vest on my son, we ventured out to jump some waves.
Tip #5 – Make sure you have life vests on your little kiddos. Some waterparks require them. But don’t worry about needing to buy one, there are life vests scattered around the park that you can grab.
Unfortunately, the wave pool was not functioning correctly during a good portion of our stay. But there was still so much more to do.
The Lost River
Venturing down the lazy river is always a great way to float on down with a raft and relax, taking a break from all the waterslides. I would have to say the lazy river at Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark is probably the coolest lazy river we’ve seen at any waterpark.
As you float down, the lazy river gets transformed into an archeological dig site where you’re surrounded by what looks like mountains and rocks and you even float through a cave.
We visit an indoor waterpark every winter for our son, but we enjoy it to, and since grandma tags along, my husband and I are able to sneak off for a little while to enjoy some adult time and ride some waterslides on our own.
Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark offers a variety of waterslides that adults and bigger kids will love. A water coaster, mat waterslide, plenty of raft and tube rides, and free-falling body slides are just some you can enjoy.
Grown-ups will also enjoy this indoor and outdoor warm spa with hydrotherapy jets. With the swim up bar, you can grab a drink and just sit back, relax and enjoy some adult time.
This was one of my favorites as well. Just being able to take a break with a nice cocktail.
Other Waterpark Fun
You can try the Bombora Flowrider where you can ride the wave on this surfing simulator. Stand up flow boarding lessons are also available if learning to surf is on your bucket list.
Try out Ally-Oop Lagoon where you can enjoy shooting hoops from the pool, the Croc-O-Nile Crossing where you hold onto a net while crossing lilly pads. It’s not as easy as it may look. Or you can live in luxury for the duration of your stay by renting a cabana.
Camelback Resort Dining
You have your choice between full-service restaurants, a buffet, or grab and go options.
If you don’t want to stop all the fun or the kids are just too wiped out at the end of the day, you can grab something to go at the Big Pocono Family Eatery, Eastside Pitstop, Graffiti Pizza where you can grab a New York-inspired pizza, Colonial Commons located inside the waterpark, Neptune’s Cafe to grab a quick lunch, or World Bazaar Coffee Shoppe for a coffee and snack.
Or looking to sit down and would like different options to choose from? Try Hemisphere, a big buffet with every option that you can imagine. From chicken fingers to roast beef to tacos to fish to mashed potatoes to green beans and a great array of desserts as well. The food at this buffet was well worth the money.
If you would rather just sit back, be waited on, and enjoy your meal, you might try, Trails End Pub & Grille, which offers some good American food with a list of craft beers. Or Berrelli’s Italian Chophouse is a great choice if you are looking for Italian and want to sit back with a glass of wine. However, if you are craving barbeque you might decide on Boardwalk Smokehouse where you can get brisket, fall off the bone ribs, or roasted chicken. Thirsty Camel Bar & Grille is another choice to just enjoy some great food.
Now I can’t forget about the Sugar Shack. A shop filled with some of your favorite candy and of course an amazing ice cream shop. Just be careful, your kids will be begging to go in here.
Camelback Resort Fun
While you’ll be spending most of your time at the waterpark, Camelback Resort also has 170,000 square feet of indoor activities.
Along with Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark, Camelback Resort also has an arcade, laser tag, rock climbing, an escape room, virtual reality, an indoor ropes course, and bumper cars. And you grown-ups may enjoy the luxury spa at Camelback where you can get a massage and feel a little pampered. The spa even has kid’s manicures and pedicures where you can turn it into a mother/daughter night.
Tip #6 – Keep in mind that all these activities offered at Camelback Resort do have an extra cost. None of these are included in your stay like the waterpark and skiing is.
Since you’ll spend the majority of your time at the waterpark, I suggest bringing comfortable swimsuits with a few options for your kids in case one suit is still wet when you’re heading back down. Also flip-flops or water shoes, goggles, nose plugs and earplugs if you need them. And make sure to bring a waterproof camera.
Tip #7 – You don’t have to pack beach towels. Towels are available through the waterpark. But once you leave the waterpark you have to return the towels and get new ones when you return to the waterpark.
Check out is at 11 am but you have access to the waterpark for the duration of that day.
Whether visiting Camelback Aquatopia in the winter or summer, it’s a great family trip to take your kids. But if you’re trying to decide whether to go in the winter or summer, take a look at 5 reasons to visit an indoor waterpark in the winter and 5 reasons to visit an indoor waterpark in the summer.
However, if you are visiting Camelback Resort in the summer, they also have Camel Beach Outdoor Waterpark and you will certainly enjoy the outdoor waterpark just as much as Aquatopia and it is definitely worth a visit.