Bring the Family

Indoor water parks offer a great winter escape

Coco Key

Go swimming. Today.

If one snowfall after another hasn’t driven you crazy yet, it will. And when you finally decide you can’t take it anymore and you have to get out of the parkas and the sweaters and the wool socks and the boots, put your bathing suit on and hit one of six awesome indoor water parks around New England.

Going skiing? Even better. Plan the getaway near a water park in Vermont or New Hampshire.


We did and it could not have worked out more perfectly. We took Julia 7, and Ben, 4, skiing for the first time at Mount Cranmore in North Conway, and because we did not know how much they’d enjoy skiing, we stayed at the Red Jacket Mountain View Resort as a precaution. Why? It has a huge water park and it’s two minutes from Cranmore.

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It turned out the kids had a blast skiing, and at the water park, and by 7:30 p.m. they were so tired they could barely stand up.

Doug Most

Here is a roundup of six water parks, close to home or ideal for a weekend winter getaway.

Two-and-a-half hours north of Boston, Kahuna Laguna, located at the Red Jacket Mountain View Resort, features a three-story slide that lands visitors in a 43,000-gallon pool. The basketball hoops in the water are great for adults and kids. The wave pool’s pretty fun, too. Admission for the water park is $40 for adults and children, but be aware that rates apply only to registered guests at the Red Jacket.

2251 White Mountain Highway (Route 16), North Conway, N.H.,

The Cape Codder Resort and Spa, located in Hyannis, features a wave pool, but it’s really a lot more than that. Guests will find waves up to 2 feet, and also two water slides, waterfalls, and dancing water fountains. The pool is free for all resort guests. The Cape Codder has plans to expand the wave pool into a full-blown 30,000-square-foot water park that will feature a retractable roof for the summer months.

1225 Iyannough Road, Hyannis,


Coco Key Water Resorts, a national chain with nine locations in all, boasts three New England franchises in Danvers (pictured), Fitchburg, and Waterbury, Conn. If the constant temperature of 84 degrees doesn’t make you feel like you’ve gotten away, the Key West theme at each location certainly will. You’ll find a 300-gallon dump bucket at the 55,000-square-foot Fitchburg location. Children can float along the Coconut Grove Adventure River. Full-day pass costs vary by location. See website for details. Annual passes may also be purchased.

50 Ferncroft Road, Danvers,; 150 Royal Plaza Drive, Fitchburg; and 3580 East Main St., Waterbury, Conn.,

The Pump House, Vermont’s first indoor water park, opened in 2011 as part of Jay Peak Resort’s ongoing expansion. The park features four water slides, including the thrilling “La Chute,” as well as a lazy river, and a surfing pool. It is clearly unlike anything else in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom. Admission to The Pump House is $35 for adults, $25 for juniors ages 4-14. Children under three are free.

Eric Wilber compiled this list. Doug Most can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @Globedougmost.