Things to Do With Toddlers at Great Wolf Lodge

Is Great Wolf Lodge a good place to stay when you have a toddler? Check out these things to do with toddlers at Great Wolf Lodge! 

The day after the big kids got out of school for the summer we surprised them with a fun staycation to kick off the beginning of summer. Over the 4 day getaway, we spent two days at Great Wolf Lodge Southern California. We’d never stayed at a Great Wolf Lodge and have been dying to try out the closest one to our house. So when I saw the opportunity to purchase a Groupon again (we missed the first opportunity), I jumped on it and booked a night. 

As we did a bit more research on our upcoming stay, one thing was clear: there is a TON to do for all age groups. Including toddlers. And once we got there, we found this to be 100% accurate. Not only were there fun things for the big kids, but for the small kids and adults as well. 

If you’ve planned a night at the Great Wolf Lodge, here’s what you should put on your list to do with your toddler: 

Things to Do With Toddlers at Great Wolf Lodge

1. Grab a puddle jumper or bring your own – 

While there are quite a few places your toddler can go at Great Wolf Lodge, safety is first. Make sure you either bring your own life jacket (or favorite puddle jumper) or use one that’s provided for you at the various life jacket stations. We preferred our own because sometimes they’re out of life jackets at certain times of days or locations and it’s easier to just grab our own. 

2. Park yourself somewhere close to the Cub Paw Pool – 

After enjoying an afternoon at the water park on our first day there (you can enjoy the park starting at 1pm on your check-in day even though check in is at 4pm) and exploring everything for the first time, we knew that as soon as we arrived at the water park on our full day at the park, we needed to snag a spot near our toddler’s favorite area: Cub Paw Pool. 

Now not only does this area have a zero-depth entry that makes it easier for toddlers and infants alike to explore at their own pace, it only goes to 24″ deep in the deepest area. There are age appropriate slides, water funnels, and fun splash areas that are sure to excite any little one. And parents can just relax (as much as one can when they’re in the water with kids) while their littles play around them and have fun. My husband literally sat at the bottom of a small slide as he watched our daughter go up the stairs and down the slide 100s of times as I took the other two to the “big kid” areas of the park. She seriously did not want to leave to go anywhere else once she found Cub Paw Pool. 

3. Enjoy a fun splash area that older siblings can have fun at too at Fort Mackenzie – 

While Cub Paw Pool was perfect for the toddlers and infants, if your toddler is a bit more adventurous, let them splash and explore around Fort Mackenzie. The older kids can enjoy the medium size slides while the younger kids take turns trying to shoot water at passersby or stomp around in the big puddles. But watch out! That bucket on top of Fort Mackenzie does fill with water and tips to empty every few minutes. 

You may be surprised to find that after your toddler tries out the small slides in Cub Paw Pool that they ask to try the medium sized slides over at Fort Mackenzie! Maybe. If they’re daredevil 2-year-olds like mine…

4. With life jackets on, enjoy the waves of Slap Tail Pond’s wave pool.

There are lulls in between the waves (pictured above) but once the wave machine starts going, the littles LOVE trying to jump over the waves closer to the shore as the big kids swim in deeper. This pool also has a zero-depth entry that makes it easy for all to enjoy. And your little one might surprise you by asking to be taken further into the waves. Just make sure to hold on a bit tighter as you go in deeper. 

5. Looking for some sun? Enjoy the rays (with sunscreen lathered on, of course) at Raccoon Lagoon. 

Another zero-depth entry pool that gets to about 4 feet deep, this pool has two entrances on either side that offer fun play areas for toddlers to explore. The big kids will take over the center of the pool where the basketball hoops are but that’s ok, the edge is closer to the restaurant and drinks! 

In between splashing in the water and played with the water funnels, our 2-year-old munched on a delicious corn on the cobb snack from the Grizzly Jack’s Bar and Grill. I couldn’t pull all of the kids out of here but sadly had to as our day was coming to a close. You can stay the full day on the day you check out but we were ready to dry off and head to our next adventure by then. 

6. Staying a second night? Make sure to head down for storytime. 

Some littles may be in bed by the time this starts (I believe it was 8 or 8:15pm) but both of our girls headed down with dad to check out The Forest Friends Show followed by Great Wolf Lodge bedtime stories as told by one of their Ambassadors of Fun. Don’t forget your camera because after Story Time, meeting Wiley, Violet or one of the Great Wolf Kids characters is an unforgettable memory you won’t want to miss – and a pretty cute one too! High paws are always welcome and definitely encouraged.

As you can see, there is plenty to do at Great Wolf Lodge when you have a toddler. And some things we didn’t even get a chance to do! Good thing the whole family was in agreement that we’d have to come back soon! 

A few highlights I didn’t mention above but the toddler loved: Pizza from Hungry Like a Wolf for dinner, Donuts from Dunkin Donuts for breakfast, brownies and fudge at Bear Paw Eats & Sweets, the mini carousel and candy claw at the Northern Lights Arcade, and ending our trip with a souvenir wolf from the Buckhorn Exchange Gift Shop. 

Don’t forget to book a Wolf Den room if you have more than one cub! The bunk beds were a huge hit with our kids. While one night may be great for a lot of families, we’ll be booking two nights next time we head up so we can enjoy more of the amenities offered. 

Have you been to Great Wolf Lodge? What was your favorite part? 

What To Ride At Legoland California: A Height Based List

I am a Legoland California ambassador. I receive a 4 pack of tickets yearly as an ambassador however all opinions are my own.

What To Ride At Legoland California - A Height Based List

My kids absolutely LOVE spending time at Legoland California. It’s such a fun place for kids and there’s something for everyone there. But there are some attractions with limitations and if you don’t plan ahead before going, your kids might be disappointed to find out they can’t go on a ride they were looking forward to. 

We’ve been going to Legoland since my son was 4 so we’ve been able to scope out all of the rides and figure out what rides were best for the heights of our children at the time of our visit. So we’ve put together a list of what to ride at Legoland California based on height. Hopefully it’ll save you from a melt down mid-line when your child realizes they can’t go on something. But if that does happen, a fresh churro con chocolat might make things better. 

Quick Tip: Take a photo of your kids at this height check at the front of the park (by the maps) as a quick way to remember how tall they are throughout the day AND as a great memento of your time at Legoland California. We now always take a photo here to have progression shots of our kids throughout the year. 

What To Ride At Legoland - 48 inches and over

What to Ride With Toddlers/Preschoolers

No Height Restrictions

  • Dig Those Dinos
  • Fairytail Brook
  • Playtown Theater
  • Heartlake Fountain
  • Friends Forever Stage 
  • Heartlake Stables
  • Village Theater
  • Legoland Express
  • Duplo Playtown
  • Fun Town Stage
  • Lego Club House
  • Factory Tour
  • Soak n Sail
  • Hideaways
  • Pharoah’s Revenge
  • Lego Showplace 4D Theater
  • Duplo Play
  • Coast Cruises
  • Miniland
  • Model Shop
  • Block of Fame
  • Jay’s Lightning Drill
  • Zane’s Temple Build
  • Kai’s Spinners
  • Cole’s Rock Climb

34 inches

  • Safari Trek
  • Sky Patrol
  • Fun Town Police and Fire Academy 
  • Flight Squadron
  • Skipper School
  • Captain Cranky’s Challenge
  • Lost Kingdom Adventure

36 inches

  • Coastersaurus
  • Crug’s Run
  • Cragger’s Splash
  • Cragor Reef

Legoland Heartlake City - mia's riding camp

What to Ride With Big Kids

40 inches

  • Kid Power Towes
  • The Dragon
  • Knights Tournament
  • Aquazone Wave Racers
  • Crooler’s Twist

42 inches

  • Mia’s Riding Camp
  • Lego Technic Coaster
  • Bionicle Blaster
  • Orange Rush
  • Splash Out
  • Twin Chasers
  • Build a Raft River
  • Lion Temple Wave Pool

48 inches

  • Lego Ninjago The Ride

Age Restrictions

  • Junior Driving School (3-5 years)
  • Driving School (6-13 years)
  • Cargo Ace
  • Lego Mindstorms

Things to do at Legoland California - ride the sky cruiser

Before you go, print out this height restriction guide so you have all of this info handy! And be prepared to have a LOT of fun! 

When is your next trip to Legoland California planned? 

Knotts Berry Farm Camp Snoopy Celebrating 30 Years

Knotts Berry Farm Camp Snoopy Celebrating 30 Years

This past Saturday I took my family up to Knott’s Berry Farm for the first time ever. We were invited up to check out the recently revamped Camp Snoopy and Calico Mine Ride.

My husband and kids have never been to Knott’s Berry Farm and it’s been ages since I’ve gone so it was quite a treat for us all. And boy did they have a great time!

Knotts Berry Farm Camp Snoopy is celebrating their 30th birthday this year and in addition to some of the fun rides they already have, they’ve also added a few additional rides to the mix.

[Read more…]

Disneyland with Infants and Toddlers

After being asked a few times for tips and tricks to visiting Disneyland with an infant and toddler I thought I’d finally just write everything down in a post. My husband and I have been annual passholders since before we were married. He actually proposed right next to Snow White’s wishing well.

So Disneyland has always held a special place in our hearts. And it comes as no surprise to those who know us that we would frequently take our little ones to visit the park. Both kids have been going since they were newborns and we’ve never felt limited or held back because of them!

Here’s what we do: 

Bring a small umbrella stroller

Both kids use it and switch when the other is walking (or the youngest is in the Boba carrier). Invest in a swivel hook like these if you don’t already have one. It makes carrying bags around so much easier. We have one on each side of the stroller. If you really don’t want to bring your own stroller then you can easily rent one from Disneyland starting at $15 a day. Just remember you can’t take it with you outside of the park (and that includes Downtown Disney).

We choose not to bring our double stroller because 1. we’ve heard of others getting stolen and 2. it’s just too bulky to lug on and off the tram and/or busses. If you bring your double please make sure to bring a stroller or bike lock with you just in case.

Pack snacks in a lunch bag & bring a reusable water bottle or two

That way you can snack as you go and fill up the water bottle at any restaurant or food line (just ask them to fill it up and take off the lid… we do this to save money and never buy sodas). These don’t need to be stored in lockers if you don’t want to. You can just hang it from your umbrella stroller or put it in the basket underneath.

Buy meals to split

Lets face it… most places serve meals that can easily count as 2-3 servings. Why not take advantage of the big portion sizes and split your meals amongst each other? We usually buy two meals and split it between the four of us. Sometimes we get a kids meal for the kids to split (they also have toddler meals most places… just ask!)  and a meal for us to split or we get two adult entrees and share. In the end we pay about $15 for the whole meal when it could easily be $30+.

For breakfast we always get a parfait and a cinnamon twist inside the bakery to share. It’s more than enough food for all of us. And I get my coffee from the coffee & tea place on the right hand side of Main Street next to the snack cart because they give you free refills all day with your receipt. If you want a nice place to sit down and eat for dinner check out Downtown Disney before you head back. Or you can eat outside the park at one of the restaurants around Anaheim.

And since we pack snacks we usually allow our children one or two treats inside the park. One of our son’s favorite treats is a fresh popped box of popcorn. The whole family can enjoy it and there’s more than enough to satisfy everyone. When we’re leaving the park we can’t help but stop for a sweet treat in the bakery or candy store. We usually buy a box of cookies for the road and a small chocolate or sucker for the kids.

Take advantage of the baby care center

It’s located at the end of Main Street has quite a few amenities for their smallest guests. Here’s what they have to offer:

  • Diaper Changing Stations – these are not your hard surfaced, bathroom changing stations. Each station is a padded, comfortable area with more than enough room for a squirming baby and your diaper bag. They have disposable liners to put under baby to insure each change is germ free.
  • Small Toilets – right next to the changing stations there are two small toddler-friendly toilets to make going to the restroom a lot easier for our little ones. These are potties that the kids can actually touch the ground while sitting down. Makes potty training a LOT easier.
  • Feeding Station – Need a quiet place to nurse or feed your child a bottle or are you away from baby and need to pump? This is the perfect place to do so in peace. There are comfy chairs to sit in and there’s even a curtained off area for more privacy. There are also high chairs available for the babies on solids!
  • Diapers/Accessories – if you’ve forgotten anything at home have no fear, the Baby Center has diapers, formula, wipes, baby food and much more for sale at a reasonable price. I remember having a horrific morning at the park and going through every single diaper we had in the bag. Thank goodness for the Baby Center! No need to turn home (or to the Target down the street).

Make sure to get commemorative pins

First time at the park? Celebrating a birthday or other celebration? You can go to City Hall on Main Street when you first get in the park OR if there’s a line at City Hall just ask any cashier in the stores on Main Street for a special button to make your toddler’s day.

Packing Extra –

We always bring a sweater or jacket for each kid but store an extra set of clothes in the back pack just in case. These are lightweight, easy to store outfits that won’t take a lot of room in the bag. It does get chilly in the evenings so we always keep a pair of warm clothes in the car in case we’re coming back for the evening.

Rides! –

Just about every ride at Disneyland (save for a few “big kid” rides) is toddler and infant friendly. And you’ll find a ride for every age in every land. That’s the magic of Disney! Some of our family favorites are the Disneyland Railroad, Casey Jr., It’s a Small World, The Haunted Mansion and Astro Blasters. So don’t hesitate to jump in line and enjoy the excitement!

I suggest going to Fantasyland either right when you get to the park or in the late afternoon because there’ll be a lot of people rushing to the “big” rides first and it’s less busy. Also, a great time to ride without lines is parade time. Everyone’s lined up to get a great spot on Main Street and the lines for the rides are near non-existent.

And if you want to catch a parade, don’t worry about sitting to save a spot to watch it. There’s always room for more people right as the parade starts.We actually don’t even look at the parade times and more likely than not we “run into” them as we’re going from one attraction to the other. We also usually stumble onto other forms of entertainment around the park. There’s always something exciting in the form of music, laughter and dance going on in every land.

Whether it be the Billy Hill and the Hillbillies at the Golden Horseshoe, the marching band on Main Street (with Conductor Mickey) or the Jazz Band in New Orleans Square, there’s never an end to the awesome entertainment found at Disneyland.

If you have any questions about your upcoming trip to Disneyland I’d be happy to answer them! Email me at simmworksfamily (at) gmail.com and I’ll answer as best I can.



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