12 Best Things to Do in Wisconsin Dells (with Map)

In the center of the state, the Wisconsin Dells has become the center of the water park universe. The popular resort town has an incredible amount of exciting options to choose from, indoor and out.

In a magical setting, split by the Wisconsin River, the fun doesn’t end when you leave the water slides. Other things to do in Wisconsin Dell include explore the historic natural area with wildlife, canyons and bluffs. You can capture the iconic Dells (sandstone bluffs) on boat tours and along scenic hikes. While at night, a world of theater and live entertainment comes to life.

12. Wilderness Territory


With four indoor and outdoor water parks, the Wilderness Territory is one of the biggest resorts in the Wisconsin Dells. Offering an all-in-one experience, visitors will have few reasons to venture away from all the action.

The indoor and outdoor nature of the experience mitigates the impact of weather, allowing the fun to happen, regardless. With endless pools, lazy rivers and adult waterside bars, there’s something to keep everyone happy.

But the extensive theme park sets the resort apart from others. Go-karting, climbing and zip-lining. Play laser tag, jump on the bumper boats or play mini-golf. The choices are endless.

11. Chula Vista Water Park

Chula Vista Water Parkflickr/Jody Halsted

Get lost (and a little wet) in all the fun to be had at Chula Vista Water Park. Known as Las Rios, the indoor water park has something for young and old. Just ten minutes from the center of Wisconsin Dells, the park has relaxing and adrenaline-pumping action in equal measures.

While the day is young, race your friends and family on the Matador Mat Races or ride down the exhilarating Rio Rapids. To relax, enjoy the Jacuzzis or hang out in the huge Mount Montezuma forest. With arcades, snack bars and restaurants, there’s also plenty of dry fun to be had.

10. Ripley’s Believe It or Not

Ripley's Believe It or Notflickr/Kim Briggs

If the rain is falling in Wisconsin Dells, then it’s the perfect time to explore Ripley’s Believe It or Not. The local installment of the worldwide phenomenon provides 11 fascinating galleries housing over 200 downright strange artifacts.

Each exhibit is complemented by necessary information that will explain just how this oddity came to be. Some of the highlights in the museum include the bizarre two-headed sheep, a series of confusing puzzles and shrunken heads. But to keep everyone entertained, go on a magical quest and search for hidden items while escaping the curse of King Tut.

9. Wisconsin Deer Park

Wisconsin Deer Park© dreamstime

Even as Wisconsin Dells developed a wide range of tourist attractions, one of the original local experiences continued to bring in the crowds. The Wisconsin Deer Park has been in operation for over five decades and remains a local favorite. The expansive and interactive park has plenty of walking trails through the calm forests along with petting and feeding areas.

Open from Memorial Day to Labor Day, visitors can see the dozens of Virginia white-tailed deer with the opportunity to get up close and have them nibble right out of your hands. If you’ve arrived in the early summer, you may be able to see their baby fawns.

Other animals in the park include bison, llamas, lemurs and emus.

8. Riverwalk

Riverwalk© dreamstime

Fun and free, the Riverwalk is a great way to explore the enchanting local nature. The paved path is short and sweet, measuring at around a quarter of a mile. But along the walk you see several of the town’s famous sandstone bluffs and wonderful views of the surging river below.

While it may take just a short time to complete the wheelchair accessible path, there are many places to stop and enjoy the serenity. Along the way, you’ll find spacious lawns along with benches and picnic tables for the entire family to enjoy. Bring along your favorite yard games or some snacks for a relaxing afternoon.

7. Rick Wilcox Magic Theater

Rick Wilcox Magic Theater

Providing a combination of magic, comedy and entertainment, the Rick Wilcox Magic Theater is a great way to spend your night in the Wisconsin Dells. With no shortage of theater attractions in town, this one stands out because of one dynamic duo, Susan and Rick Wilcox.

Over a 90-minute period, take part in a mystical experience that will make your jaw drop while providing plenty of laughs. Having performed together for so many years, their theatrical chemistry is on full display. For returning visitors to the Dells, it’s always worth coming back as they offer a fresh routine every year,

6. Witches Gulch

Witches Gulch© dreamstime

Found in the Upper Dells, you can only reach Witches Gulch on a water-based tour. After taking the journey north along the Wisconsin River, passing pine-covered cliffs and navigating river narrows, you’ll reach land. Once you’re off the boat, you can embark on an eerie yet beautiful hike through a thin canyon.

Cut and carved out of an ancient lake, the sandstone canyon is more akin to some of the famous slot canyons in Utah. The thin passageways house hidden whirlpool chambers and can be gloomy in sections, adding a spooky element to the journey.

Continue on until you reach Stand Rock, a thin but towering natural structure. With one larger flat rock on top, Stand Rock appears to be wearing a hat. Here, your tour will reach its most memorable as a trained dog jumps from high above, off the top of the rock pillar.

5. Timbavati Wildlife Park

Timbavati Wildlife Park© dreamstime

Water parks are such a large part of the Wisconsin Dells experience. But if you’re searching for something different, then head to the Timbavati Wildlife Park. The park features animals from all across the globe, in various recreated habitats.

Timbavati was designed with the family in mind, with the opportunity to experience different worldwide nature up close and personal. The kids will have a blast on the Safari Train that will guide everyone through the park, visiting each habitat along the way.

Some of the popular stops include the Grasslands, where you’ll see giraffes eating from the treetops and antelopes frolicking about. If you’ve ever wanted to see a kangaroo with your own eyes, then get excited about the visit to the Woodlands.

4. Noah’s Ark Water Park

Noah's Ark Water Park© dreamstime

It’s fair to say that multiple days are needed to thoroughly explore the largest water park in the United States. But whether you have just one day or an entire week, you won’t soon forget Noah’s Ark Water Park.

Using five million gallons of water on three miles’ worth of water slides, the hardest part of your day will be deciding where to start. With over 50 rides and entertainment options, there are ample family-friendly adventures and blood-curdling experiences.

Split your time between the Bermuda Triangle and Dark Voyage tube rides before going on the Time Warp for a white-knuckle ride. To rest up, book your own cabana for an idyllic escape.

3. Kalahari Indoor Waterpark

Kalahari Indoor Waterparkflickr/ct

The largest indoor water park in Wisconsin is the complete experience. The expansive park covers everything from start to finish, even your accommodation. After arriving at the Kalahari Indoor Waterpark, check in to your private room just steps away from all the fun.

After settling in, it’s time to see what all the fuss is about. Primed for a family vacation, the indoor water park boasts thrilling water slides, play areas for the little ones and some top-notch spa experiences for when mom needs a break from the world.

With a monumental day of excitement in the books, pick between a variety of dining options from signature restaurants to buffets. Before resting up for what’s sure to be another memorable day.

2. Mt. Olympus Water & Theme Park

Mt. Olympus Water & Theme Park© dreamstime

With so many water parks already mentioned, you may be wondering if we need yet another. Well, read on for the best of the lot. Featuring both indoor and outdoor water and theme parks, there’s something exciting to do: rain, hail or shine.

Within the indoor water park at Mt. Olympus, you’ll find a fantastic selection of adrenaline-pumping water slides and whirlpools. Those who prefer a more casual experience, then gather your friends and explore the lazy river. The indoor theme park complements the water park with fun rides for the kids and arcade games to keep everyone busy.

As for the outside, if it’s a beautiful day in the Wisconsin Dells, then there’s no better place to be. Explore the Lost City of Atlantis, complete with six stories of aqua adventures, or embark on the hair-raising roller coasters in the adjacent theme park.

1. Take a Boat Cruise

Take a Boat Cruise© dreamstime

Since the middle of the 19th century, boat cruises have been a big part of local life in the Wisconsin Dells. One way to join in on the fun is to sign up for a Dells Boat Tour, where you can see firsthand how the city got its name.

The dells, created by millions of years of glacial carving, can be seen along the Wisconsin River. There are two tours on offer, to the Upper and Lower Dells. If you’ve already ventured to Witches Gulch, then make your way to the Lower Dells to see several famous rock formations.

Some of the highlights along the Lower Dells boat cruise include the stunning Rocky Island, Baby Grand Piano and Hawk’s Bill. To complete the experience, learn about Native American legends and the Lost City of Newport.

Map of Things to Do in Wisconsin Dells

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