Last weekend we went on our first family vacation, and even though it was only an hour away from where we live, it was awesome! We went to Key Lime Cove Indoor Waterpark Resort in Gurnee, Illinois, which is right across the street from Six Flags Great America. We decided to go because we didn’t get to go swimming much this summer since we moved and I was busy with that, and since we didn’t have money to really go anywhere for vacation. Key Lime Cove provided the perfect weekend getaway for all of us and I really felt like we went out of state.
Inside Key Lime Cove it is like its own little world. There is of course the huge indoor waterpark, but there are also a bunch of restaurants, some shops, an arcade, and even a kids play area called Leapin’ Lizards. We only left the hotel for about 5 hours to go over to Six Flags for Frightfest. It was a little cold and luckily it was absolutely empty there, so we got to go on everything we wanted and have a great time.
So from Friday at 3 PM to Sunday early afternoon we basically lived at Key Lime Cove. I can’t even guess how many hours we spent in the water park as there was just so much to do there. The water park has 12 waterslides, a lazy river, a wave pool, a basketball pool area, and a huge water splash play area. The splash area was huge and with water shooting out all over, it did scare Aidan a little bit as I think it was just so overwhelming. The boys actually loved lounging on me or my husband in the lazy river and just watching everything as you float around and under the water activities. Then we discovered an area that has three smaller waterslides that dump you into only about 3 feet of water, and Aidan was in his glory. He would go down the slide, I would lift him back up so he could walk back up the stairs, and he would go down again!
Now even though the water at the park wasn’t too deep, Key Lime Cove offers free life jackets. I was very impressed that the life jackets were free and they were actually nice. I put one on both boys for added safety and they didn’t even mind! You also pick up free towels to use within the water area. And if you are hungry, there is a bunch of restaurants right there that you can grab food from and eat at one of the many tables in the water area.
Key Lime Cove was well worth the money I paid especially as we got a great special of “Buy 1 night, Get 1 Free,” but don’t worry they also have great specials offered so you will no doubt be able to get a great deal. The rooms are also super nice and we were even lucky enough to stay on the ground level which is right by the waterpark! Now you may think that the restaurants inside are more expensive since they know people are going to end up eating there, but they were all quite reasonable. Oh and everything we ate was absolutely delicious, I honestly can’t complain about any of their food. They even have an old-fashioned soda fountain, D.W. Anderson’s, that has the best ice cream ever! The shops also had some great sales, and I purchased a cute pair of shorts to go with my bathing suit for $15.
The associates at Key Lime Cove are also very helpful and friendly. From the waterpark area to the restaurants to the registration desk to the play area, everyone was great. I even spoke with the manager who was extra helpful and worked with me when I forgot a coupon I had.
Luckily my boys are too young to understand the arcade, which by the way is huge too and you can even earn tickets for prizes, because that was about an average of $0.50 a game. We really enjoyed the Leapin’ Lizards area which is basically a play area for young kids all the way up to teens. Best of all, it is free! (I think they do offer some craft classes that cost money for the supplies, but we didn’t do any of them.) Gavin loved the Mr. Potato head box they had with all the pieces and the giant box of blocks, while Aidan colored numerous coloring sheets, played Connect 4, and played with dinosaurs. At night they even had a Guitar Hero competition where you could win a few tokens! My 11-year sister came with us and she really liked the play area too, especially since she won at Guitar Hero. You could just walk in and basically start playing. They also had activities throughout the day like special games, movies, and parades, but we missed them all because we were too excited about the water park.
Another attraction the resort offers is Paradise Mist Spa. It offers individual spa treatments all the way to full day spa experiences. They offer massages, body treatments, facials, manicures, pedicures, and more. Unfortunately I didn’t get to make my way over to the spa, but it did look very nice so maybe next time.
Overall, I highly recommend Key Lime Cove Indoor Waterpark Resort in Gurnee, IL. It is not a franchise so you will have to come to Gurnee, IL but it is worth it. Gurnee is also only an hour from Chicago if you were going to be visiting Chicago. Even if you don’t have time to stay at the hotel, you can buy a Day Pass for the Indoor Waterpark.
Has anyone else been to Key Lime Cove? I would love to hear anyone’s elses experiences!