Five Spots for Swimming and Splashing in Dallas

Zarlacht Atiqzoy - Dallas Fort Worth
June 4, 2017

With the heat index well into the 100s already, there's only one thing in the minds of Dallas families: water! Whether that's swimming laps, splashing in parks, or floating on tubes -- wherever we are and what ever we are doing -- let there be water! And let it be fun! Dallas has several watering holes to choose from, and with a long HOT summer, there's plenty of time to check them 'em all out.

Sliding at the water parks

Water parks give playing with water a whole new meaning. Simply because there's so much of it that can be experienced in so many different ways. Through thrilling rides that turn, twist and drop you with an intense force, to wave pools that mimic the surfs of a beach, there is something adventuresome to try or relax in with the whole family. With four locations in the Metroplex (North Garland, The Colony, Mansfield and Roanoke), Hawaiian Falls caters to families of all ages and swimming levels. Little ones can splash in the harbor in a shallow pool with water umbrellas or visit an interactive water rain fortress with water buckets, rope ladders, and geysers. Thrill seekers will find free fall body slides as well as inner tube rides that explain why the lines stay full. Check out their website for full details on special events, pricing, and park hours.

The North Richland Hills family water park (NRH20) hosts some daring rides as well, recently debuting a slide that drops you into a 20-foot megatube called The Viper. But a ride like this isn't what keeps the crowds coming -- locals find this to be a favorite, especially enjoying the family pavilions, beach area and kiddy rides. Parking is free, and coolers packed for summer picnics are welcome. Friday evenings are "dive-in" movie nights, where a PG movie plays on a movie screen over the wave pool.

Swimming in a river

Families may have to contend with crowds, waiting in line for attractions, and admission fees when visiting any adventure water park this summer. So if you're looking for a different kind of adventure experience for your family, especially for your nature and science gurus, then swimming in the Paluxy river at Dinosaur Valley State Park may be at the top of your list. Located near Glen Rose, 90 minutes from downtown Dallas, the river is home to exposed fossilized dinosaur tracks that kids can step into and learn more about, while cooling off in the water. Dry activities include camping, hiking, biking, wildlife viewing, and much more.

Splashing in the spraygrounds

Pack the kids' swim gear in the car because you never know when you might come across a sprayground park while running errands through the city. It's a wonderful "break" for the kids who simply want to get silly, splashy and wet! Dallas spraygrounds are open to the public through Labor Day weekend and have eight locations.  Surrounding cities offer these cool-off tot spots as well -- check with the city's park and recreation site for listings. These are also fun to coordinate playdates around, or happenstance on neighborhood kids too. Don't forget your pocket change; most afternoons an ice cream truck will swing by to further quench little summer hearts.

A weekend getaway

Need a family vacation get away but want to avoid the long distance travel to a beach, greasy sunscreen applications, and sunburns? Then perhaps a night or weekend at the Great Wolf Lodge in Grapevine is worth looking into. Guests who stay here have exclusive access to their 84-degree indoor water park that stretches in over 80,000,000 square feet of family friendliness. Age-appropriate rides and play areas cater to families with children of all ages -- from toddlers to tweens -- and offers additional activities such as evening story times, a MagiQuest live-action adventure game, arcade, and flavored pedicure or facial pampering followed by ice cream at their Scoops spa.

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