There’s nothing like ringing in the summer with a visit to a waterpark, so we decided to kick off the season by visiting Raging Waves Waterpark, Illinois’ largest waterpark, on Memorial Day weekend.
- Fun for younger kids. We were happy to find two kiddie areas. One with zero depth entry and small slides.
And the other Kangaroo Falls. A fun little kids area with slides, water cannons, rope bridges, water hoses and a dumping bucket.
- Fun wave pool.
- More to do out of the water. Brock’s Sand Box.
- Thrilling rides. For those adventurous enough. For example, they had this fun-looking funnel.
Or the Wonambi, the only waterpark in the Midwest to feature the ProSlides TornadoWAVE. The four-person high-speed goes near vertical with zero gravity moments. Eeks!
- Relax. The quarter-mile Kookaburra Kreek Lazy River located in the center of the park looked really cool, but time got the best of us. We will need to try it next time we visit.
- Plenty of food. When hunger strikes (which will most definitely happen!), guests can try out either Shark Bite or Hungry Crocs Restaurant. We opted for Hungry Crocs because it was closer. We heard there was a sub shop, so we would try that healthier option next time.
- Plenty of seating. It may have been because there weren’t many people there, but we found ample chairs. Tons especially at the wave pool.
- Safety. We appreciated seeing all the lifeguards paying attention. In fact, we saw one of them rescue someone from the wave pool!
- The water was warmer! It may not have mattered much to the kids, though. They still had fun!
- The kids were taller (and more adventurous!) so we could try the other rides.
- We had time to float on the lazy river.
Tips to Enjoy Raging Waters:
Beat the crowds. There are two restaurants at Raging Waves – Shark Bite and Hungry Croc. Grab lunch before 11:30 a.m. or after 1:30 p.m. to beat the crowds and get quicker service.
Think twice about bringing food inside. Outside food and beverage is not permitted with the exception of factory-sealed water bottles. How about pack a lunch in your car, eating at the picnic tables in the parking lot. You can exit and re-enter when needed. Just get your hand-stamped.
- Save money on food. You’ll save $$ if you stick to the value meal. We bought 4 hot dogs, 4 drinks, and a bucket of fries for about $20. Not too bad. We did spend more $$ ordering items ala carte at first, and we ended up still hungry (and ended up paying more than with a value meal!) Make sure to try the bucket of fries, skip the nachos. Chips were stale!
- Grab a map! We forgot to ask for a map, and ended up going around in circles around the entire park.
Despite the cold water, we all had a great time splashing in the water. We will definitely be back soon!
Address: 4000 N. Bridge St., Yorkville, IL 60560 Located 45 minutes southwest of Chicago,
Location: Family-owned, Raging Waves is Illinois’ largest waterpark located 45 minutes southwest of Chicago in Yorkville, Ill
Hours: Visit website for hours
Ticket prices: Raging Waves single-day tickets are available for $31.99 with guests under 48-inches at $19.99. Those looking to give their party a luxurious, VIP experience, Cabanas are available for purchase.
Parking: Plenty of parking at the lot
Stroller-friendly? It may get a little crowded with the stroller. There is a stroller parking available.
Food: Cafe includes pre-packaged snacks, coffee, Naked juice, regular juice
Crowded: We visited on a Friday morning and it was not crowded at all.
What to expect: Opened since 2008, the award winning water park was named “Best of the Midwest 2010 and 2011” by Midwest Living magazine and USA Today rated it “the top Illinois Summer Destination” in 2009. Raging Waves features 20 water slides, a wave pool, multiple kiddie areas, private cabanas, and a quarter mile long lazy river.