Earlier this summer, my family was looking for a quick, inexpensive weekend getaway to spend some time together. Our big requirement – it HAD to be kid-friendly.
When we walked into the lobby at Adventureland Inn in Altoona, we knew we had found exactly what we were looking for. From Disney Jr. playing on the lobby TV to the brightly-colored seating and snack station with ice cream and hot dogs, we were pleasantly surprised. Here are six reasons why we are already making plans to return next summer!
1. Multiple Pools
There are two separate indoor pool/play centers at the resort – one has larger slides for older kids, but we spent most of our time in the toddler pool with small slides, bubblers and dump buckets. Bonus: There is a swim-up bar with drinks for both adults and kids. Our kids loved sitting next to us with their own tropical drinks.
2. Gigantic Arcade
The arcade at Adventureland Inn rivals any stand-alone arcade center in both games and prizes. We had a ton of fun with our kids teaching them classics like skeeball and air hockey but we also spent time in the futuristic Star Wars gaming pod and car racing games.
3. Toddler Area
Younger kids (and their parents) will appreciate the mall-like play area located just off the larger pool. Soft play structures and cushioned floors keep kids safe and entertained.
4. Great Dining
When a restaurant is attached to a hotel, it’s a roll of the dice. But the new Spectator’s Sports Bar & Grill at Adventureland Inn kills it with daily food (kids eat free on Sundays!) and drink specials (Bloody Mary bar on weekends!). It’s perfect for a quick dinner after a day of fun. And if you want to explore the area, there are tons of restaurants nearby – from the low-key Bigfoot Bacon & Brew to the high-end AJ’s Steakhouse at Prairie Meadows.
5. Free Shuttle to Adventureland
If you’re going to spend time at Adventureland Park or Adventure Bay Waterpark (and you should!), taking the shuttle is a no-brainer. The free, 5-minute shuttle ride drops you off at the gate of the theme park and runs all day – meaning you can avoid parking fees and easily take a break for naptime.
6. Location, Location, Location
Altoona has exploded in the last few years – not only is Adventureland expanding and adding new rides and attractions, Adventureland Inn is located just blocks away from Prairie Meadows Casino (check out the kid-friendly horse races on weekends), the new state-of-the-art Cinemark Theatre with lounge-style seating, and Bass Pro Shops with their signature “underwater bowling.” And in October, the 300,000-square-foot Outlets of Des Moines shopping center will open.