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Soaking Wet in the Desert – The 15 Best Water Parks in Las Vegas

best water parks in las vegas

If you’re looking for a water park in Las Vegas, there are plenty of options. It just depends what you’re looking for. I’ve put together this list of the best water parks in Las Vegas to help you find the right one.

If you’re interested in staying on the strip, there are many hotels with some really impressive pools. However, if you’re looking for a true water park with slides, wave pools, etc., you only have two options: Cowabunga Bay and Cowabunga Canyon.

Yup, as the names imply, it’s the same company that runs both of them. Cowabunga Canyon used to be Wet n Wild, but was taken over by new management and opened for the 2022 season.

  • Water Park Dad’s Insider Tips:
    • Keep in mind that most of these water parks are outdoor and will not be open year round. Most are open March through October. You will want to check with the water parks directly to confirm their open dates.
    • Like any water park in the desert, on really hot days walking in bare feet can feel like walking on hot lava. I strongly suggest water shoes, crocs or sandals. You may not be able to take them on all the rides, but many rides will allow them and they’ll be a lifesaver on those hot sunny days!

The Best “True” Water Parks

Cowabunga Bay

cowabunga bay las vegas
source: Cowabunga

Cowabunga Bay is a full service water park where you should be able to find something for everyone. There are some high intensity rides, a wave pool, lazy river as well as a kids splash pad and play structure.

While this may not be one of the largest water parks I’ve seen, it is jammed full of some really fun and unique attractions. Their mat racing slide has a big hump near the end which means you’ll have to do a walk of shame if you don’t have enough speed to climb it. The lifeguard will have to rescue you and take you down the stairs. That’s motivation enough for me to go as fast as I can!

Cowabunga Kids Cove is where you’ll want to spend some time if you’re there with younger kids. It’s a shallow zero entry pool with a large play structure in the center. It’s a standard play structure with a variety of body slides and a tipping bucket. Compared to some of the other play structures I’ve seen it’s pretty tame. I think you might even be able to escape without getting too wet.

The wave pool is large and in my view, it’s a requirement for those hot summer Vegas days. Some interesting events to check out: they will sometimes project movies up on the screen at their “dive in” theatre and other nights they’ll have fireworks. Check their website for more timing and details.

Overall, this is mid-sized park packs a strong punch. The team behind Cowabunga does a good job and this park is no exception. It’s generally clean and well cared for. There are plenty of things to keep you busy for the day.

  • Day Passes: Unlike their Draper, UT location, this location doesn’t use “sessions”. (At their Utah location, a day pass is actually only for half the day. They clear out the park midway through the day and your pass only works for either the early or later session). You can read more about that location in my post on the Best Water Parks in Utah.
    • For Cowabunga Bay in Las Vegas, you can buy an “Any Day” tickets which will give the flexibility on what day you want to go. This will cost you $46.99 for those over 42” and $34.99 for those under 42”.
    • If you want to save some money, there are savings for seniors (65+), Military or evening passes. Keep in mind that all these passes are only available at the gate, not online.
    • If you know in advance what day you’ll be going, you can buy tickets for specific days online and save money. If you book well in advance, you should be able to find a significantly discounted ticket. When I searched for future dates, most days were $25 per day, but I expect that will increase as they sell tickets and it’ll surge based on demand.
    • If you’re local or come to Vegas often, you can also consider the season pass which retails for $99.99, or $69.99 for seniors. As a bonus, these are valid for both Cowabunga Bay and Canyon. These passes come with perks like free parking, discounts on food and drinks, cheaper guest tickets and more.
  • Cabanas: The cabanas at Cowabunga Bay are pretty basic, but if you want to have a reserved spot and a home base for the day, cabanas are a great option. On a scorching hot day in the summer, the shade is priceless! There are three different options: Lounge Cabanas, Standard Cabanas and VIP Cabanas.
    • Lounge Cabanas include two plastic chaise lounge chairs (partially shaded), a drink table, USB charging station, a secure safe and full service cabana servers. These range from $54.99 during the middle of the week to $64.99 on weekends and holidays. Depending on the position of the sun, these chairs will probably be exposed to full sun for parts of the day, even if with the shade umbrella.
    • Standard Cabanas have a maximum of 10 people, but only have seating for about 6 at a time. These include a 10 x 10 shaded cabana and include everything else mentioned in the Lounge Cabanas. The biggest advantage here is that there is more shade and can accommodate more people. These range between $179 on weekdays to $199 on weekdays and holidays.
    • VIP Cabanas are similarly sized to the Standard Cabanas, but have upgraded furniture. They also have access to a private room which is shared with all the VIP cabanas. These start at $219 for weekdays and increase to $249 for weekends and holidays.
    • My personal pet peeve with cabanas is when there is no privacy. That’s the case for the Lounge and Standard Cabanas. They’re out in the open with no curtains. Thankfully, the VIP Cabanas have curtains and are in a separate area. Although, at $250 for the day, you’re absolutely paying for that privacy.
  • Signature Ride: Wild Surf. This is a relatively unique ride which is basically a half pipe filled with water. It’s a tube slide where you drop out of the slide into the half pipe/bowl and ride from slide to slide until you eventually fall out the bottom. It’s not the most intense ride, but it does look pretty fun to try out.
    • While it may not be a signature ride, I want to give a special shout out to Point Panic and Rock-a-Hoola as these are both dark slides with lighting features – which I’m a sucker for. I love this modern type of slide with cool lighting. I am predicting there will be more of these in the future and the lighting will get even more integrated and impressive. For now, I highly recommend checking these out if you’re at the park.
  • Pros: This place has some great slides and has all the water park staples. It’s an awesome place to cool down on a hot Vegas day. If you buy a seasons pass or plan your trip in advance, the price is pretty reasonable – especially considering the quality of the rides.
  • Cons: The biggest downside here is that it is big, but not that big. In a place like Las Vegas which is known going over the top – this is far from over the top. It’s a modest sized water park which will hopefully be built out and have additional attractions rides added in the future.

Overall, a day at Cowabunga Bay is a worthwhile trip for anyone who enjoys water parks. It has some really fun and unique attractions along with all the staples you would expect at a water park. Hopefully they extra further and add more to the park, but if you’re looking for more fun, you can always check out their other park which is only a short drive away, Cowabunga Canyon.

Cowabunga Canyon (formerly Wet N Wild)

cowabunga canyon las vegas
source: Cowabunga

Cowabunga Canyon opened in 2022 after being rebranded from the old Wet ‘n’ Wild water park. There were some small changes made to the park and all the slides were renamed. It’s never a good sign when a water park closes, but hopefully with the strong management and experience of the Cowabunga team, this water park will stay open and thrive under its new name.

The same things happened to the Wet ‘n’ Wild in Phoenix but it was instead rebranded into a Six Flags Hurricane Harbor.

The park overall has all the staples that you would expect like a wave pool, lazy river, a water playground with a tipping bucket and a bunch of pretty unique slides. There is nothing here that’s “incredible” but there are plenty of options that are above average compared to your most regional water parks.

Cowabunga Canyon is a full service water park with decent food options, cabanas and they are also adding a beer garden/bar which is not something you see at all water parks. But then, this is Vegas!

  • Day Passes: The prices are the exact same as Cowabunga Bay. “Any Day” tickets will cost you $46.99 for guests over 42” and $34.99 for those under 42”.
    • Similar to Cowabunga Bay, you can save some money if you’re military, over 65 years old or if you simply plan ahead and buy your ticket in advance for a specific date.
    • Since the seasons passes work at both parks, they’re the exact same for both water parks. They cost $99.99, or $69.99 for seniors. These passes come with perks like free parking, discounts on food and drinks, cheaper guest tickets and more.
  • Cabanas: Cowabunga Canyon has two types of Cabanas: Standard and Premier. Both options are available at the Cadillac Shores (the wave pool) and Piñata Falls (the kids water playground).
    • The Standard Cabanas come with seating for six – a table with four chairs and two additional chaise lounges – as well as a cabana server, water, and a pool safe. These rent for $150 during the week or $180 on weekends and holidays.
    • The Premier Cabanas come with the same features as the Standard Cabanas, but have upgraded furniture and include a meal platter. These will cost you $210 for weekdays and $240 for weekends and holidays.
    • There are also VIP Cabanas which are coming soon and will be significantly more expensive at $650-$800 for the day. These include an air conditioned area, a full sized fridge and towels. I’ll update this once I see what they’re all about. They sound really expensive, but on a hot summer day, they would be the ultimate place to catch your breath.
  • Signature Ride: Piñata Falls. Ok, this section is where I usually name some really cool intense ride, but for this park there isn’t any specific slide that’s really impressive. They have a bunch of interesting slides, but their kids water playground is pretty big and looks to be one of their most popular attractions. It’s much bigger than the one at Cowabunga Bay and has 11 slides, spray guns and geysers and is topped off by a tipping bucket. If you have young kids, it’s a must visit while you’re there.
  • Pros: With the rebrand to Cowabunga Canyon, this place has seen some new energy added to it. Everything looks clean and well cared for and it has something for everyone. Hopefully they will add more slides in the future, but for now, this is an awesome place to be on a hot day.
  • Cons: There isn’t much negative to say about this water park, except that it would be better with some new attractions to bring things to the next level.

This is a really solid water park. It has something for everyone and for the tourists, it is a nice escape from the strip. For the locals, the seasons pass for both Cowabunga water parks seems like really good value if you are going to go often enough.

Best Water Parks on Resorts

best las vegas water parks on resorts

Mandalay Bay Beach

Address: 3950 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89119

While this isn’t a true water park, it has a pretty impressive wave pool and lazy river which is pretty impressive compared to many of the hotels on this list. On top of that, the pool has been rated as one of the best in the country by some pretty respectable places.

The coolest feature about the Mandalay Bay pool is the giant wave pool – I believe this is the only one on the strip. Interestingly, the seating on the “beach” at the wave pool is all in sand which is a unique aspect and makes you feel like you’re at the beach but in reality, who wants to get sandy feet when at a pool?

NOTE: You must be 48” to swim in the wave pool.

You are allowed to bring your own tube into the lazy river and they even have an air hose to help you inflate your tube – a nice touch!

Between the three swimming pools, the lazy river and the wave pool, there is plenty here to keep the kids entertained for a few hours.

Cabanas and Beach Gazebos at Mandalay Bay are available for rent. A beach chair at the wave pool will cost you $75 per chair for the day, although there are free chairs if you get there early enough before they’re all taken. If you want a cabana or gazebo with more space those start around $300 and can go up to $1,000+ for the largest ones which accommodate up to 25 people.

The pool is available to guests staying at Mandalay Bay but also for guests staying at the Four Seasons and Delano.

The Tank – Golden Nugget

Address: 129 Fremont Street, Las Vegas, NV 89101

This may not be the biggest water park on the list, but it is absolutely one of the coolest. In true Las Vegas fashion, the Golden Nugget took the idea of a water slide to the next level.

The signature feature of this water park is the water slide. When you jump into the slide, it seems like your standard slide until partway down the slide it goes from darkness to a clear tube slide which cuts right through the shark tank! They have a large aquarium filled with sharks and this slide cuts right through the middle.

You’re flying through the slide pretty quick so you may need a couple trips down the slide to truly appreciate this feature, but this is a bucket list slide for me!

You can see the shark tank while in the pool as well which makes this pool completely different than anything else in Vegas. If you or someone in your family is a fan of sharks, this should be a must visit.

They offer cabana and chair rentals here with prices ranging from $70 (plus a $35 reservation fee) for a chair to $400+ for a cabana.

This slide and pool are available to all hotel guests, but is also available for non-hotel guests for a fee. It varies based on demand, but from what I’ve seen prices are typically about $35 per person.

Splash Zone at Circus Circus

Address: 2880 South Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89109

Splash Zone at the Circus Circus resort is the closest thing you’ll find to a true water park on the Las Vegas Strip. It’s much smaller than the Cowabunga Bay and Wet ‘n’ Wild, but for a hotel pool, it’s pretty impressive.

The water park features a 50’ tower with three different slide features. They include a mat racing slide with four slides, a tub slide and a speed slide. It also includes a splash pad and two pools. The splash pad is pretty decent with water cannons, tipping buckets and water spraying pretty much everywhere. It’d be hard to escape this splash pad dry..

Access to the water park is included with your stay at the resort – although I’ve read that it only includes four wristbands per night. If you have more people staying in your room, you may want to check with the hotel to confirm you can get access for your entire party. Or just pay a small fee to get an extra wristband or two.

The Splash Zone is only available to guests of the Circus Circus resort.

If you’d like to secure your seating, cabanas are available and starting at $50, which is actually pretty reasonably priced.

As far as hotel pools / water parks go, this is a good option. It’s not a full water park, but it’s good enough to entertain the kids for a few hours.

MGM Pool

Address: 3799 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89109

Can you call it a water park if it doesn’t have any slides? I’m not so sure. So, this may be a stretch but I’ve included in on the list because it does have a pretty impressive lazy river.

The MGM Grand features a 1,000 foot lazy river which snakes throughout the 6.5 acre pool area. The lazy river is the central feature, but there are also four pools, three whirlpools and waterfalls throughout.

This water park is only available to guests staying at the MGM Grand.

They have cabanas and day beds available, but they can get pretty pricey. They start from about $200 and can go over $650 depending on the location, number of seats and day or the week. While it’s expensive, it does include a food and beverage credit for up to 50% of your rental cost.


Address: 3850 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89109

It’s a stretch to call this a water park, but it’s a way more than a typical hotel pool. The pool at the Excalibur has four pools and a water slide. The water slide is pretty tame, but still plenty to fun to entertain the kids for a little while.

Cabana and daybed rentals are available here and are mid-range in terms of pricing. They start around $125 for a daybed and $200 for a cabana, but these can vary based on demand and size/location.

Tubes aren’t required for the slide, but if you want to use a rube while at the pool, it’ll cost you $15 per tube.

The Flamingo

Address: 3555 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89109

The Flamingo Las Vegas has a large pool deck which features water slides. The slides are standard body slides – they’re a plus when booking this hotel but probably not reason alone to book here.

This is another example where the label of “water park” is bit of a stretch, but it’s a pretty cool spot compared to your average hotel pool.

Keep in mind that the water slides are only open on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

This pool is available to all guests staying at the resort.

Other Water Parks

Aqua Park at Lake Las Vegas

aqua park at lake las vegas
source: Aqua Park at Lake Las Vegas

This is not a conventional water park, but looks like an awesome place to spend some time on a hot day. I’ve seen a few of these around, but this is one of the larger ones I’ve seen. It’s essentially a large inflatable jungle gym which is open for anyone 6 years old or older.

Access to the park is assigned in one hour sessions. Of the one hour, the first 15 minutes is a mandatory safety instruction. So when you pay for an hour, you’re really only getting 45 minutes.

Life Jackets are required and kids between 6-11 years old need to have an adult with them at all times.

This is a fun looking way to have fun out on the lake. There are also plenty of restaurants in the area and lockers are available to keep your valuables in while you’re out on the water.

Clark County Water Parks

Clark County has a great selection of municipal water parks. These water parks are smaller than most of the others on this list, but they’re also much cheaper.

The ones with the best water parks are:

  • Walnut Water Park
  • Cambridge Water Park
  • Red Ridge Park Kids Water Park
  • Paradise Water Park
  • Parkdale Water Park
  • Desert Breeze Water Park

Las Vegas has some great options for water parks. While it’s not as impressive as some of the water parks in the Wisconsin Dells (the water park capital of the world) or Sandusky, Ohio – it’s still one of the better water park cities.

If you enjoyed this, please check out my other water park research here.