Kalahari Resorts & Conventions
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TravelPod Member ReviewsKalahari Resorts & Conventions Sandusky
Got a great Saturday night rate so headed to Kalahari for the weekend. This was an awesome birthday present for my 11 yr old son from his grandpa. The theming was almost Disney-quality. We checked in at noon and happily our rooms were available. As our room was a long walk to the waterpark, we opted to carry a swim bag and shower/dress in the changing rooms there. Everything was fabulous and we thought we got a lot of value for our money and we would be back if the timing/price was right. For almost nonexistent lines (even on a weekend with 80% occupancy), hit the waterpark from 7-10pm in the evenings and 9-11 in the mornings. From 9-11:30 on Sunday morning, we rode everything multiple times. For the Flowrider, the best time is between 9am and 9:20am in the morning - there was barely anyone else there and 2 of us rode it 4 times in the 20 minutes! Also, the changing rooms have this awesome tiny swimsuit dryer. It wasn't obvious (to me) what it was, but look for a small box hanging on the wall. Every waterpark should have these!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.
Historical Traveler Reviews Kalahari Resorts & Conventions Sandusky
A Must Read for Parents thinking of Traveling - You will LOVE IT!!!
From the Second we pulled up to this hotel....we were like WOW!
We decided to come here instead of Disney as it was time to try something new, so we drove almost 7 hours to this parents dream of a property.
Since we were here midweek and the hotel wasnt at capacity...we were automatically upgraded to a bunk room, its pretty cool...a queen size bed for the parents and a seperate lil area with bunk beds and a TV for the kids..... If you dont know this already....the place is all about Africa...Pretty cool stuff..
The rooms were spotless, clean and funky in a cool sorta way.
I personally was doing business while travelling and here was my only problem, no wireless internet...although they do have a plug in the wall to get highspeed. So the first night I was here I had a problem getting online.....spoke with a manager named Jeff at close to midnight and he got his IT guy on the phone to get me online...I needed a longer cord the next day, the day manager basically went to the store and bought me one and had it waiting in my room, that is service for you.
This staff, it's like they have stock in this property....all of them go that extra mile...and it shows, they really do care, I am so impressed....You all deserve a great big pat on the back.
Now about the water park.....let me say again....WOW, my kids were in complete heaven.....we are talking non stop......lifeguards absolutely everywhere and it is included with your stay....FREE
There is a mini pool with a slide for Toddlers....My boys (2 and 4) went down it maybe 500 times the first day....the water is maybe 2 feet deep and there is a lifeguard right there....
There is this pool that there is these lilypads floating that you can either jump onto to get across or climb a net.....the boys had fun on it...
There is a pool with trees and basketball nets ( maybe 15 or 20) with waterfalls etc.......sooo much fun
There is this thing in the middle that is like a jungle gym multiplied by 1000 with all sorts of water coming from everywhere.......at the top are two waterslids for the adults....and this pail of water the size of an elephant that turns over and soaks everyone......its sooooo cool
Then there is a lazy river, we went on it about 25 times.....my kids loved it...but not as much as me.
Then there is a water rollercoaster, tube slides, some surfing apparatus that always had a huge line, a waterslide that you go down on a tube, and this big huge white water raft thing that was so high and went so fast my 2 year old and I loved it,.....although it was kinda scary...so high.....
There is a hot tub that goes outside and inside....
There is a pool outside that goes from zero to 4 feet........with rides etc and a big fountain.....we had soo much fun....this was a parents dream....the kids went to sleep so easily at night as they didnt stop all day......
There is mini golf, there is an arcade, there is skee ball, there is this play castle that is just awesome.....a volcano goes off and balls shoot everywhere.
Please note I am telling this from the perspective of a father of a 2 and 4 year old......there was kids of all ages.....all seem to having the time of their lives.
Okay so now the food.....
There is Kahunaville....which just fits in perfectly with the place...
There are snack bars......Get them to custom make you a salad at the bottom one....was soo good.
There is a coffee bar.....with snacks..
There is a bar upstairs with tvs....like a resort with a restaurant attached that has awesome food and here is the best part.....a buffet.
So you are thinking mass produced food, low quality yadda yadda yadda....well Think again....There was a Pittsburg food critic here one night when were dining who I overheard talking to the chef...a CIA graduate, the whole crew are culinary graduates and the friendliest people in the world...and you want the best.....this is really the BEST.....THE KIDS EAT FREE AT THE BUFFET with the adults (under 5), I couldnt believe it..
So now about the food......Breakfast was 11.95 a person (Cheap)
The have fruit, bagels, cream cheese...an omelet station, a pancake station...waffles, french toast, bacon, sausage, etc etc etc.....let me say this....5 star quality...and so yummy...drinks included and my kids ate free.
Now to dinner....think it was 17 a person....kids free
First for the kids they have a station with mac and cheese (homemade) chicken strips, waffle fries, onion rings and sooo much more....then for the adults...
Salad bar with fancy lettuce, avocado, celery, all the fixings......even Pine Nuts,.....They do not skimp at all....There is even Jumbo shrimp, marinated anti pasto.....omg...its like Vegas.
There is a carving station with pork loin, turkey, roast beef, steaks....and as the chef put it...a wonderfull mushroom demi glace....lol That cracks me up....anyway.....there is a veggie station, a potatoe station, pasta station, a stir fry station and an oriental dim sum station, the deserts were absolutely awesome.....so worth it.....and the kids ate free,.....the chefs were also extremely nice...and so talented...it shows....
There is also this candy store that makes caramel apples (6 or 7 types) and has the most amazing chocolates and candies I have ever seen....and this wisconsin ice cream that is to die for.....this place is so awesome, it has it all.
As you can tell by my review....my family and I had just such a wonderfull time together and it was so reasonable, had great value, and yes I would recommend this resort to any family....you will Love it.
I have stayed at resorts, some as much as 5 times the price of Kalahari, and wasnt treated anywhere near as here, the place is awesome, the staff is awesome, and I cannot wait to come back with my family....Enjoy!
We went to Kalahari on Tuesday through Thursday June 21 -June 23. It was a great time to go because we had no waiting in lines and all of the rides were in working order! There are a variety of slides and rides:
The family raft ride is great fun and safe. The large blue and green slides also rate to the top of the list. The body slides -- well no raft here - and ouch you feel every place the slide was put together. The zip coaster, -- bring your sunglasses or goggles. The water sprays in your face. Still fun.
The flowrider- this is an experience -- the landing of the ride is rough. The staff for this ride are absolutely fantastic. They give lessons, ask the front desk.
The rooms -- family suite. Well, we got there early and they told us that our room was ready. It was not. So then we went to another room. Well the room smelled and the view was a cement truck. So off to our third room. After we settled in we went to the bathroom and found that they were very and I mean very dirty. The hotel staff came quickly to remedy the situation and later, upon my inquiry, did make a slight adjustment to our bill for our trouble. Overall this is a great resort, really best suited for preteens and teenagers, although my 5 year old had a blast.
Great Place! The kids loved it.
Just returned from a stay on June 16, 2005. I have 2 boys (ages 9 and 12). We got there early - around noon (check-in is 4 pm). Went into the waterpark before our room was ready (you are allowed in at 12:00 and you can stay the next day until 3:00 after checkout). The kids loved it. We have stayed at Great Wolf Lodge and the boys liked it better. I must say I enjoyed it too. It has more chairs to lounge in and seems to be a lot larger / more open space. Of course, everything is brand new and it is kept very clean. There were plenty of towels.
The surf ride was the favorite for my boys. It did breakdown when we were there and they immediately had someone repairing it. The water-coster did breakdown a few times while we were there - we did get to ride it once and one time my boys were stuck on it (they had to get out of the raft and walk off the ride). All of the other attractions were fine - lots of fun.
Our standard room was nicer than I thought it would be. It didn't have much of a view or balcony but I expected that. We weren't in the room much anyway.
They have an indoor play area plus a very large arcade. The indoor play area was nice - they had a nice area for the bigger kids (which most places don't have).
All of the staff was VERY friendly - that's hard to find these days.
Can't wait to go back.
Best in Sandusky!!!!
Just got back from a one night stay on June 11, 2005. Second time there and it was better than the first. We were automatically upgraded to a two room suite for our family of five. What a bonus!!! The waterpark is very warm and inviting. Family raft ride is the best. Been to Castaway Bay and Great Wolf Lodge, both in Sandusky, and Kalahari is certainly the best for families. Traveled with husband and three children (11, 8, and 5 years).
Our five year old could get on everything except the Flowrider. The Zip Coaster was a HUGE disappointment. If you like being sprayed in the face constantly with water and not seeing anything, then this is the ride for you. The body slides are excellent!!! Wish they had a wave pool but can't have everything. The outdoor pool was open and very warm. Spent half our time out there just relaxing. Had lunch at Kahunaville and food was good with varied selections and a little on the expensive side. Definitely will go back again and again. Loved the baby Tiger cub that you could have your picture taken with (for a large fee, of course). Don't waste your money on Great Wolf Sandusky. It's better spent here. Hope this helps!!! Enjoy your stay!!!
What a blast!!
Just returned from a two night stay! We had a blast. i took two children, ages 7 and 16. They loved it. there are plenty of activities. The waterpark is awesome and there are other activities as well. The dry play place was big hit as was the arcade,the tiger cub, and the pottery place. There are also other freebie activities such as a cookie decorating time, storytime and family movie night. the restaurants of course are WAY overpriced and you definitely want to take your own food or venture out. There are tons of restaurants within sight of the resort. Walmart and Meijer are also close, as is the Sandusky Mall. The outdoor hot tub(giant) and pool were both open. all rides were operational. The zip coaster did have its problems but we rode it 3 times with no troubles. I have stayed many places and have never encountered a friendlier, more helpful staff. I would suggest water shoes as the floors are mighty slick when wet. Also, the rides are a little rough and I am not sure a child younger than 7 or a very small child would be able to handle it. Other than the overpriced food problem, we had no real complaints. Just take your own food and drinks, which you can because there are microwaves, refrigerators and coffee pots in the rooms. They are still building but we did not find noise to be an issue. Overall, a big star for this resort. it was fun and the opening special package was a bargain deal. I think they will improve with time, as well.
Lots of fun
We've been to Great Bear/Wolf, Splash Lagoon and Castaway Bay. We have a 5, 7 and 9 year old and they all had a blast at Kalahari. The rooms were new, well prepared, had plenty of space to sleep our 5, microwaves and refrigerators. They have a large arcade area and indoor putt-putt but we used neither of these. They do have an indoor multilevel play area that our kids loved. The water park itself was a lot of fun. The staff was very friendly and did a great job. The restaurants and snack shops were pricey but good. In the main restaurant they have a lot of interactive time for the kids. They got all the kids up on stage and let them sing and dance. And they had a menu more exciting than the other parks. From the time you check in to the time you check out you can charge everything to your room with only your wrist band. Once you check out you are back to cash/credit. Plenty of parking.
But they're still working out wrinkles. The family (4 seat) waterslide was fun and very popular but did not work at least half of the time. And the water coaster did not work for most of our stay. Two of the four kids with us did ride it, and I talked to two other kids about it. None of them liked it. And all said the same thing "...it hurt". The other slides are comparable to the other parks, fun and popular. They have a larger "basketball pool" which my kids liked. The body boarding was a highlight. You have to be 42" to ride it but even the 5 year olds I saw ride it had fun and got a good ride. The lines were a little long and you definitely need to make sure your bathing suit is tied tight. I saw [more than I should have of] at least three people that did not. They had, by far, the largest lazy river of all the parks we have been to. The only other thing that comes to mind was that the outdoor pools were not open yet. They were doing inspections while we were there. I suspect the outdoor pools were open within days of our visit.
Wait until next summer, maybe....
This resort was definitely not ready to open. Don't get me wrong, the atmosphere of the rooms and lobby was beautiful, but the waterpark does not even compare to the other two in Ohio. I was first told by reservations when I booked a 2 family suite that the room overlooked the waterpark and the waterpark was open until 10pm. The room actually overlooked a dirt pile that will become the outdoor waterpark sometime around Labor Day and the indoor waterpark actually closed at 9pm. The two major attactions of the zip coaster and family slide were broken down for most of the two days. We were actually stuck at the top of the family coaster for close to 30 minutes waiting for repairmen to fix the lift for the rafts. My 4 year old was not happy about standing at the top of a platform for that long. Not to mention there was not alot of air circulation at the top of the slides. I never did get to ride the zip coaster. Also for my two year old there was one very small area that was overcrowded with parent trying to entertain their kids. The outdoor pool was not open because it had yet to pass inspection. There was still much construction going on in and around the pool area and had to tell management about a forgotten circular saw that was left with the blade sticking out on one of the garbage cans. I see this place having much safety issues because there is no height restrictions on these rides. I could go on and on..... But if you are considering it, I would definitely wait until later on in the summer or next year when you don't have a dust wasteland to look at and the sound of construction equipment waking you up at 7am. Just a fyi, either take lots of money or pack food because it cost us $35 for a large pizza. I am not even sure how they can morally charge someone for something like that. Also, the bill stated both Huron and Erie county tax. How can you charge a tax for two counties? I never got a straight answer to that one. Castaway Bay and Great Wolf are a much better value and have more to do for the kids. Spend your money there.
My family and I stayed at this hotel May 25th-May 27th. We loved it. The indoor waterpark was great for people of all ages. The oldest in our group was in her 50s and the youngest only 2. Everyone could enjoy the waterpark and the hotel was beautiful to just walk through and look around.
The staff were extremely helpful although some what uniformed. As with any new hotel, there were some quirks to work out. We were told the tiger cub would be out for viewing each day, however, the cub was only on site during the weekends. Luckily we got to see the cute cub!
The rooms were extremely clean and beds were very comfortable. Our family will most likely return to this resort again this summer.
We just returned from a wonderful trip to Kalahari Resort. We stayed over night on May 30th, 2005. We had a trip to Cedar Point's Castaway Bay (about 5 miles up the road) in early March and let me tell you.....Cedar Point had better watch out. As soon as people plan a stay at Kalahari, going back to Castaway Bay just won't be an option. Check in went smoothly and everyone was EXTREMELY friendly. There seemed to managers everywhere and as soon as line began to form they found more employees to open more lines. We got a free upgrade to a two-room family suite with a fireplace, balcony, and two full baths! They had a live tiger cub in the lobby which really added to the whole atmosphere. The water park was great and not too crowded. Their new Zip coaster was open when we arrived and seemed to be running smoothly. The lazy river was a big hit along with the surf simulator. We enjoyed the water park until our room was ready (around 4pm) and then decided to go to dinner. We went to one of Kalahari's restaurants, The Great Karoo. The food was excellent and the service was even better. As theme/water parks go the prices were reasonable. We enjoyed the arcade as well. This resort has it together! During our stay I must have had at least 5 employees approach me to make sure all of my needs were being met and that we were having a good time. All that I remeber of check in at Castaway Bay was a bunch of people yelling at the employees behind the counter and no manager in sight. While waiting for check in I actually had a manager approach me, apologize for the delay and find an employee that could assist me. WOW! I also didn't get super dry skin and a slight rash this time. The chemical levels in the water at Kalahari must be better regulated than at Castaway Bay. We all had an awesome time and are busy planning our next trip to Kalahari! I was SOOOOO empressed that, being as new as they were (only open two weeks), they had EVERTHING together. I'm excited to visit again to see how much better they can get!
Kalahari Resort - Great family trip!
Just got back from a trip to the brand new Kalahari Resort in Sandusky, OH. The indoor waterpark was great. The kids in our group (ages 15, 12, 11, 9, and 7) could not get enough. The older ones especially loved the indoor surfing simulator - Kalahari Safari Flowrider. The waterpark also included a lazy river, tube slides, body slides, a family raft ride, indoor/outdoor hot tubs, pool with basketball hoops, kiddie pool with slides, and a huge "waterfort" play area. Lots of fun for all ages. The only downfall to the waterpark was the biggest attraction - a water roller coaster (which was heavily advertised) was not yet opened ( will open in July).
We arrived on Sunday of opening weekend and stayed until Wednesday. At check-in, we received a free upgrade to a much better room than we reserved (Standard Desert Room to a Two-Room Family Suite). Room was very nicely decorated with an African theme. Immaculately clean - it was only the second night hotel was open.
Unfortunately, I do have a few complaints - early morning construction noise and showers that never quite get HOT and tend to go from warm to cold as you shower. Hotel staff seemed to take complaints seriously and even took notes, so I have faith that they will work to resolve the problems.
I give a "thumbs up" to the big arcade, indoor "dry" playground, the live tiger cub, in room dining, the wonderful African safari atmosphere, and the polite, energetic resort staff.
The Kalahari is still constructing rooms and working on an outdoor waterpark to be opened in Sept. We were also told that the indoor waterpark is to be expanded next year.
My family can't wait! We will definitely be back - probably at least once a year!
TripAdvisor Reviews Kalahari Resorts & Conventions Sandusky
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