A Fall Escape to Kalahari
By Meg Berno

A Fall Escape to Kalahari

Heading out to Kalahari Resorts and Conventions in Sandusky, I felt like a kid again. I knew I only wanted to do one thing, get on the water slides! After all, Kalahari is America’s largest indoor water park. When I arrived, I was easily sidetracked. As soon as I walked in the door, I ran into the Candy Hut, a display case of dozens of chocolate delights, including my favorite, milk chocolate-covered Oreos. There were also chocolate- and caramel-covered apples, cashews clusters and turtles.

As I continued walking, I saw another display case of bikini-busting cheesecakes, cupcakes and carrot cakes. My mission was getting derailed. I walked on and noticed the bar that sells oversized souvenir drinks that would last the average person all day. Not me. I ordered a margarita.

I soon began to realize that there was more to this place than just a water park. As I began to explore, I discovered Kalahari’s luxurious spa. The spa offers hot stone massages, facials, and is one of the few indoor resort spas that has couples massages for a nice romantic escape. Kalahari is so huge, that I got lost in all its beautiful original African art and exquisite wood carvings, bought personally by the owner, which are displayed throughout the resort. I felt like I had really escaped into an exotic adventure–an adventure that included animals!  Safari Adventures Animal Park offers a close-up view of African animals. There also are outside villas with  multiple rooms, perfect for family reunions or a girlfriends’ weekend getaway. There is also a large convention area to host events and conferences.

I’ve lost my focus – I was supposed to be going to the water slides! I made my way back into the main area, the water slides were within view, but to my right was one of Kalahari’s many wonderful restaurants. While I was there, I learned some interesting facts about the owner, Todd Nelson, who before becoming the “king of the indoor water parks,” owned a pizza restaurant and grew his fortune from there. His belief that portions should always be filling, is exemplified in his menus. I ate at The Reserve Restaurant and Bar, which at night turns into a cool night club experience.

I thought, “by now I’ve experienced everything there was to experience except for the water slides,” so I finally headed that way. Wrong again. I ran into the awesome game room. It was at that point that I realized that I really should have brought my son along – he would have loved this! Nevertheless, I played a couple of rounds on the giant-sized video games.

Finally, I arrived at my destination – “funtopia.” My expectations had been exceeded. The water park really enhanced what I remember about going to  water parks as a kid. There was a water roller coaster, a thrilling raft ride, a winding lazy river ride, an enormous wave pool and a private cabana with a television, although my favorite spot was the hot indoor/outdoor whirlpool spa with the swim-up bar.

It was there that I came to the conclusion that this was a perfect place to hibernate for the winter, so I have decided to take up residence at this great indoor resort, at least until the cold passes. Please forward all my mail.

About the Author

Meg Berno is a freelance writer and Marketing Coordinator with the Dublin Convention & Visitors Bureau. Meg graduated from Miami University with a degree in Strategic Communications. Outside of work, Meg enjoys photography, writing and finding new places to explore in Ohio.