Whether manmade or natural, water parks are incredible places to visit with family for fun and relaxation. Most summer to-do lists include water park visits, not only for swimming but to take engage in various exciting water activities suitable for both kids and adults. North Carolina has a 12,331-mile coastal shoreline with numerous water parks providing both indoor and outdoor water sports. For tourists looking to visit the best water parks in North Carolina, here are the top eight picks.

8 Carowinds, Charlotte

It is easy to spot the cascading tube and aqua loop slides of this water park from a distance. It is home to one of the tallest slides, the Blackbeard’s Revenge, which carries a capsule launch slide and a Surfer’s Swell tuber. The park also features incredible water equipment like the Dorsal Fin Drop and the Barracuda Blasters, which give riders an adrenaline rush as they go down the waves and the dark tubes. Kids can enjoy less bumpy activities like splash pads, swimming, and floater paddling.

  • Location: 14523 Carowinds Blvd

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7 H20BX Waterpark

The H20BX Waterpark sits on an 80-acre piece of land, located three miles away from the Memorial Bridge. The park is richly equipped with over thirty water rides, slides, and dummies of the most iconic pirate ships that take guests on epic sails. Visitors can spend the whole day just floating around or taking a chariot slide with their entire family. Since the park is multi-generational, there are facilities like splash pads and baby pools suitable for kids aged one year or over. Couples can as well enjoy a ride in a two-person rough ride on the skateboard-style slide.

  • Location : 8526 Caratoke Hwy, Powells Point Dan Nicholas Park

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6 Dan Nicholas Park

For tourists looking to have fun in a natural water park, Dan Nicholas Park is the place to visit. The park is built on a 425-acre piece of land, with a 10-acre lake where tourists go paddling, fishing, and kayaking. Guests can as well observe sea life in the freshwater aquarium. Kids are well-catered since there is a carousel, a miniature train, a gem mining spot, and a splash pad. This theme park has it all since it also offers hiking trails and a picnicking meadow space. The best part about visiting this park is that most activities are free.

  • Location: 6800 Bringle Ferry Rd.Salisbury

5 Great Wolf Lodge In Concord

On its 80,000 square feet of indoor space, the Great Wolf Lodge Concord has eleven water slides and four swimming pools. The water park tickets are available as early as 11.00 am. There are lifeguards who monitor different activities, making it a safe, kid-friendly place, especially during summer. The water slides can accommodate both kids and adults, and the lazy rivers are perfect for indoor floating and paddling experiences. The park also has a few tube rides that lead to the swimming pool for a memorable splash and ride experience.

  • Location: 10175 Weddington Road, Concord NC

4 White Lake Water Park, Elizabethtown

This is the perfect destination for adult and kid-friendly water games. One can get a body soak in the wade or wave pool or just float around in the river. Adrenaline seekers are not left out since there's something for them in this water park. They can enjoy a ride in the Double Turbo Twister or sail in the Sinking Submarine. Kids get to battle their friends in the Bumper Boat Pool or paddle down the wading pool. The park also offers other activities like picnicking and barbecuing.

  • Location: 192 NC-53, Elizabethtown

3 Ray’s Splash Planet, Charlotte

This is an indoor water park combined with a modern fitness center. With a water capacity of 117,000 gallons that service both the kid racer slides and the comet slide, the water is enough for the multiple pools. Therefore, the park is more of a kid and teen destination than an adult recreation spot. There are swimming trainers for kids and alert lifeguards to ensure safety. Adults on the other hand can check out the swimming facilities.

  • Location: 215 N Sycamore Street, Charlotte, NC 28202

2 Wet 'N Wild Emerald Pointe

The park is a branch of the famous Wet ‘n Wild chain of parks spread on a 41-acre piece of land, equipped with more than 36 water rides. Thousands of people spend their summer in this park since it has packages varying from mild to wild, making it a family-friendly destination. Young guests can play in the Happy Harbor or Splash Island. There are also kid-friendly submarines in the wave pools. Couples can flip down the rides, while others can roll down in total darkness.

  • Location: 3910 South Holden Rd. Greensboro, NC

1 Lion's Water Adventure

At least 1,000 tourists visit the Lions Water Adventure in Kinston daily during summer. The water park offers a 0.1-acre hot kiddie pool, a therapeutical pool, and a visually impaired safety audio space. Most of the floaters available in this park are also customized in animal shapes, so they look quite appealing to kids. The eight-lane lap pool is suitable for swimming competitions. Better yet, there are at least 27 lifeguards on duty to ensure maximum safety.

  • Location: 2602 W Vernon Ave, Kinston