By Michelle Talsma Everson.
Princess Resort Water Park w Slide-2

These lagoons of luxury will keep you refreshed this summer

WHETHER YOU’RE AN ARIZONA NATIVE or this is your first summer in the Valley of the Sun, there’s something all of us can agree on it’s amazingly hot outside (and yes, it is a dry heat). Thanks to a variety of water parks and area resorts with amazing water features, you don’t have to hide indoors all summer. In fact, we challenge you to embrace the heat by having a blast at one of these splash-tastic locations; after all, what could be cooler than water fun during the hot summer months? To help you get started, we rounded up some of our favorite water-themed locales. Remember, always watch your kids around water and don’t forget the sunscreen! Enjoy.

AZSAL’s Top Five Water Wonderlands:

Sonoran Splash at Scottsdale Princess Resort, Scottsdale
At Sonoran Splash, guests experience the fun of a water park with the perks of a resort. Featuring two 200-foot twisting water slides and a pool that shows Dive-in Movies all summer long, every member of the family is bound to have a good time. Got tots in tow? Take them to the zero-entry deck area as well as a large sandbox complete with Tonka trucks and beach toys sure to keep little ones entertained for hours. While the kids play, relax under a luxurious cabana available for rent that comes with poolside butlers to help make you even more comfortable. Ahh … what a life!

Breakers Water Park, Tucson
Don’t think we forgot one of the coolest water parks outside of the Valley. At Breakers, you’ll enjoy a variety of rides and attractions — including the Riptide and Surfari Bubbles — and Breakers Bay, which is southern Arizona’s largest wave pool, according to the park’s website. For thrill seekers we recommend the Bonzai Pipeline and families with young kids shouldn’t miss out on Captain Kidd’s Surfari. Insider tip: Visit the website for exclusive printable coupons.

Hole-in-the-Wall River Ranch at Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort, Phoenix
Point Resort
Another ideal staycation spot, Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort’s Hole-in-the- Wall River Ranch, has all you need to enjoy the lazy days of summer. This cool spot allows guests to enjoy “four acres of pools, waterfalls, a lazy river, waterslide, miniature golf, four tennis courts and children’s adventure camp, Coyote Camp,” according to its web- site. Not planning on staying? You don’t have to be a guest at the resort to enjoy this relaxing water park. “Poolside activities, refreshments and more help to make River Ranch the ‘heart’ of Squaw Peak.”

The Kierland FlowRider at Adventure Water Park in Westin Kierland Resort & Spa, Scottsdale
Splash Pad image Keirland Resort
The latest addition to Kierland Resort’s popular Adventure Water Park, the FlowRider is bound to be one of the hits of the summer. “Opened in October 2012, Kierland FlowRider is the first boardsport simulator in the Arizona resort market,” cites a recent press release, “Bringing the California beach lifestyle to the Sonoran desert of Scottsdale, this wave technology by Wave Loch attracts youth, families and boardsport enthu- siasts of all ages.” With two jets that push nearly 30,000 gallons of water per minute at 25-30 miles per hour, this is one cool thrill you don’t want to miss. Are your kids interested in learning how to flowboard? There are camps happening all summer; check out the website for more details.

Oasis Water Park at Arizona Grand Resort & Spa, Phoenix
AZ Grand Water Park Photo
Considering a staycation? Make your reservation at Arizona Grand Resort & Spa so you and the gang can visit Oasis Water Park. The seven-acre exclusive park was dubbed one of the country’s top 10 water parks by the Travel Channel, according to the resort’s website and for good reason. Featuring thrilling water slides, a gigantic wave pool, river tubing, and Wild Cat Springs for kids, you can’t go wrong. Our favorite? The 25-person hot tub. Another great perk? If you work up an appetite, you can enjoy great eats at the Oasis Bar & Grill, adjacent to the park.