Experienced by Leon Brittain

I’m sure you have heard of the Poconos as that romantic getaway location with champagne glass jacuzzies, heart-shaped beds, and that crackling warm and glowing fireplace for blissful lovers’ weekends. Now imagine an exotic African safari-themed resort with your choice of appetizing comfort food or fine cuisine paired with premium adult spirits and wines, a mind-melting halotherapy room and spa, and an outdoor adventure park. And when you’re ready to take a dip in the pool, you have a choice of an indoor or outdoor swim-up bar in addition to the largest indoor waterpark in the country at your disposal.

Geared toward family fun, Kalahari Resorts and Gorilla Grove Treetop Adventures in the scenic hills of Pocono Manor Pennsylvania is one of my greatest experiences with my wife and kids thus far.

The waterpark is equipped with several towering rides that spin, twist, and splash along with an indoor wave pool making this an excellent destination for kids of all ages, unlike other popular waterparks geared towards younger kiddies. Once you’re ready to dry off there is a huge arcade and game room that occupies the entire lower-level complete with a bowling lane, basketball hoops, and games galore to keep everyone entertained.

For the outdoor adventure type, Gorilla Grove offers the mini steam engine ride on the Gorilla Express Train, the Legends of the Jungle mini-golf course, and a wooded ropes obstacle course designed for all skill levels. Although you are completed tethered to a safety line and harness at all times, these obstacles will certainly put your courage, strength, and agility to the test. The beginner course was just enough to excite my venture loving 12 and 17-year-old sons while their 11-year-old little sister was not about to be outdone by her older brothers and easily kept the pace with them.

After tackling the beginner and intermediate courses the kids decided to complete the experience with the advanced level Black Rhino where I joined them. Surely I thought this would be a breeze for someone that took on level 5 white water rapids, snowboarded down Black Diamonds, mountain biked tough circuits, and knee dragged on a Suzuki Hayabusa. Little did I know I was in for a big surprise. This course engages your upper and lower body strength while you’re balancing more than 20 ft. in the air on dangling planks of wood, or at times only a thin tight-rope cable. Although I was a proud papa watching my kids rock, I also had a few inside words for them as I struggled through some of the obstructions.

All-in-all, I wouldn’t trade this memory for anything else in the world and am looking forward to a repeat. I now see the Poconos in a whole new family-friendly light! For more information visit www.kalahariresorts.com.