Kids and kids at heart have a splashing good time at Lehigh Valley’s Dutch Springs, a 50-acre aqua park in a former quarry fed by a spring. In addition to the aqua park with countless attractions and scuba diving, it’s a recreational haven with a "Sky Challenge," featuring high ropes and a two-story rock climbing wall and an active learning center for youth.
Dutch Springs has been named one of the top 10 destinations to Scuba Dive in the Unites States and Caribbean for both novice and experienced divers, according to USA Today in 2015.
The recognition of Dutch Springs comes a few months after PADI's ScubaEarth also named the Lower Nazareth Township recreational facility its No. 1 diving site in both North and South America and second best diving site worldwide.
There's also the popular Aqua Jump, a glorified trampoline on water; kayaks and paddle boats, available for hourly and half-hourly rentals; and land-based attractions such as camping and the Sky Challenge. Several inflatable attractions include The Summit, which is a giant water slide; The Wibit, an elaborate obstacle course; The Water Totter, which is similar to a see-saw; and The Iceberg, which challenges you to climb a wobbly "ice" chunk without falling off.
Adults looking for additional thrills might want to try scuba diving in the 50-acre lake, which reaches depths of 100 feet and boasts excellent visibility due to the water being filtered through limestone. You need to be a registered diver (Dutch Springs does not hold certification classes) or be under the supervision of an instructor to explore the underwater attractions. The premier underwater attraction is a Sikorsky H37 helicopter which is 85-foot-long, 30-foot-high suspended in the water at 50 foot. Other interesting underwater attractions include a pilot boat, a crane, a trolley, several airplanes, a cement tank truck plus many others. Enjoy a variety of interesting fish and aquatic life, including Rainbow Trout, Largemouth Bass, Bluegills, Palomino Trout, Koi, Yellow Perch and Goldfish.
The Sky Challenge
Towering higher than two stories tall, Sky Challenge incorporates a rock-climbing wall with high-ropes course elements into pulse-quickening adventures for everyone. Closed toed shoes with back required; flip flops not allowed.
Hours & Tickets
Dutch Springs is open April to November and on New Year's Day. Times for scuba and general admission may be different, please see calendar here for hours and rates for each activity.
Dutch Springs is a premier site for birthday parties, corporate picnics, family reunions and group outings. The summer day camp is very popular for the age groups up to 13 years old.
Tips To Know Before You Go
- Life vests must be worn at all times.
- Children under 13 must be accompanied by an adult; and certain height and weight restrictions apply.
In 1933, the National Portland Cement Company purchased about 300 acres from several farms near Nazareth, PA. By 1935 the company had completed construction of a cement plant and began mining the adjacent limestone for use in cement manufacturing. Soon after the mining started, the quarry began to flood, and it became necessary to pump water out to keep the quarry operating.
When mining operations were stopped during WWII, the water rose again. When the company was ready to resume mining after the war, the quarry was completely flooded and had to be pumped dry. The quarry continued supplying limestone until the 1970s when National Portland Cement went out of business. When operations ended and the pumps were shut off, the quarry, now as deep as 100 feet in some areas, flooded again, becoming a 50-acre lake.
In 1980, the property was purchased and converted into one of the largest fresh-water scuba diving facilities in the country. Dutch Springs is spring fed from an underground aquifer that seeps through the limestone, filtering it to provide 20 to 30-foot visibility, which makes it ideal for scuba diving.
Today, Dutch Springs has expanding to include the Aqua Park, Sky Challenge and NorthStar Adventure, which provides adventure-based teambuilding experiences for corporations and other groups. Attracting about 30,000 divers annually and more than 750,000 divers since its opening, the Aqua Park and Sky Challenge areas have hosted more than 318,000 visitors since it's 2005 opening. The goal is to make Dutch Springs a recreational facility with adventure fun for the entire family.
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