Amusement and theme Parks in California

Full Guide 2023

Find your amusement and theme park...

It’s possible that your ideal family day includes a trip to a large theme park. Hundreds, if not thousands, of amusement parks and theme parks can be found in California. Theme parks in Florida include water parks, attractions, record-breaking roller coasters, and Ferris wheels.

Check out the following information we’ve prepared for you to help you plan your next trip to one of California’s top amusement and theme parks today! Enjoy!

Best Amusement and Theme
Parks in California

Knott’s Berry Farm (Buena Park)

Knott’s Berry Farm has grown from humble beginnings as a tiny berry farm to a world-famous theme park. Berry connoisseurs will delight in delectable cuisine dishes produced right on the farm. Roller coasters, interactive experiences, and more thrill rides await thrill-seekers. Snoopy and the Peanuts Gang stage events, interactive experiences, and arcade games are ideal for family bonding. Knott’s Berry Farm Hotel and Knott’s Soak City Waterpark are both great places to visit.

Attractions in Knott’s Berry Farm

Are you a thrill-seeker? There are more than a dozen scream-inducing rides at Knott’s Berry Farm to test your limits if that’s the case.

Begin your roller coaster journey at Ghostrider – the West Coast’s longest, fastest, and tallest wooden roller coaster.

You can plunge 200 feet in three seconds flat on Supreme Scream or go all out on Hangtime, the first dive coaster in California. The nearly three-minute ride on this massive roller coaster includes 14 hills and plenty of air time.

There may be something for waterpark enthusiasts at Knott’s Berry Farm. In addition to 23 water slides, the Tidal Wave Bay wave pool is one of the most popular attractions in this amusement park. To add, Banzai Falls water slides for large groups and families, as well as Beach 

Things to do in Knott’s Berry Farm

Attend the PEANUTS Celebration at Knott’s and the Boysenberry Festival at Knott’s to celebrate with the characters from the Peanuts comic book.

Typhoon, Tornado, and Cyclone tube slides sit atop the Laguna Storm Watch Tower’s 43-foot-tall spire. Whether you’re on your own or with a companion, an inflatable raft can make navigating the rough waters ahead much easier.

There are numerous kid-friendly attractions at Camp Snoopy, including a miniature roller coaster and a meet-and-greet with Snoopy and the PEANUTS Gang.

Coast Rider’s 52-foot ascent to the top will have everyone clinging to the handrails for an ultimate family coaster experience. House and Gremmie Lagoon for younger children, are all available to guests and visitors to enjoy and plunge too!

Things to know before going to Knott’s Berry Farm

Knott’s Berry Farm and Knott’s Soak City do not allow any other food, drink, or snack items to be brought in. Radios, stereos, luggage, and large coolers are all prohibited in the park for the safety of all visitors and park guests alike.

To enter the park, you must have a current admission ticket or a Season Pass with you.

Aside from amusement rides, Knott’s Berry Farm also has live shows, educational experiences, dining options, and a slew of other enjoyable pursuits.

Military personnel is eligible for a discount on single-day admission tickets. Families of military personnel can also visit the theme park military at Knott’s Berry Farm for free.

Discounts were also available to the members of their immediate family. Discounts extended to their immediate family members as well.

Six Flags Magic Mountain (Valencia)

From family favorites like Twisted Colossus to smaller thrills like Canyon Blaster, Six Flags Magic Mountain has something to keep the whole family entertained. Make sure to experience unique thrill and kiddie rides and attractions such as Tatsu, Full Throttle roller coasters, and Lex Luthor: Drop of Doom and see for yourself why Six Flags Magic Mountain is dubbed as the undisputed Thrill Capital of the World.

Attractions in Six Flags Magic Mountain

Six Flags Magic Mountain won’t be named the “Thrill Capital of the World” without its historical terrifying attractions perfect for adrenaline junkies.

Visit Six Flags Magic Mountain is the home to the tallest and fastest looping roller coaster in the world: the Full Throttle. In terms of roller coaster height, this ride has the highest loop of all time at 160 feet. If you want to get the most out of Full Throttle, you’re going to have to do it twice. At the top, you’ll be able to see the stunning view while having an incredible amount of hangtime.

Check out Dive Devil if you still haven’t had enough of the adrenaline rush of skydiving, hang-gliding, and bungee jumping. Climb to the top of a 152-foot tower and bravely jump from it. You can go on this ride alone or with a group of friends, and then scream to the top of your lungs altogether.

Things to do in Six Flags Magic Mountain

Take a ride on the Buccaneer, a sturdy and fast pirate ship, with your friends and family and experience the rage of the sea right here on land. Surf around on this boat as it swings you higher and higher into the air until the entire vessel is almost vertical.

Lose your sanity and have fun being crazy when you ride CraZanity. Soar through the air at speeds of up to 75 mph on this record-breaking ride at Six Flags Magic Mountain. After reaching the top, don’t forget to open your eyes and enjoy a breathtaking view of the theme park.

These are just some of the most popular attractions in Six Flags Magic Mountain. If you wish to save your time while maximizing your stay, we encourage you to avail the amusement park’s THE FLASH Pass where you can hold your place in line at the theme park’s most popular rides while you enjoy other attractions.

Things to know before going to Six Flags Magic Mountain

Six Flags Magic Mountain has several branches across the country so make sure to review that you have selected the correct park and tickets before completing your purchase.

Tickets, Season Passes, and all vouchers purchased are non-refundable. Take note that Six Flags does not offer cancellations, refunds, rainchecks, or exchanges so it is wise to consider the weather forecast too.

You are not allowed to bring any food or drink into the park, including coolers and grills of any kind. Food allergies and sensitivities can be brought into the park by visitors who do not feel comfortable with the menu options provided by the park.

There are no exceptions for service animals when it comes to bringing pets to the park. Six Flags Magic Mountain’s kennel services are available for those who are unable to leave their pets at home.

Full list of Amusement and Theme Parks in California

Legoland California (Carlsbad)

Third of the Legoland park in the world, Legoland California Resort is a theme park, miniature park, and SEA LIFE aquarium based on the Lego toy brand.

Legoland California has its own LEGOLAND Water Park which features slides, sandy beaches, LEGO-based Build-A-Raft River, Pirate Reef, and CHIMA Water Park consisting of 10 acres of water fun! This theme park is also home to more than 60 fantastic rides, shows, and attractions all built and geared for children. Live events and arcades are something to be excited for too!

Attractions in Legoland California

With over 60 waterparks and kiddie rides and attractions to choose from, every moment is thrilling and special at LEGOLAND California Resort.

It’s a long day ahead at LEGOLAND California Resort and you can start off at LEGOLAND water parks. Play and compete with your family members at Pirate Reef. Get on the blue ship or the red ship and fire water cannons across the ships’ bows. To add to the excitement, you can join a buccaneer-filled boat as it races down a flume between the battling ships.

Swabbies Deck is a great place for kids to play in the crystal clear water surrounded by pop-up water jets, playful water fountains, and delightful squirt cannons. LEGOLAND’s Imagination Station is a fun and educational way for kids to learn about water while having a great time.

Things to do in Legoland California

Don’t miss Emmet’s Flying Adventure Ride which is also the biggest attraction in the LEGOLAND! Let the Triple Decker Flying Couch transport you all over The LEGO® Movie™ universe. This attraction will bring you high through a world created completely from LEGO® bricks as surrounded by a full-dome virtual screen.

LEGOLAND California does not just feature thrill rides and attractions but also recreational ones. As an example, the SEA LIFE® aquarium serves as the first introduction to marine life for many young visitors. In addition to hands-on learning and educational lectures, SEA LIFE® offers kids the opportunity to get up close and personal with sea creatures.

Astrology enthusiasts would surely get mesmerized at SEA LIFE aquarium’s new exhibit: the Sea at Night. Visit this now and stroll in a gentle surf under a starry sky regardless it is day or night.

Things to know before going to Legoland California

Due to social distancing and restricted capacity restraints issued in the area, you need to purchase tickets in advance online to confirm your reservation when visiting LEGOLAND California. Children aged 2 and under will not be charged a ticket for entry into the theme park. However, guests aged 3 years or over will need to purchase a ticket for entry.

Bringing pets, except for service animals is prohibited inside LEGOLAND California, the Water Park, and SEA LIFE Aquarium. LEGOLAND has kennel services though for those who need to bring their pets with them.

Guests are also not allowed to bring outside food and beverages inside the theme park. However, you may try delicacies in dining stores at LEGOLAND. 

California’s Great America (Santa Clara)

For over four decades, the 107-acre Magic Kingdom by Walt Disney has been called “The Most Magical Place on Earth.” There are six themed lands at Magic Kingdom, as well as dozens of attractions that appeal to all ages. Visitors and residents alike are invited to partake in the featured restaurants’ live performances by  most talented artists.

Attractions in California’s Great America

Start on a high note (literally!) with Great America’s RailBlazer and Planet Snoopy. Ride and scream on these ground-breaking single-rail steel roller coasters together with the PEANUTS Gang. These two extreme rides bring thrills to everyone of all ages in the family.

After feeling topsy-turvy at RailBlazer, it’s high time for another great challenge at Delirium. Together with 31 other riders, you will be brought up to 64 feet in the air while spinning continuously at your respective gondola at up to nine revolutions per minute. 

Just keep the adrenaline pumping and head to the theme park’s Demon’s dark lair. Vertical loops on this steel coaster at Great America make for stomach-churning airtime for passengers. You’ll find your feet dangling in the air since there is no floor beneath them, making the ride even more exhilarating than it already is.

Things to do in California’s Great America

The amusement park also features waterpark attractions ideal for those looking for refreshment and thrill. Slide up, down, and all-around with Great America’s exciting family waterslides

The 54-foot-tall platform at Coastal Cruz is a great place to start your aquatic journey. The four-person raft allows you and three of your friends to ride down the water slide at the same time and enjoy the endless twists and twirls.

Make a trip to historic Mission Falls on the West Coast, which is one of its kind. The best way to enjoy this water ride is with a close friend. Return to the top of a nearly vertical wall by soaring down a dark chute.

Rushin’ River’s meandering streams and Breakers Bay’s wave pool are great places to cool off and relax. 

You can also unwind while keeping an eye on your children as they have a blast on the mini-slides at the Tide Pool lagoon.

Things to know before going to California’s Great America

For any reason, admission tickets and Season Passes are not refundable or exchangeable after the order transaction has been completed at the front gate, online through our website, by phone, or when purchased through a third party. Thus, prior to your arrival, please check the weather in the area where you plan to visit.

Outside food, drink, or coolers are not permitted. As a precaution, inform the theme park’s staff of any special dietary needs you or your friends may have.

Guests at California’s Great America can purchase delicious snacks and drinks at the park’s on-site dining and beverage stores.

There are numerous ways to make a purchase. The theme park accepts cash, credit, and debit cards from American Express, MasterCard, Visa, and Discover for admission. You must, however, present your valid driver’s license when using a credit card.

Belmont Park (Mission Beach Boardwalk)

Located in San Diego’s Mission Bay neighborhood, Belmont Park is a historic oceanfront amusement park. After you’ve had your fill of the park’s delectable fare, take a stroll along the Boardwalk to relax and unwind. Regardless of your age, this amusement park has something for you to enjoy! With so many options for recreation and entertainment, Belmont Park is a must-place to visit.

Attractions in Belmont Park

Belmont Park’s Ride and Play features dozens of rides and attractions ideal for visitors of all ages. Wear your explorer hat and invade the Tiki Town jungle! Stretch your arms and legs as you harness up to climb two stories high and play on 26 obstacles. Ziplines and tree walking will surely keep your adrenaline from pumping.

Did you know that you can be an ultimate belter even without singing? Yes, you can with Mic-Drop! This 3 story drop ride moves in an up and down motion and pulls guests to the top of the tower and drops them back down. This ride is suited for all ages.

If Mic Drop is not enough, try Beach Blaster. This thrilling ride in Belmont tests the limits of brave riders by swinging them into the sky while swirling them in a frenzy of excitement with dizzying upside-down sky views.

Things to do in Belmont Park

Ride on the Control Freak and take control of your entire ride by deciding which direction you will go. You can rotate clockwise or counterclockwise using the buttons located on the ride’s shoulder restraint. However, you cannot control when the ride flips upside down multiple times so just relax and have fun!

The amusement park also features interactive attractions and one of the most popular is the Laser Tag. Form up to two teams with 8 members each and face off over 3 levels. Shoot other players with your laser and knock them offline for a few seconds. This is ideal for kids and young adults looking for some throwback arcade feels.

Of course, don’t leave the amusement park without riding the historical roller coaster ride – the Giant Dipper. Built during the Golden Age of wooden roller coasters, this ride is one of the significant icons of Belmont Park.

Things to know before going to Belmont Park

Admission is free at Belmont Park, but ride tickets can be purchased onsite or online and are good for one year from the date of purchase. Tickets are non-refundable, non-transferable, and cannot be exchanged. Ride & Play Passes are also available at Belmont Park for unlimited fun.

It is prohibited to bring outside food or beverages at Belmont theme park, but there are numerous dining options within the theme park. To accommodate guests with food allergies, Belmont Park’s management may allow them to bring their own food or prepare safer options.

Dogs on leashes and service animals are welcome in the theme park. But without Belmont Park’s express written consent, commercial photography and videotaping are outright prohibited.

Universal Studios Hollywood (Los Angeles)

Feel the glam life and explore the fantasy world of Hollywood at Universal Studios Hollywood California. This movie-studio-meets-theme-park features thrilling action rides and attractions throughout the place. Immerse yourself behind the scenes of popular animated movies. The theme park is also famous for being home to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ with the simulation of Hogwarts Castle and Hogsmeade Village.

Attractions in Universal Studios Hollywood

If you wish to visit and experience the Magical World of Hogwarts, you can start doing so by entering the Care of Magical Creatures grounds and passing by big Hagrid’s hut. Be amazed and feel like Harry or Hermione as you watch Hagrid give instructions to Hippogriff on how to bring you to your next adventure.

When you meet Hippogriff, you’ll see a magical creature through the image of half-eagle and half-horse. But when you ride on Hippogriff, you are riding a family-friendly roller coaster that spirals and dives around the pumpkin patch and then swoops past Hagrid’s hut. Sounds familiar, isn’t it?

As you alight from Hippogriff, brace yourself and enter through the towering castle gates as you make your way down the familiar passageways and corridors of Hogwarts™ School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. 

Things to do in Universal Studios Hollywood

There are also movie-themed simulations at Universal Studios Hollywood. Join Gru and his mischievous Minions for a heartwarming and exhilarating journey in Despicable Me Minion Mayhem. Visiting Gru’s house and going through some “Minion training” will allow you to live the life of a Minion for a day. Gru’s despicable laboratory has more interactive moments for visitors.

If you’re a Fast and the Furious fan, you won’t want to miss this exhilarating high-speed chase through the dangerous underworld of fast cars and international crime syndicates.

The pride of Universal Studios Hollywood, Jurassic World, also has its own set foot at the amusement park. At Jurassic World – The Ride, you’ll enter an immersive land and come face-to-face with the new Indominus rex as she stalks you through the jungle. Cheer her up as she confronts her archrivals in an epic battle.

Things to know before going to Universal Studios Hollywood

Tickets at Universal Studios Hollywood can still be used whether it rains or shines. However, the amusement park does not offer any complimentary admission for guests to return another day. Bringing of weapons, drones, hoverboards, and selfie sticks are not permitted inside the theme park unless used for emergency/ safety purposes. Guests are not allowed to bring selfie sticks in rides, studio tours, and other interactive attractions. Bringing outside foods and drinks is also discouraged at Universal Studios Hollywood, guests will not go hungry as restaurants and concession stands offer fresh, delicious food. These food hubs, as well as merchandise shops in the theme park, allow guests to bring in their service animals.

Castle Park (Riverside)

Castle Park, which opened in 1976, is a full-service amusement park with over 27 rides suitable for all ages. In addition to rides and attractions, Castle Park has four championship miniature golf courses, a water playground, carnival midway games, retail shops, a video arcade, and live performances. See more of what exciting experiences Castle Park has to offer here.

Attractions in Castle Park

With over 30 rides and attractions along with new state-of-the-art video games, it must be a struggle to select where to begin your journey at Castle Park.

Starting off at Merlin’s Revenge might just be a great idea especially if you are interested in witches, wizards, and magicians of all sorts. Feel like one of them at this ride as take the front-row seat.

After spending a fun-filled, family-friendly day at Castle Park, you can proceed to a more intimidating ride at Screamin’ Demon. If you are an older rider seeking an even more intense adrenaline rush, you’ll find Fireball an intense one.

Ascend a 100-foot vertical tower in a pulse detonating, 3G launch with a 1G drop with Dragons Tower and reach speeds of up to 35 mph in under two seconds.

Things to do in Castle Park

After spending some time exploring Castle Park’s interactive exhibits, it’s time to put your courage to the test at the Fireball. This ever-increasingly fast inverted looping roller coaster will have you slamming into the ground.

Feel the intensity going up by defying gravity at UFO-like Flying Saucer. This ride thrills guests with its 65-mph spin as they feel the floor dropping out from under them.

Keep your head high as you fly through the air on your own individual throne at The Kings Crown. This attraction makes you twirl in your own seat as it simultaneously moves up and down. 

After you’ve lost your nerve on the roller coasters and other high-speed thrill rides at the amusement park, head to the arcade to cool off. Take part in dozens of arcade games for a chance to win cool rewards, prizes, and souvenirs from the theme park.

Things to know before going to Castle Park

To enter the park, visitors must purchase a ticket. However, regardless of age, admission to Castle Park is based on height. People 36 inches and taller must purchase an admission ticket to enter the amusement park, while those under 36 inches are not required to do so.

The park does not allow visitors to bring in any food or beverages. There are a variety of snacks and drinks available at Castle Park for visitors to enjoy. Castle Park accepts cash, Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express cards for purchases of food, souvenirs, and arcade tickets.

Even so, online ticket purchases for general admission, season passes, and group tickets are available. You can withdraw money from the ATM kiosks located throughout the theme parks if you prefer to pay with cash for your admission tickets and other purchases.

Six Flags Discovery Kingdom (Vallejo)

You’ll surely be in awe when you visit Six Flags Discovery Kingdom. This amusement park is another hidden gem worth visiting because of the variety of attractions, thrilling roller coaster rides, and top-notch live shows and entertainment. Whether you’re planning a weekend trip or days of theme park fun, check out our sneak peek of what to watch out for at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom Vallejo.

Attractions in Six Flags Discovery Kingdom

When you visit Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, also known as EPCOT, you will be welcomed by a giant golf-ball mascot named Spaceship Earth.

Aside from being ESCOT’s mascot, Spaceship Earth will also take you to a trip back in time over 40,000 years to witness some of the key moments that made today’s cutting-edge technology possible on a 16-minute ride!

This is your chance to experience NASA-style training and even a space launch with MISSION SPACE’s shuttle simulator and be an astronaut for a day.

Prepare your  involving avoiding meteors, navigating nebcrew of four cadets for a missionulae, and slingshotting around the moon.

Things to do in Six Flags Discovery Kingdom

Six Flags Discovery Kingdom is rich with rides ideal for adults and kids! If you are on the hunt for thrilling attractions, you can start with Cobra. This elegantly-built, snake-themed junior roller coaster ride might look an easy one, but with its fast-paced jaunt, it will keep you and your pals screaming for fun!

Take a breather before resuming your ride at Wave Runner. Two-person cars on this ride cause riders to feel dizzy-frenzied, especially when the other passengers circle around them.  Just by imagining it, you’ll feel wobbly dizzy already. 

It’s time to face the Dare Devil if the suspense and thrill aren’t quite enough. This roller coaster ride loops around a single circular track and reaches a height of seven stories.

After waiting for the Dare Devil Chaos Coaster to suspend you upside down, it reverses your direction for more thrills and fun.

Things to know before going to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom

Plan your visit to Six Flags the Discovery Kingdom carefully since it does not offer cancellations, refunds, or exchanges. Please be sure you have selected the correct park and schedule since the tickets, season passes, and all vouchers purchased are non—refundable.

Moreover, the amusement park does not offer any refunds or rain checks for inclement weather. In terms of payment, Six Flags Discovery Kingdom accepts Discover, MasterCard, Visa, and American Express credit cards.

No outside food, beverages, or coolers may be brought into Six Flags the Discovery Kingdom. Exceptions are made for guests with special dietary needs including certain food allergies and baby food/formula. Guests need not worry since Six Flags the Discovery Kingdom has so many tasty food options in the vicinity.

Disney California Adventure Park (Anaheim)

Disney California Adventure is the second theme park at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California. The theme park boasts of its movie-inspired rides and attractions such as the Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, as well the Marvel-themed Avengers Campus. Though it is the second of its kind in the same location, Disney California Adventure’s unique architecture makes it a personal favorite of many thrill-seekers and theme park travellers.

Attractions in Disney California Adventure Park

Looking for a real theme park experience? Line up and prepare for a frightful ride to the top of the Tower of Terror. Even if you don’t like free-fall rides, this exhilarating attraction will provide them for you. It’s fun to fall from the top of a junky metal tower in a freight elevator.

Another breathtaking ride awaits you at California Screamin‘. This classic rollercoaster at the theme park is known for its unique start and loop.

Mickey’s Fun Wheel, Disney California Adventure Park’s signature Ferris wheel ride, is a must-do when visiting the park. Anaheim’s skyline can be seen in all its glory from the top of this mellow ride.

Soarin’ Over California is an indoor IMAX movie experience that will help you cool down even more. At your leisure, you can fly over some of the state’s most iconic sights in this immersive 3D virtual reality tour.

Things to do in Disney California Adventure Park

The adventure park at Disney’s California Adventure is perfect for kids of all ages. Toy Story’s Midway Mania features Mr. Potato Head and his gang for a full blast of fun. A dinosaur dart game with Wallace Shawn’s Rex or a shooting gallery with Woody is also fun options for kids.

Sing the national anthem and join Spider-Man on an action-packed journey! Help Peter Parker fight the rampaging robots by riding on his buggy Spider-Bots. If you’re looking for a more action-packed ride, check out the Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT, which features incredible special effects, thrilling free-fall drop sequences, and a variety of storylines to follow.

Wrap the day by visiting the workplace of Riley’s Emotions inspired by the Disney and Pixar film Inside Out. Feel the thrill of emotions as you meet Joy, Sadness, Fear, Disgust, and Anger.

Things to know before going to Disney California Adventure Park

Disney California Adventure does not offer a raincheck or refund since most attractions and indoor shows will continue to operate in the event of inclement weather.

Disney California Adventure allows guests to bring outside food and nonalcoholic beverages inside as long as they are not in glass containers. However, guests are not allowed to reheat or bring foods with pungent odors. A security cast member from the theme park should also be informed when you bring any food items. Guests may bond with their family and peers with their own food in the theme park’s complimentary picnic area.

Bringing of tripod or monopod stands is allowed, but any equipment used for unauthorized photography or videotaping for any kind for commercial purposes is not allowed. For specific photography transactions, guests may coordinate with Disney California Adventure’s representatives for details.


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  • Which theme park has more rides in California?

    Home to 19 roller coasters and over 30 rides, Six Flags Magic Mountain features more coasters than any other amusement park in the world.

  • What is the first theme park in California?

    Known for its slogan as America's 1st Theme Park, California's Best Theme Park, and The Friendliest Place in the West, the century-old Knott's Berry Farm holds the record of the first theme park in California.

  • What is the largest roller coaster in California?

    California's Great America's Gold Striker is the tallest and fastest wooden roller coaster in Northern California with a standing record of 108.2 feet high and traveling 53.7 miles per hour.

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