All theme parks are welcoming family vacation spots for young kids, but some make better vacations for toddlers than others. We’re talking rides without height requirements, young children’s favorite movie and TV characters live and in person, and play areas where they can climb, slide, and run around.
Best Amusement Parks for Kids
These U.S. amusement parks for kids are fun for the whole family, but especially families with little ones who want kid-size thrills.
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1. Magic Kingdom – Orlando, Florida
At Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom, younger kids can go under the sea with the Little Mermaid, dine with Cinderella, fly with Dumbo, and, of course, meet their pal Mickey Mouse. Magic Kingdom has more than 20 fun rides and attractions with no height requirement that families can ride together, including a few play areas where kids can run around if they’ve been pent up in the stroller (or had one too many Mickey ice cream bars).
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Leave some time to explore Tom Sawyer Island, climb to the top of the Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse, and cool off at the Casey Jr. Splash ‘N’ Soak Station. If your kid has their heart set on a particular character dining experience, those reservations can be made online up to 60 days in advance. They go fast so you’ll want to secure those as early as possible.
2. Animal Kingdom – Orlando, Florida
At Disney’s Animal Kingdom, kids can learn about the world around them while observing hundreds of wild animals in their natural habitats. You can take a walk on the wild side at the Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail, Discovery Island Trails, and the Maharajah Jungle Trek or ride along on a guided tour of an African savanna on the Kilimanjaro Safaris (no height requirement).
While you’re there, take the Wildlife Express Train to Rafiki’s Planet Watch where there’s a petting zoo, animal education area, and a daily art lesson with a Disney animation expert. Kids can even become Wilderness Explorers, just like Russell from the movie Up! Stop by the Wilderness Explorer Headquarters inside the park’s entrance and collect badges (and wilderness skills) as you explore the park.
3. LEGOLAND – Multiple Locations
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In addition to attractions themed to the LEGO Movie, LEGO City, LEGO Ninjago, and more, you can meet your favorite LEGO characters, build with LEGO bricks, and stay in a LEGO hotel (don’t worry, it’s not really made from LEGO). Toddlers and preschoolers will especially love the Duplo rides and play areas.
Bonus: Right next door to LEGOLAND Florida, the newly opened Peppa Pig Theme Park has a dozen toddler-friendly attractions and six rides, half of which do not have height restrictions.
4. Islands of Adventure – Orlando, Florida
Of Universal’s two parks, Islands of Adventure is your best bet with young children. In Seuss Landing, kids can enter the world of classic Dr. Seuss stories like “Cat in the Hat” and “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish” and even find out what Who Hash tastes like at the Green Eggs and Ham Cafe.
In the Jurassic Park section, there’s a prehistoric playground just for kids and a very special ride that might just make people visiting without kids a little jealous. The Pteranodon Flyers is a sky-high suspended ride with some of the best views of the park, but adults are only allowed on with a child (36-inch minimum height).
5. SeaWorld – Multiple Locations
SeaWorld has locations in Orlando, San Antonio, and San Diego, and all three have kid-friendly rides, entertainment, and lots of opportunities to interact with aquatic animals. Each park has a unique Sesame Street area with rides, characters, and interactive play areas that young kids will love.
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If you can drag them away, they can also see whales, dolphins, sharks, and tropical fish. Behind-the-scenes offerings vary from park to park, but you can make it a trip to remember by adding on a penguin encounter, dolphin swim, or sea lion tour.
6. Disneyland – Anaheim, California
There’s no better place for kids to experience a world of fantasy (and parents, a sense of nostalgia) than Walt Disney’s original park in Anaheim, California. Disneyland has many of the same lands and attractions as Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom park, but there are a few things you can only find at Disneyland. Snow White’s Enchanted Wish, Alice in Wonderland, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, and a few other classic attractions can only be experienced at Disneyland.
You can also tour the homes of Mickey, Minnie, and their friends in Mickey’s Toontown and travel to a galaxy far, far away at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. Don’t forget to leave time for a trip on the Disneyland Railroad—on top of a scenic ride around the park on an old-fashioned steam train, you’ll encounter dioramas of the Grand Canyon and the primeval world of the dinosaurs (complete with “live” dinos).
7. Sesame Place – Langhorne, Pennsylvania
Sesame Place is one of the few U.S. theme parks geared exclusively toward families with young kids. The rides are more mild than wild and even the coasters are family-friendly. Oscar’s Wacky Taxi coaster has the highest height requirement in the park and it still comes in at only a 40 inches minimum. Entrance to the onsite water park is included with your admission and both cabanas and changing rooms are available so you don’t have to walk around in your wet swimsuit all day.
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Sesame Place is also the first theme park in the world to be designated as a Certified Autism Center. Team Members receive special training in servicing guests with special needs and there are quiet rooms and low sensory areas available around the park.
8. Children’s Fairyland – Oakland, California
Oakland’s Children’s Fairyland opened in 1950, five whole years before Disneyland came on the scene, and it’s said that Walt Disney’s visit to Fairyland provided some inspiration for Disneyland. With nearly 60 different storybook sets, kid-friendly rides, and live animals hanging out among the storybook sets, this fairytale-themed park is perfectly sized for kids to crawl, climb, play, and explore. There are also daily story times and puppet shows that will entertain your children when they need a little break to recharge.
9. Holiday World – Santa Claus, Indiana
Aside from lands themed to kids’ favorite holidays like Halloween, Christmas, and Thanksgiving, Holiday World has something that not many theme parks have—rides that adults aren’t even allowed to get on. In the Christmas section of the park, there are a few merry-go-round type rides and a kid-friendly drop ride and in the Fourth of July section, the Tippecanoe boat ride is only for kids under 54 inches tall.
The Howler is a family-friendly coaster that kids and parents can ride together (though you may be a bit uncomfortable if you’re over six feet tall) and if you howl, they’ll usually let you ride twice. There’s also midway games, play areas, and free soft drinks and sunscreen for all guests.
10. Story Land – Bartlett, New Hampshire
Story Land brings kids’ favorite storybook characters to life with more than 30 family-friendly rides themed to classic tales like Cinderella and Alice in Wonderland, a petting zoo with “three little pigs” and “baa baa black sheep,” and a Nursery Rhyme play area.
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There’s also daily live entertainment, including a magic show and royal red carpet show with fairytale princesses and an aquarium right next door. A separate ticket is needed for entry to the Living Shores Aquarium, but it is included if you purchase an annual pass.
11. Santa’s Village – East Dundee, Illinois
Santa’s Village is the perfect park for kids who want to celebrate the holiday season every day of the year. The park has lots of attractions with no height requirement, including a one-of-a-kind fire truck ride where kids can use a real hose to put out a fake fire.
Santa’s Village bills itself as an “Azoosment Park” because scattered amongst the rides, you can visit animals on Tortoise Island, Parakeet’s Paradise, and Old MacDonald’s Barn. Admission to the Santa Springs water park is included with your ticket cost and, of course, you can meet Santa year round.
12. Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park – Gilroy, California
Gilroy Gardens is a cross between a theme park, a water park, and a botanical garden, and there are things in this Northern California theme park you won’t find anywhere else. In addition to the whimsical, family-friendly rides, there are lush gardens and 25 “Circus Trees.” With a bit of shaping from Axel Erlandson, the man who planted the trees in the early 1900s, these wonders of nature are sure to delight children of all ages. One of the splash area’s slides even winds through a replica Circus Tree!
13. Knoebels Amusement Park – Elysburg, Pennsylvania
From coasters and log flumes to a miniature steam engine train and a 100-year-old carousel, Knoebels really does have something for everyone. Kids can even hop on kiddie versions of classic rides like bumper cars, a ferris wheel, and a Himalaya ride. What really makes Knoebels stand out, though, is that parking and admission are 100 percent free.
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You can get pay-per-ride ticket books or purchase a “Ride All Day Pass” that will get you on as many rides as you can squeeze in during your day. You don’t always accomplish as much in a day as you think you will when you’ve got little ones in tow, and with this system you only pay for the rides you actually get a chance to experience.
14. Nickelodeon Universe – Multiple Locations
Nickelodeon Universe has locations in the Minneapolis Mall of America and the American Dream retail and entertainment complex in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Rides are themed to – you guessed it – Nickelodeon shows and characters. Younger kids will love Nick Jr. attractions like Blue’s Skidoo and the Paw Patrol Adventure Bay play area. Both locations also have mini golf and an aquarium, and American Dream is home to the largest indoor water park in North America. Speaking of indoor, both Nickelodeon Universe parks are inside so you can play with your Nick Jr. pals year round, even when the temperatures dip.
Theme parks sized for younger children offer so much more than thrill rides. The best amusement parks for small children delight with toddler-friendly offerings like train rides, interactions with favorite characters, water play areas, and kiddie rides.
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Chessington World Of Adventures, Greater London
See your favourite children's books come to life, experience a treetop adventure and take a ride on exhilarating roller coasters. There's plenty more where that came from too!
A family entertainment center, often abbreviated FEC in the entertainment industry also known as an indoor amusement park, family amusement center, family fun center, or simply fun center, is a small amusement park marketed towards families with small children to teenagers, often entirely indoors.What age group goes to theme parks the most? ›
Survey shows millennials more likely to visit theme parks than other age groups. Millennial parents (78%) and non-parents (75%) are more likely than all parents (59%) to say they're interested in visiting a theme park in the next year.Which theme park is more kid friendly? ›
Disneyland – Anaheim, California
There's no better place for kids to experience a world of fantasy (and parents, a sense of nostalgia) than Walt Disney's original park in Anaheim, California.
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There are plenty other kid friendly destinations still on our to-do list, including South Africa, Sweden, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Denmark and Iceland. We're looking forward to exploring these destinations with our kids in the near future.
While Universal Studios Hollywood will be a hit with tweens, teens, and adults, what about young kids, like those that are 5 years old and older? With kid friendly rides like The Secret Life of Pets and play areas like like DinoPlay and Super Silly Fun Land, even young kids won't feel left out.Why are theme parks good for families? ›
Theme parks are a great place to make some long-lasting, unforgettable memories with your family and friends. With endless photo opportunities available across theme parks and so many fun rides and arcades to have fun in, you'll be treasuring these memories for a really long time.Why is family outing fun? ›
An outdoor family entertainment not only allows us to spend time and socialize with our family but also other people around us. We get to know new people and make new friends and also find new things about our family members their likes and dislikes.What activities does family do together? ›
- Cook together. What is this? ...
- Make a fort. Making a fort is a winning solution to family boredom. ...
- Play hide and seek. Even the smaller family members can learn to play a game of hide and seek. ...
- Go on a family hike. ...
- Have a movie night. ...
- Throw a dance party. ...
- Sing karaoke. ...
- Play a card or board game.
Magic Kingdom: The Magic Kingdom Park is one of the best for teenagers, as four of Disney's top rides reside in this park. The “Mountain Range” as they call it – Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain and Splash Mountain – are all rides that appeal to any teenager seeking a thrill in this family-oriented park.
You are walking close to 10 miles a day (around 20,000 steps) on a full park day. Kids typically walk a mile per their age, so a 7 year old should be able to walk 7 miles.What Disney park is best for a 5 year old? ›
Magic Kingdom is one of the best Disney parks for 5 year old and younger, offering a wide array of options for families—from character meet-and-greets to attractions to a stunning fireworks display.What is the safest amusement park? ›
Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom
It is the definition of safety and excitement all in one facility. Every child and most adults dream about visiting Disney amusement park at least once in their lives. Why wouldn't they? It's the place where magic comes to life.
- Cedar Point (Sandusky, OH)
- Disneyland (Anaheim, CA)
- LEGOLAND (Winter Haven, FL)
- Santa's Village (Jefferson, NH)
- Sesame Place (Langhorne, PA)
- Diggerland (West Berlin, NJ)
- Seuss Landing (Orlando, FL)
- Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park (Gilroy, CA)
If you would ask us, there is no age limit when it comes to visiting Disneyland. This is what makes this park so great as there are attractions that both adults and kids will find interesting. As we have mentioned above, there is so much to do and see, including parades, fireworks, and all those fun rides.Where are kids happiest in the world? ›
Basically, two white, middle class women who both work as freelancers asked a bunch of their friends about child rearing in the Netherlands, and present their findings in a way that suits their narrative, namely that Dutch kids are the happiest in the world.Who has the most kids in the world? ›
Valentina Vassilyev and her husband Feodor Vassilyev are alleged to hold the record for the most children a couple has produced. She gave birth to a total of 69 children – sixteen pairs of twins, seven sets of triplets and four sets of quadruplets – between 1725 and 1765, a total of 27 births.What state is the most kid friendly? ›
Parents often wonder if their kids are too young (or too old) to go to Disney World. The best age to take a child to Disney World is between 3 and 12 years old, but people of all ages will enjoy the park.Can a 8 year old go Disneyland? ›
Re: 14 year old and 8 year old going to disneyland alone?? According to the Disney website, 14 is the minimum age to both go into the park and escort kids under 7 onto rides. So, under the rules, you can go.
Disney does a wonderful job of catering to all ages. The experience will be different for teenagers than for young children. For the little ones, it's all about the magic - the characters, walking around and seeing everything, and the simple rides.What age is free at Disney? ›
Disney World offers two ticket categories according to age level: One is for ages 10 and older; the other is for ages 3 to 9. Admission is free for children under the age of 3. Read on to learn about the types of passes and what is/is not included.Can a 7 year old go to Universal Studios? ›
The answer is YES! If you've been on the fence about taking your little ones to Universal Studios Hollywood, you should definitely go! There are tons of fun things to see and do with your kids, and with Universal's Child Switch service, there is no need for you to miss out on the fun. What is this?Which Disney park is best for 7 year old? ›
A great park to start for at for a 7 year old would be Hollywood Studios or Animal Kingdom. If your little one is wanting to try bigger rides, but not fully get scared, these two parks would be great.How many rides can a 5 year old ride at Universal Studios? ›
There are eight rides and attractions that allow children at or under 40 inches to ride at Universal Studios Hollywood.What is the best theme park for a 6 year old? ›
There are many theme parks within the direct orbit of London, so you'll always have plenty of options. Chessington World of Adventures is generally considered to be the main 'London theme park', and it also happens to be pretty damn kid-friendly.What is the best age to take a child to Universal Studios? ›
The thrill rides would most likely frighten them, but most inappropriate rides for the tiny-tot set have height restrictions that prevent any unfortunate mistakes. If, however, this is going to be a one-time trip, then I recommend waiting until your children are between 7 and 10.Why is the park important for kids? ›
Time spent outside leads to higher levels of physical activity in children. A 20-minute walk in a park or other natural area can help children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder focus better. Active children show more brain activity, and they are 20 percent more likely to earn an A in English or math.Why are children's parks special? ›
It's a great place for discovery and growth. Growing up, your imagination is at its peak. From building a fort to exploring uncharted territory, kids can discover the world around them and let their imagination run wild. Parks are a great place for kids to discover nature and exercise their imagination!Why are children's parks important? ›
A Place for Kids to Be Outside
Children who spend a significant amount of time in nature also experience better emotional stability and improved mental health. Parks also provide great opportunities for parents to bond with children, and for children to make new friends in the neighbourhood.
- Break Out the Sidewalk Chalk. ...
- Start a Family Garden. ...
- Take a Hike — Literally! ...
- Walk, Jog, or Run for A Charity. ...
- Pack a Picnic and Head to the Park. ...
- Host a Car Wash and Donate Any Proceeds. ...
- Paint Outside.
- Boredom Jar. One creative parent told us she made a “boredom” jar for her house. ...
- Build a Fort. Who doesn't love a fort on a stormy day? ...
- Indoor Obstacle Course. ...
- Write a Letter. ...
- Sock Puppets. ...
- Dress Up. ...
- Imaginary Creatures. ...
- Tea Party.
The grandmother would be the most elder person in the family followed by the father. The youngest person in the family would be the new born baby.What makes a strong family? ›
Strong families have warmth and care, good communication, predictability, and strong connections to others outside the family. Looking after yourself is an important part of raising a strong family.Is 10 too old for Disneyland Paris? ›
You are never too old for Disneyland Paris. Walt Disney created a wonderful world he was simply a genius. 9.Can a 13 year old go to Disneyland alone? ›
C, according to the Disneyland website, Guests 14 years old or younger must be accompanied by an adult when visiting the Disneyland theme parks. While your child can ride many attractions solo while in the parks, you will need to accompany them during their park stay.Is Disney World fun for a 14 year old? ›
Disney World with teens can be a great vacation for your family. It offers awesome entertainment, rides, and attractions making it a great family vacation spot no matter what age your kids are.Is 7 too old for stroller? ›
There are no set guidelines, but the general opinion leans toward kids over the age of 4 to 5 years being stroller-free. The transition should start at about 3 when your child is able to walk confidently and understand your directions.Does a 10 year old need a stroller at Disney? ›
Many people waste lots of time and money on strollers at Disney World for their kids who are 6, 7, 8, 9, or even 10 years old because they think they need them. The truth is that any healthy kid over the age of 4 does not need a stroller at Disney World.Is Disney World strict on age? ›
No need to bring along any proof of age or identification for your child. Kids under 3 will not require a theme park ticket. There is child ticket pricing for kids age 3-9, then any guest age 10 or older requires an adult priced ticket.
Guests often wonder if Disney World is free on their birthday. Disney does not give you free admission on your birthday but they do give you special treatment, free food, and other perks.Is it worth taking a 4 year old to Disney World? ›
Yes, it is absolutely worth taking a 4 year old to Disney World! It's magical to see them meet characters, try new foods and rides, and learn through the Disney brand of edutainment.What rides can a 5 year old ride at Disneyland? ›
- Under the Sea- Journey of the Little Mermaid. ...
- Peter Pan's Flight. ...
- Dumbo the Flying Elephant. ...
- The Barnstormer. ...
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. ...
- Haunted Mansion. ...
- Pirates of the Caribbean. ...
- Splash Mountain.
All of this leads us to rank Magic Kingdom as the best Disney park for the little ones. Other Good Orlando Theme Parks for Toddlers: Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park — This park is ideal for anyone who loves animals.What age kids are free at Universal? ›
Children 2 years old or younger are allowed to enter the Park for free (no ticket needed).Will a 5 year old remember Disney? ›
If you're worried about your kids remembering the trip, then you may want to wait until they're at least 5 or 6 years old to visit. A 5-year-old be able to remember a Disney trip when they're older, but children under 5 probably won't remember much.Which Disney park is better for a 5 year old? ›
Magic Kingdom is one of the best Disney parks for 5 year old and younger, offering a wide array of options for families—from character meet-and-greets to attractions to a stunning fireworks display.Where can kids go today? ›
- Rizal Park. This is our popular park in Manila where you can enjoy the fresh air and the kids can run and play around outdoor. ...
- Intramuros. Intramuros is also known as the “Walled City”. ...
- Molito Area Alabang. ...
- EVIA, Daang Hari. ...
- Terra 28th. ...
- Kiddie Wheeley Park BGC Taguig.
- Descanso Gardens. 1418 Descanso Dr. ...
- Kidspace Children's Museum. 480 N Arroyo Blvd. ...
- Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden. What is this? ...
- Griffith Park. ...
- TreePeople. ...
- The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. ...
- El Capitan Theater. ...
- Time Travel Mart.
Best Age for LEGOLAND - 6-9 Years:
If there was a prime age for LEGOLAND, the 6 - 9 age group would likely fit the bill. There are almost no height requirements that they won't reach, and there is so much to do. The Dragon Coaster - The Dragon Coaster is a perfect intro roller coaster for kids, and is legitimately fun.
Kids around this age usually love to explore, especially topic like space – making EPCOT on of the best theme parks for 10 year olds. Epcot has a whole neighborhood dedicated to discovery, outer space and innovation.Is Disney good for a 3 year old? ›
Three year olds can do most of the rides at Disney minus a few roller coasters and steep drop rides. 3 year olds can also meet characters, enjoy shows, watch parades and fireworks and eat lots of Mickey Shaped Snacks!