Amusement parks have always been a big part of our travel plans. We love to visit places for a few days, ride some rides, visit some museums, go on long walks & just enjoy spending time together as a family. It's a lot more fun now that all my kids are older but we have been going ever since they reached double digits. My eldest daughter & I are particular about our rollercoasters. We can't handle much so we usually ride the coasters you'd find at a carnival or in the children's section of the parks. My husband. son, and youngest daughter are all about crazy coasters. They'll ride the biggest rides with the most death defying drops & then get off like "it was okay - could have been bigger". 🤢🤮 This week I thought I'd talk about the places we have been too & what our consensus is on these parks as a family. (Some of the photo's might be dated!)
1. Disney World Florida - Orlando, FL
My husband & I went there when we got married in 2001 for our honeymoon. We went to Disney, Universal Studios, and Busch Gardens in Orlando while being kid free. So I know the park(s) might look a little bit different now. Unfortunately, all the pictures we had/have are only physical copies. My favorite ride was the Rockin 'n' Roller Coaster (the Aerosmith ride). I am not a big rollercoaster person but I love how it shoots off & doesn't give you time to think! I also go tricked into going onto the (now torn down) Twilight Tower of Terror. It was fun & the picture is awful because I didn't know that we were gonna drop!! My husband's & I's rating: 9.8 / 10. Now that the kids are older, we are looking forward to taking them.
2. Universal Studios Florida - Orlando, FL
My husband & I went there way back when. However in 2018, my eldest daughter & I went there while my husband & youngest daughter went to Volcano Bay. Though my family isn't water-park people, they enjoyed it. It was hilarous to go back after all those years & to still have the Mummy ride & the Men in Black ride!! It was a fun to reminicse and make new memories (though my eldest daughter pranked me & refuses to let me live it down). Our rating: 11 / 10. We're all making plans to go back!
3. Worlds of Fun - Kansas City, MO
We have been there so many times that we had the park memorized. All of my kids have been there for birthdays, school functions, parties, etc. It was the only amusment park in Kansas but it was so fun. Also all the pictures from these days are not digitized, but we have so many good memories there. My youngest daughter, son, & husband's favorite ride was the Mamba. My eldest daughter's favorite ride was the Spinning Dragons whereas my favorite ride was the Patriot (besides the time I almost threw up on it). Our consesus family rating is: 7 / 10. We gave it a lower rating because the rides are really rough & often we'd leave with headaches & neck/back pain. Also there was a lot to do for people who like big coasters whereas for people who liked to walk around, there was nothing. Hardly any shows, very few kids rides, no haunted houses, etc. We have fond memories but we have no plans to currently go back.
4. Busch Gardens - Williamsburg, VA
This place definitely a place for people who like the thrill of a big coaster. We visited this park several times because of it's location. So we could go to the park one day then visit Colonial Williamsburg the next day. We also enjoyed it because it had some shows and a lot of cool shops! We rode a lot of rides, despite being scared of them. My favorite coaster is the Verbolten- it shoots off & is in the dark with super fun twists, turns, and drops. My eldest daughter's favorite was the Trade-Wind- it's just like a carnival ride. My husband & youngest daughter's favorite ride was the Griffin (youtube.com/watch?v=9-SVQCiv-FA) <-<-<- watch it if you're feeling brave! My son's favorite was the Alpengeist which was HUGE with so many inversions! Our rating for this park: 8 / 10. We might go back to visit but it's not a "must" anymore just because we've been there several times.
5. Silver Dollar City - Branson, MO
Now this place, we can never be tired of!! We will even visit from NC to go there! There's so much to do. Whenever we go we plan several days there. The rides are old but amazing. They always have the most amazing hand-made shops, fun / interactive shows, & rides that are fun for everyone! Plus the town has so much to do like Dolly Parton's shows, caves, fun museums, etc. My husbands favorite was the Outlaw Run- it's the "World's Most Daring Woodeen Coaster". My son & daughter loved the Powder Keg becuase of the massive drops & how it shoots off. My eldest daughet & I rode the Fire in the Hole NON-STOP! It's the oldest ride there and so simple but the fun in immense. We love going there, however we have no plans as of yet to go back. Our rating for this park: 10 / 10
We have visited some more parks but these have the most treasured memories. We are trying to go back to a few and visit some new ones but we'll talk about that in the last of this blog series. We can't wait until the parks re-open so we can go visit. Have you even been to any of these parks? Do you have any suggestions for some fun parks? Comment below & feel free to share videos & pictures! We are always looking for fun & new adventures!