Planning to holiday in California with the family? Sure, you may have heard (or have already visited) parks such as the Disneyland Park, SeaWorld, Six Flags, and Universal Studios Hollywood. But some of the more underrated amusement parks in the Golden State also deserve some love.
Here are the parks in California where the prices are more reasonable, the lines are shorter, and the fun might just be greater!
Legoland California Resort
This is in Carlsbad, which is about 35 miles north of San Diego. If you’re already in San Diego, then it’s worth the trip. In fact, some families even vacation in San Diego specifically for the Legoland adventure. Or you can stay at the Legoland Hotel.
As the name makes obvious, it’s all about those famous building blocks. Here, you will find various city replicas made entire with the Lego building blocks. This is a fantastic visit for the younger kids, as many of the rides are designed for ages 2 to 12 years old.
If you’re also in San Diego, then it’s almost a crime not to spend some time in the Mission Beach Boardwalk. They’re you’ll find the Belmont Park, which you can visit before or after going to the beach. Make it after your beach visit—as time passes very quickly in this amusement park.
For families with kids, it’s a real blast. There’s the legendary wooden roller coaster known as the Giant Dipper. You can try flying along the zipline or experience the spinning Beach Blaster. The family can play mini-golf or wage laser tag battles, and then you can all rest while playing the arcade games. Boredom simply isn’t possible here.
Knott’s Berry Farm
Yes, Disneyland is great. But if you’re hankering for a change of pace, there’s Knott’s Berry Farm about 7 miles northeast of Disneyland. And right beside it, there’s also Knott’s Soak City Waterpark.
At Knott’s Berry Farm, you’ll find various rides and attractions for various ages, so no one feels left out. The excitement level ranges from the Wheeler Dealer Bumper Cars (which is not boring at all) up to the heart-pounding Montezooma’s Revenge roller coaster.
For the younger kids, they can enjoy the rides and attractions at the Camp Snoopy area of the park. Then you also have sports and other games at the Boardwalk.
Some call this place the Coney Island of the West Coast. Here at the Santa Monica Pier, your family can experience plenty of fun while you enjoy a great view that overlooks the Pacific Ocean. The family can try out the games and rides, and there are lots of food to try.
Here, you can really take in the fantastic views as you try out the world’s first (and so far, the only) solar-powered Ferris wheel. If you want something a bit more exciting, there’s also the oceanfront West Coaster steel roller coaster. Add the arcade games, and every minute here is simply fun.
Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
This place seems to have everything, especially if you’re coming from farther up north of the US. You have rides and games, plus lots of sunshine and ocean views.
For younger kids, there’s a lot of fun trying out the Bugly the Whale ride and the Bouncin’ Buggies. And between the rides, there are also games like Balloon Bust and the Dime Toss.
For older teens, rides such as the Giant Dipper roller coaster and the Fireball will be a lot more exciting. And everyone has a good time.
For families with just the younger kids, this Sacramento kiddie park is a great option. The rides are easier to handle while they’re not boring at all. Your kids can try out the Squirrely Whirl Swings and the Spinning Crazy Cups, along with the Backyard Buggies and the Funderland Train.
While you pay for each ride, there’s no entrance fee at all!