Dutch Wonderland is the ideal first theme park for kids. Located in the heart of Pennsylvania Dutch Country this amusement park offers over 35 attractions, a water play area, games, live shows and fun foods.
Nestled along 43 acres in Lancaster; Dutch Wonderland is truly a kingdom for kids. With the park being smaller it makes getting around much easier for the little ones compared to the larger theme parks. All of the attractions are situated close to one another but not on top of each other. Kids love this because they can walk from ride to ride quickly and not waste time.
The park has undergone some changes since our last visit in 2016, and we were asked to be part of this years blogger program, I was excited to see some real upgrades to this classic family park.
Arriving at the park around 11 a.m.; it was virtually empty. This could be in part due to the fact that it was a Monday. We had perfect weather and no waits for the kids. Their first stop was the all new coaster Merlin’s Mayhem, who can blame them, it’s a suspended under track coaster! I would say this is the kids new favorite, as they rode it 4 times. The younger one in our party (age 6) didn’t like it because he hit his head on the sides as he is just at the height limit for the coaster.
Insider Tip: When you arrive, head towards the back of the park and work your way forward, this also helps with lower lines when you first arrive
After a twirl on Merlin’s Mayhem, we headed to the back of the park. Here you will find the speedway, and you can take a gondola ride along the Amish countryside. You will also want to explore the dinosaurs on Exploration Island. If you have a dino lover in your family, this is a do not miss spot. Here you can find over 20 lifelike dinosaurs and see them in a lush habitat. You can learn about the dino’s from the story boards in front of them. After you come face to face with the dinosaurs you can dig for fossils in Dino Dig. That T-Rex was awfully lifelike when he roared!
The kids then rode almost every ride in the park, and needed a little down time. So we decided to watch our favorite afternoon dive show, at The Aqua Stadium for The Adventures of the Frog Prince. The kids were absolutely entranced the entire show; they sat and yelled out Oohs and Ahhhs fascinated by the divers. If you don’t mind the kids getting wet, sit them in the first six rows for some antics during the show. This show has been around for years and always packs the stadium. Be sure not to miss it.
We had worked up quite an appetite walking the park all morning, and before we knew it lunch was upon us. There are tons of great options at Dutch Wonderland from Nathan’s Famous, to the famous loaded Potato Patch fries. If you are looking for healthy options head to Mill Stream Eatery and dine at Bean Sprouts. Offering healthy and wholesome meals for kids and adults. The avocado turkey sandwich is my personal favorite.
The sun came out and it was time for some play in Duke’s Lagoon. The splash and play area is perfect for a hot summer day; and for the kids to get the wiggles out as they can run freely and play. Our kid’s stuck with the slides and dunk tanks; but there are also toddler play areas as well. With squirting geysers, spill buckets and multiple play platforms Dukes Lagoon provides hours of water fun.
You can rent a cabana for the day if you wish and relax in the water area all day. Prices vary on Cabana rentals and you can reserve it online in advance. You cannot bring outside food in the park; but there are many choices at Sharky’s Grill for lunch and they will deliver to your cabana. Also located in Dukes Lagoon are The Slush Shack and Rita’s Italian Ice.
Once we finished in the water area we boarded the last train of the day and bid farewell to Dutch Wonderland after a great day of fun just for the kids.
Insider Tip: The Wonderland Special (train) has been there since the park originally opened in 1963.
If you are ready for a day of fun with the kids get your tickets at DutchWonderland.com and enter code SUMMERBLOG18 in promo box to save on tickets! Daily admission is $44.99 (ages 3-59) and children under 2 are free. There is special pricing for grandparents $39.99 (age 60-69) and $31.99 (age 70 and over). Don’t miss out on great summer fun through Labor Day at a discount!
originally published aug 2018