Guide to the Best Southern California Amusement Parks
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Guide to the Best Southern California Amusement Parks 

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Universal Studios Hollywood Reopening Date and Other Important Information
UNIVERSAL STUDIOS HOLLYWOOD — Pictured: Universal Studios Hollywood Main Entrance — (Photo by: Universal Studios Hollywood)

Southern California has a lot of fun places for kids and adults alike. From Disneyland to Knott’s Berry Farm, there are plenty of options for everyone. Here are some of our favorite amusement parks in Southern California!

RELATED: 10 of the Best Southern California Water Parks

Guide to Southern California Amusement Parks

Los Angeles Amusement Parks 

Universal Studios Hollywood

Universal Studios Hollywood is known as “The Entertainment Capital of L.A.” and is the only movie and television-themed theme park that allows customers to experience the magic of Hollywood firsthand. Universal Studios Hollywood is home to a full-day movie-themed theme park and Studio Tour, as well as the CityWalk entertainment, shopping, and dining complex, Universal CityWalk Cinemas, and the state-of-the-art outdoor performance venue “5 Towers.” The popular “Despicable Me Minion Mayhem” family adventure ride, the intense, award-winning “King Kong 360 3-D” on the famed behind-the-scenes Studio Tour, the critically acclaimed mega-attraction TransformersTM: The Ride-3D,” “The Simpsons RideTM,” “Revenge of the Mummy SM – The Ride,” and “Jurassic Park® – The Ride” are just a few of the world-class rides and attractions.

Six Flags Magic Mountain

Six Flags Magic Mountain is the indisputable “Thrill Capital of the World,” with 19 world-class roller coasters – more than any other theme park on the planet – and more than 100 rides, games, and attractions for the entire family! Six Flags Magic Mountain is home to the world’s tallest, fastest, and steepest roller coasters, and was selected America’s Best Theme Park by USA TODAY readers.

Los Angeles Zoo

On November 28, 1966, the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens opened its doors. More than 2,100 mammals, birds, amphibians, and reptiles call the Zoo home, representing more than 270 different species, including more than 58 endangered species. Furthermore, the Zoo’s botanical collection includes numerous landscaped gardens and over 800 distinct plant species, totaling over 7,000 individual plants. The Los Angeles Zoo, which is owned and administered by the city, draws over 1.8 million visitors each year.

Santa Monica Pier

It symbolizes the heart of Santa Monica and is one of the most photographed places in the world, jutting out into the Pacific Ocean at the confluence of Ocean and Colorado. Discover more than just a pier; they’re a location where people gather to enjoy local culture and reminisce about the Pier’s illustrious past. They can’t wait to welcome you to the Santa Monica Pier, whether you’re here to take in the breathtaking vistas, ride the Ferris Wheel at Pacific Park, hold an event, or participate in another family-friendly activity.

Amusement Parks
Guide to the Best Southern California Amusement Parks  4

Orange County Amusement Parks 

Disneyland Resort & Disney California Adventure Park

This is the place to celebrate, with two amazing theme parks and one of Southern California’s most stunning entertainment, dining, and retail areas! So assemble your closest friends and family and head to The Place Where Dreams Come True.

Knott’s Berry Farm

At Knott’s Berry Farm, there’s never a dull moment! Knott’s Berry Farm has something for everyone with dozens of rides, shows, and attractions spread throughout four themed regions. The Timber Mountain Log Ride is a fun way to cool off. The Boardwalk area has rides for the whole family, including the Xcelerator, which accelerates riders to 82 mph in under three seconds! Take a stroll around the streets of the Old West Ghost Town®, where you’ll meet the town’s diverse people – but beware of bandits! The PEANUTS gang’s Camp Snoopy will cap off your day with pint-sized adventures in a High Sierra environment.

Adventure City

Adventure City is a little theme park with a lot of family fun. For the same price as one ticket to a big park, a family of four may enjoy all of our 16 rides, shows, and attractions for one low fee! One of our two roller coasters will provide you with a thrilling ride. Take a journey on the Adventure City Express Train or board the crazy bus for a little craziness. In their petting farm, you can make some new animal pals. Enjoy entertaining, interactive children’s performances and more. Adventure City is Orange County’s most economical family entertainment destination.

Great Wolf Lodge Water Park

Immerse yourself in a world of play where you may splash, play, eat, and relax all in one place. With over 50 attractions, this is one the family will never forget. Go with the flow in the water park resort or enjoy exciting dry-play around the lodge.

Irvine Park Railroad

The Irvine Park Railroad is a one-third size train that takes children and adults on a 12-minute excursion through Irvine Regional Park’s gorgeous and lovely scenery. Wheels Fun Rentals at Irvine Park offers bike and paddle boat rentals, among other things.

Balboa Fun Zone

The Balboa Fun Zone is one of the last outstanding seaside amusement parks in Southern California. The Fun Zone, which is located on Newport Beach’s Balboa Peninsula, continues to compete with Orange County entertainment heavyweights such as Disneyland and Knott’s Berry Farm for the title of most fun place to visit.

Boomers! Irvine

Mini-golf, go-karts, bumper boats, and arcade games are all available at this national amusement center company, located in Irvine, California

San Diego Amusement Parks

LEGOLAND® theme park, SEA LIFE® aquarium, and LEGOLAND Water Park

LEGOLAND theme park is an engaging, hands-on theme park experience for families with children ages 2 to 12. With more than 60 rides, shows, and attractions, it’s an interactive, hands-on theme park experience for families with children ages 2 to 12.

The SEA LIFE® aquarium is your child’s first interactive journey to aquatic life, mixing active hands-on learning with intriguing educational discussions and up close encounters with sea creatures such as sharks, octopi, and rays!

LEGOLAND Water Park has more than seven slides, sandy beaches, and the unique Build-A-Raft River at LEGOLAND Water Park, as well as Pirate Reef and LEGO Legends of CHIMA Water Park, totaling ten acres of water enjoyment!

Sea World

SeaWorld San Diego is located on gorgeous Mission Bay Park and has world-class animal shows, rides, lectures, and exhibits.

Enjoy incredible creatures, world-class educational performances, thrilling seasonal activities, and more as you stroll around over 100 acres of stunning outdoor grounds on Mission Bay! A wide range of artisanal foods, as well as local craft beers, unique cocktails, and wine, are available.

San Diego Zoo and San Diego Zoo Safari Park

The San Diego Zoo is a zoo located in Balboa Park, San Diego, California, that houses approximately 12,000 animals from over 650 species and subspecies on 100 acres of Balboa Park leased from the city.

The San Diego Zoo Safari Park, formerly known as the San Diego Wild Animal Park until 2010, is a 1,800-acre zoo located near Escondido in San Diego, California. It is one of San Diego County’s most popular tourist destinations.

Sesame Street Theme Park

Whirly Rides, Splashy Water Slides, and a Kid-Friendly Roller Coaster are among the exciting attractions. With 18 Sesame Street themed-rides and water attractions Sesame Place has plenty to do for kids of all ages. An interactive Sesame Street neighborhood, parades, live shows, and meet-and-greets with all your favorite Sesame Street characters are all part of the fun.

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