Whether you’re a theme park enthusiast, a blooming fan, or simply tagging along for the ride, you can’t plan a holiday to the USA without visiting one (or more!) of the country’s infamous amusement parks. Being amongst the most significant tourist attractions globally, American theme parks grant daily attendees various things to see and do.
Whether you’re seeking live performances, thrilling rides, delicious food and drink, meeting quirky characters, or gift shopping – the theme parks in the USA present visitors with all of these activities and more. Attracting thousands of visitors per day, Orlando, Florida, is the theme park capital of America, home to Walt Disney Studios, Universal Studios, etc.
However, planning a trip to one of these parks can be a daunting task with so much stuff to do and things to see. Especially when you’re not a local, learning all the tips and tricks to ensure that you make the most out of your American theme park trip can take much research. We’ve created this article outlining a few tips to help you plan the perfect trip – keep reading to find out more to save yourself time and stress.
Walt Disney World
No list of the top theme parks in the USA would be complete without mentioning Walt Disney World, so it’s kickstarting ours. Although Disney does not publicly share the number of attendees the theme park gets daily, it is estimated that around 250,000 guests travel from all around the globe to attend the various Walt Disney World properties.
Quite rightfully earning the theme park the title of Florida’s number one attraction and the most visited, largest amusement park globally. For most, a trip to Walt Disney World can last several days, as it would be nearly impossible to discover everything the park has to offer in a single day due to its sheer size. For families looking to plan the perfect trip, we suggest staying in one of the many hotels that call Disney home, eliminating the stress of travel and giving you and your family more time for rides, meet and greets, and much more.
Consider booking your hotel in one of the park’s best-known areas for accommodation like Animal Kingdom Villas, Magic Kingdom hotels, etc., close to all the popular attractions. Additionally, if you don’t fancy queuing in the humid Florida heat, consider getting fast passes for the attractions and rides that you don’t want to miss out on!
Six Flags Magic Mountain
Also known as the ‘Thrill Capital of The World’ Six Flags, Magic Mountain is a haven for roller-coaster fanatics, boasting over one hundred rides and spanning 260 acres. Located in Santa Clarita, California, the park is home to eleven separately themed zones – each featuring its own attractions, dining services, and roller coasters.
For the perfect Six Flags experience, we recommend spending an entire day there so that you have time to experience all the rides and account for queue times (unless you purchase a Platinum Flash Pass, which almost eliminates queuing). To achieve this, you could consider staying in hotels near Six Flags Magic Mountain to arrive at the park as soon as it opens, then have the luxury of collapsing into bed after a day well spent.
Look for hotels near Six Flags Magic Mountain using hotel comparison sites to ensure that you get the best price possible; since Six Flags can be expensive enough already, the last thing that you want is to pay over the odds for accommodation. Be warned that hotels near Six Flags Magic Mountain can get fully booked months in advance, so ensure that confirming your accommodation is one of the first things you do before your trip to avoid disappointment.
Universal Studios Florida
Universal Studios Florida is another theme park that couldn’t be missed off our list. Upon opening, the theme park gained so much popularity that a sister park was opened in Hollywood by Universal Parks & Resorts in 1964. Like Disney, it’s hard to find accurate figures for the number of visitors the park gets daily. However, it is estimated to be around 20,000, placing Universal just behind Disney on the popularity scale.
Home to the two theme parks Universal Studios Florida, Universal’s Islands of Adventure, and one water park Universal’s Volcano Bay, the park boasts eight official hotels and a dining/shopping district named CityWalk Orlando – and that’s before we’ve even covered the park’s attractions! One attraction that Universal owes much of its recent footfall to is the recently opened Wizarding World of Harry Potter, which comprises two themed lands – one in each of the two parks.
To plan the perfect trip to Universal Studios, we recommend spending a minimum of two to three days at the resort, or one if you’re only looking to explore one part of the park. Consider staying on-site at one of Universal’s own hotels, such as Universal’s Endless Summer Research or Universal’s Cabana Beach Bay Resort, to avoid traveling back and forth to the park. Or, if you’d like to keep your stay short, you could consider purchasing fast passes to jump the queues and condense as many of the park’s highlights into a day.