Old-timey vibes at California’s family-friendly park

Knott’s Berry Farm is an old-fashioned theme park with a lot of charm. The park is compact and highly walkable, even with six different sections. Also, competitive ticket prices make Knott’s Berry Farm a less-expensive day than other theme parks in the area.

This California-based theme park dates back to the 1950s, and it’s been a smaller, more affordable alternative to Disneyland ever since. Since it’s so cost-effective, it’s the ideal place to spend a day or long weekend with a big family.

Common areas are clean and well-kept, and there are tons of activities for people of all ages. The park doesn’t have a lot of shade, so make sure to wear light clothing in warm weather, plus a hat and sunglasses. Slather on sunscreen, too.

What you’ll find at Knott’s Berry Farm

One of the theme park’s largest sections is Old West-themed, including a true-to-size locomotive that you can ride. All in all, there are a few dozen rides in the park, including extreme thrill rides. Most of those you’ll find near the Boardwalk, which is also where you’ll come across rides for little ones. Smaller children will also love Camp Snoopy.

Every day, there are six or so shows to catch, including indoor shows that let you cool down in the AC. Don’t forget to pick up a show schedule when you walk through the front gate. There are several special events during the year, too, like Knott’s Scary Farm in October and holiday celebrations.

Notable rides at Knott’s Berry Farm

 There are an assortment of rides at Knott’s Berry Farm, and most people head here for the thrills. Noteworthy rides include:

  • GhostRider, one of the world’s tallest, longest wooden rollercoasters. Beware: it’s jerky.
  • The steampunk-style Voyage to the Iron Reef ride depicts a battle that takes place underwater. You’ll fight sea creatures who are trying to ruin the park.
  • The river rapids ride, once called Bigfoot Rapids but rebranded as Calico River Rapids, has animatronics and special effects.
  • Hangtime is one of the park’s newest rollercoasters, with a dive that starts 150 feet up. Also, one of the coaster’s loops is designed to make riders feel like they’re floating.
  • VR Showdown in Ghost Town is a virtual reality experience where you can travel to the future and combat robots that are trying to wreak havoc.
  • The six-story Sol Spin has arms that spin and rotate.

Fast Lane wristbands can help you get on rides quickly, which is especially helpful at the more popular thrill rides. Wristbands do sell out, though, so get them early.

Guidelines and accessibility at Knott’s Berry Farm

Knott’s Berry Farm has a dress code that requires everyone to wear shoes and shirts. Also, you can’t wear anything profane or attire that depicts illegal substances.

Minimum height requirements for thrill rides are between 32 and 54 inches, depending on the ride. Some rides will only allow riders who are 10 years or older. If there are two adults who want to go on a ride that their child can’t go on, one person can wait with the child at the exit, then immediately get on the ride when the adults switch places.

Photo Courtesy: [parisblanco/TripAdvisor]
The Ride Boarding Pass is designed for people who have mobility issues. You can get on a busy ride at a predetermined time, no wait in line necessary. If you need to rent a wheelchair or stroller, head to Ghost Town. The Information Center has hearing assistance devices, too.

Get insider information with the mobile app

There’s a free Knott’s Berry Farm mobile app that will help with things like directions, hours, guides, and wait times. You can also purchase tickets through the app, or you can get them in person when you arrive. Plus, the app has a feature to help you find your car. When you arrive, the location of your car will be marked in the app, making it easier to find after a long day in the hot sun.

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