Dutch Wonderland, in Lancaster, Pennsylvania was a totally new experience for our family recently. We had never heard of this amusement park until this year, so when we visited we were excited about a fun new experience and new we had to share these Reasons to Visit Dutch Wonderland with you!
Reasons to Visit Dutch Wonderland
Ideal Amusement Park for Younger Families
One of the things that we found when researching was that the bulk of the rides in this local to Pennsylvania theme park is that they are made for the younger crowd. Not just grade school age, but even toddlers! Yes, there are rides that all ages will enjoy, but near every ride for the big kids, you’ll find something for your toddler to enjoy. While we have an older child and didn’t need this, we did appreciate how it appealed to families with younger children.
For instance, our son loved the bumper cars at Dutch Wonderland. While we waited for his probably dozenth time in them, we watched another family able to have their young son on the bumper cars while they also could manage their toddler on the bumble bee ride just above it. The close proximity meant that they could be close to supervise their son on the bumper cars while being on the ride with their toddler. Throughout Dutch Wonderland, this was obviously the goal.
Low-Key Options for those with disabilities
While you may consider a theme park something someone with disabilities wouldn’t enjoy, I was impressed with the options available. Not only was it wheelchair friendly, it was a great place for those who had other disabilities. We found the staff accommodating, and also found many low-key quieter options that could be ideal for those who wanted to enjoy the interaction without the noise.
One example is the Storytime with Princess Brooke. Many children with sensory issues might struggle with the other shows and the loud music or lights. Storytime with Princess Brooke is overall a much quieter event with slower options and still involves some one on one time with a character in a small setting.
Additionally, there are many park benches throughout the park for resting, sitting, and getting away from the noise and crowds as needed. This was much needed for me, but I could also see it being a benefit to anyone traveling with a child who had sensory overload during their visit. It may not be perfect for all issues a child with a disability has, but we did see various families there with children of all ages in wheelchairs, with headphones to mute the noise, and a few with developmental issues all enjoying their time with no problems. I was very impressed with the staff interactions with these families, and really feel like it is a goal there to make it all about the child and their experience.
Characters are available all over the park
Children love amusement parks for the opportunity to interact with characters. We had the best time seeing Princess Brooke, Sir Michael, and Duke the Dragon up close throughout the park on multiple occasions throughout the day. As a smaller park, it was much easier to manage, and the crowds were smaller meaning we had a chance to really see them and talk to them. Pictures were easy to manage, and you could take your own, or take advantage of the in-park photographer if you wanted to upgrade for a fee.
Very child focused making it truly the Kids Kingdom
One of the most important things to us when on vacation is to make something be truly all about our son. Dutch Wonderland really is the Kid’s Kingdom. Everything focuses on the children. While there are some rides that are made for adults to enjoy (some roller coasters are more adult friendly), the bulk of the rides are made just for kids and young teens in mind.
Being kid focused means there aren’t scary elements. These aren’t the thrill rides with giant dips and scares, but smooth and easy rides. Fun times, mild thrills, and exploration are what this park is all about. With things like classic carnival rides, old fashioned cars, a gondola boat cruise, and even the amazing dinosaur dig and Exploration Island, it is all about getting your child excited.
Affordable for most budgets.
Day passes for Dutch Wonderland are definitely affordable. Season passes are a great affordable option if you leave within a short distance of the park as well. We found that not only is the general admission easy to manage, parking was super affordable at only $5 for general parking (a short walk to the entrance).
Another great thing we found while in the park was how affordable the concessions are at Dutch Wonderland. There are options for upgrades to get a dining pass that has special deal options, or you can simply order al a carte as we did during our visit. With great food vendors throughout, we found that the Potato Hut was our favorite with HUGE portions for a low cost, and the quality was superior! Plus, you can pay just $9.99 for a Souvenir Cup and get $1.99 refills all day long. Water fountains are near all restrooms, so you can also have plenty of water for no cost.
Two parks for the price of one.
One of the other additions to Dutch Wonderland is the expansion of Duke’s Lagoon. This additional corner of the park is small, but still a great way to cool off in the summer months. The water park area is full of fun splash pads, slides, and one great larger slide you can ride with your children to really cool off in the heat. You get two parks for the price of one! What’s not to love about that?!
If you are looking for something to do with the family that is a short distance from Philadelphia, but affordable and fun, Dutch Wonderland is a great option. The summer of 2017, they are also in the midst of construction for a new ride called Merlin’s Mayhem which looks to be a great addition to a new fun roller coaster thrill ride for all ages!
Use our code for a great discount on your tickets!