We were recently given the opportunity to take our family to Dutch Wonderland. Full disclosure- we were given four complementary tickets in exchange for a review. My review will be honest and reflect my personal views and opinions. I was super excited about this trip because my mom and I used to take Isaac there every summer when he was younger. We had only taken Hannah once in the dead of winter and it was too cold to really enjoy ourselves. We were excited to see what the park had to offer for Hannah and Tyler on a weekend when Isaac was away.
Dutch Wonderland reminds me of the small old-school kind of amusement parks we went to as kids. In my head I always think of Dutch Wonderland as a smaller theme park but Ryan and I were really surprised at how much there was to do there. We arrived right as the park opened at 10 am and stayed until close (8:30) and still didn’t get to do everything we were interested in this time. The park is geared towards the younger crowd so Hannah could ride almost everything.
*Dutch Wonderland Tip*
One of the things I love is how easy they make it for you to know which rides are suitable for each height. They use a simple color coded system that revolves around gems. You look at each ride entrance for your color and if you see it you are a go! Aquamarine is the lowest which is anything 29” inches or under. Next is Amethyst which is 30” inches and up,Emerald is 36″, Amber is 42”, Sapphire is 48” and Ruby is the tallest at 54”. This makes it easy when you have multiple children and need to quickly see who can ride or not.
New for 2018
New this year is Merlin’s Mayhem a suspended roller coaster.
Hannah was thrilled to find out that as she met the minimum height restriction of 39 inches she was tall enough to ride and she did– three times! She even sat in the front row and had her hands up the whole time. Ryan and I each rode with her and even though smaller kids can ride, it is actually a pretty thrilling coaster.
For lunch we ate at the Castle Cafe. They had just barely opened. There were lots of employees but only one seemed to be available to wait on us. I ordered the create your own salad, but the rest of our orders were standards salads and sandwiches off the menu. Each item was made fresh by the same slow employee which took quite a while. I loved having healthier lunch options for everyone besides the usual chicken fingers and burgers but the service was really, really slow. They also have a lot of picnic area in and outside of the park, so you could bring your own food instead.
Although it was a Saturday in the middle of tourist season, the park never felt very crowded. We walked right on most rides. It did rain for a little bit during dinner and that cleared the park out even more. This was a welcome break from Sesame Place our usual amusement park where the crowds can become unbearable and it can take 20 minutes to get out of the parking lot.
Some things we liked…
Prices around the park were very reasonable. Ryan and I had a miscommunication about who was packing Hannah’s swimsuit and we realized we would need to buy one at the park. We were able to pick her up a cute one for less than $20 dollars. Lockers in the swim area were $1 dollar for a small or $2 dollars for a large. Parking was only $5 dollars. We also saw many people walking from local hotels. There is a campground located on the property that looked fun. The food was reasonably priced as well compared to other theme parks we have been to.
Everyone had a blast. The park was charming, clean, with plenty of shade and the crowds were sparse. It was the perfect park for our family. We will definitely come again. We are even considering getting season passes in the future.
If you are coming to Lancaster and would like to check out Dutch Wonderland for yourself, we have been given a special promo code for our readers to use on dutchwonderland.com (good until 10/7/2018) :
Use Promo Code: Summerblog18
Have you been to Dutch Wonderland? What were some of your favorite things you did? Do you have any tips you would like to share we did not include in this story? We would love to hear from you! Let us know in the comments below and make sure you subscribe to our blog to keep up to date on our latest adventures!
The next Destination With Sunshine we will review is : The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University in Philadelphia Pennsylvania.