The 4 Best Theme Parks in Los Angeles

Los Angeles is one of the most popular cities in the world because of its great weather, diversity, and countless activities that keep its residents and tourists busy year round. For people living in or visiting Los Angeles who have children, this is no exception. Theme parks are great places to bring your children if you want a fun filled day.

Disneyland/California Adventure – The originator and also the most expensive park you’ll find on this list. Prepare to open your wallet when visiting, but its definitely a “must” to visit the park at least once. Everyone in Southern California has been to Disneyland at least once in their lives. If not, make sure that missing out on this landmark doesn’t span two generations and take your children for an experience they’ll remember for years to come. Recommended for younger children, but still fun for the entire family.

Tip: Disneyland visitors are free on their birthday (as of October 2009)

Six Flags Magic Mountain – This park is a popular destination for teenagers and young adults. Magic Mountain has the best and largest selection of thrill rides that you’ll find in Southern California. Prepare for long lines, although most of the rides are well worth it. Magic Mountain was recently tied with Ohio’s Cedar Point for the theme park with the most roller coasters in the country before relinquishing the title after shutting down one of its older coasters. During the summer you can also visit Six Flags Hurricane Harbor which is a water park located directly next to

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Tip: If you plan on visiting more than once a year, purchase a season pass early in the year for about $60 and have access to the park all year long.

Knotts Berry Farm – Knott’s is almost like a cross between Magic Mountain and Disneyland. However, it’s more like Magic Mountain than Disneyland as it does have its share of thrill rides in addition to many rides aimed at the younger crowd as well. Knott’s is often viewed as an alternative to Magic Mountain as the operating hours are usually slightly better and the lines aren’t normally as long. However, every year in October as Halloween approaches, Knotts Berry Farm transforms into “Knott’s Scary Farm” once the sun sets, and becomes the most popular theme park in the entire city. Also, you can visit Knott’s Soak City which is a water park located adjacent to the main park.

Universal Studios Hollywood – This one is different than the others on the list because of its lack of rides. Sure, there are a few rides such as The Simpsons Ride, The Mummy Ride, and the classic Jurassic Park ride, but aside from that, everything else is purely shows and attractions. I only emphasize Universal’s lack of rides so that any first time visitor knows what to expect and isn’t disappointed. However, Universal is still a fun place to visit as you can see where many of your favorite movies and television shows were and currently are filmed. Also, located just outside of the theme park is the famed Universal Citywalk where there is enough to keep you busy for the entire day without even going into the park.