Amusement Park Rides
New rides and attractions at the Delaware Valley's favorite amusement parks.
Summer spells fresh thrills at local amusement parks. Here’s a roundup of the new rides, themed lands and experiences you can expect to find this season at the area's favorite amusement parks, water parks and shore points on a scale of mild to wild to the most extreme.
+ Water Fun!
West Berlin, NJ
Can you dig it? Now in its second year of operation, this construction-themed adventure park introduces the 24th attraction to its lineup. Join your budding builder for a drive along a designated course in the two-seater “Max,” a black-and-yellow 4×4 Utility Terrain Vehicle designed for jobs in construction, farming and military. (pictured above)
Dorney Park and Wildwater Kingdom
Take to the skies inside an “eagle,” suspended 28 feet in the air, with the Cedar Creek Flyers family attraction. As the eagles swing outward and move upward, riders control their flight experience with a personal carriage paddle.
Step into a hot-air balloon for a view of the park from 20 feet in the air on the Bon Voyage Balloon Chase ride. Control the direction and speed of your spinning with a wheel at the center of the balloon.
Mt. Laurel, NJ
Keep an eye out for changes throughout the amusement center this season. New additions will include the indoor Tilt-A-Whirl “Fun-A-Whirl,” the indoor Air Shot ride, a remodeled Go-Kart track and boardwalk-themed midway games.
Celebrate the 35th birthday of this family mainstay all season long. Birthday balloons, inflatable cake and life-sized candles transform the park, and a new birthday float and song has been added to the Neighborhood Birthday Party Parade. Also look out for three new rides — The Count’s Fly By, The Castle Swing and The Count Around — plus a renovated Elmo’s Eatery with table-delivery service.
Egg Harbor Twp., NJ
Let the kids go nuts with Out on a Limb!, the new tree-shaped kids’ swing ride! Don’t miss the custom-made squirrel sitting at the top of the tree.
Seaside Heights, NJ
Dry land sees several additions this season. Putt for a hole in one on the multi-level, 36-hole Mountain Mini Golf course; race for bragging rights on the expanded, extra-twisty Go-Kart track; and hold onto your hats on the Double Shot Drop Tower ride. Then slip and slide over to the pier’s Breakwater Beach Waterpark, where you’ll find a Wave Pool, speed slide and serpentine body slide.
Great Wolf Lodge Pocono Mountains
Got gamers in the family? Introduce them to the new video game/water slide hybrid Slideboarding. Sliders hit corresponding buttons on a special, tech-enabled vehicle as they glide down to compete for high scores on a visible scoreboard; the levels change as the rider improves. For drier fun, join the Clubhouse Crew, where kids make their own stuffed-animal companion to solve a mystery.
Land of Make Believe
Brace yourself for a twist on the classic tower ride with Drop ‘n’ Twist, the amusement park’s latest all-ages thrill ride. After the initial ascent, prepare for the drop — and the spirals and turns you’ll encounter along the way.
King Kong returns to Surfside Pier, this time donning an “I Love Wildwood” shirt, grasping a tramcar and hanging from the 60-feet-tall lighthouse at the center of KONG, an update of the classic 1970s ride. Navigate around the notorious gorilla in a vintage bomber or relax underneath the attraction, where you’ll find charging stations, cozy chairs and a chocolate-covered frozen banana treat. (pictured above)
Escape into the world of funhouses on the Laff Trakk Indoor Coaster, a spinning glow-coaster. Traveling along 1,400 feet of steel track, the coaster whips riders around for a 70-second-long ride with curves, turns, hills, imaginative characters and a hall of mirrors that will make you dizzy. New food options include Moe’s Southwest Grill, the allergen-friendly restaurant The Outpost and the sweet Makin’ Whoopie Pies shop. (pictured above)
Knoebels Amusement Resort
Ready to get topsy-turvy? Meet Impulse, the steel tower roller coaster that marks the first time since 2004 that riders can go upside down at this family staple. The coaster starts with a 98-foot-high chain lift, moves directly into a free-fall drop and reaches speeds of over 55mph as it launches you into loops, rolls and inversions.
Six Flags Great Adventure
On your way to the fan-favorite roller coaster El Toro, don’t skip El Diablo. The bright red looping coaster rockets thrill-seekers in “face-off” seats into a back-and-forth motion before launching them into full revolutions, leaving them temporarily suspended upside down and reversing directions. For more coaster fun, get a new view on a popular ride when Batman: The Ride goes backwards (for a limited time, starting July 4).
Soak Up New Fun
This summer, two brand new indoor waterparks open their doors for family day-trips and getaways in the Poconos. There, all ages (and thrill levels) can make a splash!
Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark
With 13 slides, 7 pools and 2 levels, this brand new water haven (with transparent roof) inside Camelback Mountain Resort is a must-do for the fishes in your family. Ride the Storm Chaser, the longest indoor water coaster in the nation; hang 10 on the Bombora FlowRider, a simulated surfing and boogie-boarding experience; and let the little ones splash in the zero-depth entry pool.
Kalahari Resorts and Conventions
Pocono Manor, PA
Opening in July, the African-themed resort will boast a family entertainment center (think mini-bowling, blacklight mini-golf and virtual reality games), outdoor waterpark and indoor waterpark with retractable roof for any-weather play. There’ll be plenty to splash about: Test your surfing skills; hop on raft rides and speed slides; relax in the Lazy River; shoot water guns; and let the littlest guppies enjoy tyke-sized slides and activities. (pictured above)