A warm summer night at an NJ amusement park with your kiddos, perched atop a Ferris wheel, snackin’ on some funnel cake—does it get any better? This summer is prime season for trips to the amusement park, and our state has some seriously great options for thrills (including the world’s tallest and fastest single-rail roller coaster) for every age. Whether it’s screaming at the top of your lungs on a coaster or taking a tame spin with your toddler, NJ amusement parks have it all. Scroll down to find one that fits your family, and if you want thrills wet, these waterparks in NJ will not disappoint. (featured photo credit: American Dream Mall – Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park)
Get ready to ride at one of NJ’s amusement parks
Six Flags Great Adventure
Six Flags Great Adventure is Jersey’s biggest theme park, with a ton of rides, a safari, and a waterpark. Since the 1970s, the park has been upping the thrills for all those adrenaline-seekers with new coasters and attractions, including the Jersey Devil, the world’s tallest, fastest and longest single-ride coaster. Beyond the awesome thrills, there’s also plenty to do for little ones with kiddie rides, Looney Tunes character shows, an arcade, and family rides that you can all do together. The 350-acre Six Flags Wild Safari Drive-Thru Adventure offers a chance to see some 1,200 animals from six continents like elephants, rhinos, and giraffes. On a hot day, head over to Hurricane Harbor for tons of slides and splashes to kick back and cool off.
1 Six Flags Blvd. Jackson, NJ 08527
Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park
Step into the biggest indoor theme park in the Western Hemisphere with some of the steepest, tallest, and longest rides in the world. Your little ones will love Blaze’s Monster Truck Rally, Pup Pup and Away! and Shimmer and Shine’s Jumping Genies ride at Nickelodeon Universe. Or, if you are looking for more family-friendly rides, check out the Rugrats Reptar Go-Round, SpongeBob’s Jellyfish Jam, or the Bikini Bottom Crosstown Express. If your kiddos want more thrills, there are rides like the Skyline Scream, The Shredder, and Aang’s Air Gliders to bring their excitement to the next level. And if you are lucky, you might even meet your favorite characters like Blue’s Clues, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and SpongeBob Squarepants while exploring the park.
1 American Dream Way, East Rutherford, NJ 07073
DreamWorks Water Park
Experience the largest indoor waterpark in North America at American Dream in East Rutherford. Enjoy summer all year long inside an 81-degree tropical climate. Freefall down the Jungle Jammer, or if you are feeling brave, take a ride down the Mad Flush slide. The Kungfu Panda Temple of Awesomeness is the perfect multi-level play structure to keep your little one entertained with geysers, dump cups, and the enormous tipping bucket in the world (yes, the world!). If your kiddo would rather hang ten, there is a place for private Dream Surf Sessions, or boogie board in 1.6 million gallons of water in the world’s biggest indoor wave pool.
1 American Dream Way, East Rutherford, NJ 07073
Morey’s Piers comprises 3 piers, packed with rides and activities for all ages, set on the Wildwood boardwalk. This park is a perennial favorite (dating back to 1969) and one of the shore’s biggest and best boardwalk amusement parks. Morey’s has a bit of everything, from the petite boats, planes, and kid-sized race cars the littles love to a 140-foot drop tower that gets the big kids’ hearts pounding. For some wet and wild fun in the sun, check out Morey’s two water parks—Ocean Oasis Water Park and Beach Club and Raging Waters Water Park.
3501 Boardwalk, Wildwood, NJ 08260
iPlay America is a large indoor amusement park in New Jersey, featuring a different experience in thrills and fun. With all kinds of rides (even a roller coaster), laser tag, ropes course, go-karts, a 4D theater, and carnival-inspired games, a visit here will be a day to remember. Take on your kiddos in a game of whac-a-mole or putt around in the new Top Golf Swing Suite before a round of mini-bowling and some pizza or sweets at one of iPlay’s seven restaurant options.
110 Schanck Road, Freehold, NJ 07728
Every summer, the Seaside Heights boardwalk is filled with locals and tourists flocking to Casino Pier for rides and fun overlooking the Atlantic. After the damage from Sandy, Casino Pier has slowly rebuilt itself and adds new attractions each year. Littles will go crazy for the Mermaid Parade, Elephant Express, Crazy Cabs, and Centrifuge. Of course, don’t miss the classic favorites like the swings, bumper cars, or tilt-a-whirl. Breakwater Beach, the water park next door, has a giant wave pool and plunging slides into making a splash with the family.
800 Ocean Terrace, Seaside Heights, NJ 08751
Fantasy Island Amusement Park
Located in the heart of Beach Haven, Fantasy Island Amusement Park is an intimate amusement park that is perfect for your little cuties on your visit to Long Beach Island. It’s geared toward mostly younger kids, but there are still rides that older ones will enjoy, not to mention a massive indoor arcade. Your littles will love the vintage-style carousel, designed like the old carousels from the 1900s. With great kiddie rides, fun games, a little mini-coaster, and an ice cream shop right inside, a night at Fantasy Island is the stuff of summer family memories.
320 Seventh St., Beach Haven, NJ 08008
With locations in East Hanover and Mount Laurel, The Funplex is an indoor-outdoor theme park that offers dozens of arcade games, rides, go-karts, laser tag, and a water park. Bonus—at the Mount Laurel location, you can bowl under fun lights, jammin’ music, and a big-screen TV. The Funplex has special events all year round, and don’t miss the Splashplex Water Park at both the Mount Laurel and East Hanover locations.
3320-24 Route 38, Mt. Laurel, NJ 08054
182 Route 10 West, East Hanover, NJ 07936
Located in Egg Harbor Township, Storybook Land has been keeping children’s imagination’s going for ages. Not only is it entertaining for your littles, but it’s educational too. Your family can journey through classic stories that have lived on through the ages of time, from your parents’ generation to your kids. A few favorites include Snow White & the Seven Dwarves, Mother Goose, and Little Red Riding Hood. While there are many walk-through displays to visit, there are tons of themed rides, too—like the Beanstalk Bounce and the Out-on-a-Limb swings.
6415 Black Horse Pike, Egg Harbor Township, NJ 08234
Land of Make Believe
Land of Make Believe is all about, well—making believe and using your imagination. The goal of this family theme park is that adults and parents would no longer be “passive spectators” but rather have just as much fun as their kids. It’s an amusement park in a charming setting as well as an award-winning water park. From tilt-a-whirls to a thrilling roller coaster, there’s fun around every corner. Play boardwalk games, make your way through mazes, and visit the World War II Airplane Cockpit.
354 Great Meadows Rd., Rt. 611, Hope, NJ 07844
Field Station: Dinosaurs
Are you ready to come face-to-face with a T-Rex right here in the Garden State? Though not a traditional ride-based amusement park, this spot is where modern science and prehistoric dinosaurs come together in New Jersey and entertains dino lovers and their families. Kids will get their thrills embarking on a wild scientific expedition to see over 30 life-size, realistic, and moving dinosaurs. Don’t miss fun workshops and competitions, including the Backyard Fossil Hunter, DinosOrigami, or visit the Fossil Dig Site. You can also check out shows like the T-Rex Feeding Frenzy or the Field Station Challenge.
40 Fort Lee Road, Leonia, NJ 07605
Can you dig it? There is no better place for your little construction lover to drive, ride, and operate specifically engineered real machines than at Diggerland in West Berlin. Take the heavy-duty steel off-road Roxor off-road, learn how to use a 7,092-pound big digger, or dig up treasure with the mini-dig. Your little ones will also enjoy the turnpike tractors, skid steers, and dumper trucks. And if the temps are heating up, don’t miss The Water Main, a construction-themed water park on-site with plenty of places to soak, swim, and slide.
100 Pinedge Drive, West Berlin, NJ 08091
Wild West City
Howdy partner! Take a step back to the Wild West, all while never leaving Stanhope, New Jersey. Experience Dodge City, Kansas, in the 1800s with demonstrations, dramatizations, and historical characters at Wild West City. While you are there, don’t miss the authentic Main Street buildings, the Native American art and artifacts, and Wild West City Stagecoach. Take a ride on the train or a pony, learn how to pan for gold, or learn all about the printing press to see how they created newspapers decades ago. But, don’t make a wrong move, or you’ll end up in the circa 1890 jail cell.
50 Lackawanna Drive, Stanhope, NJ 07874
Other NJ amusement parks:
Steel Pier in Atlantic City
Playland’s Castaway Cove in Ocean City
Jenkinson’s Boardwalk in Point Pleasant
Gillian’s Wonderland Pier in Ocean City
Keansburg Amusement Park & Runaway Rapids in Keansburg
Which NJ Amusement Parks are on your bucket list? We would love to hear more in the comments below.
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