United States tours make clear that the entire country is its own theme park. However, if you are looking for something a bit more specific, here are five of the best theme parks America has to offer:
Universal Studios (Orlando, Florida and Hollywood, California)
With American movies beloved the world over, you can enjoy rides and tours based on your favorite movies at either of the Universal Studios theme parks. Regardless of whether United States tours keep on the west or east coast, you can take rides based on Shrek, Harry Potter, the Simpsons, The Mummy, and more. You can also attend shows at either park. The shows can be musicals where you can enjoy hits from movies like the Blues Brothers, or see exciting stunt shows.
Legoland (Carlsbad, California)
Legoland is a diverse theme park based on the classic lego toys. You can see surprisingly accurate lego models of major US cities. There is also an area called the Imagination Zone, where kids can get creative with legos of their own. There are also a variety of rides (including a water park) and shows at this theme park. Many of the rides have rather low height requirements, making it a good choice for families with small children.
Dollywood (Pigeon Forge, Tennessee)
Established by legendary country music star Dolly Parton in the 1980s, this theme park located in the interior of the United States is a real slice of Americana. Each area of this park is based on the culture of Smokey Mountains where it’s located. There is Craftsmen’s Valley, The Country Fair, and Owen’s Farm, just to name a few. All have rides, exhibits, and many, not surprisingly, also have performance theaters. Music has a strong presence in the Appalachian culture celebrated by this park that is reflected in the amusements at Dollywood. In fact, this park is home to the Southern Gospel Museum and Hall of Fame.
Disney World (Florida) and Disneyland (California)
Probably the world’s best known theme parks, each of these parks offer an unseemingly end of rides, attractions, shopping, and shows. Founded by famed animator Walt Disney, these are the “happiest places on Earth” and where your children can meet such classic Disney characters as Snow White, Mickey Mouse, Goofy, and Donald Duck. Because these parks have been around so long, many parents have the joy of taking the rides they first experienced as children with their own children, such as The Matterhorn and It’s a Small World. However, that shouldn’t be taken to mean that these parks are static or relics. Your children will also get to meet newer characters, like the Little Mermaid and Buzz Lightyear. Hosting between 15 and 20 million visitors each year, these parks are models of fun and efficiency.
Busch Gardens (Tampa Bay, Florida)
For the animal lovers, there can be no better theme park to visit than Busch Gardens in Florida. In addition to rides and shows, there are a variety of live animal attractions. From safaris to tropical birds, most provide opportunities to interact with the animals.