12/01/2011 06:20 pm ET Updated Jan 01, 2012

Amusement Parks In Philadelphia: A Huffington Post Travel Guide

Amusement parks in Philadelphia have a magical mix of thrill and character. From chocolate factory tours to the tallest coaster in the world, Philadelphia offers some of the most charming (and famous) amusement parks in the World. As part of a Huffington Post Travel series on family-fun parks, here is our guide to all the key information visitors need to know about Philadelphia amusement parks.

Hershey Park and Chocolate World

The famously delicious American chocolate company is the namesake brand of Milton S. Hershey, a generous and philanthropic man born and raised in central Pennsylvania. His chocolate factory and legacy live on in Hershey's Chocolate world, home of Hershey Park and the Hershey Factory. Hershey Park offers over 60 rides, interactive tours of the chocolate factory and a summer amphitheater concert series.

58-Second Thrill

Storm Runner was the first hydraulic coaster to feature inversions. This 58-second ride is for those looking for an aggressive thrill. Lines will be shorter toward the beginning of the day before the park fills up.

Interact With Characters

In addition to a number of scream-inducing roller coasters and plenty of kid-friendly rides, Hershey chocolate bar and candy characters can be seen strolling around the park, interacting with visitors. Hershey Park also features 11 award-winning musicals and shows.

Food For The Family

Hershey Park offers a number of food options for the family. It has both vegetarian and gluten-free options as well as a breakfast with the Hershey's characters and Turkey Hill Ice Cream products, combo meal packs and picnic lunches.

Safety Record

Our research revealed no notable news reports of accidents or safety issues at Hershey Park.

Address: 100 W. Hersheypark Drive, Hershey, PA 17033
Phone: 1-800-HERSHEY
Hours: The park's hours vary. Please check the website for more information.
Price: Ages 9 to 54, $53.95; ages 3 to 8 and ages 55 to 69, $32.95; ages 70 and older, $21.95; children 2 and younger, free.

Six Flags Great Adventure

Six Flags Great Adventure is a bona fide adventure land for all ages. Living up to its reputation for housing some of the most intense thrill rides on the East Coast, Great Adventure is home to the tallest and fastest roller coaster in the world: Kingda Ka. Apart from the scream machines, Great Adventure offers several Looney Tunes-themed rides for little ones, pop concerts for teens and a variety of food and shopping locations for those who just want to relax.

Fastest In North America

Kingda Ka is the tallest and fastest roller coaster in North America. It zooms from zero to 128 miles per hour in three and a half seconds using a hydraulic launch, subsequently catapulting its passengers 45 stories into the air at a 90-degree angle. Weightlessness ensues during the following 90-degree plummet. Closed eyes won't do much to lessen the fright -- this is not a ride for the faint of heart!

Go Looney

Great Adventure not only offers "every kind of ride for every kind of rider," but also meet-and-greets with the wandering Looney Tunes characters, kids karaoke shows and dozens of shops to explore. Next door is Wild Safari, a 350-acre wildlife preserve which is the largest drive-through safari outside of Africa, and across the street is Hurricane Harbor, a 45-acre tropical water park.


There's no shortage of munchies and meals at Great Adventure. From Ben and Jerry's ice cream to Johnny Rocket's burgers and shakes, from cheesesteak to pizza and fresh salads, there's something for even the pickiest eater in your group. Individual and group meal deals are also available.

Safety Record

In 2004, lightning struck a power substation nearby Great Adventure, causing the park to lose power. Twenty passengers were left hanging 75 feet above the ground for 40 minutes. No passengers were injured. There have been no incidences of ride equipment being operated inadequately.

Address: 1 Six Flags Boulevard, Jackson, NJ 08527
Phone: 732-928-1821
Hours: The park is open weekdays from 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. and weekends from 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Price: Adults, $59.99; children under 54 inches, $36.99; ages 2 and younger, free. Tickets to Wild Safari are $11.99, added to the cost of a general admission ticket.

Other Noteworthy Parks Near Philadelphia

Sesame Place
Dutch Wonderland
Keansburg Amusement Park
Morey's Piers

What's your favorite attraction at Hershey Park and Chocolate World?

Check out more AMUSEMENT PARKS.