When's the last time you visited Elitch Gardens Theme & Water Park? As a teenager, this iconic amusement park was one of my favorite places to go in the summer. Now as a mom, it's one of my favorite places to take my own kids!
Located in the heart of Denver, Elitch Gardens is the perfect destination for family fun in 2018. The park is open now through October 28th and this season is packed with events for everyone, including stunning fireworks extravaganzas, a free summer concert series, and dive-in movies.
Elitch Gardens features over 50 attractions including pint-sized adventures, thrilling roller coasters, and an entire water park. Don’t miss last year’s new additions, the 17-story Star Flyer and the exceedingly fast Mega Wedgie waterslide.
If you've got little ones, Kiddieland features more than a dozen attractions suitable for the younger set. Many are miniature versions of the adults rides. Parents can ride with their kids on a few of the rides but most are made for little tikes only. In other areas of the park, you'll find several more rides suitable for families, like the giant Ferris wheel and Ghost Blasters.
Tweens and teens will flip their lids (LITERALLY!) on thrill rides galore! From a 200-foot drop on the Tower of Doom to soaring 17 stories in the air on the Star Flyer, there are more than enough adrenaline-inducing rides to keep your heart thumping and your blood pumping at a rapid pace all day. The Mind Eraser, a hanging roller coaster that travels more than 50 MPH is one of our personal favorites!
PRO TIP: Although I still love thrill rides, my body can't take it like it used to. I usually take a medication to prevent motion sickness, like Dramamine. I didn't need it in my younger days but now ...
For the best value, I recommend visiting on a hot day so you can also enjoy Island Kingdom Water Park. Island Kingdom is open daily through Labor Day weekend (weather permitting) from 10:30 AM–6:00 PM, and entrance to the water park is included with your admission. From a lazy river and a wave pool to exciting water slides, there's enough to keep you cool all day!
Everyone entering the park must pay the full admission, so go with another family if you've got younger kids. One set of parents can hang out in Kiddieland or Island Kingdom while the other set enjoys some of the grown-up rides; switch places after a couple of hours. If your kids are older like mine, prepare to burn calories trying to keep up as you run from one side of the park to the other. All. Day. Long!
Know Before You Go:
- Parking is $20 per day; season parking passes are $50.
- Elitch Gardens is located in downtown Denver, so prepare for evening traffic. The Light Rail is an affordable and convenient option.
- Purchase your tickets online to save a significant amount of money (up to $20 per ticket) and time. There is a $5.99 processing fee per order.
- Season passes are still available and are still a great value if you plan to visit at least twice this season. But plan for next year ... the earlier you buy and activate your season pass, the more perks you get, like free parking all season, free souvenir cups, bring-a-friend tickets, and more!