Philadelphia Theme Parks

June 14, 2019

The region offers plenty of family-friendly theme parks, zoos and aquariums to thrill any age. Here are a few to check out with the family.

zoo in philly
Photo courtesy of the Philadelphia Zoo

The PHILADELPHIA ZOO, America’s first, offers visitors the chance to see animals from a new perspective thanks to Zoo360, a network of elevated pathways where lions, apes and more can roam above the park. Animals are not the only ones who can roam overhead. The Zoo’s latest experience is WildWorks, an aerial adventure with two courses designed for different ages and skill levels.

Photo courtesy of Sesame Place

Just 30 minutes from Center City, SESAME PLACE is the only theme park in the world dedicated to the beloved children’s TV show. Wowing crowds with kid-friendly roller coasters, water rides and amusements, the park recently refreshed its “neighborhood” to celebrate the show’s 50 years. Don’t miss photo ops with characters and an all-new live show with Elmo, Abby and Big Bird.

The Shark Tunnel at Adventure Aquarium photo by C. Schultz.

Explore the ocean and its inhabitants at ADVENTURE AQUARIUM across the Delaware River on the Camden waterfront. Walk through a glass tunnel as dozens of sharks sharks swim through 550,000 gallons of water around you. Adventure Aquarium is home to the largest collection of sharks on the East Coast and the only facility to exhibit a great hammerhead shark in the U.S. Journey to the Amazon through the interactive Piranha Falls exhibit and engage with the playful African penguins. Spot hippos swimming around in the immersive Hippo Haven, the only exhibit of its kind in an aquarium in the world to showcase the enormous semiaquatic mammals.

Photo courtesy of the Crayola Experience

Kids can color their world at the CRAYOLA EXPERIENCE in Easton, Pennsylvania, about an hour from Center City. The crayon-inspired experience has multiple levels of arts and craft fun, including centers where you can melt crayons into sculptures, create spin art designs and make and name your own crayons. New in 2019 is Silly Selfies, where kids can transform photos of themselves into robot unicorns, rockstar parrots and more.

Photo courtesy of Hershey Park.

Make it a day at HERSHEY PARK, a sprawling amusement and water park built around the popular chocolate brand. Just two hours from Center City, the entertainment zone includes thrill rides for all ages, more than 200 animals at ZooAmerica, and Chocolate World, with restaurants, shops and a chocolate-factory ride.

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