Don’t let the cold weather stop you from having a blast this winter! Learn about the best indoor theme parks to enjoy this season.
It is no secret that theme parks across America are some of the most popular destinations for family vacations. Welcoming millions of Guests from across the country, and even many international travelers eager to enjoy some of the most thrilling roller coasters, fun attractions, exciting entertainment offerings, delicious snacks, and refreshing drinks, and have an overall memorable experience, it’s no wonder why Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Studios Hollywood, Universal Orlando Resort, Knott’s Berry Farm, SeaWorld, Busch Gardens, LEGOLAND, and so many more are fan-favorite destinations for a fun-packed day for the whole family.
While several theme parks have year-round schedules, some theme parks have to close their gates during the winter for several reasons.
Theme parks closing during the winter
While many of us would love to be able to visit our favorite theme park all year round, several theme parks in America have to close their gates during the winter due to low temperatures and extreme weather conditions, which make it not only difficult to operate the theme park and its attractions, but unsafe for Guests and theme park employees, as many rides and attractions could be prone to accidents if operated in low temperatures.
Some theme parks that will close this winter include Worlds of Fun in Kansas City, Missouri, and Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio. Worlds of Fun announced the theme park’s complete cease of operations in November, saying that the Park was eager to welcome Guests again in Spring. Cedar Point closed its gates on October 30, per the Park’s website, though theme park employees continue working hard on the upgrades coming to the Sandusky theme park to have them ready when Cedar Point reopens on May 6, 2023.
Other theme parks like LEGOLAND New York Resort, King’s Island in Cincinnati, Ohio, Holiday World Theme Park in Santa Claus, Indiana, and several Six Flags theme park locations across the Midwest and Northeast are also closing their gates for the winter. Most of these amusement parks have plans to reopen in Spring 2023, welcoming Guests to enjoy all the fun with warmer weather.
However, this doesn’t mean you and your family can’t have fun at an amazing amusement park this winter, as many exciting options remain open year-round. Let us tell you more about them!
Indoor theme parks available this winter
Fortunately for families this winter season, several indoor theme parks across America are open year-round, offering exciting attractions for everyone, fun activities, and more this season.
Northeast indoor theme parks
Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park in American Dream Mall in East Rutherford, New Jersey
Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park is the biggest indoor theme park in the Western Hemisphere, with some of the tallest, steepest, and longest rides in the world. Located within the American Dream Mall complex, along with luxury retail locations, the DreamWorks Water Park, an ice-skating rink, Big Snow — North America’s first and only indoor year-round ski and snow resort —, LEGOLAND Discovery Center, a live aquarium, and so many more experiences to enjoy indoors, Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park is a must-do destination for families this winter.
Some of the attractions at Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park include The Shredder, Sandy’s Blasting Bronco, The Shellraiser, Kraang Prime Pandemonium, Nickelodeon Slime Streak, and Skyline Scream. You can click here to buy tickets and learn more about Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park in American Dream Mall.
iPlay America in Freehold, New Jersey
iPlay America brings the boardwalk on the Jersey Shore inland and blends it with a New York City street, complete with Brownstones and quaint shops in this nearly 4-acre indoor family fun complex. With 11 indoor rides and attractions, a TopGolf Swing Suite, a two-level laser tag experience, and the recent opening of “Ballocity” and “XD Dark Ride,” the amusement park’s latest additions, make iPlay America a perfect alternative for families looking for a fun-packed day.
Attractions at iPlay America include the Kite Flyer, Skyscraper, Reverse Time, and Mini Ferris Wheel, and the complex offers special packages for group events and birthday parties for kids, teens, and adults. You can click here to learn more about iPlay America.
Midwest indoor theme parks
Nickelodeon Universe in Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota
Nickelodeon Universe in Mall of America is the nation’s first indoor Nickelodeon theme park. Like its New Jersey counterpart, it offers unique attractions inspired by famous Nickelodeon characters in seven acres of fun. Along with a live aquarium, mini golf locations, the Crayola Experience, live entertainment, premium retail locations, and so much more, the Nickelodeon Universe in Mall of America is an excellent alternative for all ages.
Some of the attractions Nickelodeon Universe is home to include, Fairly Odd Coaster, Shredder’s Mutant Masher, Spongebob Squarepants Rock Bottom Plunge, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Shell Shock, and Pepsi Orange Streak, among others. You can click here to buy tickets and learn more about Nickelodeon Universe in Mall of America.
Scene75 Entertainment Center in Dayton, Ohio
Scene75 Entertainment Center in Dayton, Ohio, is home to the Tsunami, one of the largest roller coasters in the state, in addition to rides and attractions, mini golf, laser tag, indoor go-karts, a massive arcade, and so much more. Scene75 Entertainment Center has locations across the Midwest, including Dayton, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, and Chicago, representing some of the largest indoor entertainment centers in the country. You can click here to learn more about Scene75 Entertainment Center in Dayton.
Knuckleheads Trampoline and Indoor Amusement Park in Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
Knuckleheads Trampoline and Indoor Amusement Park in Wisconsin Dells is the perfect location for a fun-packed family experience. The indoor amusement park is home to over a dozen exciting attractions, including rides for the whole family, a trampoline park, a full arcade, and cosmic bowling lanes in an 80,000-square-foot indoor entertainment facility. You can click here to learn more about Knuckleheads Trampoline and Indoor Amusement Park.
Tom Foolerys Adventure Park in Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
Tom Foolerys is a 100,000 square feet capital of fun and excitement for the whole family with an unprecedented array of indoor attractions and activities, including rides for the young and young at heart, fun, immersive activities, and even a water park! In addition, Tom Foolerys offers several dining options, suites and villas to stay the night, a spa to pamper yourself, a fitness and training center, and more. You can click here to learn more about Tom Foolerys Adventure Park, a Kalahari Resort.
South indoor theme parks
KidZania USA in Dallas, Texas
Unlike many traditional amusement parks, KidZania offers the chance to play grown-ups. The indoor facility provides an interactive play city where kids can fulfill their dream of becoming a doctor, firefighter, construction worker, news anchor, and so much more. KidZania USA currently has partnerships with 7-Eleven, American Airlines, Bic, Chase, Chobani, Kinder, Pepsi, Spotify, and ABC, helping make the make-believe experiences as fun and life-like as possible. You can click here to learn more about KidZania USA.
Planet Obstacle in Lake Mary, Florida
Planet Obstacle is the largest indoor obstacle park, offering a day full of fun activities, including rope courses and obstacle courses that emulate “American Ninja Warrior,” with options aimed at children and adults alike. Two Cirque du Soleil veterans created the 50,000-square-foot indoor park with the mission to help people achieve their health goals in a way that is exciting and exhilarating while creating memories and having fun. You can click here to learn more about Planet Obstacle.
West indoor theme parks
The Adventuredome in Las Vegas, Nevada
Located at Circus Circus Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, The Adventuredome is home to Canyon Blaster and El Loco, two thrilling roller coasters, and over a dozen fun and exciting attractions, as well as live entertainment, a classic arcade, midway games, mini golf, a laser maze, and an “Xtreme Zone” to test your skills at rock climbing and bungee jumping indoors. You can click here to learn more about The Adventuredome.
Slick City Action Park Denver West in Lakewood, Colorado
Slick City Action Park is the world’s first indoor slide (with no water) and sports court park designed for all ages. With ten attractions, including several different slides, air courts, and a coming rope swing, this “bold, courageous, and audacious” indoor park promises a day packed with fun activities for the whole family. You can click here to learn more about Slick City Action Park.
Triple Play Family Fun Park in Hayden Lake, Idaho
Triple Play Family Fun Park is the owner’s dream come true, as they wanted a wholesome, family-friendly facility where families could spend quality time and play together. The Park currently offers indoor and outdoor attractions, having the ability to provide entertainment all year and in any weather. The facility is home to Triple Play Family Fun Park, Raptor Reef Indoor Waterpark, and the Triple Play Resort Hotel & Suites. You can click here to learn more about Triple Play Family Fun Park.
Multi-location indoor theme parks
LEGOLAND Discovery Centers
LEGOLAND Discovery Centers offers over a dozen locations across America. While each LEGOLAND Discovery Center has different offerings, they all promise a fun-packed day for families with attractions, activities, and displays inspired by LEGO. You can click here to learn about the different LEGOLAND Discovery Center locations and visit the one closest to you!
Great Wolf Logde
Great Wolf Lodge is a chain of indoor water parks with over a dozen locations across America, each of which features restaurants, arcades, spas, children’s activities, and more. You can click here to learn more about the different offerings at each Great Wolf Lodge location and visit the one nearest to you.
Other theme parks open year-round
Carowinds in Charlotte, North Carolina, recently announced that the theme park would adopt a year-round schedule this year, welcoming Guests during the winter season to enjoy the amazing offerings at the Park, including some of its most popular rides and attractions. King’s Dominion in Doswell, Virginia, also announced that the theme park would be open year-round to welcome fans this winter. Both Carowinds and King’s Dominion are owned and operated by Cedar Fair Entertainment Company. Several Six Flags locations in the West and South are also open year-round.
Other theme parks in the South and West remain open year-round as they have no issues with inclement weather during the winter. Some of these include, of course, Disney Parks and Universal Parks.
The holidays are in full bloom at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California, and Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. With mesmerizing decorations across the resorts, unique seasonal entertainment offerings, mouth-watering limited-time drinks and snacks, exclusive merchandise, Disney characters dressed in their holiday best, and so much more, the holidays are definitely a fantastic time to visit Disneyland and Disney World!
Inside the Magic prepared a guide with everything you need to know if you’re planning to visit Disneyland Resort this holiday season, including the Resort’s entertainment offerings, available attractions, seasonal offerings, and more. We also prepared a guide to the holidays at Walt Disney World Resort, with everything available at the Resort’s four theme parks — Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, EPCOT, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando Resort are decked for the holidays with unique offerings like the Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s, Grinchmas, Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and some fan-favorite returning offerings like The Grinch™ & Friends Character Breakfast and Universal’s Holiday Tour at Universal Orlando Resort.
And Guests visiting Universal Studios Hollywood this holiday season will be able to enjoy Grinchmas, Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and the “Biggest New Year’s Eve Celebration” coming to the California theme park this year.
Would you like to give indoor theme parks a try this season? Are you visiting your favorite theme park this winter? Let us know in the comments below!