Thanks to the generosity of Busch Gardens we were able to experience a great day in Williamsburg, VA. As always, all opinions expressed in this sponsored post are genuine and my very own.
We love to surprise the kids with a kick-off to summer trip every year. This year, some patience was required since all 4 kids finished school on different dates but with the last of the kids out for the summer, we decorated our “summer party minivan” and headed out on another blended family road trip adventure.
Just 3.5 hours away from Raleigh, Busch Gardens amusement park in Williamsburg, Virginia was the perfect destination for the start of family summer fun. It’s no wonder that it’s been named the “World’s Most Beautiful Amusement Park” every year since 1990. The park is gorgeous. It features 134 beautiful acres, walkways and gardens and old-world authentic European flare. The detailed settings enhance your experience as you stroll through the “countries” of England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Germany and Italy. In each, the music changes, as do the culinary and shopping offerings and of course, the themed rides.
We arrived at Busch Gardens in the pouring rain. Fortunately, we enjoyed a brief respite from the storm just as we got off the Italy parking lot tram and decided to try to catch some rides while the rain held. We were so glad we did- we were able to go from ride to ride with an under 5 minute wait time.
Of course, the kids wanted to hit up the coasters first.
•Their first of the day, the Verbolten®, had an indoor track and (spoiler alert) a surprise drop down to make it hand’s down the most unique coaster of the day and a family favorite.
•The InvadR®, the park’s first-ever wooden coaster, was next and proved to be a true family coaster that all of the kids (ages 9 through 16) could enjoy. It had great speed without being too intense but since it’s not a steel coaster, it was also less smooth. Half of the group loved the slightly rickety feel of the ride while the other half found that it made the ride “scarier” than the steel counterparts in the park.
•The Griffon®, one of the world’s tallest and first floorless dive coasters plunged them 205 feet after a 5-6 second pause at the top of the drop at 75 miles per hour and was the one that the older kids and husband were the most proud to conquer. Me? I watched from the safety of the viewing bridge. It was intense and definitely the scariest of them all.
In between the coasters, we enjoyed DaVinci’s Cradle (a weightlessness ride), Der Wirbelwind (a swing ride), Le Catapult (a scrambler ride), Der Roto Baron (a plane ride for the younger set), and the one I can’t ever pass up, a traditional Carousel ride, Kinder Karussel.
I thought the park was the perfect combination of kid and adult friendly. Animals, rides and shows for them- beautiful gardens and views for me and delicious beer offerings plus high adrenaline coasters for him.
After just a few hours the sky opened up again and the heavy rain put a damper on our Busch Gardens fun. Luckily, the wonderful people at guest relations gave us a “rain check” pass to come back and enjoy a full day within the next year.
The roller coasters are really fantastic, the setting beautiful, the staff we interacted with, delightful. We could have easily stayed from opening to close and found enough rides, shows, shopping and food to keep us endlessly entertained and very well fed for a couple of days. We’re so excited to go back!
Plan Your Trip:
Upcoming 2019 events:
•Food & Wine Festival: select days May 17 – June 30
•Summer Nights: June 28 –Aug 11
•Bier Fest: select days Aug. 16 – Sep. 2
•Howl-O-Scream®: select days Sep. 14 – Oct. 27
•The Count’s Spooktacular: select days Oct. 5 – 27
•Christmas Town®: select days Nov. 16 – Jan. 5
•1-Day Ticket – $86.99A/$76.99C; save $12 online
•2-Day Ticket – $109.99 gate price; save $30 when you buy online and visit Busch Gardens Williamsburg and/or Water Country USA for two days.
•3-Day Ticket – $119.99 gate price; save $30 when you buy online and visit Busch Gardens Williamsburg and/or Water Country USA for three days.
•Children (ages 2 and under) FREE- Woot!
Call (757) 229-4386 or visit Busch Gardens Vacations online. They will hook you up with anything from budget to luxury accommodations.