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18 Parent Tips for Traveling with Kids to Busch Gardens

January 10, 2018
Our Parent Panel shares their advice on how to keep those faces smiling.

How do you ensure your kids have FUN during your visit to Busch Gardens® Williamsburg? We asked our Parent Panel to share some insights for making it the BEST DAY EVER. This panel consists of real-life, honest-to-goodness parents just like you, including our own Team Member parents and bloggers. Read these tips before you pack your bags for the day. You’ll find important information about what to bring, where to eat, how to save a little money and which kid-friendly rides and attractions you won’t want to miss.


The Recipe for Smiling Faces

We know that a successful day out of the house with little ones always requires some planning ahead. A trip to the park is no exception. From cost-effective snacks to tools for keeping hands clean, here are some tips on what to bring to the park to keep kids happy.

In the warmer seasons, let your kids splash about in our play areas

1. Plan to Get Wet

Put the kids’ swimsuits on before you leave, and once you get to the park head straight to the water play areas. It is easier to change them into dry clothes for the rest of the day.

Tennis shoes will help keep little feet from getting sore

2. Appropriate Footwear

Wear tennis shoes, it’s a long walk for those little feet and helps prevent accidental trips from flip flops.

Take the tram from our parking lots to the Front Gate Entrance

3. Getting on the Tram

Don’t worry about folding down your stroller to get on the tram, Busch Gardens’ Team Members will help get it on and off (as long as you take your child out first).

Check out our Height Check Stations to see which rides your kids can enjoy

4. Show Your Colors

Get measured at the Height Check Station so the kids already know what they can ride. (Saves a lot of drama in going up to a ride that they then can’t ride).

Meet Sesame Street friends at Sesame Street Forest of Fun

5. Where To Go First

Busch Gardens staggers the village opening times. We find it best to arrive when the park opens and start with Sesame Street® Forest of Fun since that area opens first.

Land of the Dragons is one of our kid-friendly play areas

6. More Kid-Friendly Fun

Go to Land of the Dragons® first to beat the crowds.

See the park at a new height on the Skyride

7. Rest Your Feet

The Skyride is a must to keep little feet happy.

Stop by Grogan's Grill in Ireland for a bite to eat

8. Need a Break from the Heat?

Grab a meal at O' Taters, then walk over to Grogan’s Pub to eat - nice and cool, room for the kids to move around and parents can get a tasty adult beverage as well.

Our scrambler ride is great for parents and kids

9. Ride with Your Kids

Make sure you check out the “bigger” rides that you can ride with your kids such as Le Scoot and Le Catapult. These are great rides for the more adventurous kid that isn’t tall enough for the coasters.

Take a ride down our log flume in New France

10. Thrill-Seeking Kids

For kids that aren’t quite big enough for the coasters but want a thrill, they should ride Le Scoot log flume. The drop from the saw mill is very coaster-ish.

Get pretzels and beer at Beste Brezeln und Bier

11. Pretzel Snacks

Every kid wants snacks; the popcorn buckets that you can bring each time for refills is great, but sometimes you just want a change. Pretzels & Beer (Beste Brezeln und Bier) offers homemade pretzel bites and chips. The chips are great, as they last a little longer, and can be nibbled on as you traverse the park.

Play games at Oktoberfest Games

12. Kid-Friendly Games

Play the KIDsiderate® games in Oktoberfest for a guaranteed win.

Get soaked on Escape from Pompeii's splash bridge

13. How To Get Drenched

Want another way to cool off after a long hot day? Escape from Pompeii® splash bridge. Bring a change of clothes for the car ride home or use the family dryer.

Enjoy many selections at Marco Polo's Marketplace

14. Picky eaters?

Variety at Marco Polo’s Marketplace is sure to meet your family’s needs.

Eat pizza at La Cucina

15. Pizza and Pasta

Pizza is a must for my little one. She enjoys the pasta and pizza at La Cucina and loves the pizza-style desserts.

Elephant Run is a great attraction to ride with your kids

16. Don’t forget about Festa Italia

This section can be easily missed and has great kid-friendly attractions, such as Elephant Run and Turkish Delight (aka Tea Cups).

Visit Busch Gardens again and again

17. Save on Popcorn

For those that are planning on coming multiple times, the popcorn refill bucket is a great deal! You can bring the bucket back with you every time you come for a cheap snack for your kids. And let’s face it, what kid doesn’t like popcorn.

Endulge in funnel cake for a sweet theme park treat

18. One Last Sweet Treat

Stop in England on your way out for Dippin’ Dots® or a tasty funnel cake as a last hurrah.

Take turns riding with your children with Child Swap. One parent can wait with the child who is not riding while the family boards and rides. After they exit the ride, the remaining parent can board the next available seat.