This post about Knoebels Amusement Park is part of our summer Travel Thursday series.
My husband grew up going to the Knoebels Amusement Park in Elysburg, PA. We have been visiting as a family yearly since 2009. Knoebels Amusement Park grew out of a picnic grove and campground and still offers open access from the adjacent campground. Today they offer many rides, shows, a swimming pool, mini-golf, and more. Knoebels is FREE to visit – no parking charge, no park admission, and free shows. Tickets are required for the rides with unlimited wristbands available on certain days and times.
Knoebel’s offers a wide variety of rides with a few roller coasters, thrill rides, water rides, family rides, and kids rides.
Knoebels has several coasters:
- two wooden coasters
- Flying Turns, a Bobsled coaster,
- Impulse a steel coaster
- Kozmo’s Kurves family coaster.
Of these, my favorite is Flying Turns which finally opened in late 2013 after starting construction in 2006 and encountering problems with the ride vehicles in subsequent years.
Knoebels offers several other thrill rides such as the StratosFear a 148′ drop tower, Fandango a spinning pendulum ride, and Looper a spinning hamster cage style ride. Knoebels also features a ride-through Haunted House that is perennial voted a top 10 favorite by Dark Ride and Funhouse Enthusiasts.
Knoebels has two water rides. Skloosh is a large boat ride that creates a giant tidal wave that is sure to soak you (particularly if you stand on the observation bridge). The Giant Flume is a traditional log flume ride that offers a slightly less wet experience.
Knoebels offers more than 25 kiddie rides. Their kiddie rides include some unique rides like the Hand Cars and the Sky Slide. Some of these rides allow adults, so taller kids who like calmer rides have options as well.
Other Knoebels Attractions
Knoebels is more than just rides. They also have a few history areas, a swimming pool, mini-golf, and shows.
Knoebels has their spring fed Crystal Pool, a Kiddie Pool, and 4 slides. The Crystal Pool has is a zero entry pool that includes playground like slides and diving boards. The Kiddie Pool offers fountains, waterfalls, water guns, and kiddie slides for young kids. There are 4 large water slides in the pool area. There are 2 Slide Winders, tube slides that wind down the hill, and 2 Twister Slides, mat slides that include a tube section and then a large drop
The 18 hole Mini-Golf course is nice because it is shaded. It also opens earlier than the rides allowing you to get an earlier start on your day.
Getting to Knoebels
Knoebels is located in Elysburg, Pennsylvania about 20 minutes south of I-80 at the Buckhorn Exit 232 – Route 42. It is about a 7 hour drive from Ann Arbor.
Park Hours vary by the day. For most of the summer, the rides are open from 11a-10p except Sunday when they close at 9p.
There is no admission fee or parking charge at Knoebels. There are two options for rides, individual tickets or Pay One Price Wristbands. Individual Tickets are available in $0.25 increments, but can be bought at a discount on weekdays or sometimes at local grocery stores. We have made a stop at a grocery store on our way in to buy tickets. Tickets do not expire and can be saved from year to year.
Ride all day wristbands are typically available any time except weekends from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day Weekend. We usually opt for a wristband for our daughter and tickets to cover the adults since we don’t ride as many things or may take turns riding with her. Wristband prices are based on height (under 48″ is discounted) and are available to purchase with or without the wooden coaster option. The Pool and Haunted Mansion are not included with the wristband.
Admission to the pool is based on age with a discounted rate for ages 2-11. You can buy admission just to the pool or the pool and slides. You can also buy individual tickets for the slides.
Knoebels Camp Ground offers camp sites for tent camping, RV camping, and Cozy Cottages for rent by the week. There are also Bed and Breakfasts nearby and hotels in the Buckhorn area. My husband has stayed in the campground when he was younger. My mother-in-law in only 45 minutes away so we stay at her house and drive in for the day.
Knoebels offers a number of dining options. We enjoy the Alamo, their sit-down restaurant and usually have either lunch or dinner there on our trip. We usually buy a whole pizza for lunch with one or two people placing the order and waiting on the pizza while the others take our daughter on rides until the food is available.