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La Jolla Mom

10 Best Knott’s Berry Farm Rides That You Can’t Miss

All ages have options at this California theme park

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Small enough to get through in a day, but big enough to have a lineup of coasters that would make any theme park proud, Knott’s Berry Farm is packed with fun for the whole family. Kids adore the Snoopy and Peanuts theming and pint-size Knott’s Berry Farm rides, while thrillseekers line up for massive drops and turns.

New and planned attractions highlight how well this hidden gem of a park stands up to the major players in the area in addition to being featured on our list of best California theme parks.

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Timber Mountain Log Ride

Height restriction: 48″ but smaller kids can ride with adults (see below)
Ride type: Log ride

Timber Mountain is a Knott's Berry Farm log ride that guests, like these splashing down the mountain, love.
Photo courtesy of Knott’s Berry Farm

One of the park’s most popular and enduring rides, this Knott’s Berry Farm log ride is fun for the whole family. You’ll journey back in time to the days of the old frontier as you ride through scenic woods and old fashioned lumber mill settings. You’ll have time to admire the scenery until you hit one of the ride’s famous drops. 

Height restrictions vary, so families can ride together. Kids as small as 36″ can ride as long as they are with an adult, and can ride independently if they are 48″ or taller. The Knott’s Berry Farm log ride has been around long enough that many of the adults visiting now (like me) once rode as children making it a nostalgic choice for the whole family. 


Ghost Rider

Height restriction: 48″
Ride type: Roller coaster

Guests hurl down the wooden track on Ghost Rider at Knott's Berry Farm.
Photo courtesy of Knott’s Berry Farm

The longest, tallest and swiftest coaster in the park — and on the California coast — the Ghost Rider is a must-see for any thrill seeker. This is a wood coaster, a model that is getting increasingly difficult to find as coaster styles shift to more modern materials and technology. The wood makes for a robust and thrilling experience with true authenticity. Coaster enthusiasts travel from all over the world to ride wood coasters, and Ghost Rider is a popular destination for coaster aficionados. 

At almost 5,000 feet long, Ghost Rider is also one of the lengthiest rides in the park. Arrive early to make sure you can experience ghost rider with a minimal wait time. 55 miles per hour is Ghost Rider’s top speed, but with plenty of twists and turns and an impressive drop, most people consider this to be one of Knott’s Berry Farm’s crowning achievements. 

Give yourself plenty of time to explore Knott’s Berry Farm — from the thrills of Ghost Rider and the Xcelerator to the traditional fun of the Huff and Puff mine carts and the family-friendly Knott’s Berry Farm log ride. Learning about the best rides and attractions at Knott’s Berry Farm before you leave home makes it easy to create a touring plan that includes all the highlights you won’t want to miss. You’ll also discover some hidden gems along the way. 


Pony Express

Height restriction: 48″
Ride type: Roller coaster

An empty Pony Express roller coaster on the track at Knott's Berry Farm.
METRO96 [CC BY-SA]

This fun coaster is noteworthy not for its track, which is fairly tame, but for the pony-style ride vehicle that elevates the ordinary track to an extraordinary experience. The best part of this ride is the beginning, when riders are launched from the gate at about 38 miles per hour, and whipped into a series of twists and turns.

With a high point of 44 feet and plenty of thrills, this is a good ride to use to gauge how well a new rider does on a roller coaster before trying one of the larger, faster rides in the park. The unconventional seating makes this coaster something truly special.


Jaguar!

Height restriction: 48″
Ride type: Mild roller coaster

The Jaguar! roller coaster at Knott's Berry Farm.
The Phoenix Enforcer at en.wikipedia [CC BY-SA] — cropped and brightened

This family-friendly coaster slinks through the Fiesta section of the park, roaring as it soars through the air and glides along the 2500 foot track. Jaguar! is one of the park’s older coasters, and one that has stood the test of time well.

Jaguar! has an old-school, long train that does not have a lot of sudden twists or dropped. The fun here is a combination of the ride itself and its interaction with the nearby Montezooma’s revenge; the trains often pass one another closely, thrilling riders on both attractions.


Montezooma’s Revenge

Height restriction: 48″
Ride type: Roller coaster

A roller coaster car navigates the upside-down loop on Montezooma's Revenge.
Flickr/rollercoasterphilosophy

Having grown up in Orange County, I’ve ridden Montezooma’s Revenge more times than I can count. Back then, it and the Corkscrew (which has since been replaced) were the top Knott’s Berry Farm rides for thrill-seekers.

Montezooma’s Revenge is the granddaddy of all the roller coasters in the park and features some moves that are becoming increasingly rare as coaster design changes. This is a launched coaster, so it shoots from the starting point with a burst of speed – the setup is similar to the more extreme Xcelerator, located elsewhere in the park.

You’ll get some air on both of the track’s towering hills. At 148 feet, Montezooma’s Revenge features some of the highest peaks in the park. Montezooma’s Revenge also features a full loop — combined with lap bar style seating and restraints — this makes for an experience any thrill-seeker will love.


Xcelerator

Height restriction: 52″
Ride type: Roller coaster

A car about to go down a very steep drop on the track of Xcelerator roller coaster at Knott's Berry Farm.
Photo courtesy of Knott’s Berry Farm

Looking for a true thrill ride? If the rocket launch start of the Xcelerator doesn’t impress you, not much else will. You’ll go from 0 to 82 miles per hour in under three seconds when the Xcelerator launches; the site of this launch alone sends some guests scurrying for the exit. Take a moment to enjoy the hot rod style cars and styling of this impressive ride. You won’t be able to see much of them once the ride begins and you’re cruising at 80 mph. 

Those who brave the Xcelerator are in for more than just a rocket-fast beginning, with a 200-foot high point (a top hat) and a thrilling 90-degree drop that will take your breath away. Make sure you head for this ride early in the day; only a single train can run at a time, so the wait time will be longer as the day progresses. 


La Revolucion

Height restriction: 48″
Ride type: Spinner

La Revolucion looks like a fast-spinning Ferris wheel with the wheel part swinging from horizontal to vertical.
METRO96 [CC BY-SA] via Wikimedia Commons

Not all Knott’s Berry Farm rides for thrill-seekers are coasters. La Revolucion packs an amazing punch and is impressive enough that lines are always short — there are often more people waiting for riders than actually boarding the ride. La Revolucion combines the best of several traditional theme park rides, with the swinging motion of a gondola (the park also has a dedicated gondola ride) and a spinner. 

Guests ride in a seated position; La Revolucion twists, turns and soars for several minutes. La Revolution is as thrilling as it looks, and if you have a sensitive stomach, ride this one before (not after) a big meal. 


Silver Bullet

Height restriction: 54″
Ride type: Roller coaster

Photo courtesy of Knott’s Berry Farm

With a whopping six inversions, the Silver Bullet delivers one of the smoothest and most thrilling experiences in the park. This is a suspended coaster, so you can’t see the track, even during the rolls and inversions, adding a touch of the unexpected to an already stunning experience.

Silver Bullet has one of the tallest height restrictions in the park, so even kids who can go on other coasters might have to skip this one. At 55 miles per hour and with a daring track, this is one of the longest rides in the park, and a must-do for any visitor. 


Linus Launcher

Height restriction: 42″
Ride type: For young kids but adults can ride

METRO96 [CC BY-SA] via Wikimedia Commons

There are several fun Peanuts-themed rides in the park, but the Linus Launcher is the most appealing and the easiest for adults to ride. You’ll lie down in an inverted ride vehicle themed like Linus’ blanket. Once everyone is on board, you’ll soar through the air. It’s a gentle ride, but an unusual seating arrangement and viewpoint, so it’s perfect for riders of all ages. A generous height restriction means even younger kids can board and enjoy.

Linus Launcher is just one part of a larger zone called Camp Snoopy. If you’re traveling with kids, Camp Snoopy is a don’t miss section of Knott’s Berry Farm. Packed with familiar kid-style rides, including those with swings, spinners, and other traditional models and adorned with an immersive Snoopy and Peanuts theme, this area will keep the youngest members of your party entertained for hours.

Note that some rides in Camp Snoopy are sized for small riders so larger adults may feel a bit cramped. Linus Launcher is the exception as even tall guests can fit easily into these oversized carriages. 


Huff and Puff

Height restriction: Under 52″
Ride type: Car race for young kids

One of the most unusual and enduring Knott’s Berry Farm kids’ rides, this one runs on pure energy. Perfect for days where you’ve had a little too much sugar and cotton candy, kids can burn off energy on these pint-size mining cars. Kids by themselves sit in petite vehicles that are on a fixed track and they push and pull a lever to get them to move. It may look tiring to you, but this is one of the top attractions for kids in the park. 

Note that Huff and Puff has a height restriction. You must be under 52″ to ride or you’ll just be too big to fit the mining car. Kids that want to drive the bumper cars but are not allowed to will adore these self-powered vehicles. Try them before you leave to ensure the smallest members of your party sleep well when you head home. 


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Photo courtesy of Knott’s Berry Farm

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