26 Best Theme Parks in North Carolina

Okay, forget the glossy brochures and fake smiles. Let’s get real about the best theme parks in North Carolina…

Think big crowds, overpriced snacks, and rides that might be older than you are. But hey, there’s a weird kind of magic in that too, right?

Insider tip: If crowds make you want to scream, smaller parks can be a lifesaver. We’re talking shorter lines, cheaper food, and sometimes even a retro vibe that’ll take you back to your own childhood.

Listen, these places aren’t perfect – they’ll hit your wallet hard, and let’s just say the bathrooms aren’t always a highlight. But if you want a day of letting loose, making memories (and maybe some hilarious mistakes), North Carolina’s theme parks won’t disappoint.


Carowinds in North Carolina

Carowinds: it’s like a shot of pure chaos, right on the border of the Carolinas. Screaming coasters cut through the air, the smell of funnel cake fuels your adrenaline rush, and the crowd’s energy is infectious. If this sounds like your kind of party, Carowinds awaits.

Love those drops that make your stomach flip? They have those.

Got little ones? They’ll lose their minds in the kiddie zones.

LocationCharlotte, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsFury 325, Carolina Harbor Waterpark, Planet Snoopy, Afterburn, Copperhead Strike
MapCarowinds Map

But let’s be real: Carowinds isn’t about tranquility. Expect long lines, especially if you hit it on a popular day.

Food isn’t going to win any awards, either. None of that matters when you’re hurtling down a coaster at top speed, though.

Insider tips:

  • Forget weekends – hit Carowinds mid-week for way less hassle.
  • Bring your own water bottle and snacks. Trust me, your wallet will thank you.
  • WinterFest is a hidden gem. Think smaller crowds and tons of festive lights.

Santa’sLand Fun Park & Zoo

Santa'sLand Fun Park & Zoo in North Carolina

Santa’sLand Fun Park & Zoo is a festive and exciting place located in Cherokee, North Carolina. This themed park brings joy to children and adults with a unique blend of amusement park rides, outdoor wildlife exhibits, and the ever-so-magical Santa Claus village.

LocationCherokee, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsSanta’s Village, Zoo, Fun Rides, Picnic Area, Paddle Boats, Magic Show
MapSanta’sLand Fun Park & Zoo Map

Perfect for a family day out, kids would be thrilled to meet the cheerful Santa, the friendly zoo animals, and enjoy the variety of exhilarating rides. The picnic area by the paddle boats adds a perfect spot for a family lunch with a breathtaking view of the surrounding mountains. Beyond families, adults seeking a nostalgic return to their childhood Christmas joy will also find this festive park a delight.

The park is open from May to October making the summer months the best time to visit. But, to truly experience the magic of Santa’sLand, consider timing your visit around the Christmas in July event. Get ready to create lasting memories filled with laughter, fun, and a sprinkle of holiday spirit even in the middle of the year!

Lions Water Adventure

Lions Water Adventure in North Carolina

Lions Water Adventure isn’t going to win any awards for being fancy. But there’s something special about this place. Maybe it’s the friendly staff or the surprisingly fast slides. If you’re up for an adventure, you might just discover its hidden charm.

LocationKinston, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsLap Pool, Kiddie Lagoon, Splash Pad, Lazy River, Water Slides
MapLions Water Adventure Map

Big kids and brave adults will love the slides, while the lazy river is perfect for chilling out (and people watching!).

Got toddlers? The Kiddie Lagoon was made for them.

Insider tip: if the crowds are intense, the lagoon is often a bit quieter.

Lions Water Adventure is pure summer fun. Best time to go? June through August when the weather is hot. Don’t expect luxury – this place is about getting wet and having a blast.

Jungle Rapids Family Fun Park

Jungle Rapids Family Fun Park in North Carolina

Jungle Rapids Family Fun Park is pure chaos. And sometimes, that’s exactly what a family day out needs! There’s something for everyone, from thrilling slides to surprisingly competitive mini-golf. Just be warned: this isn’t some fancy resort experience.

LocationWilmington, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsWater Park, Mini-Golf, Go-Karts, Arcade, Laser Tag, Climbing Wall, Kids Jungle
MapJungle Rapids Family Fun Park Map

Got a big group? Jungle Rapids loves a crowd. The more people you bring, the better the deal on tickets tends to be.

Insider tip: check their website for discounts, especially if you’re planning a weekday visit.

The water park is the star attraction – plan to go between May and September when it’s open. But don’t ignore the go-karts and laser tag! Lines can be shorter than you’d expect. It’s the perfect chance to beat the kids (or let them finally win, if you’re feeling generous).

Tweetsie Railroad

Tweetsie Railroad in North Carolina

Don’t expect sleek rollercoasters or high-tech shows at Tweetsie Railroad. This place is all about old-fashioned charm – think panning for gold and square dancing instead of virtual reality. It’s a blast…just don’t take it too seriously.

LocationBlowing Rock, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsSteam Train, Deer Park Zoo, Traditional Mountain Dancing, Gem Mining, Amusement Rides
MapTweetsie Railroad Map

Best for little kids and anyone with a soft spot for nostalgic Americana. Tweetsie keeps the Wild West spirit alive with live shows, panning for gold, and even a runaway train ride!

Insider tip: Grab a spot for the Can-Can show early – it fills up fast.

Aim to go during the summer when everything’s open. But here’s a secret: Tweetsie gets PACKED in peak season. If you hate crowds, it’s worth checking out their Halloween and Christmas events. They’re just as kitschy and a whole lot less busy.

Cherokee Fun Park

Cherokee Fun Park is…well, it’s a little bit dated. But that’s okay! It’s got old-school go-karts (the fast kind), a surprisingly challenging mini-golf course, and a decent arcade for rainy days.

LocationCherokee, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsGo-karts, Mini Golf, Arcade Games
WebsitePermanently closed
MapCherokee Fun Park Map

Best way to enjoy this place? Bring a competitive spirit and a sense of humor.

Insider tip: go-karts are cash only, and they don’t take reservations, so get there early on busy days.

Honestly, the park shines brightest on warm spring or summer days. It’s more about the feeling of being outside than fancy rides. If you’re visiting Cherokee and need a break from shopping or want to let the kids loose, it’s worth checking out.

Magic Mountain Fun Park

Magic Mountain Fun Park in North Carolina

Magic Mountain Fun Park is a throwback to simpler times. Think sun-faded signs, classic water slides, and the smell of mini-golf course carpet. It won’t win any awards for innovation, but that’s okay – it’s the perfect place to make some old-school summer memories.

LocationHolden Beach, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsMini Golf, Water Slide, Snack Bar
MapMagic Mountain Fun Park Map

Insider Tip: Skip the tiny, overpriced arcade. Focus your energy on beating your family at go-karts – the track is surprisingly fun.

Magic Mountain shines on hot summer days when you need a break from the sand. Hit it early to avoid the biggest crowds. This place won’t blow your mind, but it’s guaranteed to bring smiles (and maybe a sunburn if you forget sunscreen!).

Wet ‘n Wild Emerald Pointe Water Park

Wet 'n Wild Emerald Pointe Water Park in North Carolina

Wet ‘n Wild Emerald Pointe is definitely showing its age. Don’t come expecting a spotless, cutting-edge water park. But if you’re into faded beach vibes and surprisingly fast slides, it might grow on you.

LocationGreensboro, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsSoak Zone, Happy Harbor, Shipwreck Cove, Daredevil Drop, Splash Island, Thunder Bay
MapWet ‘n Wild Emerald Pointe Water Park Map

Best for families on a budget who prioritize fun over fancy. Insider tip: pack snacks and drinks. Park food is pricey and not that great. Hit a grocery store beforehand to save money and keep hangry kids at bay.

Avoid weekends! Wet ‘n Wild gets PACKED on Saturdays and Sundays, which ruins the experience. If you have any flexibility, go early on a weekday.

Another insider tip: check the weather. An iffy forecast scares people off, meaning fewer crowds, but the park stays open even if it’s a little drizzly.

Is Wet ‘n Wild Emerald Pointe going to change your life? Probably not. But it’s a guaranteed way to cool off and have some laughs on a hot summer day.

H2OBX Waterpark

H2OBX Waterpark in North Carolina

H2OBX Waterpark boasts some seriously impressive slides and a cool Outer Banks theme. It’s definitely a step above your average water park. But be warned: it’s also pricey and gets insanely crowded in peak summer months.

LocationPowells Point, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsTeach’s Tides Adventure River, Queen Anne’s Revenge, Flowrider, Deep Six Adventure Lagoon
MapH2OBX Waterpark Map

Families will love the kiddie areas and the wave pool.

Insider tip: the Flowrider surfing experience is always booked out. Make a reservation online well in advance if you’re serious about trying it.

“Best time to visit H2OBX Waterpark” is tricky.

The park is only open seasonally, and those summer weekends are brutal when it comes to crowds and lines. For a better experience, try aiming for shoulder season – late spring or early fall – if the weather cooperates.

All in all, H2OBX is fun, but it isn’t perfect. If you’re expecting a chill day by the pool, look elsewhere. But if you want some seriously fast slides and don’t mind the crowds, it’s a good time.

Frankie’s of Raleigh

Frankie's of Raleigh in North Carolina

Frankie’s of Raleigh is the perfect place to let loose and act like a kid again. Go-karts, batting cages, mini-golf, laser tag – it’s old-school fun with a healthy dose of friendly competition. Think of it as a giant (slightly cheesy) arcade under the open sky.

LocationRaleigh, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsGo-Karting, Mini Golf, Arcade Games, Batting Range, Bumper Boats, Laser Tag, Drop Tower
MapFrankie’s of Raleigh Map

Pro tip: Frankie’s gets SWAMPED on weekends. If you hate crowds, aim for a weekday afternoon – you’ll practically have the place to yourself.

Best for families with kids who have energy to burn. It’s ideal for birthday parties and groups who just want to goof around. Don’t expect a super clean or fancy experience, but it’s guaranteed to bring on some laughs (and maybe a few bruises from the bumper boats!).

Carolina Harbor

Carolina Harbor in North Carolina

Carolina Harbor promises big waterpark energy. It’s got slides, a wave pool, and your standard lazy river fare. Perfect for cooling down on a hot Charlotte day, but don’t expect anything groundbreaking.

LocationCharlotte, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsBlackbeard’s Revenge, Surfer’s Swell, Dorsal Fin Drop, Seaside Splashworks, Pirate’s Landing
MapCarolina Harbor Map

It’s ideal for families with kids and teenagers who love water slides. Adults might get a bit bored after a few hours.

Insider tip: pack a picnic lunch. Park food won’t blow your mind and it’s super expensive.

The sweet spot for visiting is early summer or late summer. The weather is still good, but the crowds are WAY smaller than in the middle of peak season. Weekdays are also key if you want to avoid long lines for the slides.

Overall, Carolina Harbor is a decent place to splash around. It’s just not the kind of water park you’ll still be raving about weeks later.

Buffaloe Road Aquatic Center

Buffaloe Road Aquatic Center in North Carolina

Looking for a super-fun place to cool down in Raleigh, North Carolina? Then the Buffaloe Road Aquatic Center is your premier destination!

LocationRaleigh, North Carolina
Cost Range$
Main AttractionsLazy River, Water Vortex, Three-Story Waterslide, Zero-Depth Entry Pool
MapBuffaloe Road Aquatic Center Map

The Buffaloe Road Aquatic Center is perfect for families with children of all ages. It’s especially fantastic for keeping energetic youngsters entertained with numerous fun-filled attractions. They can explore the Lazy River and Water Vortex, or even take a thrilling ride down the three-story waterslide!

The best time to visit? Summer, without a doubt! Not only does it offer an amazing respite from the heat, but it’s also less crowded during the weekdays. So if you’re free, plan your visit during these times for an unforgettable aquatic adventure!

Sun Crest Water Park

Sun Crest Water Park in North Carolina

Sun Crest Water Park is small-town summer fun at its finest. Don’t expect a sprawling waterpark experience – think a few twisty slides, a basic splash area for kids, and a whole lot of concrete.

LocationTaylorsville, North Carolina
Cost Range$
Main AttractionsThe Tower, Super Slide, Lilypad Crossing, Kids Zone
MapSun Crest Water Park Map

Pros: it’s cheap, and it does the job of cooling you off. Insider tip: Lines for the big slides get crazy. Skip them and hang out in the splash zone with little kids – it’s usually way more relaxing.

Best for: Families on a budget who need a break from the heat. It’s also not a bad option if you’re traveling with toddlers and just want somewhere to let them burn off energy.

Avoid weekends during peak summer months – it’s pure chaos. The sweet spot is a weekday afternoon when the place is half-empty.

Great Wolf Lodge Water Park

Great Wolf Lodge Water Park in North Carolina

Great Wolf Lodge’s water park is a classic kid-magnet. It’s loud, it’s crowded, and after a few hours, your head might explode. But kids LOVE the slides and wave pools, making it a decent trade-off if some adult sanity is sacrificed.

Insider tip: the water park is included if you stay at the hotel, but it’s pricey. For a cheaper experience, find a day pass deal online. Just brace yourself for the crowds.

LocationConcord, North Carolina
Cost Range$$$
Main AttractionsFort Mackenzie, Howlin’ Tornado, Alberta Falls, Crooked Creek, Slap Tail Pond
MapGreat Wolf Lodge Water Park

Great Wolf Lodge tries to be fancy, but it’s really just kid-friendly chaos. The food is overpriced, and the rooms are nothing to write home about. If you’re expecting a chill resort vibe, look elsewhere.

Best time to visit is the shoulder season – think late spring or early fall. You’ll avoid the worst summer crowds, and the weather is still decent for enjoying the outdoor areas.

Overall, Great Wolf Lodge water park is an experience. Kids will be in heaven, but it might test the patience of adults. Go with realistic expectations and you might even have a blast!

Adventure Landing

Adventure Landing in North Carolina

Adventure Landing isn’t about sleek attractions or trendy vibes. Think less high-tech amusement park and more “that weird but fun family place from my childhood.”

Go-karts that might sputter a bit? Check. Slightly faded mini-golf courses? Absolutely! An arcade filled with games your parents would recognize? You bet.

LocationRaleigh, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsMini Golf, Go-Karts, Arcade, Batting Cages, Bumper Boats, Laser Tag
MapAdventure Landing Map

The best way to enjoy Adventure Landing is to let go of any perfectionism. Embrace the friendly competition, laugh when you inevitably hit your mini-golf ball into a windmill, and maybe even give laser tag a go, no matter your age.

Insider tip: This place SHINES on a mild weekday when you practically have it to yourself. Pack some snacks, leave any snobbiness at home, and you might just have a surprisingly fun time.

Adventure Landing might not be the fanciest place, but it’s got that unpretentious, nostalgic charm that can be hard to find.

West Water Park

West Water Park in North Carolina

West Water Park in Kinston is classic summer fun in a no-frills package. It’s got your basic mix of slides, a lazy river, and enough concrete to fry an egg. Perfect for families with kids who just need to splash around and cool off.

LocationKinston, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsWater Slides, Wave Pool, Lazy River, Kiddie Area
MapWest Water Park Map

Insider tip: Don’t expect anything fancy. The lines for the slides get long, and the food is pricey and mediocre. Pack some snacks and plan to eat lunch elsewhere.

Best time to go? Weekdays or early in the morning before the crowds hit on summer weekends. Avoid peak season if you hate being surrounded by screaming kids. It’s also not the greatest place for teens – they’ll probably get bored after an hour or two.

Aeronautica Landing

Aeronautica Landing in North Carolina

Aeronautica Landing at Carowinds is all about fast rides and classic amusement park vibes. Think twisty roller coasters and flying contraptions designed to make you scream. Just be warned: this part of the park often has some of the longest lines.

LocationCharlotte, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsFlight Deck, Afterburn, Aero Squadron
MapAeronautica Landing Map

Insider tip: If you’ve got little kids, head to the Aero Squadron ride first. It’s a cute flying ride that almost always has a short wait. It’s a good way to ease them into the thrills of the bigger rides.

Best time to visit is a weekday in the shoulder seasons – spring or fall. You’ll still get decent weather and way shorter lines for the rides. Avoid summer weekends if you hate crowds!

If you love classic coasters, Aeronautica Landing won’t disappoint.

Celebration Station

Celebration Station in North Carolina

Celebration Station in Greensboro is the classic “something for everyone” entertainment spot. Think mini-golf, go-karts, batting cages, a decent-sized arcade…nothing fancy, but it does the trick when you need a kid distraction.

LocationGreensboro, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsGo Karts, Mini Golf, Bumper Boats, Arcade, Batting Cages, Playland, Laser Tag
MapCelebration Station Map

Best for families with a variety of ages – there are some things for little kids and enough “thrilling” rides to keep older kids entertained for a few hours. Insider tip: the pizza isn’t terrible, but it’s expensive! Pack snacks to stave off the hangries.

Don’t bother visiting on rainy days – the main attractions are outdoors. It’s more about the classic outdoor amusement experience than anything mind-blowing.

Celebration Station is NOT going to impress teens or anyone who’s expecting cutting-edge entertainment. But sometimes, simple go-kart races and cheesy arcade games are exactly what you need. Think of it as a slightly elevated Chuck E. Cheese experience.

Chimney Rock Country Fair

Chimney Rock Country Fair in North Carolina

The Chimney Rock Country Fair is a slice of classic Americana. It’s got a few rides, some local food stands, and a whole lot of kitschy charm. Don’t expect anything fancy – think more community bake-off vibes than a giant amusement park.

LocationChimney Rock, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsFairground rides, Food stalls, Craft vendors
MapChimney Rock Country Fair Map

Best for people who love browsing local crafts and hunting down hidden treasures. You might find an awesome vintage piece or handmade item in the most unexpected place.

Insider tip: try the fried Oreos – surprisingly good!

Ideal way to spend a warm fall afternoon or a lazy summer evening. Avoid visiting if it’s raining – most of the fun stuff is outdoors.

The fair won’t blow your mind with thrills or cutting-edge experiences. It’s all about enjoying the laid-back atmosphere and supporting the local community. Think of it as a quirky day out with a healthy dose of nostalgia.

Frankie’s of Charlotte

Frankie's of Charlotte in North Carolina

Frankie’s of Charlotte is pure kid-focused chaos. Think go-karts, bumper cars, an arcade filled with flashing lights and screaming children – you get the picture. It’s the kind of place where you might lose your sanity after a few hours, but kids absolutely LOVE it.

LocationCharlotte, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsRacer 5’s go-karts, Mini Golf, Fun House, Dark Ride, Drop Zone, SkyTrail, Laser Tag, Arcade, Batting Cages
MapFrankie’s of Charlotte Map

Best for families who need to burn off some energy and don’t mind a bit of noise.

Insider tip: pack your own snacks. The food options are standard amusement park fare – pricey and not very exciting.

Don’t expect a super clean or polished experience. Frankie’s is all about bright colors, loud games, and slightly sticky surfaces.

Absolutely avoid weekends and school holidays if you hate crowds! If possible, plan a weekday visit for way shorter lines and less chaos.

Overall, Frankie’s of Charlotte isn’t for adults looking for a relaxing day. But if you’ve got a kid who’s obsessed with go-karts and flashing lights, it’ll be their idea of paradise.

Fields of the Wood

Fields of the Wood in North Carolina

Imagine a place where faith comes alive, a mountainside transformed into a physical manifestation of biblical teachings. Fields of the Wood in Murphy, North Carolina does just that with its unique blend of natural beauty and spiritual symbolisms, creating a one-of-a-kind experience.

LocationMurphy, North Carolina
Cost Range$
Main AttractionsTen Commandments Mountain, Baptismal Pool, All Nations Cross, Prayer Mountain, Bible in Stone, Golgotha Hill
MapFields of the Wood Map

Fields of the Wood is an ideal destination for those seeking inspiration, spiritual enlightenment, or just a tranquil retreat. Along with individuals and families, the park holds particular appeal for church groups. The site features over 200 steps leading up Ten Commandments Mountain, providing an active and engaging experience that refreshes both body and spirit. Head on to The All Nations Cross — a favorite spot for sunrise and sunset viewings.

The best time to visit depends on personal preference. This outside park is beautiful year-round, but fall’s vibrant colors heighten the scenery’s appeal. On the other hand, visitors in spring or summer can enjoy the additional shade provided by luscious green foliage, and the humidity prominent during these seasons adds a serene layer of mist over the landscapes. Whenever you plan your visit, make sure you leave sometime for quiet reflection — it’s what Fields of the Wood is all about!

Xtreme Park Adventures

Xtreme Park Adventures in North Carolina

Xtreme Park Adventures is all about getting outside your comfort zone. We’re talking ropes courses, zip lines, and maybe the occasional leap of faith if you’re feeling brave. It’s NOT for the faint of heart.

LocationDurham, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsZip-lining, Paintball, Laser Tag, Gem Mining, Airsoft, Escapology
MapXtreme Park Adventures Map

Do you dislike heights? Terrified of being upside down? This probably isn’t your place. But if you’re the type who gets a thrill from pushing your limits, it might just be your jam.

Insider tip: Don’t try to impress anyone – you WILL look goofy on the ropes course. Embrace it, have a laugh, and you might be surprised by how much fun you have.

Best on a decent weather day when it’s not too hot or rainy. Ideal for groups who get a kick out of shared challenges. Just be prepared to cheer each other on through slightly embarrassing moments.

Xtreme Park Adventures isn’t about a “relaxing day out.” It’s about sweat, a few scrapes, and maybe a good dose of adrenaline.

Carolina Beach Boardwalk Amusement Park

Carolina Beach Boardwalk Amusement Park in North Carolina

Forget Disney – the Carolina Beach Boardwalk Amusement Park is where it’s at for no-frills, old-school fun. You won’t find any costumed characters or fancy tech here. Just squeaky rides, greasy food, and that sticky-sweet smell of cotton candy.

But hey, some of us like that. It’s about the simple things – winning that giant stuffed animal at the ring toss, screaming your lungs out on the rickety coaster, getting dizzy on the teacups with your kids.

LocationCarolina Beach, North Carolina
Cost Range$
Main AttractionsFerris wheel, Spinning teacups, Wave Swinger, Sea Ray
MapCarolina Beach Boardwalk Amusement Park Map

Here’s the thing: it’s not always picture-perfect. Paint’s peeling, some games are rigged (like everywhere else), and yeah, it gets crowded. But that’s part of the experience.

Pro tip: Thursday nights are for locals. It’s your best bet to avoid the worst crowds. Want to really feel like you’re in on a secret? Hit the boardwalk at night – the lights, the sounds… there’s a weird kind of magic to it.

Obviously, summer is nuts. But for a different vibe (and fewer screaming kids), try May or September. You’re welcome.

Fantasy Lake Adventure Park

Fantasy Lake Adventure Park in North Carolina

Fantasy Lake Adventure Park promises a good time, but it ain’t exactly a luxury resort. Think water slides, paddle boats, maybe a few rogue weeds – it’s the kind of place where you get a little muddy, a little sunburnt, and have a blast doing it.

Picture this: screaming kids, long lines for the best slides, and those inflatable jump houses that always smell kinda weird. Not for everyone, but if you’re down for some messy, chaotic fun, it’s worth checking out.

Location Hope Mills, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsSwimming, Water Slides, Paddle Boats, Jump Houses, Volleyball
MapFantasy Lake Adventure Park Map

Insider tip: hit the paddle boats early. Once the teens wake up and discover them, it’s a madhouse out there. Also, bring your own snacks. Park food is pricey and nothing special.

Don’t expect a perfectly manicured experience. This place is more about letting loose than Instagram-worthy moments. It’s especially great for groups – birthday parties, company outings… gets pretty wild.

Summer weekends are a zoo, obviously. If you can swing a weekday, do it. But even with the crowds, there’s something weirdly charming about the chaos. You might just come away with a hilarious story (and a killer sunburn).

Land of Oz

Land of Oz in North Carolina

Okay, the Land of Oz theme park isn’t some high-tech wonderland. It’s old-school, and that’s the whole point. Think faded costumes, handmade sets, and that feeling like you’ve stepped into a slightly off-kilter version of the movie.

Cheesy? Absolutely. Charming? If you’re into that kind of thing.

Don’t get me wrong – it’s perfect for super-fans of the Wizard of Oz. And little kids will get a kick out of meeting Dorothy and seeing the yellow brick road. But know what you’re getting into – it’s more about nostalgia than cutting-edge thrills.

LocationBeech Mountain, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsYellow Brick Road, Dorothy’s house, Emerald City, Hot Air Balloon
MapLand of Oz Map

Insider tip: the absolute best time to go is the Autumn at Oz festival. They go all out – characters, music, the whole nine yards. If you miss that, try to hit a day when they have a live Dorothy scheduled. Makes a huge difference.

Let’s be real, this place isn’t for everyone. It’s a bit weird, a lot outdated, and the crowds can be rough. But if you’re down for a quirky adventure, and you love the classic movie, the Land of Oz has a goofy kind of charm you won’t find anywhere else.

White Lake Water Park

White Lake Water Park in Norrth Carolina

White Lake Water Park promises a good time, but don’t expect anything fancy. Think classic water park vibes – think peeling paint, sticky sunblock, and screaming kids galore. That’s half the fun, though, right?

It’s got your basics: water slides (some fast, some slow), a wave pool, and that lazy river that’s perfect for people-watching. The splash zone is a hit with the little ones. Honestly, it’s a kid’s paradise if they’re into getting soaked and making a mess.

LocationWhite Lake, North Carolina
Cost Range$$
Main AttractionsLazy River, Wave Pool, Super Slide, Kids Waterfun Zone, Flume Tube
MapWhite Lake Water Park Map

Insider tip: pack a picnic lunch. Park food is overpriced and not great. Also, stake out your spot early. Prime seating around the wave pool fills up fast.

This place isn’t for everyone. If you hate crowds or want a super-chill experience, steer clear. But if you’re up for some good old-fashioned water park chaos, grab your swimsuit and some friends.

Summer weekends are packed (surprise!). The park does stay open some evenings – those tend to be less hectic and a little more fun for older kids. No matter when you go, get ready for some serious splashing and a whole lot of laughs.

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