This post has been sponsored by Kings Dominion
In early August, our family had the privilege of going to Kings Dominion Theme Park in Doswell, VA for the day with some of our best friends. Since our families have done outings together since our kids were tiny, we planned the trip as a final “send-off” outing for my oldest son before he left for college in mid-August.
Our party included eight kids in all, with four ten-year-olds (two sets of twins), a thirteen-year-old, a fifteen-year-old, a seventeen-year-old, and an eighteen-year-old plus two moms of unmentionable age. We agreed to let the four oldest kids split off right away. Since they had all-day dining passes and fast lane passes, they didn’t need to come to see us for food money or anything. We agreed to check in with them periodically throughout the day via text. I gave them a FunPic pass so we could have pictures to remember the day.
If you haven’t taken your kids to the Kings Dominion theme park yet, you should. It’s the perfect day trip to enjoy with your family. From the D.C. area, Kings Dominion was about a two-hour drive. From the time we arrived early in the day until we closed the park late in the evening, everyone in our group was having a great time, attitudes were in check, and the experience was fantastic.
Our Ten Most Favorite Things you must Experience at Kings Dominion
All Day Dining Passes
Kids and grown-ups alike agreed that the All-Day Dining passes from King’s Dominion were very much worth it. Every member of our party was able to eat every 90 minutes as needed. This meant a) no one got crabby from hunger b) we didn’t have to take the time to process payment every time we wanted to eat and c) our hungry teens could stop and eat pretty much as often as they wanted without racking up a huge bill and d) we could eat when lines were short. Everyone planning to spend the day at Kings Dominion should plan to purchase the All-Day Dining pass. It’s a fantastic value!
The Eiffel Tower
At the end of the evening, when each ride and the entire park was beautifully lit up and shining in the darkness, the moms and younger crew headed up to the top of the Eiffel Tower. What a spectacular view, and the perfect way to finish our day, looking back at each of the rides the kids enjoyed and chatting about all the things we could see from the tower. This picture shows the kids at the base of the tower in the awesome lights. The Eiffel Tower was definitely the best way to end the day and close the park!
Both age groups in our party rode the Delirium, and the younger group came back to this ride over and over. At the end of our day, we allowed each child to pick one ride to enjoy one last time, and this one was chosen again. The Delirium was definitely a crowd favorite. This one made it into the top four enjoyed by the group.
When asked “Why did you like The Delirium?” my ten-year-old Joshua answered, “It gives me serious adrenaline and its so fun because it looks like your gonna die but then you don’t and you get done and think ‘Oh that was fun’, so you do it again.”
The Backlot Stunt Coaster
A fantastic coaster, and one of the most beloved of the coasters for the younger crew, this is another ride chosen over and over throughout the day as we made our way around the theme park. This one made it into the top four enjoyed by the group.
When asked what he liked about the Backlot Stunt Coaster, my ten-year-old Peter answered, “It was super fast and its the first roller coaster that I’ve ever been on that went almost upside down.”
This one is a blast, with five inversions at speeds up to 67 miles per hour on the longest floorless steel roller coaster in the world, including one of the largest vertical loops in the world. While it didn’t make our top four rides, it was still a big favorite with the teen crowd in our group.
The Flight of Fear
This one catapults from zero to 54 miles per hour in just four seconds on this heart-pounding adventure in total darkness through four inversions. The Flight of Fear made it into the top four enjoyed by the group.
Favorite Coaster: The Intimidator 305
The teens had a blast on The Intimidator 305 — it was the crowd favorite and (obviously) made it into the top four enjoyed by the group. The Intimidator 305 is arguably the most thrilling roller coaster on the East Coast. It starts with a 300-foot drop and follows that with high-speed twists and turns to deliver exactly what you want from a coaster! The Intimidator 305 was voted “Best New Roller Coaster of 2010” by Amusement Today.
The Racer 75
Since this coaster is a double coaster with a race built-in our group had fun trying to pick which side was going to win. A wooden coaster, the Racer 75 is a great first coaster for kids!
Refillable Drink Bottles
We found the cost of the refillable drink bottles to be totally worth it. The day we went it was super hot, and while free water is available at every concession stand, having the option to get electrolyte drinks or soda was very helpful.
The Fun Pic Pass
Several of the rides at Kings Dominion had an opportunity to have an “in-ride” photo taken for those with the Fun Pic pass. We had so much fun seeing the kids on the actual rides – something as parents we rarely get to enjoy! We were able to give each group in our party a fun pic pass, and then get them combined at the end of the day so that we only had to pay for one. All of the pics taken using our pass throughout the day were available instantly to download and save. This was perfect since we spent most of the day in totally different areas of the park!
To Plan your Trip to Kings Dominion Theme Park Well:
- Be sure to check the Kings Dominion calendar on the website before you go, since open hours and days of each weekend vary.
- Buy the All Day Dining Pass for each person before you arrive. (you will thank me later!)
- Plan to arrive when the park opens and leave when the park closes. You can leave earlier if you want, but it is super fun to ride after dark.
- Make sure you take a tote bag to stick all the drink bottles in! Makes it much easier for someone to hold all the drink while the riders ride.
- Dress in layers that peel. It can go from hot to chilly or vice-versa pretty quickly!