Knott’s Berry Farm dates back to 1920’s when it was a family owned farm that sold berries, homemade berry preserves and pies on the roadside. Later in 1934, a tea room was created and they started selling fried chicken dinners. Soon after Mrs Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant was established. The restaurant is still on the site but now located outside the theme park. Keep reading for our comprehensive Knott’s Berry Farm review.
The chicken dinners became very popular with tourists and soon they started to create attractions that would keep people entertained while waiting for a table at the restaurant. The idea of an amusement park took off in the 1950’s with the creation of the Ghost Town and the Summer Long County Fair. Admission fees were introduced in 1968 at the princely sum of 25c. In 1990 the family sold the park, Walter Knott had passed in 1981 and Cordelia Knott in 1974, the new owners continue to expand the theme park.
Knott’s Berry Farm is located in Buena Park, about 10 mins from Anaheim, California. We stayed at a near by hotel and walked from there. See below section outlining nearby hotels.
Knott’s Berry Farm is a substantially cheaper than most of the other theme parks in Los Angeles. Buying tickets online is also a lot cheaper than purchasing tickets at the gate, Sally suggests purchasing through this slightly discounted link with Viator.
I always like to study he park map before arriving so we can plan the best way to tackle it. It’s so much better than walking in the gate and standing there with a fresh map trying to decide where to go while the kids are running in every direction. Here’s a map to help assist you with your planning!
Knott’s Berry Farm is famous for its 9 roller coasters and the 2 water slides at Knott’s Soak City. If you are seriously into roller coasters this is the place to be. Needless to say I spent the day holding bags and dealing with the excited screaming when the kids got off one! Why is it that they can’t just say that ride was great, but have to scream it right in to my face!!! I can tell you now the excitement was evident! The best roller coasters they have even been on they told me.
Unfortunately for us, we chose a day that was busy and I mean super busy. I eventually found out it was Veteran’s Day when Veterans and their families are invited to the park with free entry and special discounts for six of their friends. It was very, very busy but we didn’t let it ruin out day, it just meant that we had to wait and in some fairly sizeable queues! I do love that the American’s hold their returned soldiers in such high esteem, so much respect for them, its refreshing to see.
Now, Knott’s Berry Farm appears to lack cohesion and to me it felt like the park has been extended over the years with little thought to it’s flow and design. In Australia we would say, it’s a little all over the shop! Just means that you will benefit greatly by planning your visit.
Camp Snoopy, home to Peanuts and the crew, is an amazing area for young kids, there are a number of age appropriate shows and rides, enough to keep any toddler entertained. Rides include:
My kids are a bit too old for most of these rides and given it was really busy on the day we visited, we didn’t stop here too long. Had it not been as busy, they probably would have had a ride on a couple of them as it will likely be our only visit ever.
You can see a lot of the big roller coasters towering over the park from the outside. We don’t have many theme parks in Australia and only one very small one where we live in Melbourne but it has nothing like the roller coasters at Knott’s Berry Farm.
The sight of these made the kids very excited. Which one’s did they ride?
Unfortunately we weren’t able to ride the Ghost Rider as the queue was very long. Had we have been more organised we would have gone there first but when we arrived late in the afternoon the queue was in excess of 2 hours. As I said though, it was an excessively busy day for us to visit.
There will be a new roller coaster coming to Knott’s Berry Farm in 2018, Hang Time and for all those roller coaster fanatics, I think they are going to love this one. Click the link above and check out the computer simulated preview of it. Looks impressive right?
There are also a number of live shows at Knott’s Berry Farm, these include:
As we were visiting on a busy day we only managed to see one of the shows. We were very much slowed by the queues waiting for rides. The Wild West Stunt Show was pretty impressive and the kids really enjoyed it. Get there early to get a seat as the seating fills up pretty quickly.
During our visit to Knott’s Berry Farm we stayed at the Radisson Suites Hotel Anaheim. We felt that the Radisson Group had recently purchased this hotel and were in the process of upgrading it. The room we had did not look like the rooms being advertised online. Having said that, it had a perfect location and only a 10 minute walk from the entrance of Knott’s Berry Farm.
Knott’s Berry Farm Hotel is located at the southern end of the park and many of the rooms have a Snoopy theme which would be fantastic for younger kids. If your kids are young this might be a perfect option for you and will minimise any walking for little kids.
The kids loved Knott’s Berry Farm and even though it was really very busy, apart from the queue for rides it actually didn’t feel that bad. We didn’t eat in any of the restaurants, mostly we were pick eating along the way. We were way too busy to actually sit down for a meal, that would be wasting precious roller coaster time! The kids did manage to go on their favourite roller coasters twice so all in all it was a pretty fabulous day.
We visited in December 2017 and it was great to have the Knott’s Merry Farm decorations up, it really did have a great Christmasy atmosphere. I love that American’s get into the spirit by dressing in Christmas sweaters and t-shirts. We were also very lucky weather wise, we had a cracking 28 degree day (82F) what more could we ask for although the evening did cool down enough in the evening to need a cardigan. Otherwise it was perfect.
While in Los Angeles we also had the opportunity to visit Universal Studios Hollywood, Disneyland California and Warner Brother Studio Tour which were both very different experiences but fantastic as well, read my review.
Sal, Craig & our 3 kids
Disclaimer: We had a mutually beneficial arrangement with Knott’s Berry Farm although as always our opinion is our own.
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