Huge amusement parks like the one in Hershey, PA can be overwhelming.  These tips can help you plan your trip.

Hersheypark. When in Hershey, you’ve gotta go to the park. I recommend passing up the frenzied Boardwalk water zone and spending your time on the drier rides. There truly is something for everyone here, including plenty of mini rides for little ones and megawatt roller coasters for older adrenaline junkies.

Chocolate World. Skip the edible souvenirs – you’ll get a sample at the end of every ride and attraction at Chocolate World. Our favorites: the Really Big 3D Show and the Great American Chocolate Tour.

Times and seasons. We got an early start at 10 a.m., but the park was already filling up. Thankfully the kiddie ride lines were short, but the Boardwalk was packed solid by late morning. If I had it to do again, I’d go during the twilight or evening hours when it’s cooler and presumably less crowded. Better yet, I’d schedule a fall visit when the hot and sweaty crowd is but a distant memory.

Accommodations. If you want to go with the Hershey brand, you have three options: the swanky Hotel Hershey, the family-friendly Hershey Lodge, or the Highmeadow Campground. All three have frequent shuttle buses going back and forth. We stayed at the Lodge and loved the on-site miniature golf, rustic lobby area, Cocoa Beanery coffee and breakfast café, free in-room wireless Internet, turndown service with chocolate kisses, and family vibe. There are also a handful of national chain hotels within close proximity to the attractions. 

Babysitting services are offered at both the Hershey Lodge and The Hotel Hershey. Contact the concierge as soon as possible to make arrangements.  The babysitters are allowed to take the children to activities at the particular property they’re staying at (mini golf or the S’mores cook-out at the Lodge, for example), but they can’t leave the property with the children. In other words, a sitter can’t take the kids from the Lodge to the Park or over to the Hotel.  

Cocoa Kids Club, at the Hotel Hershey, offers activities like make your own ice cream, kids fitness and visits to the Children’s Butterfly House for kid’s 5-12. Available half or full day and evenings.  Teens can participate as Camp Counselors at the Cocoa Kids Club.

Just For Kids is a variety of activities held at the pool and around Hershey Lodge created with kids in mind.

For the whole story, Chocolate Central
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