Here are the best theme parks in America, so start planning your next trip now

Pack your bags and grab a bottle or two of sunscreen. TripAdvisor has released their list of the Top 25 Best Amusement Parks in America, and we’ve got to hurry if we’re going to visit every single one. Get ready for thrills, chills, and some quality time with friendly dolphins.

It might actually be too early to set off on a trip, but it’s never too early to start planning your next vacation. Based on reader-submitted reviews and comments, TripAdvisor has put together a list of the 25 must-see amusement parks in America we’re going to need to check out. Surprisingly, or maybe not surprisingly, a Disney park isn’t actually #1.

So what is? The best amusement park in America, per TripAdvisor, is actually Universal’s Islands of Adventure in Orland, Florida. If you’ve visited the park before, you know why. Two words: Harry Potter.

Islands of Adventure is home to (half of) The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and it’s this section of the park that includes the magnificent Hogwarts Castle. Inside, you’ll find Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, which I’ll go ahead and admit is actually one of the best attractions I’ve ever been on. So it makes sense that Islands of Adventure ranks high at the top. And come on, frozen Butterbeer, you guys.

The second park on the list isn’t full of rides and shows, but rather marine life. Discovery Cove, also located in Orlando, Florida, comes in next. If you’ve never been there, and have never heard of it, it’s kinda like a giant aquarium. A giant aquarium that you can swim in and interact with all sorts of different animals, namely, dolphins. Do you want to meet a Dolphin IRL? You can here.

Number three is Magic Kingdom at Disney World in Orlando, Florida. So yes, there is a trend when it comes to where the best amusement parks are located. Hollywood Studios is number five, Animal Kingdom is number eight, and EPCOT is number eleven. Jumping to the other coast, Disneyland in Anaheim, California, comes in a number seven and California Adventure at number 14.

There’s more to life than just Disney parks, though. Other parks to check out include Cedar Point in Ohio and just in time for Christmas, Santa’s Village in New Hampshire. If Dolly Parton’s more your thing, there’s always Dollywood in Tennessee. In 2016, the park is going to open one the fastest wooden roller coaster in the world.

You can check out the all the information about the top parks here, and check out the full list below. If you’re looking for a last-second holiday gift for the family, there’s no harm in suggesting a trip to any of these.

1. Universal’s Islands of Adventure in Orlando, Florida
2. Discovery Cove in Orlando, Florida
3. Magic Kingdom in Orlando, Florida
4. Universal Studios Hollywood in Los Angeles, California
5. Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Orlando, Florida
6. Universal Studios Florida in Orlando, Florida
7. Disneyland Park in Anaheim, California
8. Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Orlando, Florida
9. Cedar Point Amusement Park in Sandusky, Ohio
10. SeaWorld Orlando in Orlando, Florida
11. Epcot in Orlando, Florida
12. Busch Gardens Tampa in Tampa, Florida
13. Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
14. Disney California Adventure Park in Anaheim, California
15. Six Flags Magic Mountain in Los Angeles, California
16. Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri
17. Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, Virginia
18. Warner Bros. Studio Tour Hollywood in Burbank, California
19. Santa’s Village in Jefferson, New Hampshire
20. Hershey Park in Hershey, Pennsylvania
21. Morgan’s Wonderland in San Antonio, Texas
22. Knoebels Amusement Resort in Elysburg, Pennsylvania
23. SeaWorld San Diego in San Diego, California
24. Bay Beach Amusement Park in Green Bay, Wisconsin
25. Storybook Land in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey

(Image via Universal Studios.)

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