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“excellent every time but the lineups are long”

Canada's Wonderland
Ranked #2 of 43 things to do in Vaughan
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Located just North of Toronto, Canada’s Wonderland features 70 rides, including 16 roller coasters, 2 children areas, a 20 acre water park and world class entertainment and special events. Each fall brings the return of Camp Spooky for kids and families by day, and Halloween Haunt's spooky attractions by night.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Reviewed September 12, 2011

It is always a great day at Canada's Wonderland! You get every thrill seeking rides such as Thunder Run, Vortex, The Mind buster, and so much more. There are everything such as rides from toddlers to Adults and the food they sell everything from funnel cakes to pizzas and everything in between

3  Thank Rayyan R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,392 - 2,396 of 2,854 reviews

Reviewed September 12, 2011

We went to Canada's Wonderland in September 2011. The last time I had been there was about 1990, so this trip with the kids (5 and 2) was the first in a long time. We had been to Disneyworld last year and were afraid that CW would pale in comparison. However, we were quite surprised at how well kept the grounds were and how interesting and diverse the ride selections were. There were plenty of rides for our 2 year old and our 5 year old (at 44 inches) was able to go with us on a few of the more thrilling offerings, including a few roller coasters. We were quite happy with the whole experience.

The trip was not perfect, however, so just to present a fair assessment I would add the following. It is not cheap - with entry (even at discounted September rates), lunch, snacks and a few odds and ends we spent close to $250 for our family of four which didn't even include entry fees for our under-age 2 year old. Also, for some inexplicable reason there are additional costs for some rides (Speed City go-carts, Launch Pad assisted trampoline). Is this really necessary? The staff, for the most part, were indifferent. They were not rude, but I honestly did not see a smile on a staff member anywhere during our 8 hours there. Perhaps after Disney I have raised the bar too high, but at CW they were all doing their jobs like some sort of automatons.

Lastly, branding the kids area after Snoopy seems dated. Do small kids even know who Charlie Brown is? Mine don't. There would seem to be any number of branding options that would be more relevant to today's kids than Peanuts.

Here is a tip that will be worth reading this review if you have small kids. On each side of International Street (inside the front gates) is a height measuring station. You can have your kids given a colour-coded wristband indicating their height category, and each ride has a colour code sign before you get in line. This lets you know right away whether you should bother getting in line for a ride. Even though each ride has a height guide at the line-up, we did see at least one operator remeasure a kid at the front of the line and reject him (he wasn't wearing a wristband). The tip I have is to go to the height measuring station on the LEFT side of the fountain. The kids ride areas are all on the right side, and we would have been behind about 50 kids on the height measuring station on the right side, and were second in line on the station on the left side at the same time (you can see across). This only takes you about 30 seconds out of your way, but saves you about 10 minutes.

Thank RHtraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 12, 2011

This was a very long day for us. Husband, myself, and 2 daughters...15 and 10, left Sudbury at 5:30 am, and after having stopped for a quick Tim Horton's breakfast, we were parked in CW lot by about 9:40 am. We had pre bought our tickets at Costco for $170.00 for the 4 of us. I consider this a VERY fair price...about $42.50 each for a full day of fun....to me...a great deal. I could have bought them at CAA for only $40.00 per person, but Costco was more convenient for us.

This is the first time in about 8 years that we've been to CW. We have been to Disney many times recently...and love it there. I know that CW is not the same...low theming, but heavy on the rides, especially thrill rides...which the kids were looking forward to.

As we already had tickets, we walked up to one of several open security lines. If you had no bags, you just walked through. My husband was our pack mule and was carrying our back pack. No food...most guards will take it out. We did not have any...only water bottles, towels, sunscreen and a camera. The search was very quick.

We picked up some park maps and headed to the left side of the mountain. The gates to the rides do not open until 10:00, so it gave us time to apply sunscreen.

Our first ride was the Windseeker...basically no line, but for some reason they did some test runs before they opened the ride. We were a bit concerned that we would wait in line for a long time, and then be told it wasn't opening...but alas, they finally let us on...we were the second ride in. I say we/us...BUT, if I actually went on that ride, they'd be closing it down again right away to clean up my breakfast...only hubby and kids did this ride. They loved it. We passed by this ride later at night...and it beautifully lit up with changing colours.

We then proceeded to the Vortex...I have done this several times many years ago, so jumped right on with the kids. BIG MISTAKE....what was I thinking. Early in the morning....upside down, twists, loops, fast...by the end I was almost crying!!! I guess my roller coaster days are over....(I did manage to do the Behemoth tho...later on that)

Hubby and kids ended up doing the Stand Up, Great Canadian Mind Buster, Stunt , The Bat, Dragon Fire, Flight Deck, Psyclone, Rip Tide, Shock Wave, Time Warp, Wild Beast, Drop Tower...and a few more that I can't recall. What did Mommy do....well, I enjoyed the beautiful sunny day!!!

I did do a few more rides...log flume...and got fully soaked, White Water Canyon...got half soaked...and THE BEHEMOTH!!!!!.....

I LOVED the Behemoth...what a great, fun, scary ride!!!

My biggest scare was that my very skinny little 10 year old would slide out of the tiny little handle bar that sits on your hips. There is NO shoulder harness...NO leg holder thing...NO nothing almost...just a little stick that goes up between your legs with a triangle handle thing that sits on your hips. WHAT????!!!!????

Since the ride goes so fast and I don't think I breathed the entire ride...I had to wait until it stopped to ask my husband if my daughter, who was sitting in the row behind of us, was still in the coaster. Yes...they were laughing away...and having a great time while Mom was panicking.

We ended up coming back about 9:30 at night and doing it again...this time it was still scary, but I had fun this time. It is a very fast, smooth coaster that does NOT go upside down. Kids had time to do one more run before the park closed at 10:00 pm.

We then meandered our way to the exit, got into our van, and got home about 2:30 am.

I was feeling it the next day. I guess I can;t pull all nighters any more!!!

All in all...a great day. Line ups weren't bad (except for Flight Deck...very long wait...and White Water Canyon...the line just kept going...just around one more corner was said about 4 times), but we may just have hit them at bad times.

I really wanted to go to the water park, but one day is just not enough time to do it all. Even though we got lots of rides in and we didn't really rush anything...I would definitely spend the extra $15.00 per person to upgrade to the 2 day pass. I would also take a hotel for the night...I can't do the up for 24 hours thing any more...not when I'm walking all day at an amusement park.

We bought very little food...yes it's expensive, but search things out, some things are cheaper than others. A big fat hot dog was $7.00 and looked like ti could be shared by 2. We did not try one, but chose a sub instead. A footlong was $10.00...we just shared that along with a bag of Pringles that we bought (for $5.00!!!), to settle my stomach after I foolishly rode the Vortex.

Later we bought the best thing in the park...a HUGE ice cream sandwich that they make on site. It was a little yellow shack by the left hand side of the mountain as you come in. They take great big cookies, put tons of soft serve between them, and then roll it in chocolate chips. It was only $5.00....very good snack/meal.

Later in the evening, we decided on chicken strip/fries ...YUCK, and about $10.00...we would have done better with another sub.

Take lots of water...they have free, cold fountains for refills. Take comfy shoes...you will walk...and walk...and walk. Take suncream, even if it's cloudy. Take lots and lots of patience...it will be crowded....but enjoy the day...it's better than working!!!

1  Thank travelloverOntario
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 12, 2011

We had a great day with my 5-year-old niece for her first Wonderland visit - she LOVED Ghoster Coaster and Silver Streak. But, we were perplexed when they took away our sandwiches upon arrival (yet left us with all our other snacks), without explanation. When we were leaving, we found out that you can leave picnic/food items at guest services before you enter the park and return to the main gate when you're ready to eat. It's a bit of a trek through the park with kids, but would have been worth it to save the cash on food (prices in the park are crazy, of course!). If you do eat in the park, plan at least $15 per person (kids chicken fingers and fries can be $10+).

Thank ljohnston325
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 7, 2011

I brought my family to Canada's Wonderland for the first time for my sons to see the children's area & rides. After paying over a hundred dollars to get in, one of the male security guards said he had to search my wife as it was routine, but she later told me he touched her inappropriately. It was too late to complain to customer service and it's his word against my wife, & that is even if we could find him to point him out. We decided to put it in the past and go to the children's section, It was here my wife's purse was stolen with our son's inhaler in it. As we couldn't stay without my son's medication and the $145 missing with the purse, we decided to leave after an hour into our visit. I will not go there again and wished I never took my family especially my poor wife.

2  Thank Barry P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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