Tips on Beating Theme Park Heat

Amusement parks are great for family vacations but surviving the heat during the hottest days of summer takes planning. Getting the most out of only one or two days at the park doesn’t mean you have to stay throughout the day until everyone in the family is ready to drop from heat exhaustion. Arrive about 15 minutes before the park opens and plan a midday break.

When you’re ready to get off your feet and out of the heat for 20 to 30 minutes, look for an indoor show in an air-conditioned theater. Many parks have indoor attractions that take 30 minutes or more to explore. You’re looking for a break from the heat, so don’t choose an outdoor show with no shade and metal benches.

Longer rides that take in the entire park are a great way to find a seat away from the sun. Many parks have a train ride that last 15 to 20 minutes.

Take an afternoon break during the hottest part of the day from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. If you’ve booked a hotel on or close to the property, leave the park and go back to the hotel. Take the kids out to the pool so you can watch them and relax on a lounge chair under an umbrella. Or enjoy a nap in your room’s air conditioning.

If you don’t have a hotel, schedule a late lunch at a sit-down restaurant with plenty of cool air-conditioning. A midday break renews your energy so that you can return to the park after dark and stay until closing if you wish.

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