Amusements & Attractions
Six Flags Discovery Kingdom – Features three parks in one: rides, marine mammals and wildlife. 1001 Fairgrounds Dr., Vallejo. 707-643-6722. sixflags.com/parks/discoveryKingdom/index.aspx.
Metreon – A Sony Entertainment Center. Features four levels, with 15 movie theatres, an IMAX theater and three interactive attractions. 101 Fourth St. 415-369-6000. westfield.com/metreon.
Pier 39 – Features more than 110 stores, 14 full-service restaurants and numerous fun-filled attractions. Beach Street and The Embarcadero. 415-705-5500. pier39.com.
Yerba Buena Gardens – Features the Zeum Carousel, Zeum: San Francisco’s Children’s Museum, ice-skating and bowling center and an interactive play garden. Two square blocks bounded by Mission, Folsom, Third and Fourth streets. 415-820-3550. yerbabuenagardens.com.
Lemos Farm – This popular place for birthday parties features pony rides, train rides, a petting zoo and play area. During the holidays, you can cut your own Christmas tree or pick a pumpkin from the farm’s patch for Halloween. 12320 Highway 92, Half Moon Bay. 650-726-2342. lemosfarm.com.
Malibu Castle & Grand Prix – Features miniature golf, batting cages, game room, video games, Grand Prix and go-carts. Malibu Castle, 320 Blomquist St., Redwood City. 650-367-1906. Malibu Grand Prix, 340 Blomquist St., Redwood City. 650-366-6463. malibugrandprix.com.
Sea Bowl Entertainment Center – Features bowling, a billiard room and a video arcade center. 4625 Coast Highway, Pacifica. 650-738-8190. seabowl.com.
Contra Costa County
Antioch Water Park – This city-owned facility features five pools and five water slides. Open during the summer. 4701 Lone Tree Way, Antioch. 925-776-3070. ci.antioch.ca.us/CitySvcs/Prewett.
Golf n’ Games Family Fun Center – Features miniature golf, video and redemption games, go-karts and batting cages. Closed Mon.-Tue. 501 Auto Center Dr., Antioch. 925-754-5100. golfngames.com.
The Jungle Fun & Adventure – Set your kids loose in this 20,000-square-foot indoor family entertainment center for kids 12 and under. 1975 Diamond Blvd., Concord. 925-687-4386. thejunglefun.com.
Pixieland Amusement Park – Amusement park designed for small children. Open mid Jan.-Dec. 2740 E. Olivera Road, Concord. 925-676-9612. pixieland.com.
Small World Park – Features a train and carousel. Open April to October. 2581 Harbor St., Pittsburg. 925-439-4879. ci.pittsburg.ca.us.
Waterworld USA – A water park that features rides, slides and attractions for all ages. Opens for summer in May. 1950 Waterworld Pkwy., Concord. 925-609-1364. waterworldcalifornia.com.
Adventure Playground – At this playground, kids 7 and up can add to the play environment by building wooden masterpieces and taking a ride on the zip line. Younger children admitted under close adult supervision. Call for seasonal days/hours. Berkeley Marina, 160 University Ave., Berkeley. 510-981-6720. ci.berkeley.ca.us.
Boomers! Features miniature golf, Laser Tag, game room and bumper boats. 2400 Kitty Hawk Road, Livermore. 925-447-7275. boomersparks.com.
Children’s Fairyland – A 10-acre park where children 8 and under can enjoy rides based on nursery rhymes. 699 Bellevue Ave., Oakland. 510-452-2259. fairyland.org.
Fremont Aqua Adventure – Offers summer fun on four acres of water slides and other attractions. Call for seasonal hours and pricing. 40500 Paseo Padre Pkwy., Fremont. 510-494-4426. goaquaadventure.com.
Golden Tee Golfland – Features miniature golf, video and redemption games. 2533 Castro Valley Blvd., Castro Valley. 510-537-2168. golfland.com/castrovalley.
iFly. Features indoor virtual skydiving for ages 3 and older. 31310 Alvarado-Niles Road, Union City. 510-489-4359. iflysfbay.com.
Kennedy Park – Features a carousel, train and pony rides. Open during school vacations, weekends and most holidays. 19501 Hesperian Blvd., Hayward. 510-670-7275. haywardrec.org/kennedy.html.
Shadow Cliffs – Features a four-flume waterslide for riders at least 42 inches tall. 2500 Stanley Blvd., Pleasanton. 925-829-6230. ebparks.org/parks/shadow_cliffs.
Tilden Park – Features an antique carousel and steam train. Wildcat Canyon Road and Grizzly Peak Boulevard, Berkeley. 888-EBPARKS, option 3, ext.4562. ebparks.org/parks/tilden.
Triple Play U.S.A. – Features batting cages, basketball court and video arcade. 2055 Adams Ave., San Leandro. 510-568-2255. tripleplayusa.com.
Golfland – Three parks featuring miniature golf and arcades. The San Jose site also features three waterslides that are open May-September. 1199 Jacklin Road, Milpitas. 408-263-6855. 976 Blossom Hill Road, San Jose. 408-225-1533. 855 E. El Camino Real, Sunnyvale. 408-245-8434. golfland.com.
Laser Quest – Play laser tag in a two-story entertainment center. Ages 5 and up. 1400 N. Shoreline Blvd., Ste. C3, Mountain View. 650-965-9800. laserquest.com.
California’s Great America – Boasts dozens of thrill rides, Kidzville, costumed characters and Boomerang Bay water park. Open May-October. Great America Parkway between highways 101 and 237, Santa Clara. 408-988-1776. cagreatamerica.com.
William E. “Bill” Mason Carousel and Billy Jones Wildcat Railroad – Ride a miniature steam train and a carousel made for the 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition. Oak Meadow Park, 233 Blossom Hill Road, Los Gatos. 408-395-RIDE (7433). bjwrr.org.
Arena Green – Features the Children’s Carousel with 33 painted fiberglass animals, two playgrounds and a visitor center. Guadalupe River Park, Autumn and Santa Clara streets, San Jose. 408-298-7657. grpg.org.
Raging Waters – Northern California’s largest water park is open May-September. 2333 S. White Road, San Jose. 408-238-9900. rwsplash.com.
South / Coast
Mystery Spot – Discovered in 1939, this 150-foot area in the redwood forests has amazed and perplexed thousands of visitors, as the laws of physics and gravity seem not to exist. 465 Mystery Spot Road, Santa Cruz. 831-423-8897. mysteryspot.com.
Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk – This half-mile long, historic amusement park features more than 34 rides and attractions, games, indoor arcades and shops. All rides open Memorial Day to Labor Day; limited operation the rest of the year. 400 Beach St., Santa Cruz. 831-423-5590. beachboardwalk.com.
Gilroy Gardens – The park offers 40 rides, six theme gardens and its main attraction – 19 uniquely shaped “circus” trees. Open May-December. 3050 Hecker Pass Hwy., Gilroy. 408-840-7100. gilroygardens.org.