Get Ready for Adventure! Theme Parks Near Anna Maria Island

| May 21, 2024

Anna Maria Island is home to wonderful museums & markets, delicious dining, and so much more. But if you are looking to add a little bit of magic during your stay on Anna Maria Island, Serendipity is here to help! Florida has one of the highest concentrations of theme parks in a single state. Since so many of our visitors hope to capture some of that theme park magic, we put together a list of some of the most popular and some of our favorite theme parks near Anna Maria Island that are just a day trip away!

Busch Gardens | For the Thrill- Seekers

10165 McKinley Dr, Tampa, FL 33612 | 1hr. 27min. | 60 Miles

Cost: Starting from $65

Coasters, coasters, and more coasters. For those who crave that sweet, sweet adrenaline rush, Bush Gardens is there to provide and then some. With over a dozen high-octane coasters to get your blood pumping, along with family-friendly attractions and live entertainment and music, Busch Gardens is a great place to get your thrills during your stay. 

Legoland | Where Everything Is Awesome

1 Legoland Way, Winter Haven, FL 33884 | 2hrs. 7min. | 88 Miles

Cost:  Starting from $74

Let’s be honest: the Lego movie came out nearly ten years ago, and the song “Everything is Awesome” is still stuck in our heads. But it is true! Everything is awesome at Legoland Orlando! Legoland features three separate smaller parks: a theme park, a water park, and an aquarium! This park brings kids’ fun and creativity to a whole new level with interactive exhibits and rides based on everyone’s favorite toys!

Disney World | For the Kids and the Kids at Heart

Kissimmee, Vineland Road, Orlando, FL | 2hrs 20 Min. | 106 Miles

Disney World has been crafting magical vacation experiences since it opened in 1971. With attractions and experiences created from their vast array of characters and brands, including classic characters, Star Wars, and Marvel, there is something for everyone at Disney. The park is divided into smaller sections that include: 

Epcot 

Located in Disney World

Cost: Starting from $89/day with select passes

Travel the world through Disney’s lens. Epcot is home to a veritable smorgasbord of international foods, beautiful themed topiary gardens, unique educational exhibits, character meet-and-greets, and more! (It is also home to the fantastic new Guardians of the Galaxy ride!) 

Magic Kingdom

Located in Disney World

Cost: Starting from $89/day with select passes

This is the go-to Disney experience. Visit Cinderella’s castle, ride Space Mountain in the halls of Tomorrowland, find your favorite character for a signature and photo-op, keep an eye out for Captain Jack in The Pirates of the Caribbean, and, of course, ride the (mostly) beloved “It’s a Small World” ride. The song may be stuck in your head for days to come, but this park is a trip that promises to be truly magical. 

Typhoon Lagoon/Blizzard Beach

Located in Disney World

Cost: Starting from $89/day with select passes

Disney + Waterparks = the coolest summer getaway yet. These two Disney-themed waterparks feature wave pools, lazy rivers, and so many waterslides. Did we mention there is also snorkeling? Because there is!

Animal Kingdom

Located in Disney World

Cost: Starting from $89/day with select passes

Natural environment and animal conservation efforts meet Disney fun at Disney World’s Animal Kingdom. This park is unique as it houses live animal exhibits intermingled with more traditional theme park attractions. The Animal Kingdom is also home to newer exhibits based on Pandora from the James Cameron Avatar films. This park hosts several theater-level shows and will be fun for the whole family. 

Disney’s Hollywood StudiosStar Wars Galaxy’s Edge

Located in Disney World

Cost: Starting from $89/day with select passes

The newest park in Disney World lines up Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge. Have you ever dreamed of being a Sith Lord or Jedi Master? Do you own more than one prop replica lightsaber? Then this is the park for you. There is also a Toy Story Land and the ever-classic Tower of Terror! And for the kids and kids at heart, there is both a Beauty and the Beast live sing-along performance and a Frozen sing-a-long, too!

Universal Studios | Bringing the Thrill of the Silverscreen to Life

6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819 | 2hrs. 36min. | 118 Miles

Cost: Starting from $119

Universal Studios has brought your favorite movies to life since 1990 with themed rides, shows, and attractions! From the iconic E.T. and Jurassic Park ride experiences to newer adventures from Dreamworks (a new park coming in June 2024!), Nintendo and Harry Potter, everyone is sure to have a fun time at Universal! For those in your family who don’t like rides, a handful of live entertainment and interactive media experiences will bring beloved movie characters to a new light. Also, the dining here is absolutely top-notch!

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter | For Those Who Still Believe In Magic

Located in Universal Studios

Cost: Starting from $119

If you have been living that muggle life and are still sad that you never got your acceptance letter to Hogwarts, cheer up! The time is now! Pack your broom and get ready to be sorted! Explore the magical world of Harry Potter and immerse yourself in childhood magic. You deserve it. 

Super Nintendo World | Let’s-A-Go! (COMING IN 2025!)

Located in Universal Studios

Cost: TBA

There isn’t a kid out there who doesn’t know who the Super Mario Bros. are. This park is a warp pipe straight into the Mushroom Kingdom. Nintendo opened the gate to its first theme-park venture with Universal Studios, timing the Super Mario Bros. movie launch last year in California, which was a great success. A visit to this park will surely be a superstar power-up for your future vacation getaway. 

Bonus: Dinosaur World| Who Doesn’t Love Dinos?

5145 Harvey Tew Road Plant City, FL 33565 | 1hr. 27min. | 60 Miles

Cost: Starting from $25

Dinosaur World exists in the space somewhere between a theme park and a roadside attraction and is just too charming to be left off the list. Settled on over 20 acres, you and your family can pack a picnic, bring the dog, and get ready to wander the woods and trails filled with real dinosaurs. Okay, so maybe they are real fiberglass dinosaurs, but with some imagination and an open mind, this is a fun (and much safer) substitute for a family-friendly Jurassic Park. For warmer days, there is also an indoor museum with educational animatronics and a large gift shop that will surely have something for every dino lover in your life. Not to mention, the trails are shaded, making it a lovely walk even on the sunniest of Florida days!

While these are some of our favorites, Florida is the theme park capital of the U.S., and there are even more parks worth visiting to inspire that lost childhood magic while you make our beautiful state your home or home-away-from-home. Reach out to Serendipity today to grab hold of some of that magic and start planning your perfect Anna Maria Island Vacation!

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