Thank you Land of Make Believe for hosting us. As always, all opinions are still 100% my own.
Summer is all about making family memories, and this year we have taken that very seriously. The boys are in perfect ages to explore tons of activities and cool places New Jersey has to offer. So when I learned about Land of Make Believe, I knew that it was a destination I had to plan a trip to.
The Land of Make Believe is a family-owned amusement park that features carnival-like rides, a water park, a Christmas barn, a few farm animals, some make- believe entertainment and much more. It was designed specifically for little children, so it is ideal for family with young kids. But seriously, anyone at this park will have an amazing time.
I really like the whole concept of how it all started around 60 years ago. “Land of Make Believe’s founder designed & built with the dream of providing affordable Family fun. No longer would parents be “passive spectators.” They would, in fact, “be kids again,” having as much, if not more fun than their children! Once a dairy farm, the founder transformed a beautiful valley into a charming, magical location. Knowing the cost of raising children, he encouraged families to bring their own food and enjoy picnicking in our special picnic grove”
So keep reading to learn all about Land of Make Believe and how it is such a gem family amusement and water park.
They open the park at 10am and that’s when we arrived. The weather was bit overcast so we decided to start with the rides. The boys, of course, wanted to go to the carousel first. There were NO lines and I love that! The kids were having so much fun just running around from one ride to the other. Most rides were geared towards the younger kids. Some rides, require that kids under 36″ be accompanied by an adult. There are a few attractions that all ages can enjoy and none are extreme enough that the little ones won’t want to join the fun. My 4 year old went on pretty much every ride.
Kids under 36 months are free, however one important thing to note is that they will be limited to certain amusement rides: Off Road Safari Adventure, Carousel, Train, and Water Park + two more rides. So if you plan to have them ride with a sibling, get them a ticket too!
After playing on some rides for a little bit, we went to the train station to ride the iconic Civil War Train. The train takes you around most of the park and it’s a great way to see all that there is to do before you actually do it! It was an awesome ride!
My boys love animals, and when we go places that they can have interaction with them, they get so excited. They had a blast checking out Old MacDonald’s Farm. It was a small but fun petting zoo with bunnies, a small cow, some lambs and chickens.
We saw a big Barn and I have heard they had a Christmas in July kind of thing, so we went to check it out. The kids were so surprised to see all the xmas decorations right on summer time. Santa’s Barn is an enchanted Christmas forest which is portrayed as Santa’s summer home. The best part is that in order to see the barn upstairs, you have to go through the chimmey. The boys loved that! When we got upstairs we kept walking and when we were about to head down to the stairs we saw Santa! It was a nice surprise! We were not expecting to see him there. The kids sat on the couch by him and got to tell Santa what they want for Christmas, ahead of time. Lol!
This classic is always so much fun. The kids loved trying to find their way out, and when they did, they just headed to the Candy Cane Forest to pick their own “candy”.
Family Picnic / Food
The Land of Make Believe offers great picnic area where you’re sure to find a shaded picnic table to share with your family. Whether you bring your lunch or purchase it from one of the park’s vendors you’ll enjoy a nice lunch there. We brought a few snacks for the kids to have on the car on our way home and decided to buy food there for lunch. The food prices are pretty reasonable. Not as inflated as most amusement parks. We had burgers, chicken nuggets and fries. A cheeseburger was $4 and an order of fries was just $2 bucks or so. Not bad at all.
Just keep in mind that coolers are not allowed in water park area. But you can leave them outside in the picnic area.
After lunch we headed to the water park. I loved that the place was nicely spread out. The water was shin deep. Safe for the little ones. We just sat by the pool border and watched the kids explore the Pirate’s ship and all the fun kiddie slides. It was their favorite part.
We also explored the Blackbeards’ Action River lazy river ride and Blackbeard’s Pirate Fort waterpark play area, complete with giant water bucket, where the kids had so much fun. I think we went on the lazy river about 10 times! Lol it was so relaxing and perfect for a hot summer day.
They also have some really cool water slides like the Cannonball, the Pirate’s Revenge, Pirate’s Escape, Black Hole so if you are feeling adventurous, thats for you! Maybe when the boys are a bit bigger! Lol
The changing rooms was conveniently located by the entrance of the water park. Once all the water fun was done we changed out of our wet clothes and were ready for some more rides. They also have lockers for rental in case you want to secure your belongings. We left our backpacks with clothing, sunscreen and towels at one pool chair and just carried a belt bag around with our phones and cash. By the way they only accept cash or Discover Card. Also I recommend bringing a waterproof pouch if you dont rent a locker.
Off Road Safari Adventure
The park was almost closing and the kids were getting tired so we went on the Off Road Safari Adventure, which is a cool ride that travels in a real Off Road 4×4 Safari vehicle to see the Wild West of the early 1700’s.
The kids had a blast! The photos speak for themselves and if you follow us on Instagram there is a saved stories highlights with all the videos from our day.
The Land of Make Believe was a great way to enjoy some fun family time and make some new memories. We were there for an entire day 10am to 5:30pm and were able to enjoy almost everything the park has to offer.
A few attractions were closed like the Whishing Wheel and the boardwalk carnival -like games. We also did not have time to watch one of the Theatre presentations, so we definitely have plans to go back.
The Land of Make Believe season ends on September 6th. After that they’ll be open the weekend of September 11th and 12th. That means you still have time for one more NJ family adventure before fall arrives. You wont regret!
They are located in Hope, NJ just a 50 minutes drive from Newark airport, about one hour drive from NYC.
Have you ever been to Land of Make Believe?