Exciting New Attractions Coming Soon to U.S. Theme Parks in 2023

Put your hands up—2023 is the year for big “drops” and exciting new theme park experiences. Theme parks across the U.S. are opening up new rides and attractions this year that will have thrill-seeking crowds coming back for more. From family-friendly adventures to adrenaline-rushing rollercoasters and summer-ready water worlds, here are some new theme park attractions to watch out for this year.

LEGOLAND New York Resort — Water Playground

Legoland New York

Scheduled to open Memorial Day weekend, LEGOLAND New York’s newest attraction is the perfect match for the rising temperatures. The Lego-themed water playground will have four waterslides, an interactive water play structure, a station to build and race your own Lego boat and a nearby changing station to gear up before splashing into the water. www.legoland.com/new-york.

Universal Orlando — Illumination’s Villain-Con Minion Blast

Universal Orlando is doubling the fun at its popular Despicable Me Minion Mayhem with a new Minions-themed attraction by Illumination dubbed Villain-Con Minion Blast. Set to open this summer, the new ride will use brand-new technology and a motion-based pathway to bring guests into a world where they fend off villains with blasters and encounter many Minions along the way. www.universalorlando.com.

Busch Gardens Williamsburg — DarKoaster

Busch Gardens Williamsburg

Racing through a cursed castle in the dark is just one of the many thrills of Busch Gardens Williamsburg’s newest roller coaster in James City County, Va. Fully indoors, DarKoaster takes riders on a spooky journey as they escape from a raging snowstorm in the castle on straddle-style carts that look like snowmobiles. The family-friendly coaster has a 48-inch minimum height requirement and a top speed of 36 mph. www.buschgardens.com/williamsburg.

SeaWorld San Diego — Arctic Rescue

Staying true to the park’s aquatic theme, Arctic Rescue will be a thrilling adventure through icy waters as riders race to rescue Arctic animals on snowmobile-like carts. The new rollercoaster is set to open in spring of 2023 and will be the longest and fastest straddle-style coaster on the West Coast. Arctic Rescue features three launches and a top speed of 40 mph. www.seaworld.com/san-diego.

SeaWorld Orlando — Pipeline: The Surf Coaster

SeaWorld Orlando

If riding waves and zipping through sky sounds like a blast, then SeaWorld Orlando’s new Pipeline: The Surf Coaster is the ride for you. Scheduled to open May 27, the one-of-a-kind “surf coaster” zips and loops riders around on stand-up platforms that look like surfboards. Be ready—you’ll face many twists and turns, including a wave-like curl, and top speeds of 60 mph. All riders must be at least 4’ 5” tall. www.seaworld.com/orlando.

SeaWorld San Antonio — Catapult Falls

Get ready to be transported to the top of a 55-foot hill in an open-air elevator, where you’ll then drop down into a rapid water ride with SeaWorld San Antonio’s Catapult Falls. Opening this summer, Catapult Falls is the first cross between a roller coaster and flume ride and features the world’s steepest flume ride drop. www.seaworld.com/san-antonio.

Hersheypark — Wildcat’s Revenge


Hersheypark’s 1996 Wildcat coaster is making a thrilling comeback. After closing the wooden roller coaster in 2022, Hersheypark in Hershey, Pa. is building a new ride in its honor called Wildcat’s Revenge. The wood and steel hybrid coaster will hit speeds of 62 mph and will feature a 140-foot climb, 82-degree drop and four inversions. www.hersheypark.com

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