Our kids have enjoyed going to amusement parks for years, and on a trip to Buffalo, we decided to treat them to a trip to Darien Lake Amusement Park. The park is easy to find, about 45 minutes east of Buffalo, and we had no problems getting there using Google Maps.
Right inside the entrance gates is a large parking area. Unlike some of the other Six Flags parks we have been to, the parking lot is right next to the park, so you just walk through the parking lot to the gates (there is no long additional walk or having to take a shuttle). I liked that the parking lot was right there on the border of the park.
We thought this park might be a little less crowded than other Six Flags, but it was quite busy. One thing we did not realize is that there was going to be a concert that night for a popular country artist that night, so the park was absolutely packed.
Since the park gets busy, it is good to plan out your day to make the most of it. You can find the park map as a PDF here.
I would recommend looking through the ride list and seeing what rides the kids can go on. A lot of the rollercoasters had a height requirement that was too tall for my kids (e.g. 54″), so we planned around that instead of wasting time walking to those rides.
A lot of the rides had a long line right off the bat. We arrived when the park opened, and tried to do some of the rollercoasters first, but soon the lines were 30+ minutes. The most popular rides had really long lines, so we chose to skip those (like the Motocoaster, which is a rollercoaster but you ride it on a motorcyle type apparatus). Any time we visit an amusement park, we try to get to the most popular rides first, in order to avoid the lines if possible.
There is a good assortment of rides, from small children to adults, plus there is a water park.
The weather was beautiful, and we headed over to the water park after a few hours, to cool off.
The kids are always a fan of the river at water parks.
Aside from the rides, there are lots of games around the park.
You can purchase food within the park, or bring food and have a picnic lunch at your car. I don’t believe you can bring your own food into the park unless you have a special circumstance (such as a food allergy or baby).
There are also accommodations at Darien Lake, from camping to a hotel to RVs.
I would recommend bringing the following:
~ Sunscreen / sun protection (hat, sunglasses)
~ For the waterpark: swimwear, sunscreen, towel, water shoes
~ Container for water unless you plan on purchasing drinks (I would check their website – this probably needs to be brought in empty, and you fill it in the park)
~ Money for food (or anything else like games or merchandise), or bring your own food
Check out Six Flags Darien Lake at https://www.sixflags.com/darienlake