Everything You Need to Know About Visiting Canada’s Wonderland with a Baby or Toddler
Considering visiting Canada’s Wonderland with a baby or toddler? Children under the age of three do not have to pay for park admission, so why not bring them along for some fun?
Since it opened in 1981, Canada’s Wonderland was not only the first major theme park in Canada, it remains the largest out of all the amusement parks in Canada.
I’ve been a gazillion times! So, if you’re thinking of visiting Canada’s Wonderland with a baby or toddler, I can help plan your day and make the most of your trip.
Baby Care Centres:
Like visiting Walt Disney World with a baby or toddler, Canada’s Wonderland has taken Mickey’s cue and created Baby Care Centres for their small guests and their parents. For the one park there are two centres, one in KidZville and the other in Medieval Faire. While there are change tables in the washrooms and most restaurants in the park can warm bottles, Canada’s Wonderland’s Baby Care Centres offer a little respite for baby and for parent to chill out, recharge, and head back out to the park.
A day at Canada’s Wonderland involves lots of walking, so bring your stroller. But if you’re past full-time stroller use and/or you have a toddler or preschooler along who tires easily, you can rent a stroller for the day. The strollers at Canada’s Wonderland are the molded plastic ones that you’ll find at Disney World or the Toronto Zoo. The rental fee for a single stroller is $15.99 plus tax (+$5 refundable deposit) and for a double stroller is $25.99 plus tax (+$5 refundable deposit). Your deposit is refunded when the stroller is returned in good condition. Stroller rental is located on the far left as you enter the park.
• Outside Food
No outside food, beverages, or coolers are allowed to be brought into Canada’s Wonderland. However, baby food and formula are permitted, as well as plastic bottled water. However, if food allergies are a concern, they have a detailed page on their website outlining safe food options at the park that cover most dietary requirements. If you or a member of your group has a severe food allergy, please contact Canada’s Wonderland before your visit for more information,
• Other Essentials
You don’t need to go crazy and follow a list like our carry-on packing list, but you do want to make sure you’re not left purchasing necessities if you don’t have to.
- A change of clothes
- Permitted baby food, snacks, and/or formula
- Bottles/drinking cups
- Pacifier and clip
- Swimwear and towels if visiting Splash Works
- Soft infant carrier or sling for naps/comfort
Our Guide to Eating, Sleeping, Playing & Getting Around Canada’s Wonderland with a Baby or Toddler…
Eating at Canada’s Wonderland with a Baby or Toddler:
If you are visiting Wonderland with a baby or toddler, you are allowed to bring in baby food and formula. This is just about the only outside food permitted in the park. However, if you need or want to supplement what you’ve packed, there are lots of healthy (and not so healthy, because Wonderland) options available to purchase.
Your best bet would be either the MarketPlace International Buffet, which offers a salad bar and a fresh fruit bar, and KidZville Snacks, which sells fresh fruit and fruit cups alongside its fast-food options.
Like most major theme parks in Canada and beyond, eating at Canada’s Wonderland is not inexpensive. However, they have a number of dining and drink plans available that offer great value for the money.
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I am probably not the best one to seek answers about the healthiest food options at Wonderland, simply because I could not wait to celebrate “Baby’s First Funnel Cake” when my son was a toddler. Literally that’s all I would eat there if I could get away with it.
Sleeping at Canada’s Wonderland with a Baby or Toddler:
Unlike, say, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, there really aren’t many (or even any) cool and/or quiet places to take baby for a stroller walk. Canada’s Wonderland is hopping! If there’s no chance of a nap simply by the sheer act of riding around in the stroller on a hot afternoon, you may consider dropping the nap for the day. Or you could try heading out to the parking lot and picnic area for a quieter place to wander with baby.
Playing at Canada’s Wonderland with a Baby or Toddler:
Best Rides at Canada’s Wonderland for Babies and Toddlers:
Canada’s Wonderland has two family-friendly areas within the park, KidZville and Planet Snoopy. And there are more than 25 kids attractions suitable for most little kids. However, unlike the vast number of rides for babies and toddlers at Disney World, a number of these rides are not suitable for lap or “handheld” infants.
From their guest assistance guide, Wonderland’s definition of a lap or handheld infant is:
Hand-Held Infants: Hand-held infants are children who are unable to independently walk or maintain seated postural control.
The rides at Wonderland that do permit lap or handheld infants are: Antique Carousel, Character Carousel, and the ground level of the Maple Park Treehouse.
KidZville rides skew older than those at Planet Snoopy. But don’t despair if you want to ride the latest monster coaster, Yukon Striker while visiting Canada’s Wonderland with a baby… They have a “Parent Swap” program. Wait in line as a family and tell the ride attendant when it’s your turn. Then, one will ride and the other will hold the child. When the first rider returns, they swap out.
Measure your child when you arrive at the park. Have them wristbanded so there will be no confusion (or tears) as to whether or not your child is allowed to go on a ride. My daughter was 36″ on her 2nd birthday and my son reached that height well before. That is the absolute minimum height for some Wonderland kids rides.
KidZville Rides for Babies & Toddlers:
Blast Off is like a mini Drop Zone. Riders must be at least 36″ to go on. You do not have to accompany your child but if you are over five feet tall you must ride with a child.
In the Flying Eagles‘ unique carriages, the ride starts with spinning at a high speed, that increases so as to rise above the ground. Once in the air, you can control your carriage’s flight by heading up or down. Guests must be 44″ tall to ride alone or 36″ tall if with a companion.
This is a cute combo of miniature hot air ballons and a Ferris wheel. Guests must be less than 60″ tall to ride. Handheld infants are not permitted.
These old-fashioned cars are a classic. Like the ones at Centreville, I used to imagine I could manouvre it off the track and drive around in it. You can’t actually do that, BTW. Each car sits four people and guests must be 46″ tall to ride alone or be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted.
This airplane that zooms up and down, both clockwise and counter-clockwise, will prep your kids for future swoopy rides. Riders must be 42″ tall to go on alone or be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted. Guests over 60″ tall must be with a child. There is a maximum of one adult per row.
This very cute miniature train ride fits four people per car. It slowly chugs its way around the track set up in alightly wooded area. Riders must be 40″ tall to go on alone or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted. Those over 60″ tall must be with a child.
Maple Park Treehouse
The Maple Park Treehouse is a large play structure with bridges, slides, and climbing structures to explore. Guests over 54″ tall must be accompanied by a child. Hand-held infants are permitted on the ground level, and the ground level is also wheelchair accessible.
Similar to the Mad Tea Party at Disney’s Magic Kingdom, these maple syrup buckets will spin you while you spin yourself–as fast or as slow as you can manage. Riders must be 44″ tall to go on alone or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted. Guests over 60″ tall must be accompanied by a child and there is a maximum of one adult per car.
A miniature version of the classic rotating swing ride, Swing Time features a child-size chair swing with free hanging seats suspended from a gently rotating tower. An individual lap bar and a between-the-leg safety belt secures each rider. Guests must be between 36″ and 54″ tall to ride.
Taxi Jam is a small, steel roller coaster for kids. It’s designed to be a child’s first roller coaster at Canada’s Wonderland. Guests must be 40″ tall to ride alone or 36″ tall with a parent or guardian. Guests over 60″ tall must be accompanied by a child.
These very cute small helicopters make their way slowly around an elevated track. You can make it go a bit faster by pedaling! Riders must be 42″ tall to go on alone or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted and guests over 60″ tall must be with a child.
Planet Snoopy Rides for Babies & Toddlers
Boo Blasters on Boo Hill
This ride is similar to Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin at Disney’s Magic Kingdom. You aim and shoot targets with a laser gun, and you compete for high score with your seatmate. It’s dark and noisy. Riders must be 42″ tall to go on or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted.
Wonderland’s Character Carousel is a child-sized version of a traditional carousel. Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Lucy, Linus, and all of the Peanuts characters spin with 20 beautiful horses and two chariots. Guests must be 46″ tall to ride alone or be accompanied by an adult. Handheld infants are permitted in chariot seating. Guests over 60″ tall must be accompanied by a child and are not permitted to ride on a jumper horse.
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The Ghoster Coaster is most Toronto kids’ first real roller coaster experience. It’s still a great ride for adults! Riders must be 46″ tall to go on alone or 40″ tall with a parent or guardian.
Joe Cool’s Dodgem School
If your toddler is 36″ and up and is of a sturdy sort, they might enjoy Joe Cool’s Dodgem School. This classic bumper car ride promises strong side to side movement and rapidly changing forces and direction. Guests must be between 36″ and 54″ tall to ride.
This is a mini version for the classic midway swinging pirate ship ride. Riders must be 42″ tall to go on alone or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted. Guests over 60″ tall must be with a child and there is a maximum of one adult per row.
This little race car ride doesn’t look like much, but every parent I know loves it. The spin around the corners is really fast and fun. Riders must be 42″ tall to go on alone or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted and those over 60″ tall must be with a child.
Sally’s Love Buggies
Sally’s Love Buggies are little cars that go round and round and up and down and you control how high with a handle. Riders must be 44″ tall to go on alone or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted and those over 60″ tall must be with a child.
This is Snoopy’s version of a mini Ferris wheel. Riders must be 42″ tall to go on alone or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted and those over 60″ tall must be with a child.
Snoopy’s Space Race
These are little rocket ships that gently spin and go up in the air. Riders must be shorter than 60″ to ride and handheld infants are not permitted.
Snoopy Vs. Red Baron
Ah yes, that pesky Red Baron that Snoopy has up against since time immemorial. The miniature fighter planes go up and down as the ride rotates around in a circle. Riders use a joystick to control the elevation of their unit. Guests must be between 36″ and 60″ tall to ride. Lap infants are not permitted.
Snoopy’s Space Race
Miniature rockets (featuring Astronaut Snoopy and his assistant Woodstock) gently spin and raise riders up in the air. Guests must be less than 60″ tall to ride. Hand-held infants are not permitted.
These classic swan boats are similar to the ones at Centre Island. It’s a great little break to paddle around the little pond whild surrounded by all the busy-ness. Riders must be 48″ tall to go on alone or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted and those over 60″ must be with a child. There is a maximum of one adult per boat.
The Pumpkin Patch
This ride is kind of like a horizontal Ferris wheel. The little pumpkins spin independently as the ride goes around and around. Each pumpkin seats four and riders must be 44″ tall to go on alone or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted and guests over 60″ must be with a child.
This ride is similar to The Pumpkin Patch except you can spin your nest as it goes around and it also rocks a bit up and down. Riders must be 40″ tall to go on alone or be with a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted. Guests over 60″ must be with a child. There is a maximum of one adult per car.
Main Park Rides for Babies & Toddlers
Wonderland’s Antique Carousel is almost 100-years-old and features 64 original hand-carved horses (24 stationary and 42 jumpers) and two chariots. Guests must be 46″ tall to ride alone or must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Handheld infants are permitted in the chariot seating. Service animals are welcome.
The Flying Canoes is a family ride where guests go up, down, and around in a big canoe. Riders can control how high tto fly by the press of a button. Guests must be 48″ tall to ride alone or 36″ tall if with a parent or guardian. Lap infants are not permitted.
Shows and Attractions at Canada’s Wonderland for Babies and Toddlers:
Since there isn’t too many rides for very small guests, visiting Wonderland with a baby or toddler is more about the shows. All of the performances at Canada’s Wonderland are family-friendly. The Victoria Falls High Divers leap off Wonder Mountain four times daily. Every day at 5:00pm,the Peanuts Block Party takes over Planet Snoopy. Five times per day, Snoopy’s Dog Days of Summer show features singing and dancing at the Playhouse Theatre. And Snoopy’s Symphony of Water takes place four times per day. Snoopy conducts the fountains in front of Wonder Mountain to dance along to music.
In the summer months, don’t miss KidZfest, with live entertainment and dance parties, and visits from your favourite TV characters such as Thomas & Friends, Toopy & Binoo, ALVINNN!!! and The Chipmunks, Bob the Builder, Paw Patrol, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Dora the Explorer, and MARVEL© Superheroes!
Visit the Canada’s Wonderland website for a complete list of shows and showtimes.
Canada’s Wonderland’s Splash Works with a Baby or Toddler:
Of course you know that there’s a whole other park inside Canada’s Wonderland. The Splash Works water park has been open since 1992. Entrance is free with your park admission or Season Pass.
Life jackets are available and free to use, and please take measures for pool and sun safety.
The Lakeside Lagoon, as well as the Pumphouse and Sprayground, can be busy but can also be lots of fun for mobile toddlers. Handheld infants must have direct adult supervision. If your toddler is over 36″ they’ll love the water slides at Lakeside Lagoon. Lap infants are not permitted down the slides.
The Supersoaker, The Plunge, Riptide Racer, and Whirlwinds waterslides all have a minimum height requirement of 40″ for a child who must be accoompanied by a parent or guardian.
All children under 48″ must wear a life jacket in the Lazy River. You float with inner tubes through the quarter mile-long track. Children under 42″ may ride with their parent or guardian in the same inner tube.
These smaller water slides allow children 36″ and over to ride down alone or choose to go with their parent or guardian. Handheld infants are not permitted. Those over five feet must be with a child.
White Water Bay
White Water Bay is one of Canada’s largest outdoor wave pools. The waves come fast and furious for five minutes and then there’s a five-minute break. Eveyone under 48″ must wear a life jacket. Wave pools are super fun but please watch your children closely and stick to the shallower end with your small children.
Getting Around Canada’s Wonderland with a Baby or Toddler:
Compared to Disney World or Universal. Canada’s Wonderland is not that big. However, it’s totally possible to spend the entire day here–from opening to closing–without running out of things to do. Prepare for LOTS of walking. We mentioned this previously, but don’t even think about visiting Canada’s Wonderland with a baby without a stroller. Make sure you and your chldren are wearing comfortable shoes.
Also, you may also wish to bring along a soft carrier or sling. Sometimes, for a nap or just for comfort, being able to wear baby is an option if they’re fussing.
Lastly, if you don’t want to spend your entire day in KidZville and Planet Snoopy, when you enter the park, head to the left of the fountains and start your day with the Antique Carousel. Then, make your way around the park clockwise.
Visiting Wonderland with Children with Autism or Special Needs:
Canada’s Wonderland is accessible and inclusive. In addition to their Baby Care Centres, they offer a Quiet Room located at Guest Services for those with sensory processing concerns. Ride accommodations can also be made. Consult their downloadable Guest Assistance Guide for their complete policies and for futher information you can consult Wonderland’s Guest Services team prior to your visit, or check in with them upon arrival at the park.
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My family received complimentary admission to Canada’s Wonderland. All opinions remain my own.
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