Amusement Parks
National Parks
Route 66 Cities Beaches



Kings Island

Kings Island
Park Food
Water Rides

Kings Island is best experienced on a two day visit. Unless you live close and can return several times during the season, perhaps with a season pass, your best strategy is a two day ticket and an overnight stay nearby, or two nights and one very long day at the park.

We only recommend three locations. All three are tucked close against the park and are in walking distance to the entrance along a landscaped path. Kings Island's original concept was that they would control all lodging. Behind the Flight Deck coaster they built a campground with extensive RV facilities. Adjacent to that they built the Kings Island Resort. The final piece of land between the park and the interstate was left for expansion. When Paramount took over, it closed the campground and sold the land to Great Wolf Lodge. They also sold the expansion tract to Comfort Suites and Outback Steakhouse. So those three facilities now occupy the prime locations and we see no need to stay further away. By staying so close you leave your car parked at your lodging, walk to the park, and save the $12 to $20 parking fee each day, a $24-40 advantage over two days. If you factor that, discounted tickets through your lodging (plus the free breakfast at Comfort Suites) against the room rate, all of a sudden it seems like a much better deal.

The Great Wolf Lodge is the current superstar of KI lodging. It's a huge, modern complex built on what was originally the Kings Island Campground, meaning its backyard comes right up under Flight Deck, so you can wake up in the morning and watch test runs. All three of the scenes shown at the top of this page can be seen from one window or another of the Great Wolf Lodge. You don't even need a shuttle; you can walk directly to the park entrance along a landscaped path. There are several eateries inside the lodge, but the really spectacular feature is the indoor water park. Great Wolf Lodge is the most expensive of the KI lodgings, but you get a lot for your money. Various rooms accommodate familes of various sizes. Some are small and intimate with fireplaces, some have bunkbeds or nooks and corners so children and parents can have a little privacy during the weekend. The architecture is very North Woods : logs, stone and heavy, comfortable furniture. Mattresses tend to be extra firm; they're recommended by physicians but some people prefer a softer bed. There are lots of extras focused on kids, but each extra adds to your bill. For adults, there's a full service spa. Rooms here are $180 and up.
The Kings Island Resort & Conference Center is just down from the parking lot on a 23 acre beautifully landscaped campus of trees, lawns and a lake. There's an outdoor and indoor pool, fitness center, whirlpools, jacuzzis, playgrounds, basketball and tennis courts, and even fishing. The shuttle to the park runs every 20 minutes or you can cross Kings Island Drive to the Great Wolf Lodge and follow the landscaped walk to the entrance. There are park ticket discounts. The Main Street Grille offers a great breakfast buffet and there's a Pizzeria for later in the day. There's free wireless internet access. This resort was built when the park opened in the early 1970s and has a nostalgic look and feel. Many will find that charming. Others will prefer the more 21st Century, cutting edge lodges across the street or next door. Rooms here are $90 a night.

Comfort Inn Suites is the third lodging close to the park. This one is adjacent to Kings Island Resort, across Kings Island Drive from Great Wolf Lodge. You can still walk to the park by crossing to Great Wolf Lodge and taking the landscaped path. There's an Outback Steakhouse next door and a Perkins and Bob Evans just down the street. Rooms here are about $100 a night, but everything is new and meticulously maintained. The fitness center and indoor heated pool are small but presumably you'll be spending your day at the park. There's a bountiful breakfast buffet and free wireless internet. All suites come with refrigerators, microwaves, coffee makers and hair dryers, and you can request "full" suites with extended kitchen facilities and reclining chairs. Wives may especially enjoy the famous Christmas Shop a block down. They could spend half a day there while Hubby and the kids go on to Kings Island.

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