The Greater Phoenix area doesn't have many true amusement parks, but Castles and Coasters near Metrocenter Mall in Phoenix is one of only a couple of places in the Valley of the Sun where the family can enjoy year-round rides, miniature golf and an arcade, all in one location.
Castles and Coasters boasts four world-class miniature golf courses. What is a "world-class" miniature golf course? I'm sure I don't know, and I've never seen Phil Mickelson there. But I can tell you that they are attractive courses, with 18-holes each, water, landscaping and creative design. Miniature golf is fun for the entire family. Aside from the arcade, this is the only attraction at Castles 'n' Coasters where there is no height requirement, and kids under 5 play free with a paying adult.
The lagoon is where you'll find the bumper boats. This used to be a seasonal activity, but now you can enjoy the bumper boats year round. This attraction does have a height requirement, but shorter guests can ride along with a taller person (minimum 44 inches tall).
The Go Karts at Castles 'n' Coasters have the strictest height requirements -- you must be 56 inches tall to ride alone in one of the karts, and passengers must be a minimum of 40 inches tall. Then you can race around the quarter mile of banks and hair pin curves on the race track. If you are here for a corporate party, this may be the one place where you can feel comfortable beating the boss!
It is not unusual for the lines at the Go Karts to be the longest of any of the attractions at Castles 'n' Coasters.
If racing fun is on your agenda, get on line early!
Get Wet at Splashdown Falls
At the logging town of Splashdown Falls you'll have fun, you'll get wet. Think of it as a wet roller coaster without ever being upside down. That's for me! Single riders must be at least 42 inches tall, and passengers must be a minimum of 36 inches tall when accompanied by a responsible person meeting the 42 inch requirement.
Splashdown is only open all year long, but only when the rest of the ride park is open.
During the summer, the water rides are very popular. There are plenty of areas where parents or kids can take a break from the sun and sit in the shade. The arcade, of course, is indoors, and it's a logical place to beat the summer heat.
Wild Walking and Zip Lines
The amusement parks has added an elevated, 3 story, obstacle course, On the Ropes, that will test your balance and your courage. It is a rope course, with 28 different elements. I watched people, mostly adults, taking on the challenge -- and I can tell you that some of them were not able to conquer the ropes.
Right above On the Ropes in the photo above you'll notice that one young lady is taking the quick way to get a great view of the entire park.
That's the Sky Wire zip line. You must be wearing shoes that will stay on (not flip flops) and you must be at least 46 inches tall, between 100 and 300 pounds to ride.
The rides are the biggest attractions at Castles and Coasters, especially in the winter. Free Fall, pictured here, is great for the younger crowd, while Sky Diver is an extreme ride for taller thrill seekers. Don't eat before you go on this one....
Other rides at Castles and Coasters include the Magic Carpet ride, the Patriot Roller Coaster, and the back-and-forth and up-and-down Sea Dragon. There are several rides that are appropriate for little kids, and a very pretty carousel.
Ram Rods are the name of the bumper cars at Castles and Coasters. This is your chance to bump your mom, brother, boss or teenager--just don't act like you are enjoying it too much!
Like all the rides at Castles and Coasters, there's a height requirement here. If you are 4 feet tall or more, you can get on any ride at Castles and Coasters on your own, except the go karts and bumper cars. At the entry gate there is a list showing the height requirement for each of the rides, or you can check the list online before you go.
There are no refunds if you buy a ticket and then can't get on the rides!
Castles and Coasters used to be open 365 days per year, but in 2011 the hours changed such that they are closed on Christmas Day. On other days, hours change with the seasons, days of the week, and if there are special events going on. Certain attractions and rides may be open only specific hours during their hours of operation. You can check the calendar to see if the attractions and rides that you want to enjoy are offered on the day you want to go.
Castles and Coasters is a popular place for corporate and school parties and events, and they may be closed to the public on those days. Your best bet is to call before you go to check the hours and make sure you can get in.
Castles 'n' Coasters Address:
9445 Metro Parkway East
Phoenix, AZ 85051
Here's a map and directions to Castles and Coasters.
Castles 'n' Coasters Phone Number:
Castles 'n' Coasters Official Web Site:
Castles 'n' Coasters Admission Prices:
You can pay for rides and golf and arcade fun as you go, or a la carte, or can can select from several different all day passes. An all day pass that includes unlimited rides and one round of golf costs about $30 (2012).
All dates, times, prices and offerings are subject to change without notice.