Cliff's Amusement Park in Albuquerque, New Mexico offers over twenty family friendly rides, thrills and games, and includes the WaterMania water park. Family rides and attractions include classics such as the carousel, bumper cars, Tilt-A-Whirl and miniature train. The Big Flush and Rocky Mountain Rapids are log flume rides.

More ideas: Best Weekend Getaways, Best Day Trips

The Sea Dragon is a giant swing ride shaped like a pirate ship, while the Falling Star is takes visitors up towards the sky, spins them around, and then drops them back down. Kiddlyland offers rides for children under 48 or 36 inches. Kiddyland rides includes children’s bumper cars, a Happy Swing and Frog Hopper swing, Doggie-Go-Round, Spin-O-Rama and the Balloon Wheel, a gentle, small version of a Ferris wheel. Midway games and activities include a Laser Maze, Whac-A-Mole and a 3-point basketball contest. Face painting transforms young guests into super heroes, butterflies and animals.

For riders above 48 inches, thrill rides include the Cliff Hanger, a fast drop from a height of 120 feet, and the spinning Musik Express, SideWinder and Wind Rider. Two roller coasters at the park include the Fireball, offering 80 foot tall loops, and the New Mexico Rattler, voted one of the world’s top 25 wooden roller coasters. The 3,000 foot long hybrid coaster combines a steel frame with wooden tracks. The Rattler loops around and over the exterior of the park, and includes a 100-foot long underground tunnel, 75-foot drops, and 270-degree turns. The coaster’s New Mexico themed entrance is based on the territorial revival and pueblo revival style of architecture.

The park’s WaterMania water park is open May through September, while the main park opens each year in April. It is the and is the only outdoor water park in New Mexico. WaterMania offers a Li’l Squirts play area designed for toddlers and young visitors, and a Mega Water Monkeys playscape periodically sprayed with water to beat the New Mexico heat. The Mega Water Monkeys attraction includes mid-sized slides and fountains.

Over ten different restaurants within the park include the Everything Ice Cream Stand and Snack Shack for smaller bites, or the Cabana Grill or Cliff’s Pizzeria for burgers, hot-dogs and pizza. The All American Café has been open for over 30 years, and serves burgers, freshly made corn-dogs, and ice cream. Smokey’s Jumbo Legs opens on Memorial Day Weekend and serves giant turkey legs near the entrance to WaterMania. Inside WaterMania, visitors will find Cabana Chill, which offers snacks and refreshments.

History: Uncle Cliff’s Kiddieland opened in Albuquerque in 1959. The park’s founders, Cliff Hammond and his wife Zella, began with a small Kiddie Playland and go-kart track near the center of town, which was forced to move when neighbors petitioned to have it shut down. In 1963, Uncle Cliff’s moved to a new location just outside of town, where they were able to add on bigger attractions at the 6-acre property. In 1976, Cliff’s daughter, Linda Hays, took control of the park along with her husband, Gary.

The park continued to grow over the years, and in 1991, the name was officially changed to Cliff’s Amusement Park, to better reflect the bigger attractions. The New Mexico Rattler, the park’s largest roller coaster was completed by Cliff’s in 2002 after the company that originally began its build went bankrupt half-way through the project. WaterMania opened in 2012 and since then, the park has continued to grow in attendance each year. Cliff Hammond passed in 2013 and the park is now operated by his grandchildren, Justin and Tracy Hays.

Ongoing Programs and Education: Groups of 50 or more may purchase discounted all-ride passes, and make use of the event’s private event area and event catering services. Catering at the park is done via partnership with outside vendors such as Rudy’s BBQ, Fuddruckers and Jimmy John’s. On weekends only, discounts are available for groups of 10 or more. School groups may utilize the Cliff’s Classroom Guide, which offers 12 pages of games and activities for elementary school aged children to complete when they visit the park.

The park offers discount events throughout the season, including discount days for veterans, healthcare workers, teachers, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and more. Discounted weekends include Cliff’s April Anniversary weekend, which will celebrate Cliff’s 59th year of business in 2018. Other park events include the annual Food on a Stick Festival. The September event celebrates corndogs, candy apples, ice cream, and all foods on sticks with a variety of food and beer vendors and live entertainment in addition to unlimited rides. Oktoberfest at Cliff’s takes place the last weekend of each September. The event includes discounted rides, beer vendors and live music.

4800 Osuna Road Northeast, Albuquerque, NM 87109, Phone: 505-881-9373

More Things to Do in Albuquerque