- Fish Tales
- 22nd St Bayside - Ocean City
- Maryland - United States
The resort's tallest Ferris wheel rises high above the beach at Ocean Pier rides.
Thrill-seekers will get their fill in Ocean City, where they can race on a Grand Prix track, do battle with paint balls and lasers, jump from a light tower, fly on a bi-plane and careen down man-made mountains on torrents of water or embark on a pirate adventure -- at sea or in a virtual-reality theater. The more traditionally inclined, of course, will find plenty of amusements like roller-coasters, Ferris wheels, bumper cars, mini-golf and all manner of arcade games.
With a nod to the spirit Daniel B. Trimper, who made having a blast serious business when he opened Trimper Rides in 1887, we offer the best of OC amusements.
Jolly Roger, Ocean City’s biggest amusement park, just got bigger. You can body surf or roll on the waves in a clear inner tube barrel at Splash Mountain Waterpark’s new Wave Pool, barrel down 500 feet on the Master Blaster "water-coaster" or float along the 1,500-long Lazy River. Then catch some rays on the man-made beach. Watch the lights blaze by in a blur aboard Ocean City's newest roller- coaster, the Wild Mouse, or take the 40-foot-plunge from the new Lighthouse Drop Tower. Test drive the new racers at the Grand Prix track at Speedworld, one of the biggest go-kart tracks in the country. The sprawling park features plenty of other rides, including ones for little tykes, and a first-rate miniature golf course. 30th Street and Coastal Highway.
Ocean Pier Rides couldn’t possibly be in a better location. The air carries that sweet blend of Thrasher’s French Fries, ocean salt, caramel corn and Boardwalk tar. The midway game barkers’ belt out their pitches non-stop. And all that tilting, twirling, spinning neon from the rides bathes the beach and, in the distance, the waves, in a kaleidoscope of color. Everybody should see coastline and skyline from Ocean City’s tallest Ferris wheel at least once.
Frontier Town has been bringing the Old West cowboy to life for more than four decades. The popular Wild West Show, set on 38 acres laid out like an 1860s Old West Town, features rides on stage coaches, ponies, paddle boats and a steam train, can-can shows, Indian dances, gun fights and bank hold-ups. Frontier Town has added a few concessions to modern times: a water park with a giant slide and Western-themed miniature golf. Four miles South of Route 50 on Route 611.
Trimper Rides & Amusements, the granddaddy of Ocean City amusement parks, resembles an old-fashioned midway with rides on blacktop paving way down near the southern end of the Boardwalk. Trimper, founded in 1887 and still owned and operated by the same family, features more than 100 rides, games and amusements, including a huge indoor section filled with kiddie rides. Marvel at one of the oldest carousels in the country: The newly restored 1902 Herschel-Spellman antique carousel is a delightful display of artistry and craftsmanship with all hand-carved wooden animals -- not only prancing horses, but also a lion, a long-necked giraffe, a frog, a chicken, an ostrich, a pig, a tiger, a zebra, a camel, an antlered deer, a billy goat, a dog and a dragon.
The triple flume’s the biggest draw at the 65th Street Slide & Ride, which also features miniature golf, batting cages, bumper boats and water-gun wars.
Thunder Lagoon, just north of Ocean City in Fenwick Island, features two twister slides, a Viking Ship that tips you into the water and a 2,800-square-foot play pool.
Jolly Roger’s Splash Mountain features a beach and wave pool, lazy river and "water-coaster."
It’s been said that Ocean City has among the highest concentration of miniature golf courses in the country, and a drive along Coastal Highway will do little to dispel that notion. Among our favorites:
Old Pro Golf eight locations with courses inhabited by hand-made, animated dinosaurs, clowns, animals and knights.
Embers Island is the hottest new addition on the strip this summer. Embers’ three courses feature an active volcano, a pirate ship, sand traps and water hazards.
It’s not a mirage: Those really are igloos and hollowed-out glaciers at Ice Land Golf. Look out for the mechanical grizzlies snatching salmon from the icy waters. Philadelphia Avenue between Somerset and Wicomico streets.
Maui Golf brings a bit of the Hawaii to the East Coast with its waterfalls, Easter Island statues, even a Jeep with the obligatory surfboard on top. But you have to wonder how that great white shark got into the at the 12th hole.
A round at Jungle Golf leads you through a tropical rain forest, complete with waterfalls and a lagoon, and over mountains inhabited by animated wild animals.
If you’ve got a jones for getting behind the wheel and racing, you’ll find go-go tracks galore at Speedworld (Jolly Roger, 30th Street and Coastal Highway), Drag-N-Fly Go Karts (68th Street on the bay), Baja Amusements (12639 Ocean Gateway/Route 50, one mile west of Route 50 Bridge on the right) or Grand Prix Family Amusements (12639 Ocean Gateway/Route 50, a half mile west of Route 50 Bridge on the left). Grand Prix has bumper boats as well.
The Boardwalk wouldn’t be the Boardwalk without Skee-Ball, pinball, games that ring and buzz and roar and clang. You get all that and a new virtual-reality theater with dragons and pirates and cowboys at the at Sportland,on the Boardwalk at Worcester Street. Other favorites include Fun City (Boardwalk at Caroline Street) and Marty's Playland (Boardwalk at Worcester Street).
Kids paint their faces and put on their sailing sashes before heading to sea to seek underwater treasure aboard the Pirate Adventures on the Sea Gypsy cruise. "Captain Crisis" leads sea chanteys, tells stories, teaches the crew the loyalty oath and how to fire the water cannons when necessary. Six daily departures in summer from Ocean City Fishing Center, Route 50 and Shantytown Road, West Ocean City.
Sea Rocket (South Division Street and the bay), O.C. Rocket (Talbot St. and the bay) and U.S.A. Patriot (Wicomico Street and the bay) offer ocean cruises along the coastline on oversized speedboats.
For nature cruises, try Assateague Adventure (Talbot Sreet and the Bay), Shantytown Nature Cruises (Route 50 and Shantytown Road), Explorer (South Division Street and the bay) or Discovery Nature Cruises (First Street and the Bay).
Ocean City looks a whole lot different from the sky. The mass of concrete condos seem to be marching toward the ocean, porpoises and giant manta rays bob in the waters, and deer and ponies traverse trails into the marshes and bayberry thickets of Assateague Island. To see it all from on high, book an air tour. You can feel the wind blowing through your hair aboard the biplane rides of Cloud Dancer. If you’d prefer to be enclosed in the cockpit, try Sky Tours, and, along with great sites, you’ll get a fascinating lesson on the complex eco-system of a barrier. Both tours operate out of Ocean City Airport, Route 611.
Planet Maze will get the kids twisting, turning, sliding and climbing their way through a mass of tubes, tunnels, three-story slopes and ropes. At the adjoining Laser Storm, teams armed with laser guns and wearing futuristic head gear go to battle in an fog-shrouded arena resembling the set of the movie "Stargate." 33rd Street and Coastal Highway.