Knoebels Vs Dorney Park

Coaster Round-Up

Dorney Park Sign Amusement Park

Knoebels and Dorney Park are two amusement parks located in Pennsylvania, and both are home to some world-class attractions. But both are very different parks, offering two entirely different experiences.

Today I am going to compare the two amusement parks to try and determine the positive and negative aspects of both parks. This comparison will be split into sections, exploring the roller coasters, other rides, entertainment, food, and other aspects of the park based on the 2021 season.

Roller Coasters

Twister Wooden Roller Coaster Knoebels Amusement Park

Dorney Park and Knoebels both have some amazing rides that at times have been considered among the best in the world.

The standout coaster between both parks is easily Phoenix at Knoebels, a classic relocated wooden coaster. This ride features some of the most intense airtime of any coaster in the world, and despite its age typically is considered one of the best wooden roller coasters in the world. It is easily the best roller coaster at either park.

But beyond the best overall ride, Dorney Park has the more well-rounded lineup.

Dorney Park has several standout roller coasters, including Steel Force, an amazing hypercoaster, Talon, one of the best-inverted roller coasters that I have ever ridden, and Hydra The Revenge, a floorless coaster with a unique layout that makes it an amazing experience.

On top of these standout rides, they have a few good supporting coasters as well, including Thunderhawk and Possessed.

Beyond Phoenix, Knoebels only has one other coaster that is of a similar quality to the top-tier coasters at Dorney Park, and that is Impulse, a relatively new steel roller coaster with a vertical lift hill and four inversions. Twister, the other major traditional wooden roller coaster at the park has a good layout but has grown too rough to enjoy on many ride-throughs, despite being significantly newer than Phoenix.

The main thing that keeps Knoebels far below Dorney Park according to the 2021 season is that multiple of their coasters, including Flying Turns, were down for the year. This weakened the park as a whole by keeping major rides unavailable.

Dorney Park at least opened all their major coasters and kept them open, on top of having a strong, consistent lineup of roller coasters.

Other Rides

White Water Landing Boat Ride Dorney Park Amusement Park

Dorney Park and Knoebels both have a strong collection of other rides beyond the coasters.

Dorney Park has a modern collection of flat rides that have been kept up to date over the years with constant new additions, on top of a few classic rides. Some standout attractions include White Water Landing, Demon Drop, and Meteor.

Knoebels meanwhile focuses more on classic attractions, with a few modern rides in the park as well. The standout ride among these is easily the Haunted Mansion, a classic style dark ride, but there are many other good rides throughout the park even if most are not standout rides on their own.

Both park's ride collections are incredibly strong, Dorney Park merely focuses on modern rides while Knoebels focuses on classic attractions.


One area where Dorney Park and Knoebels diverge a lot is in terms of their entertainment.

Knoebels does offer some entertainment, usually with local groups performing in the park, but it is relatively limited in scale compared to Dorney Park.

Dorney Park has music groups performing throughout the park on a daily basis throughout the season. On top of that, they feature the Peanuts characters and seasonal shows that are incredibly elaborate and wonderful to experience in their limited runs.

While neither features a large amount of entertainment, Dorney Park does have an edge based on the 2021 season.


This is probably the biggest difference in any of the categories.

Dorney Park has very good food, including a variety of original and chain offerings in the park. The standout foods are usually found in the plentiful seasonal festivals though.

Knoebels on the other hand has incredible food all throughout the year at nearly every spot in the park. This is among the best food at an amusement park in the country, with amazing offerings to be found at every turn in the park.

Other Aspects

Beyond the aspects we have already talked about, both parks have other factors that are worth mentioning.

The layout of Knoebels is incredibly confusing, with few markers in the park to help you navigate. It can be difficult to find your way around the park if you are not familiar with the layout or carrying a map.

Dorney Park's layout is relatively easy to understand, and most of the major rides are visible from far across the park, making it easy to find them.

Both parks are incredible for their own reasons, and if you are in the area and a fan of roller coasters or amusement parks then you should make an effort to experience both of these parks.

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