Playland is Vancouver’s amusement park at the PNE. In August of 2020 it’s open and running over 20 rides with special precautionary measures in place.
Beginning on July 10th, Playland opened with about 12 or so rides suitable for young children. Starting on August 1st, 22 rides are in operation including some of the amusement park’s most serious attractions.
What Rides are Running at Playland in 2020?
Below is a description of amusement rides that are open to the public in the summer of 2020. First though is information about prices and COVID-19-related safety measures for the 2020 season.
To learn about the PNE and Playland in general, see our articles about the Pacific National Exhibition and Vancouver’s Playland Amusement Park. For information about events at the PNE, see our article about PNE Events. To learn about Playland rides and procedures in 2020, see below.
Click pne.ca for the PNE and Playland’s official website.
Playland Prices in 2020
Beginning on August 1st, 2020, admission to Playland costs $29.50 per person over the age of 3 for access to the littler kid rides. For people wanting thrills on rides that have a minimum height requirement of 48 inches, the price is $39.50. Included in the cost of admission is a cool Playland face mask.
Children under the age of 4 are free. They don’t get a free face mask though. Instead, they have to either buy one or bring their own. Everyone over the age of 2 needs to have a mask!
2020 Safety Features at Playland
- The venue is operating at limited capacity to ensure not too many people attend on any given day.
- Tickets must be purchased in advance for specific dates.
- Guests are instructed to maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet from other people not in their party.
- Plexiglass shields have been installed in various places, hand sanitizer stations have been set up and enhanced cleaning practices are in place.
- Face masks are required in ride lineups and on the rides themselves for everyone ages 2 and older.
- People who are feeling unwell or showing symptoms of COVID-19 should not visit Playland (or anywhere else for that matter). Instead, they should self-isolate and stay at home (or seek medical attention if serious).
Playland Rides in 2020
About twenty rides are operating at Playland as of August 1st in 2020. About a dozen of them are tamer rides that are suitable for little kids. Another ten or so are more extreme and require guests to be at least 48 inches in height.
Little Kid-Friendly Rides
Below are descriptions of Playland rides that are operating this summer and are suitable for young children. They are all considered “Limited Rides” and either “Kids or Family-Favourites.” That means they qualify for the $29.50 pass.
- Balloon Explorers – a child-friendly hot air balloon-themed ride. Note: Little kids need to ride with an adult.
- Bug Whirled – a new ladybug-themed miniature roller-coaster. Folk of any height can ride, but younger children must be accompanied by an adult. (Note: this ride doesn’t usually operate on rainy days.)
- Cap’n KC – a pirate-themed ride designed for younger children. This ride is unique because the boats are actually “floating” on water! It’s great for children between 36 and 52 inches tall, but too small for bigger kids and adults.
- Choppers – double-seater motorcycles take the place of seats for this ride. This attraction is made for younger children and riders must be between 36 and 52 inches in height.
- Cool Cruzers – a family ride with seats shaped like cars. Kids love pretending to “steer” a car, and adults are welcome to join in too.
- Dizzy Drop – a miniature Hellevator-style ride. This one is great for little daredevils who are just a bit too short for the real thing (i.e., the Hellevator). Riders need to be more than 38 inches tall, and riders under 42 inches must be accompanied by an adult.
- The Flutterbye – a butterfly-themed ride. Riders can make the cars go up and down by peddling their feet. The ride is suitable for anyone over 36 inches tall, although smaller riders may need to be accompanied by someone bigger.
- Honeybee Express – folk of all heights and ages are welcome on this honeybee-themed train ride. The train slowly follows the track around a garden so there are no crazy twists or turns.
- Merry-Go-Round – a classic family-friendly merry-go-round. Riders can choose from a variety of painted horses and carriages to sit on. Anyone of any height can go on the merry-go-round; however, smaller folk must be accompanied by an adult.
- Tea Cups – instead of cars or seats this ride has compartments shaped like teacups. An entire family can fit in one teacup. To make the cup spin faster or slower folk can spin the wheel in the middle of their cup.
Click pne.ca for the PNE and Playland’s official website.
Mid-Range Playland Rides
The following rides are considered to be “Limited Rides” and “Family-Favourites” which means they also qualify for the $29.50 pass. In our opinion they are fun for any age, not just for little kids and their parents, which is why we categorize them as “mid-range”.
(Note: “Mid-range” is our own descriptive name that we give these rides based on our experiences – it’s not an official category name used by the PNE).
- Kettle Creek Mine Coaster – a mining-themed miniature roller-coaster. It’s great for families, and anyone over 36 inches tall.
- Pacific Adventure Golf – the PNE’s mini-golf course (so it’s not actually a ride). There’s a full 18 holes of golf, and clubs and balls are provided. It’s also included in the price of admission (which hasn’t always been the case).
- Rock’n’Cars – a bumper-cars-style ride. It’s pretty tame, but lots of fun. Little kids though need to ride with someone big.
- Sea-to-Sky Swinger – a giant swing ride. The swings go up, down and all around while giving riders a great view of the rest of the park. Riders must be over 48 inches tall for this ride.
- West Coast Wheel – a tall Ferris-wheel ride. Although the cars move slowly, they do get pretty high. This ride is not recommended for people who are scared of heights! For most people it’s pretty tame, although not for everyone. The views from the top though are pretty nice.
Playland’s Most Extreme Rides
The following rides are considered to be “Thrill Rides” which means they require the $39.50 pass and for riders to be at least 48 inches tall.
- AtmosFear – an extremely tall swing ride. The ride goes up over 200 feet while spinning around in a circle. Riders are rewarded with a fantastic view of the city and surrounding mountains.
- The Beast – the PNE’s newest pendulum ride which is arguably one of the amusement park’s most extreme. It’s the only one of its kind in western Canada! The Beast swings up 125 feet on each side all while spinning 360 degrees around. This ride is only for folk over 52 inches tall.
- Breakdance – a city-themed ride. Passengers sit in seats painted like taxi cars and spin around in all directions. Folk must be 54 inches or taller for this ride.
- Gladiator – a Roman gladiator-themed family thrill ride. Folk over 45 inches tall can enjoy the spinning boats that go up and down.
- Music Express – this brightly-coloured spinning ride plays some of the most popular music. Be warned, the person sitting on the outside gets the most squished! The ride is suitable for folk over 48 inches tall.
- Pirate Ship – a boat-like ride with a pirate theme that swings like a pendulum. It’s at the bottom of the “serious” rides, in our opinion, and some might consider it a “medium-level” one. For others though, it is serious fun and can get you screaming.
- Revelation (extra charge) – one of the fastest and most extreme rides at the PNE! Up to two riders sit at each end of the arms of the ride and spin around at speeds of up to 100 km/hr. Folk must be over 52 inches tall to ride the Revelation. (Note: This ride is not included in the cost of general admission. You have to pay extra to go on it.)
- Wooden Roller Coaster – a historic wooden roller coaster. The ride was built back in 1958 and remains one of the top wooden roller coasters in Canada (and the world). Riders must be 48 inches or taller for this roller coaster.
Other Playland Rides
Other rides that normally run at Playland, but not in the summer of 2020, include the following:
Little Kid-Friendly Rides
- Super Slide – a large slide ride that’s popular with smaller kids (but not suitable for really tiny ones). Folk grab carpets at the bottom, climb the stairs and then slide down on one of the three brightly-coloured paths. Adults are welcome and riders must be over 38 inches tall.
- Flume – a classic log chute-style water ride. Prepare to get wet as the ride goes up and down the water-filled chutes and ends with a massive 40-foot drop. Riders must be over 48 inches tall for this ride, and anyone less than 52 inches tall must be accompanied by an adult.
- Scrambler – one of the most-loved but also most intense family rides. Riders feel like they’re being “scrambled” as the cars rush towards each other and spin around in circles. This ride is not for the faint of heart (or stomach)!
- Crazy Beach Party – a beach-themed spinning ride. Also called the Frisbee by some, the ride is suitable for folk over 54 inches tall. Riders spin around all while swinging back and forth like a pendulum.
- Drop Zone (extra charge) – up to three visitors can ride the Drop Zone at one time. Riders are strapped in and winched up to the top where they are responsible for pulling their own rip cord. This ride requires folk to be 48 inches or taller. (Note: This ride is not included in the cost of general admission. You have to pay extra to go on it.)
- Enterprise – a spinning wheel-shaped ride. The wheel spins and lifts off until riders are completely upside-down. Gravity keeps folk in their seats while creating a weird, almost weightless feeling. Folk must be 54 inches or taller to ride the Enterprise.
- Hellevator – the classic falling elevator-style thrill ride. Riders go up about 200 feet, pause at the top for the view and then free fall back down towards the ground. There used to be an extra charge for this ride, but not anymore. Folk must be over 48 inches tall to ride the Hellevator.
- Hells Gate – a crazy spinning attraction. Riders spin around and go upside down all over fountains of water. This ride is one of the rides with a stricter height requirement: folk must be 56 inches or taller.
To learn more about Playland and its rides see the PNE/Playland website.
For more photos and descriptions of the amusement park’s various rides see the Playland Rides webpage
Other PNE-related articles that might be of interest include the following:
- Vancouver’s Playland Amusement Park
- The Pacific National Exhibition (a.k.a. the PNE Fair)
- PNE Night Concerts
- PNE Events
- Fright Nights at the PNE at Halloween
Other articles that might be of general interest include the following:
- Vancouver Activities for Children
- Lower Mainland Summer Activities
- Vancouver’s Top 100 Places
- The City of Vancouver
- Vancouver’s Best Beaches
- Lower Mainland Outdoor Swimming Pools
- Entertainment in Vancouver
- Vancouver Shows & Entertainment
- Vancouver Festivals & Events