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Visit Visalia, Other California Partners Commit to Accessible Travel

by Aoife O'Riordan

Jul 29, 2022

© Santa Barbara Zoo


Visit Visalia and many other California-based attractions continue to raise the bar when it comes to both accessible and family travel. These different attractions and organizations created an Autism-Friendly California Road Trip, featuring attractions across the state that are Certified Autism Centers.


imagine U

© Visit Visalia


“Visalia is a destination for everyone and all families should be able to explore the area with ease. It’s a top priority for us to ensure Visalia and its offerings are accessible for all, including those in the autism community,” said John Oneto, board chair, Visalia CVB. “We’re so excited to have partnered with incredible attractions across the state to ensure that California is a place for everyone to feel supported during the ultimate Golden State summer road trip.”


lazy river

© Six Flags


Destinations in the Autism-Friendly California Road Trip include Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Concord. This 30-acre family waterpark features more than 22 world-class water attractions, from the longest lazy river in Northern California to Break Point Plunge. Guests who present an IBCCES Individual Accessibility Card to Guest Relations at the park receive any necessary accommodations.



© Visit Visalia


Visit Visalia, California’s first destination marketing organization to become a Certified Autism Center, continues to work toward providing more Certified Autism hotels, attractions and businesses. Visit Visalia compiled Social Stories and national park accessibility videos, providing helpful accessibility tips for each destination. At the Visit Visalia office, families can rent sensory backpacks.


Santa Barbara Zoo, a Certified Autism Center since 2018, embraces all visitors, with all of its programs inclusive and moderated by fully trained staff. In addition to designated quiet zones outlined on the zoo’s map, sensory backpacks are also available. A sensory sensitive pathway is also available when entering the zoo, offering a calmer alternative to the main courtyard.


Valencia Falls

© Six Flags Magic Mountain


Six Flags Magic Mountain, known as the Thrill Capital of the World, boasts more than 100 rides, games and adventures for thrill seekers of all ages. The park offers sensory backpacks available at Guest Relations, including items helpful for those who are sensory sensitive, like noise-canceling earmuffs, stress balls and various fidget toys.


The GRAMMY Museum in Los Angeles features interactive exhibits and displays highlighting the world of music. As the first destination in Los Angeles to become a Certified Autism Center, the museum welcomes and accommodates all visitors. On the second Saturday of every month, the museum hosts Sensory Friendly Saturday, in which families can enjoy the space with less crowding, quieter sound levels, lower lighting and free admission.


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