Best Parks

I try to get to a Theme Park wherever I travel in the world and am staying there for a weekend.  This is my list of the parks that I have been to with Rollercoasters and ranked them from best to worst, ranked purely of the Rollercoaster rides (and none others).

Six Flags Magic Mountain, California.  USA.
http://www.sixflags.com/parks/magicmountain/index.asp
Last visited:    September 2007
This is my favourite park.  17 rollercoasters that will thrill you all day.  Ranging from the extreme (X and Deja Vu), the largest Flyer (Tatsu) to just plain large (Goliath) and the nostalgic (Colossus).  It is a bit of a drive to get to the park (a little over an hour on a normal day) but the drive is well worth it.

Six Flags Great Adventure, New Jersey.  USA. 
http://www.sixflags.com/parks/greatadventure/index.asp
Last visited:    September 2007
Although this park has the best coaster in the world (Kingda Ka), it was not enough to put it at the top of the list.  Kingda Ka is THE highlight.  Best coaster that I have ever ridden.  It is the tallest and the fastest.  Next best is El Toro (new wooden coaster) with Nitro next which is tall, long and fast.  Superman Ultimate Flight has a twist as you do the ride in a horizontal position.  Medusa is a great mega-coaster and is up there with the best.  Batman The Ride, Batman & Robin: The Chiller and Great American Scream Machine are great rides too.

Knott's Berry Farm, California.  USA.
http://www.knotts.com/park/index.shtml
Last visited:    July 2006
I remember when I first visited Knott's Berry Farm in 1980 there was one rollercoaster, a train ride and few other rides that by today's standard were mild.  I revisited again in 1993 to find some better rides but subsequent visits in 2003 and 2005 just blew my mind.  Pick of the crop is Xcelerator which is metal rollercoaster that shoots out of the station and then straight up and over a section of track that is unsupported about 250 feet above ground.  Not far behind is Silver Bullet which is their latest addition.  Suspended coaster that matches any other ride for thrills.  GhostRider is another beauty.  Wooden rollercoaster that seems to go for ages.

Six Flags New England, Massachusetts.  USA.
http://www.sixflags.com/parks/newengland/index.asp
Last visited:    June 2006
My first visit to this park in July 2005.  Pick of the crop was Superman - Ride Of Steel.  Cannot recall so much air time on a ride and the first drop was awesome.  Other rides of note were Mind Eraser (suspended coaster) and Batman - The Dark Knight (floorless coaster).  I was surprises at how short the lines were, especially on a 4th July long weekend.

Universal's Islands Of Adventure, Orlando, Florida.  USA.
http://themeparks.universalstudios.com/orlando/website/ioa_landing.html?__dest=ioa_landing.TOP
I visited this park for the first time in 2005 whilst at a conference in Orlando.  The park only has two rollercoasters but what a two they are.  The SuperCoaster called Hulk has launch that is out of this world and you are upside down before you hit the first drop.  Duelling Dragons is really two coasters in one with intertwining tracks and hair-raising loop where the trains on each track hit the same spot at the same time.

Chime-Long Paradise, Guangzhou.  China.  
http://paradise.chimelong.com/en/
Last visited:    April 6th, 2008
This is my first theme park outside of Australia and the U.S. (Boy, I need to get out more often).  The highlight of the park is the Dive Coaster.  The operator claims for it to be the best coaster in the world and the tallest of its type.  Although the claim of best coaster is not true in my opinion it is certainly a thrill that ranks the park well up on my list.  They also operate an Intamin coaster than equals the world's record for most inversions (ie. 10), a motorbike launch coaster, a half-pipe coaster and a spinning wild mouse.  Given the admission price is really cheap (about $25 Australian) this park is a must if you are in the area.

Dreamworld,  Queensland.  Australia.
http://www.dreamworld.com.au/dw/dreamweb.nsf
Dreamworld has over the years passed through various stages of popularity but the introduction of two new coasters (Tower Of Terror and Cyclone) make the day an experience for thrill seeker.

Disneyland, Anaheim, California.  USA.
http://disneyland.disney.go.com/disneyland/en_US/parks/landing?name=DisneylandParkLandingPage
Last visited:    July 2006
Disneyland gets the nod at this position for Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and the Matterhorn.  Been a while since I have been on Space Mountain.  Was there in January this year but it was closed for renovations.  Huge disappointment.

Magic Kingdom, Orlando, Florida.  USA.  
http://disneyworld.disney.go.com/wdw/parks/parkLanding?id=MKLandingPage
Date last visited:    January 21st, 2006
Magic Kingdom has to get a similar rating to Disneyland.  The only difference is that Magic kingdom does not have the Matterhorn.

Movie World, Queensland.  Australia.
http://www.movieworld.com.au/home/homepage.cfm
Date last visited:    October 2006
Movie World has come up 3 spots with the installation of Superman: The Ride.  Launch out of the building with a zero to 100km/h in two seconds.  Great head-chopping effect when the ride re-enters the building.  Other coasters are Lethal Weapon (Australia's only inverted coaster) and Scooby Doo Spooky Coaster (indoor wild mouse).

SeaWorld Orlando, Orlando, Florida.  USA.  
http://4adventure.com/seaworld/fla/default.aspx
Date last visited:    January 25th, 2006
Only one rollercoaster and what a beauty.  Kraken has 7 inversions, including a cobra roll and a dive loop.  If you are a coaster enthusiast and are in the area then a visit here is worth the time spent.

Disney / MGM Studios, Orlando, Florida.  USA.
http://disneyworld.disney.go.com/wdw/parks/parkLanding?id=MGMLandingPage
Lone rollercoaster here makes Disney / MGM Studios are worthwhile visit.  Rock N Roll Coaster is an indoor rollercoaster that starts from standing still to 60 miles per hour in seconds.  All to the sounds of Aerosmith.

Disney's California Adventure, California.  USA.
http://disneyland.disney.go.com/disneyland/en_US/parks/landing?name=DisneysCaliforniaAdventureLandingPage
Last visited:    July 2006
California Screamin' is the signature rollercoaster in Disney's California Adventure park.  Another coaster that starts from a standing start but this time it starts you alongside the lake edge and then up some great hills and a single loop.  The ride includes a helix and some great turns.

Sea World, Surfer's Paradise, Queensland.  Australia.
http://www.seaworld.com.au/home/homepage.cfm
Another single rollercoaster park, home to the Corkscrew.  Ride takes you through an elliptical loop and then a double corkscrew.

Sea World Adventure Park, San Diego, California.  USA. 
http://www.4adventure.com/seaworld/ca/default.aspx
I have put this in as a rollercoaster as it does have a rollercoaster part of the ride.  Journey To Atlantis is at least better than any coaster at the parks that follow this.  Nice drop.

Universal Studios, California.  USA.
http://themeparks.universalstudios.com/hollywood/website/index.html?__source=RGMN
Last visited:    July 2006
Single rollercoaster park.  Only ride is Revenge Of The Mummy: The Ride.  Very disappointing ride.  No loops, only tight turns and camel humps.  One unexpected thing was the ride goes forward for the first half and then does the second half on a different section backwards.  Not enough to save it from leaving the park at the bottom of the list.

Animal Kingdom, Orlando, Florida.  USA.  
http://disneyworld.disney.go.com/wdw/parks/parkLanding?id=AKLandingPage
Last visited: January 28th, 2006
Single rollercoaster park.  Only ride is Primeval Whirl.  Basically a Wild Mouse-style ride with a twist.  Late in the ride the cars start to spin.  This will change with Expedition Everest.  In fact, Expedition Everest was running the day that I was there but only for season pass holders and Disney Vacation Club members.  Tried to talk my way onto it but the cast members would not budge.