TripAdvisor Press Release
TripAdvisor Announces Top 10 Amusement Parks Outside Orlando
TripAdvisor Travelers Hail Hershey
NEEDHAM, Mass., Aug. 3 -- TripAdvisor(R), the world's largest travel community, today announced the top 10 amusement parks in the U.S., according to traveler popularity and TripAdvisor editors. What sets these tremendous parks apart is that they offer something for every kind of visitor, from wonderful family rides and shows, to great food and games, to thrilling rides and coasters.
1. Chocolate Champion: Hershey Park, Hershey, Pennsylvania
Celebrating its 100th anniversary, Hershey Park is about as sweet as it gets for amusement park connoisseurs. This gigantic park features more than 60 rides and attractions, live shows, games, a museum chronicling Hershey history and of course, gobs of chocolate. For roller-coaster fans, the "Storm Runner" (0-72 mph in 2 seconds flat), "Superdooperlooper" and "The Comet" are must rides. As one TripAdvisor member said, "What is so great about Hershey? There is something for everyone."
2. Busch League of its Own: Busch Gardens, Tampa, Florida
With an African continent themed park, Busch Gardens takes visitors into the jungle and on quite a ride. No garden variety amusement park, Busch offers a little bit of everything: rides, restaurants, live shows, games and an amazing 2,700-animal zoo. Thrill seekers will want to take a ride on "Gwazi," a gigantic wooden double roller coaster, the epic coaster "Kumba," or "SheiKra," the nation's first dive coaster. One TripAdvisor member said, "I have been going to Busch Gardens for 20 years. It is always a great time, a clean and exciting park."
3. Cedar Point Rules: Cedar Point Amusement Park, Sandusky, Ohio
The self-proclaimed "roller coaster capital of the world," Cedar Point boasts a remarkable 17 roller coasters, including the brand new "Maverick" and the exhilarating "Millennium Force." The fun doesn't end at the coasters, Cedar Point also features a number of other thrill rides, carousels, games, water rides and even tranquil rides. According to a TripAdvisor traveler, "Cedar Point is by far one of the country's best amusement parks for people who love roller coasters."
4. Pick Six: Six Flags Fiesta Texas, San Antonio, Texas
With great shows, including musical acts, concerts and street performers, Six Flags Fiesta is fun-filled even before you get to the rides. But the rides are nothing to sneeze at either -- between the blood chilling "Scream" ride and the "Poltergeist" coaster, the Lone Star state's version of Six Flags is an amazing entertainment trip. One TripAdvisor traveler said, "The park was clean, the staff was friendly and courteous, and the rides were awesome."
5. My Kingdom for a Horse (Ride): Family Kingdom Amusement Park, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
With an incredible oceanfront water park combined with its amusement park, Family Kingdom is well worth the trip. Visitors will want to take a ride on the "Swamp Fox" coaster or the thrilling "Slingshot Drop Zone" before cooling off on the lazy river, wild water flumes or speed slides. A TripAdvisor member commented, "What a blast this place is! We went up and down the water slides like we were 10-years-old!"
6. Action in Jackson: Six Flags Great Adventure, Jackson, New Jersey
With dozens of thrill rides, Six Flags Great Adventure is the Mecca for fans of pulse-pounding rides, including the outstanding superhero rides and the "Great American Scream Machine." Be sure to try out some of the parks excellent water rides, and Great Adventure also offers fun live entertainment with concerts, animal shows, parades and street performers. As One TripAdvisor traveler said, "We only rode roller coasters and we had a great time."
7. King's Ransom: Paramount's Kings Island, Kings Island, Ohio
One of the best in the Midwest, King's Island features excellent shows for families, but also top-notch rides, such as the "Firehawk," the face-to-face inverted roller-coaster "Face/Off," and "The Beast," the world's longest wooden roller coaster. One TripAdvisor traveler said, "One of the nicest parks I have ever visited. The landscaping was great and it was very clean."
8. Smokey Mountain Magic: Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort and Amusement Park, Gatlinburg, Tennessee
An amazing scenic aerial tramway up to Ober Gatlinburg gets visitors started in style, Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort and Amusement Park gives patrons everything but the kitchen sink: skiing, indoor skating, restaurants, an alpine slide, a pirate ship and fun house, go-karts, mini golf, a shooting range, water raft rides and a black bear habitat. One TripAdvisor traveler said, "I loved riding the new tram to Ober Gatlinburg. The view is fantastic."
9. Brooklyn's Best: Coney Island Park, Brooklyn, New York
This legendary amusement park still has plenty of thrills to go around. Featuring more than 20 classic rides, thrill-seekers will want to try "The Cyclone" coaster and "The Scream Machine" freefall ride. Visitors can also enjoy a walk on the beach, catch a Cyclones minor league baseball game or cool off at the Sunlite Pool, the world's largest re-circulating swimming pool. One TripAdvisor traveler said, "The Wonder Wheel is a must and just a one-minute walk from the Cyclone. These are two classic rides, and I am comfortable in knowing they will be there for years to come."
10. Wind It Up: Paramount's Carowinds, Charlotte, North Carolina
Highlighted by the outstanding water rides of Boomerang Bay, such as "The Great Barrier Reef" (25,000-square-foot wave pool), "Down Under Thunder" raft ride, and "Jackaroo Landing," a three-story water jungle gym, Carowinds also offers fantastic thrill rides, live shows and dining. As one TripAdvisor traveler said, "They have some first-rate coasters and every one of the standard theme park and carnival rides."
"These amusement parks feature much more than cotton candy and carousels," said Michele Perry, director of communications for TripAdvisor. "Travelers like thrills but not spills -- TripAdvisor reviews were littered with comments about the importance of amusement park cleanliness."
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