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2010 Best Theme Park Attraction nominee: Holiday World's The Voyage

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Published: February 18, 2010 at 9:52 AM

Today's attraction spotlight shines on the biggest roller coaster at the smallest park in this year's tournament: Holiday World's The Voyage joins the 2010 Best Theme Park Attraction Tournament as the fifth seed in the Best Roller Coaster bracket.

Holiday World's The Voyage

This hybrid wooden coaster from The Gravity Group debuted at the Santa Claus, Indiana theme park in 2006, as the anchor of the park's Thanksgiving land. Themed to the Pilgrims' voyage across the Atlantic Ocean, The Voyage offers all the thrills that one would expect from a tempest-tossed ocean crossing.

This 1.2-mile coaster provides five underground tunnels, three 90-degree banked turns, dramatic drops, and multiple track crossovers at a maximum speed of 67 mph.

And did we mention the airtime? Oh, yes, lots and lots of airtime.

For 2010, Holiday World will install new, Timberliner trains on the coaster, with larger seats and adjusting wheels, designed to provide a smoother, faster ride, with less wear on the track.

Yeah, it's the off-season, and there's been a pile of snow on the ground in southern Indiana, but let's take a ride anyway, shall we?

Holiday World's been one of the few attendance success stories in recent years, with not only The Voyage but also the park's free parking and free soft drinks drawing fans from all over the Midwest. (And with Kentucky Kingdom closing, expect more people to visit Holiday World in 2010.) Even so, the park draws millions fewer fans that the Orlando and Southern California parks that are dominating the tournament. If The Voyage is going to make it into the later rounds, it will need its fans to make a strong case for it to other readers.

Here's your chance, in the comments.

Readers' Opinions

From Anthony Murphy on February 18, 2010 at 10:43 AM
That is quite a coaster!

I have heard only good things about this park! I am not THAT far from it so I guess I need to check it out! I give it points for being quite unique, but still has that woodie coaster feel to it.

I also think Kentucky Kingdom will drive people to Great America (not that we need anymore people there!)

From Joshua Counsil on February 18, 2010 at 10:47 AM
Robert - I'm going to take a swing and say that Manta is your favorite steel coaster and The Voyage is your favorite woodie. Am I way off?

I badly want to visit Holiday World, but only if I'm in the area. How else can I justify traveling that far for three great wooden coasters, a decent log flume (or plummet, if you will), and free drinks, parking, and sunscreen. Great amenities, but not enough gusto for a full trip.

From Erin B on February 18, 2010 at 10:58 AM
I've heard nothing but amazing things about this coaster & just looking at it & watching POVs gives me chills. I think I'll finally be experiencing the glory of The Voyage this year & I can hardly wait!
From 216.49.102.153 on February 18, 2010 at 10:58 AM
I live 10 minutes from Holiday World and get there often. The Voyage is the best coaster ever! Rode it 8 times in one day once. I love it! They have lots of other great rides, as well as an awesome water park. All make for a great day at the park. What other amusement park can you go to and get free soft drinks all day, freee sunscreen, and free parking. They're the best! I'm so glad I love so close, though it is well worth a drive, too, especially if you have kids. I sound like a commercial but I'm just that big of a fan! GREAT PARK!

Michelle S.

From 216.221.204.218 on February 18, 2010 at 11:05 AM
The case for Holiday World is much like the movie Field Of Dreams. If you build it, they will come, and we have.

We have driven that construction ridden road more times than I can count on fingers and toes...all 8 children awaiting the moment when the Holiday World water tower comes into view...

It's not the numbers that are driven to visit this park every year that should matter when puting The Voyage out front of it's competition, it's the quality of the ride. The quality comes in many forms. The coaster itself made my hair stand on end on the top drop.

But beyond the amazing ride there is so much more. The fact this certain coaster is in one of the best amusement parks in the world just makes the ride all that more sweeter. Where safety, value, and customer service are taken beyond talk into action. Safety is a thing that I think is often overlooked when picking a top rollercoaster.


I live within 25 minutes of Kentucky Kingdom and our children never visted the park. But I put my children on The Voyage without hesitation. The Voyage is looked after as a parent would look after a child. Holiday World has a safety record that makes a parent feel safe letting their children ride. You can put a million dollar coaster in a park like KK, but you wouldn't have people like me ever ride it.

Because a ride isn't just a ride, it's an extension of the policy and service of the very amusement park it resides in...and that makes this coaster an absolute perfect setup. Perfect coaster in absolutely the most wonderful place on earth....Holiday World.

Lanie Eden happy customer<3

From Derek Potter on February 18, 2010 at 1:24 PM
This is one of those rides that truly belongs among the best in America. The problem is that not many around here have ridden it, and for some reason people think coasters like Griffon belong in the same ballpark as it. This is a ride that should advance far, but won't because of the format. Sad to think that The Voyage will be out of the tournament and some show will still be in it.
From Robert Niles on February 18, 2010 at 1:31 PM
Yep, Joshua. That's what I told the LA Times, and I'll stick with it.
From James Rao on February 18, 2010 at 3:39 PM
The Voyage is amazing and unrelenting from start to finish. If you are a wooden coaster fan you owe it to yourself to ride this outstanding creation.

Josh, just one ride on the Voyage is worth the price of admission to Holiday World. I promise.

From M. Ryan Traylor on February 18, 2010 at 3:50 PM
After watching that video I really want to add this park to my Cedar Fair 2011 road trip. Although not a Cedar Fair park, it seems like a few trips on The Voyage plus a free beverage would be worth the price of admission.

I'm definitely a fan high speed airtime hypercoasters. Seeing these effects on a woodie with more than just an out-and-back (which I loathe) makes me eager to vote for it on principal.

I have a feeling that after my 2011 trip, my votes during the 2012 top ride tournament are going to change.

From James Rao on February 18, 2010 at 4:14 PM
One other note: Holiday World's other two coasters, the Raven and The Legend, are both stellar coasters in their own right, and well worth your time. Some parks have "IT", and some parks don't...Holiday World may actually have too much of "IT"! =)
From James Koehl on February 18, 2010 at 5:55 PM
A question about Holiday World- we're planning on making a trip there this summer. Should we plan on a one-day visit or two days? Plus, my wife has MS and heat and sun really take a toll on her- is there plenty of shade there, and are they accomidating to those using electric scooters? She can walk short distances, but long walks or standing long time in heat will cause her to have a major problem.
From James Rao on February 18, 2010 at 6:23 PM
3/4 to 1 full day if you are just there for coasters and midway rides, 1&1/2 to 2 days if you are going to the uber water park as well.

As for shade, I don't remember much at all, other than the queuing areas. There is one dark ride, Gobbler Getaway, that is kind of fun (it is a budget version of Disney's Buzz Lightyear), but otherwise plan on plenty of sun.

I am fairly certain the park accommodates scooters... here is a link to their accessibility guide.

From Rhys Evans on February 18, 2010 at 8:42 PM
I agree with James (again), Holiday World has THREE awesome coasters (going a bit against the grain, I rank them Legend, Voyage and Raven in that order). But I will almost certainly pick Voyage over it's challenger. Holiday World is a park well worth a drive from Cedar Point, or King's Island (I'm among the many who say "good riddance" to Kentucky Kingdom...). And I recall quite a few trees and plenty of shade.
From Joshua Counsil on February 19, 2010 at 12:37 AM
I have no doubt the ride alone is worth the price of admission, but I live in Ottawa. Sure, if Holiday World was in Toronto or New York, I would definitely pay a visit, but Santa Claus, Indiana? Bit of a hike for one park.
From James Rao on February 19, 2010 at 3:53 AM
If you wanna ride the best, you have to travel to the best! It is not going to come to you!

AnD s0 sAyZ mY MoThEr!@#$%^&*()

From 24.62.100.84 on February 19, 2010 at 7:09 AM
The Voyage is the BEST wooden coaster today.

/poll

From Paula Werne on February 19, 2010 at 8:41 AM
James K --

We have a Ride Boarding Pass available to folks who have difficulty standing in line. Here's a link to the details: http://www.holidayworld.com/visit/accessibility-guide#boardingpass

We hope you enjoy your visit -- please don't hesitate to email us with any other questions: fun@holidayworld.com

Thanks, Paula at Holiday World

From James Rao on February 19, 2010 at 11:03 AM
^Wow...gotta love that kind of top notch commitment to customer service! Kudos to Holiday World! =)
From Shannon Beauchemin on February 19, 2010 at 7:05 PM
Voyage is a fast, fun coaster. The day I went to Holiday World in July 2007, it must of been grumpy employee day. I was disapointed in the park. NO dark ride in the Halloween area. Free drinks were great though.

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