What's your dream theme park travel checklist?
The Guardian last week offered a feature on "checklist travel"
— profiling 10 people who've come up with to-do lists of goals they're trying to accomplish in their travels or spare time.
The checklists included tasks such as "Walking every street in New York City" and "Visiting every Northern Rail station in the UK." For Theme Park Insiders, of course, theme park-related checklists should spring to mind. What theme park checklists would you like to accomplish in your life?
Here are a few we've completed:
Riding all the rides at Disneyland in one day: It took the latest One More Disney Day promotion to pull off this task, which required nearly 15 hours with the park only lightly attended for most of the day. Disneyland has nearly four dozen attractions, though some might be closed for refurbishment on any given day. On days when crowds are light, limited hours often prevent visitors from getting to every ride and show. And on days with extended hours, large crowds manage to prevent the task.
Riding every version of Pirates of the Caribbean on Earth: This required visits to Disneyland in Anaheim, California, Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom in Florida, Tokyo Disneyland in Japan, and Disneyland Paris in France. As of now, there's no Pirates yet at Hong Kong Disneyland, and Shanghai Disneyland's still under construction. For what it's worth, the Tokyo version is the same as Disneyland's except for a Magic Kingdom-style exit, taking you off the ride after the collapsing room scene, which allows you to skip the ride up the chain lift back to the loading station. Disneyland Paris offers the Inception of Pirates rides, with a scrambled narrative relative to the classic Disneyland and abridged Magic Kingdom versions.
Here are three more "Riding every _____ on Earth" checklists, from your editor's personal travels:
- Riding every Haunted Mansion on Earth: Disneyland, Magic Kingdom, Tokyo Disneyland, and Disneyland Paris for Phantom Manor. Hong Kong Disneyland's Mystic Manor doesn't count, as it shares no name, characters, scenes or ride systems with the other Haunted Mansion rides.
- Visiting every Tom Sawyer Island on Earth: Disneyland, Magic Kingdom, Tokyo Disneyland
- Riding every Revenge of the Mummy on Earth: Universal Studios Florida, Hollywood, and Singapore. (Let's not restrict this to Disney!)
One doesn't need to be a global traveler to get in on the fun. How about these other candidates for theme park checklists?
- Drinking around the world: Consume one alcoholic beverage at each Epcot World Showcase pavilion that serves alcohol, in one visit to the park.
- Visiting all the Orlando theme parks in one day: The Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Disney's Animal Kingdom, SeaWorld Orlando, Universal Studios Florida, and Universal's Islands of Adventure
- Getting every character's autograph: This is easy to do in parks with fewer characters, but how about in a Disney theme park? And how about trying to do every meet and greet in a single day?
Roller coaster fans long have pursued their own checklists. The most popular model of roller coaster among Theme Park Insider readers is the Bolliger & Mabillard hyper. How about a checklist to ride all 12 B&M hypers around the world? (Your editor has a mere three, so far.)
The ultimate checklist might appear to be to visit all 11 Disney theme park around the world, a list that will grow to 12 with the opening of Shanghai Disneyland in a few years. But more than a few people have accomplished that lofty goal. Let's make it tougher, then: What about a checklist to go on every Disney attraction around the world?
Of course, finishing that checklist would require riding every ride and watching every show at the Walt Disney Studios Park in Paris, a task that might be too cruel to ask of even the most annoying troll on the site. So let's leave this to you: What theme park checklists would you most want to attempt? Which ones have you finished, or come close to completing? And which theme park checklists would most impress you?
In regards to doing every ride at Disneyland in a day. I recently posted a similar post on my facebook page wanting to visit a theme park at Walt Disney World and do every attraction on the park's map in numerical order and without using the fastpass option and see how long it takes. I'd still want to spend a full day in the park regardless if I'd finish everything on the map prior to the park's closing because I'd want to do every attraction and that includes seeing the parade and more importantly seeing the fireworks show, but its cool you posted this because I was feeling the same way.
My dream theme park checklist, is a 5 week-long celebration of my favorite theme parks. I'm a big fan of Universal, Disney, and Sea World parks so I would love to visit all 19 world wide theme parks in a month or so. Start in Europe and finish in Southeast Asia.
My wife and I did a theme park tour of California hitting 8 parks in 10 days back in 2011. (And the Monterey Bay aquarium). Parts of it are still a blur. Had as blast, though.
WDW E-Ticket attractions in one day. Yes, try and do the e-tickets at Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, DHS and Animal Kingdom.
I have done all 4 Disney parks in one day and all the E tickets at each. I have also done every attraction at both IOA and Universal in one day. Going to both Disney water parks in one day is more tiring then doing 4 parks.
I've got three main theme park travel checklists:
I actually have been thinking about starting a journal and writing about the restaurants I eat in. I was inspired by Amanda Jenkins and the wonderful Disney food reviews she does for TPI. I'd like to eat at every restaurant in WDW and write a review of it. It will probably take me many years to do this, but I want to do it "Amanda Jenkins Style" and take pictures and do a nice write up on each restaurant.
One of my dreams is to video tape every cue and ride in the Disneyland resort. I think it'll be great for when I miss the park and also because you never know when a great attraction will be replaced.
Annette beat me to it... :) Amanda announced hers in her last column -- eating at every sit-down resturant in the Magic Kingdom. I'm sure the same kind of list could be made for each of the parks - especially EPCOT!!!! But to make it a little more reasonable...I'd like to do - the top ten theme park resturants (world wide) in one year...as voted by TPI subscribers of course! :)
It is quite limited to focus on Disney, but perhaps the theme park enthusiast should focus on a few cultural trends outside of the U.S.
No one should ever recommend that anyone visit LEGOLAND unless they've got a child between the ages of 4 and 9. LEGOLAND might be expanding, but for teens and adults the parks offer very little of interest!
Attend the D23 Expo in 2014
Since I can't really assume great wealth in today's economy and even if I had the money I don't know if I could justify spending large amounts just for a theme park bucket list checklist -- I will keep mine somewhat simple.
My sister and I had the pleasure of visiting every US Disney park in the same day. We started off at WDW, rode a single ride in each park, they proceeded to hop on a plane and arrive in Anaheim where we rode one ride in each of the two parks. It was an exhausting day to say the least!
I have two trips that come to mind:
It's very possible to visit Tokyo Disneyland and Disneyland in Anaheim in the same day. In fact, you could spend most of the day at TDL, board an evening flight from Narita and arrive at LAX that same morning. (Yay, time machine!) That would give you the rest of the day at DL in Anaheim.
I've been to Disneyland Paris a few times in the past year, and feel the need to say that I've enjoyed the majority of the rides/shows I've been on/seen in Walt Disney Studios - e.g. Cinemagique, Rock and Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror and Crush's Coaster. So it may not be as dire to have to ride every ride and watch every show at WDS! That being said - although I think the rides/shows are decent, I do think that WDS could do with a lot more work in general to bring it up to the standards of the other Disney parks (landscape, theming, etc)...
I've always wanted to spend a week at the Grand Floridian during the Christmas holidays with my family. The lobby of the Grand Floridian has that quintessential Christmas atmosphere, and I can't think of a better place to spend the holidays.
Drinking around the world: Consume one alcoholic beverage at each Epcot World Showcase pavilion that serves alcohol, in one visit to the park.
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