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What are the best roller coasters in America?

July 14, 2014, 10:59 AM · Monday Top 10: On July 4, we honored El Toro at Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey as the world's best roller coaster, in our 2014 Theme Park Insider Awards. But what about the rest of the great coasters from around the country that Theme Park Insider fans love? Today, for our weekly Top 10 feature, we honor the roller coasters that you've rated among the top 10 in the United States. (Be sure to enjoy our Theme Park Insider and official on-ride videos of some of these coasters, too!)

10. X2
Six Flags Magic Mountain

9. Nitro
Six Flags Great Adventure

Nitro

8. Apollo's Chariot
Busch Gardens Williamsburg

Apollo's Chariot

7. Maverick
Cedar Point

6. Manta
SeaWorld Orlando

5. Millennium Force
Cedar Point

4. Intimidator
Carowinds

Intimidator

3. Outlaw Run
Silver Dollar City

2. Bizarro
Six Flags New England

Bizarro

1. El Toro
Six Flags Great Adventure

El Toro

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In the comments, please tell us your favorite roller coaster!

Replies (21)

July 14, 2014 at 11:43 AM · Robert, what is your personal favorite roller coaster?
July 14, 2014 at 12:19 PM · I've said this before but I'll say it again; El Toro is my favourite coaster. For airtime, intensity and overall design, this one would be difficult to top. For a while I thought that Outlaw Run might displace ET on my list but reconsidered. Of the 10 coasters featured on TPI's list, I've ridden 7 so can't comment about the other 3 but of those 7 I would have to say that these are very good choices. And it's gratifying to have 2 coasters at my home park on the list; they deserve to be there. If I were creating my own top ten list, it would include Intimidator 305 and Boulder Dash. Boulder Dash is the consummate proof that a coaster need not be a behemoth in order to be fabulous.
July 14, 2014 at 12:52 PM · The Beast?
July 14, 2014 at 1:24 PM · I've ridden everything on the list except for Outlaw Run. I certainly can't complain, but my list would differ from what the populous has chosen. I'd definitely have El Toro up near the top, but would also have Intimidator 305 right up there too. I tend to favor rides that are a bit more intense, so Carowinds' Intimidator pales in comparison, and would only rank ahead of SFoG's Goliath amongst the B&M hypers I've ridden (the only ones I haven't ridden in North America are Goliath at LaRonde and Raging Bull).

I just rode Leviathan this weekend, and despite the abrupt ending, it tops many of the coasters on this list (including Millennium Force--sorry CP Fanboys). I'm also a bit shocked that not a single invert made the top 10.

Finally, while X2 is one of the most unique coasters on the planet, it's juice just isn't worth the squeezing any more for me with 2+ hour lines and a short, shaky ride. Even if I lived in Southern California, I probably wouldn't ride it more than twice a year.

July 14, 2014 at 12:57 PM · My favorite rollercoaster is Manta. It is the only coaster I have ridden that is on this list.
July 14, 2014 at 1:02 PM · Yeah, I'm back, mainly because I just saw this on FB. Toro remains my favorite coaster, but I was happy to note several other favorites of mine in the Top 10..Outlaw Run, Millennium Force, CaroTim. I'd prefer I-305 to the latter two steelies I mentioned. I believe if I had gotten more rides on Outlaw Run last month, it would have moved past Ravine Flyer II anc challenged the Bull for #1.
July 14, 2014 at 1:30 PM · Since I was asked, I'd rate Orlando's Manta as my favorite, but I've ridden only five of these top 10, and none of the top four, so please consider that.
July 14, 2014 at 2:08 PM · Manta and Tatsu are a tossup for me. I really like Tatsu, but the way it's operated along with the lack of themeing compared to Manta, make it difficult to put it ahead of Sea World's masterpiece. However, Tatsu's pretzel loop is quite possibly one of the best inversions in the US.
July 14, 2014 at 3:35 PM · A very solid list. While arguments can be made for several other coasters (Kraken, Volcano, Alpengeist, Voyage, Texas Giant, etc.), you'll get no complaints from me. And seeing the nearby (4 hours away) Outlaw Run so high on the list just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside!
July 14, 2014 at 4:53 PM · I made the mistake of riding Manta twice within about 20 minutes. I forget why the line was so short, but it was an almost immediate re-ride, and although the first time was amazing, the second time gave me a headache that lasted the rest of the day. I thought it was very unique, and a ride more than most that you really need a front row seat (which I had).

But something about it just made for a lousy re-ride. Anyone else have that experience on multiple Manta rides?

I really want to visit Branson to check out Outlaw Run. I take everyone's word for it that El Toro is amazing, but I still want to ride Outlaw Run first.

July 14, 2014 at 5:16 PM · Grrrr....Ragin Bull was knocked off the list!
July 14, 2014 at 6:40 PM · I agree with Russell about Leviathan; forgot to mention that one. I too rode it recently - a little over two weeks ago - and found that it had more to offer than Millennium Force. More airtime, more drops, more variety. Smooth, fast, furious and fun. It's also one of the few coasters I've ridden on which I felt perfectly secure with only a lap bar as a restraint, as the lap bars are nice and snug. Goliath at Six Flags Great America was super but because it's contained within such a compact area, I didn't find it as satisfying as RMC's other novel woodie, Outlaw Run, as racing over an open field on Outlaw Run with my shirt blowing up over my head was an experience that couldn't be paralleled on Goliath.
July 14, 2014 at 7:03 PM · One or two of Rocky Mountain's creations should be on this list. How about Skyrush, the El Toro of steel? I'd add Phantom's Revenge, a more thrilling ride than than Millenium Force. And Leviathan, fabulous ride.

PAL

July 14, 2014 at 7:26 PM · I have GOT to get my butt on some coasters outside of Orlando!! Manta is the only one on the list I've ridden, and I've never been able to decide if I love that one or hate it....
July 14, 2014 at 7:54 PM · X2 gets my money. I love that its bumpy. I feel like I'm being thrown off a mechanical bull every time I ride. My body literally peels off the seat at every turn.
July 15, 2014 at 4:39 AM · Honestly as an European I love Rollercoasters in the USA...but I really miss in this top10 Voyage (Holiday World), Intimidator 305 (Kings Dominion), Top Trill Dragster (Cedar Point) Banshee (Kings Island)& Riddler Revenge (Magic Mountain) Can hardly believe that some others made the top 10. But as always every coaster gives different impressions to each driver.
July 15, 2014 at 4:39 AM · Honestly as an European I love Rollercoasters in the USA...but I really miss in this top10 Voyage (Holiday World), Intimidator 305 (Kings Dominion), Top Trill Dragster (Cedar Point) Banshee (Kings Island)& Riddler Revenge (Magic Mountain) Can hardly believe that some others made the top 10. But as always every coaster gives different impressions to each driver.
July 15, 2014 at 4:40 AM · Honestly as an European I love Rollercoasters in the USA...but I really miss in this top10 Voyage (Holiday World), Intimidator 305 (Kings Dominion), Top Trill Dragster (Cedar Point) Banshee (Kings Island)& Riddler Revenge (Magic Mountain) Can hardly believe that some others made the top 10. But as always every coaster gives different impressions to each driver.
July 15, 2014 at 4:42 AM · Honestly as an European I love Rollercoasters in the USA...but I really miss in this top10 Voyage (Holiday World), Intimidator 305 (Kings Dominion), Top Trill Dragster (Cedar Point) Banshee (Kings Island)& Riddler Revenge (Magic Mountain) Can hardly believe that some others made the top 10. But as always every coaster gives different impressions to each driver.
July 15, 2014 at 5:56 AM · Great list! I think I would put Maverick ahead of Milli though and I would add The Beast , it is still a top wooden coaster and what help start the "coaster wars" all those years ago.
July 19, 2014 at 9:59 AM · I'd definitely add The Voyage to this list -- probably in the top five, and I'd also add in Leviathan somewhere. It's just so massive and just screams through its course with so much power... that's a fantastic machine. I'd also add in Sheikra -- that's a bit of a gimmick coaster, but that first drop - especially when you are out on the edges of the car -- is just superb.

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