1 - The Magic Kingdom - 14.7 million - down 700K
2 - Disneyland - 12.3 million - down 1.6 million
3 - Epcot - 9 million - down 1.6 million
4 - Disney-MGM Studios - 8.3 million - down 600K
5 - Disney's Animal Kingdom - 7.7 million - down 600K
6 - Universal Studios Florida - 7.2 million - down 900K
7 - Islands of Adventure - 5.5 million - down 500K
8 - SeaWorld Orlando - 5.1 million - down 100K
9 - Disney's California Adventure - 5 million - opened in 2001
10 - Universal Studios Hollywood - 4.7 million - down 500K
Major surprises? DCA is doing better than USH. But with all the free tickets and discounts, that is still a sad number for DCA. And USH should have fallen more than it did. SeaWorld held on to its attendance better than the rest of the Top Ten. Epcot did far more poorly than what was expected. If these estimates are correct, the other WDW parks didn't do as poorly as expected. (Disney reported an 11% increase in theme park revenues, so all the whining was for naught.)
Non-surprises? IOA still isn't a known entity outside Florida. Their attendance figures really should be outdoing USF by now, but they did lose a lower number than USF did. DCA DID end up hurting Disneyland's figures, for their 11% drop is even worse than USH's drop and far worse than sister MK's 4% drop.
Questions for 2002:
Will the Scorpion King coaster at USF scoot that park past the faltering AK? Will AK's lame Dino-rama bring people back? Will a big attraction at IOA make it an attendance equal with USF? Will Epcot continue its slide without anything new until 2003? Will USH fall apart after adding only new shows in 2002?
Does the list you saw go any deeper then the Top Ten? (Haven't seen it myself yet.)
Below are the following Ten, without the changes:
11 - Busch Gardens Tampa Bay - 4.6 million - down 8 percent
12 - SeaWorld California in San Diego - 4.1 million - up 13 percent
13 - Knott's Berry Farm - 3.58 million - down 3 percent
14 - Six Flags Great Adventure, Jackson, New Jersey - 3.56 million - up 1.7 percent
15 - Morey's Piers, Wildwood, New Jersey - 3.4 million - up 3 percent
16 - Adventuredome at Circus Circus, Las Vegas, Nevada - 3.4 million - up 7 percent
17 - Paramount's Kings Island, Mason, Ohio - 3.36 million - up 4 percent
18 - Six Flags Magic Mountain - 3.2 million - down 3 percent
19 - Cedar Point, Sandusky, Ohio - 3.1 million - down 9 percent
20 - Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California - 3 million - no change
Notice how many of this set were UP in attendance? Still, some of this is a little suspect. Santa Cruz and the Adventuredome don't charge admission, so how do they come up with those figures? If you wander through do you get counted? Or do you have to buy a wristband? Which wouldn't count because they both offer single-ride tickets also. I wish they would only count gated parks because I know that 3 million people a year don't ride those rides. Going and riding are two different things.
The studio tour's great. But if you don't dothe tour, USH isn't much of a park. There's just three rides off the tour, after all (Jurassic, Back to the Future and E.T.) And USH is, hands down, the most kid-unfriendly park I've ever visited.
A great park should offer plenty to do even if you miss the top attraction in the park. USH is a one-trick show.
This is a studio park, after all. Disney/MGM doesn't have very many "rides" either. USH does have a lot of shows, which are fine. The problem is they just don't change the shows enough. There have been all of two different shows in the WaterWorld theater. There has been all of ONE in the Wild West stadium. Beetlejuice went on for WAY too long before it was let go.
Unlike Disneyland, USH is a major tourist destination, as was proven by the lackluster attendance there this year. There is plenty there for people to do every few years or so.
I am just glad that with every park Universal has built that, UNLIKE Disney, they have improved upon the last park. It makes me long for Universal's third park in Orlando!
Three rides or not, Universal is just plain fun. The reason they have less than DCA probably has more to do with location. Let's face it, DCA is in a good location. Disneyland, DCA, and Knott's Berry Farm all so close together. Meanwhile Universal is not in that convenient of a location. ( While there are those who may feel different, people like me and those I know here in San Diego often choose to NOT go to Universal because of the distance. Meanwhile, Disney is practically dead-center the LA, Orange and SD county areas. They are in a position for better customer draw. Universal is too far north. It alienates those not willing to make a 3 hour drive.
Universal only has three rides? Sea World San Diego is no better, but their attendance increased. Same reason. It's just plain "fun" there. Minimal rides or not, it's FUN. Universal too. DCA technically has more rides, but... That whole boardwalk is just... Just... Blah.
But is it a Top Ten park? I'm not convinced. I'd rate Universal Studios Florida ahead of Hollywood's. I'm also surprised that Sea World San Diego does so poorly in the rankings. I've thought that it does as good a job with its genre as USH does with its.
I've not been to any parks outside North America, but from everything I've heard, I'd suspect that Disneyland Paris, Disney's Tokyo parks and Alton Towers all would make stronger candidates for the Top Ten than USH.
Obviously, the Tokyo parks lag because we haven't gotten enough folks from the Far East on the site. (Language remains a barrier, even on the Web.) But USF, Sea World, and the two European parks have gotten enough votes to be rated, and lag USH.
The lesson? The value of consensus, I guess. And that any one person's opinion rarely matches perfectly with the collective opinion of a larger group.
Anyhow, I have always wondered how you get that list. Is it an overall average or what?
The park rankings are based on an average of the ratings submitted for all that park's attractions. A park has to have at least 50 votes cast for its attractions before it gets ranked.
Given "grade inflation," there's less scoring variance among good attractions than among crappy ones. So a few lousy attractions just kill a park's overall ranking. (See... Epcot.)
That's also what's happening to USF. Nick Studios and King are really bringing that park down.
So it looks like the folks on this site, at least, think it's time for the Big Ape to go.
The unfortunate thing is that theming and atmosphere don't come into play. Or dining. I can understand how hard it would be to make the food thing fair, since some places have food all over the taste spectrum (cough, MK, cough). But eating in some of the Disney/MGM restaurants or the World Showcase restaurants in Epcot is a big part of the fun of those parks. Other parks, like USF, have great food all over, but it isn't really part of the experience there. But it is nice to know that wherever you choose to eat that you won't toss it in disgust (cough, Six Flags Marine World, cough). Which reminds me, I better add some restaurant reviews!
Actually, it's not that important...it's not really a themepark...more of a fun
(although subpar in comparison to other themeparks) casino diversion.
I didn't get time to see the Speed Coaster; I'm afraid I missed that one.
And what crap did you pay for in Vegas? Most of the shows are free (i.e. the Bellagio fountains, the short pirate show in front of Treasure Island, the covered walkway on Fremont)--yeah, the theatre shows are expensive (VERY expensive)...and so is the Mustang Ranch (j/k)...but, overall, Vegas is a pretty cheap vacation unless you gamble...
I'm talking about all the in-between crap that costs way more than it should. The roller coasters are over-priced (especially that neck-breaking one at New York New York.) The aquarium, the art museum, Madame Tussaud's, the Eiffel Tower, the Stratosphere, the gondolas, the various simulators, IMAX, need I go on? Now I LOVE the shows, especially the Cirque du Soleil shows, and I don't have a problem spending that money usually. But they all happen at night and it is that daytime stuff that adds up. When you are spending 90 bucks on a show, spending 6 on a coaster seems like nothing, until you add in the rest of the "nothings" you spent that day. UGH!
IOA and Sea World clearly don't get the crowds that Epcot and MK get, but they seem more crowded since they are smaller-sized parks and have fewer attractions than those two large parks.
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