Just Published: Theme Park Insider: 2016 Year in Review
On that note I ask,
What are your favorite MUST RIDE rides during night?
What are you favorite activities during night?- Is it just walking about viewing the park in it's greatest state? Or riding your favorite rides?
I personally have not been able to stay in Universal/IOA after dark due to traveling with either very young nieces and nephews or my "elder" parents. ( They're 47 and 56 and refuse to leave hotel after diner) I have been in Magic Kingdom and Epcot after dark though (MK is Amazing! <3 SM)
As we walked by I pointed at the dino and said, "Marissa, go over there and scratch him on the nose."
She turned to me and said, "I'm not going near that thing. You go."
"Um ... let's just keep walking."
I also love riding the sky ride or Ferris Wheel at night at ANY park, for the overall aesthetic appeal of the sensory stimulation of the lights.
I think the only park that I have been to that has a sky ride left was Busch Gardens. Hardly any have them anymore... and no one I go with has the guts to ride it with me. Really why are these things SO intimidating?!
Good story, what you didn't know was that a night at the museum thing was going on and he was following you two around the park.
Great Adventure still has a Sky Ride that crosses almost the whole park. Cedar Point and HersheyPark both have Sky Rides, but they cover very little ground..especially Hershey's. Still afford a nice view of the park.
They used to intimidate me, too..I always feared getting stuck. But I'm fine on them now. Unfortunately, they have become rare. Knoebels and Lake Compounce have great ones, but they're basically ski lifts up a mountain, and you can only see the park on the downward return trip.
As for liking parks after dark, I once had the very last dinner reservation of the night at Epcot. We took our sweet time eating (felt bad for the cast members) and when we stepped out of the Norway place (don't ask me to spell it!) we were the only ones left. It was amazing.
Of course, realizing about 10 mins later in a complete panic that the car was parked at MGM which had closed 3.5 hours prior...not so amazing. :)
Pirates of the Carribean
I understand loving theme parks after dark in general just curious why you picked those as your favorites.
TH- No, HECK no! I would never get in that water! I was probably 5 when I watched that movie and its scared me ****less! Even the first time I rode the Jaws ride (I was 14 or 15) I was scared of that stupid foam thing. It took me riding it enough to learn exactly what happens when to laugh at it. Oh man, if only there was a video of my face during the boat dock part....
Mike- Good to know. I don't have the finacials or time to travel outside of the GA/FL area but in due time I will make it to these other parks. Dad always talks about how much he used to love Cedar Park, but by the time I was old/tall enough to ride everything (I am extra short) he couldn't really do theme parks anymore. Esp not extended trips like that.
Jungle Cruise at night RULES!
-Batman: The Ride
-Superman: escape From Krypton
-Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
Walt Disney World:
-Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
-Hollywood Rip, Ride, Orkcit
-Incredible Hulk Coaster
Sea World Orlando:
Busch Gardens Tampa:
There is my list!
My favorite rides at night are:
Jurassic Park River Adventure
I know its not at "night" but Ive done Rock N' Roller Coaster and Space Mountain without any show or work lights just complete darkness and its was AWESOME!
The Walt Disney World Railroad
Tomorrowlnd Transit Authority
Tower of Terror
All of the above a well worth trying after dark as they take on very different atmospheres.
Ravine Flyer II at Waldameer Park in Pennsylvania
Boulder Dash at Lake Compounce in Connecticut
Disney-wise, Jungle Cruise at night is just the best. The animals actually look better lit only by a spotlight.
Since there's 5,280 feet in a mile, I'm guessing the 1.5 mile estimate was a bit off. It's less than half a mile. Thanks for digging out the manual..I'd love to see that literature, as I've been going to the park since its 1974 opening!
Locally, the Prowler at Worlds of Fun offers a fantastic night ride, which even Cedar Fair acknowledges and endorses.
Kind of makes you wonder why more park designers don't build indoor coasters? I guess they feel it is too expensive, but in my mind the benefits outweigh the costs.
On the other hand, the only theme parks that do indoor coasters well are Disney and Universal (and I guess Herschend, if you count Fire In The Hole at Silver Dollar City). Cedar Fair's attempts, Flight of Fear and Disaster Transport, pretty much blow.
I will be riding Runaway Mountain at Six Flags Over Texas next month and am anxious to see how it stacks up, but my expectations are not very high.
So maybe money is the issue? But I digress.
The whole of New Orleans square is lovely at night by the Rivers of America after everyone's done with Fantasmic! And doing Splash Mountain with no queue at night and going straight back to the hotel room is lovely. Especially if it's going back to the Grand Californian with dinner at Napa Rose. :D
That being said, If I had to share my top fave night rides in the coaster category, it would be the following:
-Tatsu at SFMM: Come on! The tallest flying coaster in the world at night? Hell yeah...sign me up! If you ever wondered what flying above a theme park is like at 62 mph...this is a DEFINATE must...the view of the park and of the Santa Clarita valley is so beautiful (Well...what you mannage to see of it when you're not screaming and diving anyway). Honestly, this is what I imagine a superhero must feel like if they could fly.....:)
-X2 at SFMM: Trust me....the backwards freefall in the middle of the day is pretty intense....but at night and with the soundtrack blairing at you and the fire flaring up at full force...O.O;
Also, the lack of visibilty as you head up the track make for one HELL of a ride....
-GhostRider at Knotts: Man, despite the less-than-pleasing track conditions....the fact that once night falls in the park, this ride becomes completely pitch dark make it a pretty trilling ride.....If I recall only the drops are lit up with an orange string of lights....giving it one errie looking glow! :D
-Xcelerator at Knotts: being lanuched at 82 mph up a steep track and down again? Sure....why not! :D
Trust me, they're a re plenty more than fall into this category....but these are my top four for the obvious reasons....:)
And I do agree with everyone saying coasters are better after dark. I think the only ones I've ridden after dark are the ones at my local park (Wild Adventures) but even they were 10x better. I can't even imagine what US/IOA would be like. :)
MK is one where I have ridden a lot of the rides at night as they were open til midnight the day we went and we also did Halloween party a couple days later. We didn't even think about going on Jungle Cruise I will add that to my "must do" at night list. As for the queue for Haunted Mansion I agree 100%. It was eerie standing there with all the sounds. And of course I have already said I love SM at night. I forgot about Thunder Mountain though. With the added scenes at night and the lighting looking over MK it was amazing.
Raging Bull (LOVE THIS ONE!)
Top Thrill Dragster
All great rides at night, even the Mansion. . . there's just something different about it.
The Big Bad Wolf.
We miss you, my friend.
My brother and I definitely rode Expedition Everest when it was dark (multiple times that night, actually). I think that the Animal Kingdom typically utilizes the Extra Magic Hours by opening early, rather than staying open late. In this case, I believe it was open until maybe 7 or 8 pm, and because it was December it got dark pretty early. I recall that it usually closed around 5 pm at that time of year (maybe it actually was Extra Magic Hours, I honestly don't remember), but it just happened to be open later that day, and we wanted to take full advantage. This wasn't a Peak time, either. The last two times we've gone, it was early- to mid-December, just before the Christmas crowd showed up. Nevertheless, the Yeti was in full effect and looked very cool!
My brother is a member on this site, as well, with a much better memory for details like that. He may remember why it was open later that day.
I didn't find it to be particularly busy at that time (Disney is almost always busy, but this was "less busy"). We've gone at that time of year the last two visits (2004 and 2007). The last day of our trip would be like the 17th or the 19th, something like that. All of the holiday decorations are up, and the parks are gorgeous. Now, we did have to wait for some rides (I'm thinking specifically about Soarin'), but most were reasonable waits, if there was one. We went to Busch Gardens in Tampa on one trip, and there were no real waits. We could almost walk-on to everything. The weather was usually in the 60s and 70s, though it dropped down into the high-40s a couple of nights in 2004 and I recall it being in the 80s in 2007.
If I had my choice, I would always go at that time.
Walt Disney World
Tokyo Disney Resort