Cedar Point Trip, Need Advice

Edited: August 13, 2015, 7:48 PM

Hello,

I am going to Cedar Point August 29-30. First time going there. Anyone familiar how crowded the park will be this time of the season?

Reason I am asking is, I am wondering if I should buy fast lane tickets or not. If it is worth buying the fast lane, I might just spend the Sunday at the park, and relax at the hotel Saturday night. If it is not worth it, I will leave earlier Saturday morning and spend 2 days at the park.

Thanks for your advice :)

Replies (9)

August 13, 2015, 9:44 PM

Don't hop a fence to get into a restricted area...

Edited: August 14, 2015, 12:29 AM

James Koehl is the resident Cedar Point expert on here and could probably give you a better crowd estimate (as well as some additional advice), but I would guess it would probably be moderately crowded. Other than the big three, I doubt you'll encounter a line more than 30 minutes.

As for Fast Lane, even if you do buy it I would still recommend allowing two days for the park just in case something happens. What I would do is go on Saturday and see how much you can get done. If there is a lot to make up, buy a Fast Lane on Sunday. Don't buy one in advance as I mostly doubt you'll need it. Also, if expenses are a concern, it is cheaper to buy a two day ticket than it is to buy one day with Fast Lane.

Cedar Point is a great park and is easily a 2 day park (some would say a first-time visitor should allow 3 days, but I'd say that's only necessary on a crowded weekend). The park is an amusement park, not a theme park, so you won't find much in the way of theming outside of Frontier Trail and Frontiertown, but you will find some excellent roller coasters and a good selection of non-coaster rides. For a first time visitor, I would prioritize the following:

Coasters
-GateKeeper
-Gemini
-Magnum XL-200
-Maverick
-Millennium Force
-Raptor (provided it reopens by then...and don't hop the fence)
-Top Thrill Dragster
-Wicked Twister

Non-Coasters
-Cedar Downs Racing Derby
-Cedar Point and Lake Erie Railroad (excellent for transportation between the Main Midway and Frontiertown)
-MaxAir
-Power Tower
-Skyhawk
-Tiki Twirl
-Thunder Canyon (if you're okay with getting drenched)
-Witches' Wheel
-Any other flats you haven't experienced before

For a touring plan, if you get there by opening on Saturday I would start at Top Thrill Dragster and go counter-clockwise around the park. If you arrive later, start in the Wicked Twister Midway instead. On Sunday, go to Maverick first and go either direction from there. If you stay on site, take advantage of the early entry. I suggest using the Magnum gate (park in the Soak City lot) instead of the main entrance, though it is worth it to walk through the main entrance at least once for the visuals of GateKeeper.

Lastly, have fun!

August 14, 2015, 4:11 AM

AJ pretty well has it covered. Crowds depend on lots of things, mostly the weather. His idea of waiting for Sunday to decide about Fast Lane is smart. Remember that there is a difference between Fast Lane and Fast Lane PLUS. Besides the price, PLUS gets you on Gatekeeper, Rougarou, Top Thrill and Maverick also, along with everything else that the plain Fast Lane get you on. Gatekeeper is a crowd eater- they load and dispatch fast, and the wait time is very reasonable. Rougarou is the new flavor of the month, and frankly I haven't talked to anyone who really is crazy for it- it bangs your head around terribly, esp. your ears. Maverick and Top Thrill are worth it, but like I said, it depends on the crowds and that is so determined by the weather. Cedar Point is out in the middle of Lake Erie, and it seems to have its own weather. Bring a choice of clothes to leave in the car, so that you can change if it gets too hot, too cold, too wet, too snowy (just kidding- maybe)

AJ's recommendations for rides is good, but he didn't mention the Sky Ride. It's one of the last ones around, and if you don't mind looking down look over the side of the gondola at the gardens underneath the Sky Ride. They are usually planted in patterns, sometimes pictures, that can only be seen from above. It takes you from the front gate down the entire length of the original midway, to near the train station.

First time visitors don't realize just how big Cedar Point is. It is a huge park, and you will be doing lots of walking. On one of your walks, be sure to stroll down Frontier Trail, between Millennium Force and Frontier Town. It is shady, lined with log cabins (many original)and is a nice place to slow down, decompress from coaster adrenaline buzz. Check out the petting zoo- I know it sounds silly, but it is loaded with animals and just watching the kids (and adults) interacting with them, feeding them, etc. is a nice change from the thrills of the coasters. Somehow, you don't even notice Millennium Force roaring overhead.

Have a great time!

August 20, 2015, 5:21 PM

Excellent recommendations :) I will be next week (28 August) at the park :) I have all the recommendations from AJ and now from James :)
Will be my first time :)I did not buy the platinium pass yet, i read that maybe the last week of august the price decrease, is that correct? what is the best option? to buy it online or at the gate?
I can´t wait any more :) :) :) Cedar Point wait for meeeeeeeeee !!!!!!!

August 20, 2015, 5:43 PM

what is the best place to park the car? i will try to arrive early :)

August 20, 2015, 6:09 PM

There are two parking lots. The main parking lot, the first one you will come to, is where you will see Gatekeeper going through the entrance gate towers. The Soak City parking lot is at the back of the park, and is closest if you will be hitting the coasters at the back of the park first. It just depends on where you want to go first. I find it's easier to find my car at Soak City just because it's smaller. If you want to go to Soak City lot, be in the far left lane at the entrance gate and tell them you want to go to Soak City-they'll give you directions. You just drive around the park on the perimeter road towards the hotels, Soak City, etc. but you can use the entrance gate into the park right next to Soak City. If you do use this parking lot, watch for stop signs on the road. There are pedestrian walkways and people (mostly employees) ignore oncoming traffic.

Have a great time!

August 20, 2015, 7:29 PM

Thanks!!
In other post AJ said to me

"I'd expect low crowds on that day. Get there 30 minutes before early entry if possible, use your early entry on Maverick and/or Millennium Force, then just work around the park in a logical order. You should be able to get on all the coasters and some non-coaster rides in one day if you keep moving. I doubt you'll need Fast Lane unless you want a large number of re-rides."

So regarding this, the best option is to park at the Soak City parking lot? :)

I made a map

http://img214.imagevenue.com/img.php?image=14016_Entrance1_123_1151lo.jpg


Is that correct? :) What is the best option, number one or number two? :)

And here is the entrance at that parking lot?

http://img283.imagevenue.com/img.php?image=14016_entrance_123_568lo.JPG

Thanks thanks and thanks :)

August 21, 2015, 3:59 AM

You have it exactly right. There are two entrances to Soak City, but you want to go to the main entrance plaza which has the Cedar Point entrance (the one they call the "Resorts" entrance with Soak City. To get there, park in the Soak City lot, then walk along the side of Soak City between it and Challenge Park (which has the go carts and the big swings. You'll go through a tunnel under Millennium Force. Go to the right after the tunnel and you'll see the entrance building you showed. When you enter the park, go to the left if you want to head towards Millennium Force, Magnum and Top Thrill. To the right will take you towards Gemini and Frontier Town, where Maverick is. If I were you, hit Maverick first using ERT. If you are getting Fast Lane Plus you shouldn't have much trouble at all, but I think you've been told that it is not a front of line pass, but gets you into a much shorter lane. You might have only a few dozen or a hundred ahead of you (depending on the ride) compared to a thousand in front of you for the regular line).

If it is a hot day, keep hydrated! There are quite a few drinking fountains around, but every place that sells fountain drinks will give you a cup of ice water free- not usually a big cup, but a cup of ice water can taste really good on a hot day!

People always talk about how Cedar Point is a "steel park" with no theming, and I always come to its defense. No, it is not Disney or Universal, but there are some places with pretty nice theming. Frontier Trail, the Town Square at Frontier Town (check out the Town Hall Museum- interesting stuff on Cedar Point history, and it's air conditioned!) and Camp Snoopy. Camp Snoopy is mostly kids rides (although they do have a Tilt-a-Whirl that kicks butt)but the theming is really well done.

James Rao will have a heart attack if he reads this, but if you like fish, try the Perch Sandwiches they sell at a place in the plaza outside of the Gatekeeper station. Really good Lake Erie perch sandwiches. If you haven't eaten perch before, it looks a bit weird. Yes, you will see that the skin is still on, but the fish is so delicate that you need to leave the skin on or it falls apart. The skin it totally edible, and northern Ohioans love our perch. It is the stuff that local fire departments and churches sell for fund-raising dinners, and the taste is really mild.

If you like ice cream (dumb question) try Toft's Ice Cream Parlor near the Sky Ride station at the front of the Midway. Great homemade flavor, and lots of variety. I don't remember the exact name, but they have one with buckeyes in it- not the poisonous nuts that grow on trees, but the Ohio candy favorite that looks like a buckeye but is a peanut butter ball dipped in chocolate. Every flavor of Toft's it terrific.

If you find it's sunny and you aren't using Fast Lane, plan on standing in line in the sun a lot. Cedar Point isn't very good at shading their queue lines, so keep the sunscreen on. Some of the rides let you bring bags, backpacks, etc. and stow them in secured bins, others make you leave them in lockers outside before you get on the ride. Gatekeeper is notorious for that- they'll stop you before you get in line and make you leave your bags, backpack, etc in a locker, but when you get to the loading dock you'll see that they do have bins to store your stuff in? I think the bins at the station are for things like hats, flip flops, etc.- smaller stuff. Each ride seems to be different, so just go with the flow and ask the attendant at the entrance if you need to be sure.

And if you have a chance, take a walk on the beach. You can go out the Beach entrance, right next to Windseeker, get your hand stamped and stroll along the boardwalk towards the Breakers, or get down in the sand and walk along the Lake Erie shore. The beach is really wide, mostly kept really clean, but no, you can't see Canada from here(although Lake Erie is so shallow that you might be able to walk there ;+). The beach is supposed to be the longest on the Great Lakes (or at least on Lake Erie) and is something like a mile long.

Have a great time, and we're hoping for a trip report!

August 22, 2015, 8:36 AM

Woow!!!Thank you very much for your advices!!! Really really thanks!!
I just separate a hat and my sunscreen for the trip :) We don´t pay attention to that but i think we will need it a lot :)
I remember when i went to Beto Carrero park in Brazil and forgot that and at the end of the day was very difficult to sleep :)
Of course i will do my trip report :) I will visit 9 parks and i think i will have something to write :)
Yesterday i bought the 2 platinium passes, at the end of the purchase said that was 425.99 USD with the taxes, but today i saw it on my credit card bill online that i have to pay 434.51 USD. Maybe is because i bought it not in the USA, i don´t know :).
So, the times is comming!!!!!!
Thanks for all

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