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Like a lot of TPR peeps on the Aussie trip a few years back, I was pleasantly surprised by the Gold Coast parks, Dreamworld, Warner Bros. Movie World and Sea World - I felt all of these parks had a solid line-up of rides, and they seem to be getting better every year.

 

In the US, I really enjoyed Worlds of Fun. This park seems to get a bit of flack but I thought it was beautiful, blanketed in trees, with a nice atmosphere and very good rides. Loved Prowler, Mamba, and even found myself enjoying Timber Wolf too!

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I'm going to go with:

Hersheypark (S'mores, atmosphere and the coaster collection is big and diverse. I love Skyrush and think it makes that park, luckily I'm tough enough for it.)

 

Totally agree with you on Hershey, I took the family there for three days this past summer and we absolutely loved it. The coaster collection is rock solid and pretty diverse, there really is something for everyone. My 5 year old absolutely loved SDL, Comet, and Laff Track (the new indoor spinning coaster), while the older kids and myself were blown away by Skyrush, Storm Runner, and Lightning Racer. My daughter said Lightning Racer was her favorite woodie ever and it was pretty much a walk on during our whole trip. The park is absolutely beautiful, there are tons of trees and plenty of benches to rest on throughout the park. The waterpark could use another slide tower, but it's not a separate admission and had enough attractions to take up 1/2 a day. Plus, Chocolate World is right outside the park entrance with even more attractions (including a free chocolate factory tour with samples) and a huge food court that was reasonably priced. Our family's goal is to visit a new park in a different part of the country every summer, but my kids are already asking when we can go back to Hershey.

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I've been to a bunch of fun places now that I discovered through TPR that I probably would never have known about otherwise. Some of theses were far more fun than I personally expected and definitely deserve the title of underrated:

 

Frontier City

Little Amerricka

Santa's Village Azoosment Park

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Large Parks- California's Great America- I had always heard that this was one of Cedar Fair's runts of the litter, but I loved the park. It was clean, the employees were efficient, and I really liked the ride selection. Flight Deck and Gold Striker are a great one-two punch and having an Intamin drop tower never hurts.

 

Small Parks- Canobie Lake Park & Seabreeze- Canobie is my home park, so I definitely am biased, but I love the charm of the park. The park has a very good selection of flat rides and despite their height restriction, they have two good coasters in the Yankee Cannonball and Untamed. Plus the RCT style food stands are awesome. Then Seabreeze shocked me. I stopped there on the way to Canada's Wonderland and Darien Lake, and I actually preferred the park to Darien. The layout is really compact, but I just loved the old-time feel of the park and how they mixed in a lot of newer rides well.

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SFGAm. Haven't been there in 9 years, but my visit in 2006 was awesome. For a SF park it was clean, had very solid theming, lots of shaded areas, great selection of coasters, was bigger than I expected, and their HH blew GAdv's out of the water. As much as I love GAdv as my homepark, SFGAm was easily the best SF park I've been to.

 

In fact, I find that SF's poor reputation is really over-stated in general, and have had great times at all SF parks I've been to.

 

It's really amazing how quickly things can spiral downhill in just 9 years...

 

I was at SFGAm in 2012 when X Flight was new and had a great time but am quite disappointed in reading how bad it's become in such a short time.

 

My pick for underrated parks are SFStL and Hersheypark - both going well beyond my expectations when I visited.

Yay!! Shout out for SFSL! I hope you still feel that way next year, because Mr. Freeze has been turned into a parking lot coaster this offseason:

image.thumb.jpeg.e039614b84eb9c2ec5aed8288daca14d.jpeg

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Frontier City is probably the definition of underrated parks!

Frontier City is a very nice park. It reminded me of a mini Dollywood.

Adventureland near Des Moines, IA is also really nice (and Outlaw is probably underrated).

Edited by Brent York
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This may sound weird, but SFMM. I honestly think that its better than Magic Kingdom at WDW (Disneyland park is still better than SFMM though). It just has so many great coasters, and even though its lack of theming is often criticized, I think it is actually pretty decent.

 

I find the park pretty magical.

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  • 8 months later...

Silverwood I came in having no clue what to expect. I only went as it was an excuse to visit new states, but the park blew me away. The park was nicely themed, really nice employees, and the coasters were really good. If only the park wasn't so far away from anything else.

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Large park: Hershey Park

 

Small park: SFFT

I wouldn't say HP is underrated considering just about every non-enthusiast I talk to 3 states away knows about it, and it's always insanely crowded.

 

I keep hearing about this but every time I've gone to Hershey I've never had any issues with crowds. Out of my 10 or so trips out, it was only remotely busy once, and we still only waited 15 minutes tops for everything (Excluding Laff Trakk obviously.)

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Lake Winnie

This park! The Boat Chute alone is worth visiting Lake Winnie to ride at least once before you die, (the several types of common phobia's this ride triggers ensures that most people will feel like they are gonna die while on it), it is terrifying and wonderful at the same time. You have a ball's out ARM drop tower, sweet PTC old school woodie, a wild mouse that you should probably dress out in full football padding before riding, sketchy a$$ Wacky Worm, tons of great old school flats (a few quite rare), pretty good food, fantastic merchandise, extremely friendly staff, and AWESOME clown trash bins. I love this little park, and feel it should have it's own discussion thread. (adding myself to the movement of other poster's that have been calling for this recently). The park does deserve one, and it could help them get more attendance.

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I'll put down for Waldameer. It's often treated as more of a quick stop than a trip on its own, but it's affordable, fun, growing, feels well-maintained, and has plenty of charm. The setting is gorgeous like Cedar Point, RFII is a great GG woodie, the flume is really good, the dark rides are quirky classics, the drop ride is bananas, and there's plenty more to see & do that I won't include in this long sentence. Add in a sunset at Presque Isle, a little wine tasting around North East PA (it's a pretty town nearby, I don't mean Northeastern PA), and you've got one of the best summertime weekends you can have in the state!

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Most Underrated:

 

International: Walibi Holland. Totally beautiful park with Goliath and Lost Gravity. The haunted Swing is really fun and they have some extra quality to their flats and family rides. It's a great family park that got a big Six Flags boost in their coaster collection.

 

Honorable Mention: Lotte World. I thought this place was architecturally wondrous and had really fun themed rides in 2011, and they've added like 8 new rides since then so it's gotten even better.

 

Domestic: Seaworld Orlando's Christmas Celebration. Seaworld at Christmas might be the most magical thing in Orlando. The Polar Express ride and North Pole are big upgrades from the usual Wild Arctic, the christmas village has a firepit and carolers, the coasters are actually open for night rides, everything is super-cheesy and nostalgic, the lighting sections in the park are gorgeous, and the shows are the best (and cheeeesiest) the park puts on all year. It's the park at its best and it beats everything Christmas from Universal and Disney and Busch IMO.

 

Honorable Mention: Great Adventure. Best Six Flags park hands down. It's actually pretty there, and they have El Toro, Nitro and Ka. And a freaking Safari!

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I'll put down for Waldameer. It's often treated as more of a quick stop than a trip on its own, but it's affordable, fun, growing, feels well-maintained, and has plenty of charm. The setting is gorgeous like Cedar Point, RFII is a great GG woodie, the flume is really good, the dark rides are quirky classics, the drop ride is bananas, and there's plenty more to see & do that I won't include in this long sentence. Add in a sunset at Presque Isle, a little wine tasting around North East PA (it's a pretty town nearby, I don't mean Northeastern PA), and you've got one of the best summertime weekends you can have in the state!

 

I going there next week with an enthusiast friend who loves it, and goes a lot, so I'm excited to hear this about it! I knew about Ravine Flyer II being great (my friend's #6 coaster), but like that is sounds like the whole park is nice and charming to go to as well!

 

As for myself, The "park" that comes to my mind is Fun Spot Orlando! My kids, my sister, and myself, all had SO much fun when we stopped by for the better part of a day a couple years ago! Whether it was marathoning the amazing White Lightning, riding Go-Karts to our hearts' content, or enjoying some good, and affordable food in the air conditioning of the Skydiner, it was one of our favorite parts of our Orlando vacation! Seriously, if you go to Orlando to do all the Disney, Universal, and Sea World stuff, DO NOT forget to pay a visit to this aptly named place!

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Frontier City is very underrated. Silver Bullet is a fantastic coaster, and together with a great flume, a great rapids ride, and a huge number of flats, it has something for everyone--including a small splash pad onsite (this in addition to a full-size waterpark across town). The theming is great, the shows are good, and the employees are friendly, helpful, and efficient. Yes, the park is small, and not near anything else, but don't let that stop you. Come out this way for Silver Dollar City's new coaster next year, and check out Frontier City while you're in the area (yep, out West, a 5-hour drive constitutes "in the area").

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Most Underrated:

 

International: Walibi Holland. Totally beautiful park with Goliath and Lost Gravity. The haunted Swing is really fun and they have some extra quality to their flats and family rides. It's a great family park that got a big Six Flags boost in their coaster collection.

 

Honorable Mention: Lotte World. I thought this place was architecturally wondrous and had really fun themed rides in 2011, and they've added like 8 new rides since then so it's gotten even better.

 

Domestic: Seaworld Orlando's Christmas Celebration. Seaworld at Christmas might be the most magical thing in Orlando. The Polar Express ride and North Pole are big upgrades from the usual Wild Arctic, the christmas village has a firepit and carolers, the coasters are actually open for night rides, everything is super-cheesy and nostalgic, the lighting sections in the park are gorgeous, and the shows are the best (and cheeeesiest) the park puts on all year. It's the park at its best and it beats everything Christmas from Universal and Disney and Busch IMO.

 

Honorable Mention: Great Adventure. Best Six Flags park hands down. It's actually pretty there, and they have El Toro, Nitro and Ka. And a freaking Safari!

 

Get your eyes checked. I wouldn't really describe Great Adventure as "pretty". Yes that one area with the Toro/Ka photo op is nice bust besides that...Meh. Rotting infrastructure and dilapidated theming isn't really my idea of pretty.

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