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Today's Burning Question - SoCal or Central Florida?


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Also, dealing with daily thunderstorms in the Summertime and the occasional hurricane beats the Hell out of earthquakes, fires, landslides, and smog.

 

To be fair, smog is really the only thing on there that is a consistent issue with So Cal. Earthquakes, brush fires, and landslides happen about as frequently as a hurricane makes it inland to Orlando and far less frequently than thunderstorms.

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I'll have to say SoCal. Orlando has some really awesome theme parks and some great entertainment srrounding it, but that's it. Outside if that, it's pretty much the humidity and flat lands. Even at WDW, the parks there are great, I feel like everything is too spread out. It takes a whole to get from one park to the next. With DL, everything is basically "right there", which is nice.

 

In SoCal, the parks may not be quite as festive or planned out as well, but most of the big ones like Knotts, Disney, and USH have a really rich history behind them. Outside of the parks, you've got LOTS of entertainment, things to do, places to go, activities and beautiful areas and beaches. All of the parks may take longer to get to, but I lime it that way. It gives the places more of a feeling of destination and going getting to see the surroundings. In Flirida there's almost nothing to look at!

 

Don't get me started in the Haunt market in SoCal VS Florida.

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I find it amusing how all the "SoCal people" keep saying how they'd rather visit SoCal because of things other than the theme parks, but the question was:

 

"Southern California or Central Florida? Which theme park destination would you rather go to?"

 

I love how people READ these things before responding!

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For a PURELY theme park trip there is no question, Central Florida wins hands down. I personally travel with an interest in both parks and culture equally, that being said I have not made my way out to Orlando yet (went to BGT back when Montu was new hotness). Someday I'll get out there.

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^I didn't feel like there was a difference between Orlando, San Antonio, and San Diego. Save for a few more recent renovations, most of the exhibits still feel like they are from 1970!

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  • 11 months later...

I've never been to SoCal so I would like to get there eventually, but I would still choose central Florida. I think the quality of the parks in Florida are far superior and busch gardens has no equivalent in California. The fact that there isn't as much traffic is also a big plus for Florida.

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I used to live in Central Florida for some time, so I'd obviously choose them. Too bad my interest in roller coasters started just before I moved away . I missed a lot of great coasters. I've got to get back down there sometime. Although, getting back to SoCal to visit SFMM and Knott's is still on my bucket list.

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I have plans to move to central Florida eventually to be near those parks.... But at the same time, so cal has some great parks and rides, too. I guess it just depends. For example, when Diagonal Alley opened I wanted to get down there, but now that twisted colossus is coming, I want to go there. My choice really just depends on the experience I'm looking to have at that time. There really isn't one destination I would ultimately choose over another.

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Central Florida...better parks for one. But to live in, it's green, not overburdened with traffic, laid out nicely, and newer. SoCal is brown, too spread out, crowded, and has gross hazy air. The Dr Phillips/Windermere area especially is one of the best places to live IMO, especially when compared to the hazy desert that is SoCal

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I'm going with Central Florida because of World of Food & Booze at Epcot, anything at Busch Gardens, Tower of Terror, IoA, lot's of golf (reasonable if you look)....just too many good options to choose from. Although I am going to Ft. Myers Beach in three weeks and skipping Orlando/Tampa completely this time (only because we did just about every theme park there back in March).

 

Oh, and I also happen to hate No Doubt.

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Okay, having been so Central Florida... Many... Many times, and having been to ever park there... I am going to have to go with SoCal. Now do not get me wrong, Central Florida parks are amazing. WDW Alone makes Central Florida worth it. Not to mention how amazing Universal Orlando is. With that being said... I have never been to SoCal, and so many of the coasters out there appeal to me. Yes, I know everyone has nothing but awful things to say about SoCal parks, (and coasters) most of the time. However, I want to experience these coasters for my self, and draw my own opinions. Coasters like X2, and Yolo Coaster are something I really want to try... Regardless of how much bashing they get. So... like I said SoCal gets my vote on this one.

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I am divided over which Disney resort is better, because Florida has far more content, but CA has the edge of nogtalgia with being the original Disney park, not to mention how much easier it is to hop parks in CA.

 

But, for me the competition ends there. Central Florida wins every other comparison by far. USF blows USH out of the water. SWSD is good, but it is out of the way from the other SoCal parks, while SWO is more easily accessed if you are visiting for the parks. I love Knott's, but it is now very corpratized and its star attraction breakfast down on a regular basis; BGT is an overall better park. And Magic Mountain, well...

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I know I'm in the minority, but I prefer Disneyland over Disney World. While the park's are definitely more compact, I love how they are located right next to each other so I can easily hop between them and I find that both parks have all of my favorites from Walt Disney World in some form plus some that are better like Indiana Jones and California Screamin'. Other than that, I think Central Florida has the advantage.

 

Universal Orlando > Universal Hollywood

Islands of Adventure > Six Flags Magic Mountain

Busch Gardens Tampa > Knott's Berry Farm

SeaWorld Orlando > SeaWorld San Diego

Fun Spot > Belmont Park

Legoland California = Legoland Florida

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Florida wins.

 

Despite the fact that the original Disneyland is my favorite Disney park, it doesn't come close to tipping the scale for me. At WDW, there's so much more to do. Add Universal Orlando, SeaWorld Orlando, Busch Gardens, and a number of smaller parks like Legoland and Fun Spot, and you see why Central Florida is called the theme park capital of the world. Over in SoCal, the overall quality of the park collection just doesn't measure up to Florida's.

Plus, Florida is closer to me.

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SoCal represent... even though my life-long dream is to visit all of Florida's parks.

 

The way I look at it, each region has its own strengths, and one does things better than the other. It's pretty safe to say SWO is better than SWSD in both coaster count and size (not to mention a waterpark that ISN'T 15 miles away in the middle of a ghetto... also dolphin petting), and USO just has more to offer than USH (even with USH's future expansions). But what surprises me is how split people are between DLR and WDW; I thought there would be an overwhelming majority siding with WDW, but that doesn't seem to be the case. Heck, all of you guys will agree that TDR is much more superior than the other two, and there's only 2 parks over there as well (btw, I choose Disneyland, for the moment). I also prefer Knott's over BGT, but that's just personal taste.

 

I'll argue anyone to death as to why I prefer Legoland Cali over Legoland Flori (2 neighborly hotels, Knight's Tournament, a lot closer to the beach & In-N-Out, everything was built from the ground up, SeaLife Aquarium). Now that I think about it, both Legolands are in awkward places, sorta in-between the major parks. Guess you'll at least see another credit opportunity between LA and SD/OR and TB.

 

As for Magic Mountain... okay, it isn't all that great. BUT, it's still 18 credits in one place (19 once TC opens), and while there are some noticeable rotten eggs (Scream's location, Revolution's OTSRs, Green Lantern... for some reason; I actually think it's decent once you get flipping), there's still some really good coasters (Superman, Apocalypse on a good day, Tatsu, YOLO) and arguably some are the best in their class (X2, Ninja, Riddly-Diddly... not really a lot of competition for that one). So when ride ops, food, and overall atmosphere disappoint, just remember that you can literally get 18 (soon to be 19) coasters done in one day.

 

And when the big parks get too pricey, there's tons of small ones, such as Belmont Park, Pacific Park, Castle Park, Scandia and Adventure City. Don't forget about the SD Zoo, Safari Park, LA Zoo and the millions of other tourist traps that are also down here.

 

This probably won't change anything, but that's my opinion on the matter. Central Florida has great parks and quality, but SoCal ain't as bad as people make it out to be. If it isn't on par with Central Florida, it isn't far behind.

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