1. Cedar Point 2. Kings Island 3. Kings Dominion 4. Canada's Wonderland 5. Knott's Berry Farm (note: local park...would likely rank higher otherwise) 6. Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park (note: primarily due to non-ride elements...would rank last for rides) 7. California's Great America 8. Carowinds (note: based on 2010 visit) 9. Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom
Of the three Cedar Fair parks I haven't been to, Worlds of Fun looks like the best and Michigan's Adventure looks the least interesting. My guess is all three of them would rank in the bottom third of this list anyway.
Top 5 Steel: Bizarro (SFNE), Nitro, Apollo's Chariot, Maverick, Banshee Top 5 Wood: Boulder Dash, El Toro, Thunderhead, Gold Striker, Lightning Racer Top 3 Parks: Holiday World, Busch Gardens Williamsburg, Cedar Point TPR Trips: IntimidaTour 2010, North East Trip 2011, LeviaTHON 2012, Mini Tours 2014 (New Hotness & East Coast)
Of what I've actually visited: 1. Knott's/CP tie 2.KI 3.VF 4.WOF (yes, I've been on prowler) 5.CGA (yes, I've been on gold striker)
I don't feel like it would be fair to include Gilroy because it's not trying to be what the others are.
What I guess my full list will be when I eventually get to all the parks:
1. Knott's/CP tie. Knotts for it's heritage and everything, CP for it's coaster collection 2. KI 3. Canada's Wonderland 4. KD 5. Carowinds 6.VF 7. Dorney 8.WOF 9.CGA 10. MIA
I will say though, I haven't visited one that I didn't like. In general, I've generally preferred them to the six flags parks that I've visited (SFMM, SFOT, SFGAm, SFDK. Also generally nice parks, with Over Texas and Discovery Kingdom being standouts, but I like the feel of Cedar Fair better.)
I love Cedar Fair, while they lack in the theming and food departments I think very highly of their parks as unlike Six Flags I feel like they put a lot of effort into keeping their parks as nice and neat as possible. Rides usually look like they were painted within the last few years, operations are generally very good and they all have a very nice atmosphere.
I'm obviously only ranking the ones I've been to and I'll note the year of my last visit as I think that's important.
1) Cedar Point (2014) This is obviously the crown jewel of the chain. The natural location gives it an unfair advantage over anyone, the atmosphere here is great (in part thanks to that location) and even though I've ridden about 250 coasters I actually have 5 of theirs in my top 20.
2) Kings Dominion (2014) #2, #3 and #4 are so close that they're almost interchangeable. Kings Island and Carowinds both have better coaster collections but Kings Dominion is the nicest of the three parks and they have the best non-coaster collection also. I305, Volcano, Flight of Fear and Dominator are all great rides (Dominator is a criminally underrated coaster and it unfairly gets grouped in with the other forceless floorless rides) but like I said it's not all about coasters here. The entry plaza is much nicer than the similar version at Kings Island, they have an awesome drop tower, great flyers and I love the area back by the flume. Believe it or not these parks are all so close that the things that gave this one the edge was the better front gate and the area around Shenandoah Lumber Company (which is one of my favorite flumes).
3) Kings Island (2014) This park isn't quite as nice as Kings Dominion but they actually have a much better coaster collection. Beast at night is the best ride I ever had on any coaster, Diamondback, Bat and Banshee are great and I'll ALWAYS be a sucker for Adventure Express... always. lol
4) Carowinds (2015) I almost put this at #3 and even #2... like I said it's really close. Fury325 is in my opinion the best coaster in the chain outside of Cedar Point (I put both Millennium and Maverick ahead of it) and that ride brings this park to the next level. The only reason I put this behind Kings Island and Kings Dominion was the fact that besides the coasters there isn't a ton to do here besides Boo Blasters, the Drop Tower which isn't nearly as good as the ones at KI or KD and Windseeker. The entrance area is much nicer at the other parks as well... they definitely have more atmosphere. I love Carowinds though.
5) Knott's (2013) This park is very small and while their coaster collection isn't even close to being on the same level as the parks I've mentioned so far they do have a fun invert, an awesome shuttle loop and a very fun rocket coaster. The thing that gives this park the edge over Dorney is Ghost Town and the unique rides like the stagecoaches, the flume and Calico Mine.
6) Dorney (2014) This park is obviously last but that doesn't mean I don't like it. I really enjoy this park and while they don't have any stand-out coasters I like Talon, Posessed, Hydra and Steel Force quite a bit. The park is very well maintained but very generic and while I like the park any time 2 of the 3 best rides in the park are a log flume and a first generation drop ride the park isn't likely to stand up to great parks like Cedar Point, Kings Island, Kings Dominion, Carowinds and Knotts.
Cool thread. My CF parkredits are a bit weak, next year should be my big platinum-pass road trip.
1. King's Dominion 2. Cedar Point 3. KBF 4(tie). CGA 4(tie). Dorney
I truly understand the unanimous love for CP but it's just not my favorite collection of rides, what can I say? I like Millennium Force, don't love it (gasp!). I like Maverick, don't love it. (double gasp! heresy!!) I really like Raptor and Dragster and Mean Streak, in fact I almost love Mean Streak (dubya-tee-eff is this guy ON?).
I totally dig drop rides and KD's is hands-down the best I've ridden - Luthor and 'Jaro included. I totally dig flat rides and they have a great collection. I305 is just magical lunacy. Volcano is hugely underrated and is the last coaster that actually put a nice knot in my stomach first ride. Just awesome. Rebel Yell has a top-five airtime moment. It's a beautiful park and easy to navigate. Add in the fact that I had two absolutely perfect visits to this park last year, and it just happens to be my favorite at the moment.
Barely missed a chance to visit Gilroy by a few days. If it counts, and if I'd gone, it very well may have been my #1. I'm different, OK?
As of now I've only been to a whopping 3 CF parks. Here's how I'd rank them: 1) Kings Island 2) Cedar Point 3) Worlds of Fun
All around I liked the feel of Kings Island a lot more than I liked the atmosphere of Cedar Point. Yes, CP does have that great western area, but the rest is a bit bland. KI may not have better coasters (CP has better coasters by a long shot, although I really liked Diamondback, Banshee, and Racer) but I still liked it a bit better. As for WOF, it can't really compete, but it's a beautiful and surprisingly well-themed park.
Top 10:1. The Voyage2. Outlaw Run3. Millennium Force4. SkyRush5. Maverick 6. El Toro7. Fahrenheit8. Storm Runner9. Thunderbird10. Powder Keg
1) Cedar Point 2) Kings Dominion 3) Kings Island 4) Knott's Berry Farm 5) Carowinds 6) Dorney
And I'll spice things up with throwing in my top 12 coasters from those parks 1)I305 2)Maverick 3)MF 4)Banshee 5)Raptor 6)Afterburn 7)Diamondback 8)Volcano 9)TTD 10)Montezoomas Revenge 11)Steel Force 12)Dominator
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