The Best Roller Coasters within Driving Distance of the So. Indiana Area
It's nearly that time of year already, soon the cold and dreary days of winter will be behind us and the warmth of the spring and summer seasons will arrive. With the changes of the season, summer plans are surely starting to be penned out by families everywhere. Theme park attractions made up a big part of my childhood's yearly calendar and the tri-state is close to many great parks! Here are some amazing theme parks that have top-rated roller coasters!
Holiday World and Splashing Safari in Santa Claus, Indiana
Located within the tristate in Santa Clause, Indiana is a long-time favorite for locals and long-distance travelers alike. With an award-winning water park and many other beloved rides with names following the theme of holidays throughout the amusement park, Holiday World is a phenomenal choice for family fun.
Holiday World and Splashing Safari are open for the season on May 6th, 2023!
This coaster boasts one of the steepest drops in the wooden coaster world and a world record of five underground tunnels. During the ride, you experience an incredible 24.3 seconds of weightlessness. With a track over a mile long, it is one of the nation's longest and fastest coasters.
This wooden coaster has been capturing the hearts of roller coaster enthusiasts since its inaugural jaunt around the track in 1995. The Raven includes a 120-foot-long tunnel, drops of 85 and 61 feet, and banked turns over Lake Rudolph.
This coaster doesn't feature an initial lift hill, there is no slow anticipation to this ride. It launches riders straight from the boarding pad at 60 miles per hour obtained in a mere 3.5 seconds.
Beech Bend Park and Splash Lagoon, Bowling Green, KY.
You can find Beech Bend Park and its affiliated attractions in the heart of south-central Kentucky, Bowling Green. Beech Bend has been in operation off and on since 1898 and providing entertainment for many generations. Beech Bend is home to its water park, Splash Lagoon, and a racetrack that draws in festival events, drag racing, and car shows all through the year, including the annual LS Fest. The Beech Bend Family recently lost its patriarch, Dallas Jones who had a great passion for the racing industry.
Beech Bend Park and Splash Lagoon are open for the season on May 13th, 2023.
Rated the top 5th best new ride in its inaugural year in 2006, the Kentucky Rumbler is a wooden coaster with class. Kentucky Rumbler is currently ranked in the Top 33 wooden roller coasters worldwide! (Rankings by Amusement Today’s Golden Ticket Awards)
Kentucky Kingdom and Hurricane Bay, Louisville, KY
The opening day for the Louisville-based theme attraction is May 13th, 2023. Home to six different roller coasters, ranging from family-friendly thrills, classic wooden ramblers, and loops of sleek modern steel, Kentucky Kingdom has all the options. Here are just a few of their coasters!
T3 is a suspended coaster that includes five inversions that defy the laws of physics. With speeds of nearly 50 mph and a duration of just under two minutes, this is a fast pace thrill ride! This coaster can launch around 900 riders into the stratosphere per hour.
This wooden coaster opened up in April 2019 with a 5 million dollar price tag. The Kentucky Flyer has over 1,200 feet of track and maintains speeds of around 35mph.
This coaster is family-friendly and offers milder thrills for the younger audience. With a height minimum of 56 inches. This steel coaster was built in 1994 as a part of the park expansion project and cost $5 million. The Passenger cars are shaped like roller skates, hence the ride's name.
Six Flags over St. Louis
Six flags open for the season on April 1st, 2023!
Meet me in Saint Louis! With a multitude of thrill rides, there are bound to be some heart-racing coasters on location and of course, there are! Six Flags is home to some of the most recognizable coasters in the nation. Read on to discover which coasters call the "Gateway to The West" Home.
Step into the shoes of the DC superhero and take flight to defend Gotham City! With speeds of 55 mph, this coaster will give you the sensation of flight. Riders board underneath the track in suspended seats and make their climb 11 stories before being propelled through a full 360-degree loop.
As far as coasters go, Ninja gets a black belt! Slicing its riders through the air at highway speeds, over 2,430 feet of track it is sure to be a breathtaking experience. With Bruce Lee-like moves, this roller coaster flies through a half loop and half corkscrew.
Wooden coasters have been around since the inception of the original amusement parks. American Thunder offers up an amazingly complex architecture with its highest summit being 80 feet above the ground. With steep drops and 90-degree banked turns, don't sleep on this wooden classic because it is full of adrenaline-pumping attributes.
Cedar Point, Sandusky, Ohio
It would be impossible to make a list of theme parks with amazing coasters without mentioning Cedar Point. Probably one of the most iconic parks, globally known for its award-winning thrill rides, it refuses to be overlooked. Here are some of the well-known roller coasters you will find at Cedar Points 364 acre park.
It might be the oldest roller coaster at Cedar Point, but don't let it fool ya, Blue Streak can still compete with all the latest coasters there! It's been a favorite now since 1964 and offers a 1-minute and 30-second ride most recognizable for its classic out-and-back layout.
Cedar Creek Mine Ride
This coaster transports its riders back to the wild west as they fasten into the passenger cars that are fashioned after mine carts. Cedar Creek Mine Ride was the focal point of this area of the park, Frontier Town when it opened in 1969.
With a name like Millennium Force, it is of little surprise that this coaster's reputation precedes it. It paved the way for ride advancement as it created a whole new category of giga-coasters. When the aptly named coaster opened in 2000 it was the tallest ever built at over 300 feet tall and the fastest with speeds topping out at around 93 mph.
Dollywood, Pigeon Forge, TN.
Open now for the 2023 season, Dollywood ranked the #1 theme park on Tripadvisor in 2022! With a surplus of roller coasters, this last theme park on the list is sure to bring lasting memories and an abundance of fun for the entire family. Take a glimpse of just a few of the many roller coasters available to enjoy at Dollywood.
Big Bear Country
Its big debut will be in May 2023 and is located in Wildwood Grove. This ride lasts for nearly two minutes on its 3,990-foot track.
This coaster is themed after the 1950s tricked out hot-rods and launches park guests from zero to 45 mph up its lift hill of 20 stories. With a track length of 3,800 feet, this ride lands in USA Today's top 10 coasters in the country. Lightening Rod includes nearly 20 seconds of airtime during the duration of the ride operation.
Tennessee Tornado is a force of nature and has riders feeling as though they have been whisked away by a cyclone as it zooms them down a 128-foot drop at speeds clocking in at around 70 mph.
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