UK Theme Parks
Many thrills and spills are to be had at the UK’s theme parks, where each year more and more daring rides are created and unleashed on the public. People of all ages can enjoy something at the theme parks most of which are located in England and offer up scary rides, rollicking roller coasters and good old fashioned amusements.
The UK arguably leads the way when it comes to roller coaster rides, especially in Europe with one of the longest, tallest and fastest being the Pepsi Max Big One at Blackpool Pleasure Beach. Blackpool is the most visited theme park in the UK and houses some very old but still thoroughly enjoyable rides such as the Grand National, a wooden roller coaster.
The Pleasure Beach also has children’s rides, water rides, amusement arcade and an ice rink amongst many other things.
Alton Towers in Staffordshire is made up of 12 themed lands with various rides, playgrounds, pools, rapids, flumes and gardens. Some of Britain’s most notorious rides are to be found here including the vertical drop coaster, Oblivion and one of the world’s best inverted roller coasters called Nemesis. There are so many rides that it may be advisable to plan in advance which ones you want to tackle, although this may also be dictated by the size of the queues.
Further south in England there are several other theme parks including Legoland in Windsor, which is a great place to take young children. Chessington World of Adventures in south west London is also ideal for families with over 90 percent of the rides here suitable for children under 12 years old. Chessington also houses a zoo with a sea life centre.
Thorpe Park in Surrey has rides that are not for the feint hearted with Europe’s tallest fastest launched roller coaster, Stealth located here. This location has seven themed areas filed with coasters, family rides, water rides, a good old fashioned carousel and many other things too.
The sum total of rides clocked up during the day at theme parks can prove to be quite expensive so you can save money by booking tickets in advance. This will also prove to be quicker as you won’t have to queue at the entrance. Parents should note that height restrictions on some rides mean that children may not be allowed to try them.
Wales and Scotland have theme parks too as well as several areas near the east coast of England. Oakwood in Pembrokeshire, South Wales and Loudon Castle in East Ayrshire, Scotland are good examples. In all the theme parks in the UK there is bound to be something for everyone to enjoy.
If you are ever looking for a complete day of fun and action in the UK, there are plenty of theme parks dotted all over England to choose between. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland do not tend to have a share of the best parks. The country’s most popular theme parks actually have worldwide reputations and it is not unheard of for people to travel to them from other European countries. Let’s take a look at the top ones:
Alton Towers: Located in rural Staffordshire, in the English Midlands, Alton Towers has been the UK’s top theme park since the 1980’s. This park is split into several themed kingdoms and offers the most adrenaline-pumping and white knuckle rides in the country. There are several intense rollercoasters and plenty of other genres of rides for the whole family. Rides include Nemesis, Oblivion and Rita: Queen of Speed.
Thorpe Park: located in Surrey, in Southeast England, this park has expanded exponentially over the past 10 years or so. It was a rather flaccid and tame theme park, but now hosts some of the most awesome rides in the entire country. The park’s owners have worked hard to boost the reputation and get in some of the most amazing attractions. The rides Saw and Colossus are very popular.
Legoland Windsor: Based near Windsor, in Berkshire, this is an ideal theme park for the youngest members of the family. The rides are far more gentle and everything seems aimed at this more delicate age group. Older children and action-seeking adults may feel a little under whelmed by this park.
Drayton Manor: can be found in Staffordshire and is a theme park that offers plenty of rides for the thrill-seekers and also an excellent zoo as an additional attraction. The rollercoasters are not exactly groundbreaking here but efforts are being made to compete with the other big names in theme parks across the country.
Chessington World of Adventures: in surrey, very near London, is a theme park that has a good balance. This park is geared towards the entire family and there is definitely something for everyone. There is also an excellent zoo and this was how the park first started out many decades ago.
Blackpool Pleasure Beach: Situated in Lancashire, this park must have a mention as it attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. Blackpool is the country’s biggest seaside resort and therefore this park tends to capitalise on its captive audience. There are dozens of rides at this park - including ‘The Pepsi Max Big One’, which is the highest rollercoaster in the United Kingdom.
There are numerous other theme parks dotted all over the UK, local tourist information offices will be able to advise you of the ones that are located within the area.