Top 10 Orlando Theme Park Rides
The VAR Guy just awoke from a 24-hour nap in Orlando, Florida. Too many roller coaster rides for our fearless world traveler? Nope. Some sort of virus zapped his energy. Still, he managed to push himself through Universal Orlando’s theme parks. And he’ll be blogging again full-time after the Thanksgiving holiday break here in the US. In the meantime, here’s The VAR Guy’s Top 10 Rides in Orlando.
10. Dueling Dragons (Universal Islands of Adventure): Side-by-side inverted roller coasters that come within a few feet of smashing into each other. What fun.
9. Muppetvision 3-D (Disney-MGM Studios): Say what you want about this aging 3-D movie, but The VAR Guy still laughs at the old men in the balcony and enjoys the movie’s grand finale.
8. Rockin’ Roller Coaster (Disney-MGM Studios): Aerosmith never sounded so good.
7. The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man (Universal Islands of Adventure): 3-D images blended with a moving ride. You’ll believe you’re immersed in the web slinger’s world.
6. The Mummy (Universal Studios): Part roller coaster. Part simulator. Part movie. All fun.
5. The Hulk (Universal Islands of Adventure): One of the largest roller coasters in the Orlando area. For first-time riders, a surprise beginning will take your breath away.
4. Mission Space (Disney Epcot): The ultimate motion simulator. Take a ride to Mars — just try not to launch your lunch on the way.
3. Haunted Mansion (Disney Magic Kingdom): The old classic typically has some of the shortest lines in the Magic Kingdom because it has a massive capacity of 2,600 riders per hour.
2. Tower of Terror (Disney-MGM Studios): Take a haunted hotel and throw in a free-falling elevator and you’ve got an instant classic.
1. Space Mountain (Disney Magic Kingdom): A wimpy roller coaster by today’s standards. But Space Mountain was the first “big” coaster The VAR Guy ever rode with his dad way back in 1976.
Of course, The VAR Guy has ridden hundreds of additional rides. Here are some honorable mentions from each Orlando park, in no particular order:
1. Disney Magic Kingdom: Pirates of the Caribbean – a great ride long before the movie trilogy arrived; Snow White Scary Adventure – still fun after all these years; Peter Pan’s Flight – often the longest line in the park; Big Thunder Mountain – the only roller coaster The VAR Guy’s wife and kids have the guts to ride.
3. Disney Animal Kingdom: Everest – Disney’s newest mountain-themed roller coaster.
4. Universal Islands of Adventure: Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls – one of the best flume rides in Orlando; The Cat in the Hat – fun for the kids, and their parents.
5. Universal Studios: Jaws – a big rubber shark in a big pool, and it’s still a little scary; Terminator 2 3D – It’s as big and as loud as James Cameron’s movie.
6. SeaWorld: Kraken, a floorless roller coaster — the first of its kind in the southern US.