• Madison Miller

Roller Coaster Day Dreams

Andrew and I on the swings at OWA

I think we could all use a fun thrill about now. How about I break down all of my favorite roller coasters from the past year or so? Personally, I’ve just been day dreaming a lot about past trips to get me through this weird isolation and I keep thinking of how much I miss amusement parks. Also, our Dollywood trip in March was cancelled because of Covid, so I think I’m still upset about that. Andrew is such a roller coaster nerd, so I’ve definitely become a second-hand aficionado since we’ve been together. I’ve always liked roller coasters, but I’ve never prioritized them for travel until recently. This will contain some roller coaster spoilers, so if you’re planning on going to any of these places and like to be surprised, I would skip this post. Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, Universal Studios Orlando - You know I have to start off with something HP-related. I LOVED this ride. First of all, you get to walk through Hogwarts while you’re in line for it. That shouldn’t count since it’s not the actual ride, but I don’t care. The ride itself is also perfect. It’s a virtual reality ride, which is pretty common in Universal Studios, but it does a great job of feeling realistic. You’re flying on a broom with Harry, Ron, and Hermione. The views of Hogwarts are all around you. Need I say more? It’s the best.

Verbolten, Busch Gardens Williamsburg - I was so surprised by this ride. It’s in the Germany section of the park. For some reason, I thought it was going to be more geared toward kids. The theme is driving through a German forest. The seats are made to look like colorful little sports cars. For some reason, I didn’t understand that it was supposed to be a haunted forest until I was actually on the ride. It starts off pretty slow, but then takes off unexpectedly. My favorite part is when the ride takes you into an abandoned shed. Everything is dark and then suddenly, you just drop. We rode this at least three times on our visit. I love a spooky ride.

The Mummy, Universal Studios Orlando - Speaking of spooky rides, I have to include The Mummy at Universal. I first rode this when I was in high school. We were at Universal for a choir competition. I saw that it was an indoor ride and thought it might be lame, but I was wrong! Unlike a lot of Universal rides, this is not virtual reality. You’re riding through the mummy’s tomb. Mummies pop out at you. There’s fire. There’s crazy steep drops. I honestly don’t know how they fit that ride in that part of Universal. This truly might be my favorite ride of all time. It doesn’t hurt that I’m a huge fan of The Mummy, but I don’t think that would matter either way. All of the roller coaster awards should go to this one.

The Intimidator 305, King's Dominion - I have to show respect for the only ride that I know of that makes everyone on it gray out during the first drop. The Intimidator is a racing-themed ride, so naturally, it’s fast. It’s by far the fastest coaster I’ve ever been on. The first drop is 305 feet up, hence the 305 in the name. It gets up to 90 mph. When I rode it, I was with Andrew, his brother, and his brother’s girlfriend. We all grayed out, meaning we lost our vision on the first drop. It’s intense. If you are in any way motion sick or think you might be affected by this, you probably will be, so keep that in mind. But, if you’re up for the challenging thrill, go for it!

Batman, Six Flags Over Georgia - This one is on the list for nostalgic reasons. When I was a kid, I would not go anywhere near roller coasters. Then, on yet another choir trip, we went to Six Flags, and I was talked into riding one real roller coaster. It was Batman. I had so much fun and it started my love of roller coasters. Batman is a metal coaster with inverted loops. Your feet are dangling outward on all of the loops and inversions. Honestly, it relaxes me in some ways. It’s smooth, you feel the wind on your face, which feels incredible when you’re walking around an amusement park in the middle of summer in Georgia. It will always be a favorite. This post has made me want to go to an amusement park so bad! I have no idea when that will be possible again. But, we’re Six Flags season pass holders, so maybe we’ll get a chance to go before the end of the year. What are you daydreaming about doing when it’s finally safe to travel again?

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