Our Post-Virus Rope Drops
The countdown is almost over, and we’re just five days away from the re-opening of the UK’s biggest theme parks.
With that firmly in mind, in this article we’ll be giving our picks for the attractions we’re most excited to get on at each of the UK’s biggest theme parks. Although not all of these parks are reopening on July 4th, 2020, that stands as the date for the majority of the industry to start welcoming guests back through the gates. Whether it’s a high-octane ‘coaster or a dark ride, there’s plenty to look forward to once the parks start to re-open, so let’s get into the article…
Whether it’s your first visit in months or your second in a week, when you get through those turnstiles at Thorpe Park chances are you’ll head straight for one of the big five ‘coasters. The only question is which one you ride first.
For us, it’s got to be Nemesis Inferno. While many people would argue it’s not as good a roller coaster as The Swarm or even Stealth, the B&M invert makes the perfect first ride for a crucial reason. While Swarm and Stealth probably won’t have huge queues all day, Inferno is best ridden early on before the lines build up. In particular, the front row queue of Inferno gets long. If you head straight there when the park opens, you can get a front-row seat on one of the first trains of the day without a long wait. With four inversions, Nemesis Inferno is the perfect shot of adrenaline to kick off your day at Thorpe Park.
Chessington World of Adventures
Chessington doesn’t boast as many big-name attractions as Thorpe, but there are still plenty of choices when it comes to picking your first ride at the park after lockdown. While Vampire is the signature ride on offer, we have a different ‘coaster in mind.
When you get through the gates at the World of Adventures, Dragon’s Fury is literally right there in front of you. It’s a twenty second walk to the entrance and if you’re there early you could be on the ride within minutes. Seeing as many guests consider this the best ride in the park, why wouldn’t you want to step into to the Land of the Dragons and enjoy this classic spinning ‘coaster?
Not many parks challenge guests to figure out how they’re going to get around, but Legoland Windsor is one of them. Do you work your way down the hill? Take the train? Walk back and forth between whatever has a low queue?
Or do you walk all the way to the far end of the valley and spend the rest of the day heading back? Next time we go to the park, we’ll go straight to Lego Ninjago The Ride. The reason is pretty simple; it’s comfortably the hardest ride in the park to get on. Whether it’s long lines or maintenance issues, there’s always a threat of something keeping you off of Ninjago during your day at Legoland. The Dragon will (probably) be there all day, so it’s smart to get on Ninjago while you’re sure you can.
Paultons has been hit even harder than most parks by the pandemic, because their big new attraction Storm Chaser has had to be delayed for another year as a result of the crisis. Instead, we’ll have to turn to one of the older rides to start our day off well.
Flight of the Pterosaur is our pick, being arguably the best ‘coaster in the park that’s already open. This family suspended ‘coaster takes riders on a journey through a dinosaur-ruled land filled with wonderful animatronics. Once Tornado Springs opens it will be the go-to destination for every thrill seeker who steps through the Paultons gates. Until then, Lost Kingdom will continue to rule the park.
Blackpool Pleasure Beach
There’s nothing quite like The Big One to wake you up at the start of a long day in Blackpool. The 200ft hyper coaster offers two things above all else- an insane drop and some incredible views. If you’re after either of these two things, there’s nowhere else in the park you’d rather be first thing in the morning.
Besides, The Big One often gets the longest queues in the entire park- especially if it’s running on just one train, which is often the case. With that in mind, it’s best to try and be among the first guests to reach the enormous Pepsi can in the morning to ensure you don’t have to hang about in line for long. Icon has shorter queues all the time, after all.
Finally, we head to the ‘coaster capital of the UK, where there’s plenty of choice for our first ride after lockdown. While The Smiler, Nemesis and Oblivion are all pretty tempting, we’ve got something a bit more recent in mind.
Wicker Man, the UK’s newest wooden roller coaster, has earned some great reviews in it’s first two seasons of operation at Alton Towers. With the popularity of the new ride still on a high, queue times can still get pretty lengthy in this corner of the park, so it might be worth heading there first to experience this fire-fuelled ride.
Do you agree with our picks? What UK rides are you most excited to be reunited with this Summer? Wherever you go first, stay safe and remember to follow guidelines!