The rides. The attractions. The food. The thrill. Amusement parks have been providing fun for the whole family for years and years… and years and years! While big names like Six Flags and Disney World may be some of the most popular theme parks out there, there are actually others around the globe that have been operating for much, much longer.
Where are they? How old are they? What coasters do they have? And when can we go?? According to the National Amusement Park Historical Association, these are the top 10 oldest amusement parks in the world, from newest to oldest.
10 Cedar Point In Ohio
Cedar Point is located in Sandusky, Ohio, it has been around since 1870, and it has set tons of records: With 72 rides, it has the most on the planet. It has six roller coasters that stand over 200 feet and is the only park that can say that.
It has been named the Best Amusement Park in the World 16 times in a row. And it is the seasonal amusement park that Americans go to the most each year. Furthermore, many of its rides were the tallest, fastest and longest when they opened, and several still hold records, as well.
9 Central Pier In England
Up next is Central Pier, which can be found in Blackpool, England. When it opened up in the 1800s, it put its focus on providing fun. At first, there were places to dance. Next, roller skating popped up here.
Eventually, rides and amusement machines were put in, too. Even steamboat excursions were an activity that could be enjoyed here. Now, its attractions include Pirate's Bay Family Bar, Blackpool Big Wheel, Peter Sedgewicks Funfair, Central Pier Family Entertainment Centre and Old Tyme Portrait Studio, as well as other shows in theaters and games in kiosks.
8 The Grand Pier In England
In Teignmouth, Devon, England, visitors can find The Grand Pier. Known as Teignmouth Pier, as well, it was built in the 1860s, and it was first used as a way for passengers to get onto land from steamboats.
For quite some time, though, it has been an amusement park that offers up attractions and games that are both indoors and out and that the whole family can enjoy. It even has a Formula One car track, along with an ice cream and a coffee shop and spectacular coastal views.
7 Jardin d'Acclimatation In Paris
The Jardin d'Acclimatation, in Paris, came about in 1860; it was actually first a zoo, started by Napoléon III and Empress Eugénie. During the Siege of Paris, though, the animals were cooked and served by a chef named Alexandre Étienne Choron.
After that, it became the l'Acclimatation Anthropologique, and African people were on display in this human zoo. This stopped in 1931, and since then, it has been a theme park with mini-coasters, an archery range, a house of mirrors, mini-golf, a puppet theater, a science museum, an art museum and farm animals like ponies that can be ridden.
6 Hanayashiki In Japan
Hanayashiki is the next theme park on the list, and it is located in Asakusa, Taitō, Tokyo. Built in 1853, it is Japan’s oldest amusement park, and it used to be a flower park.
A few years later, play equipment, exotic birds/animals and western films were added in, and now, it is full of rides! From roller coasters to haunted houses and a merry-go-round, Hanayashiki has a variety of fun that appeals to all ages, as well as a selection of restaurants and souvenir shops.
5 Lake Compounce In Connecticut
Lake Compounce, in Bristol and Southington, Connecticut, is the oldest amusement park in the U.S., since it has been around since 1846. It got its start with a scientist doing explosive experiments, which led to the idea of opening an entire park full of thrills.
Lake Compounce started with swimming, rowing, concerts and rides, and today, it has much, much more. There are bumper cars, a carousel and a ferris wheel. There’s a beach and a water park with a lazy river, a wave pool and slides. There is the Wildcat, which is one of the oldest wooden roller coasters on the planet, as well as a wooden coaster called Boulder Dash, which is a top-ranking one that exists.
4 Tivoli In Denmark
Guests can go to Copenhagen to see Tivoli, or Tivoli Gardens, which has been around since 1843. One of its main attractions is a wooden roller coaster called The Mountain Coaster, which is one of the oldest wooden ones on the planet.
There is also a newer ride called Fatamorgana, which is the first Condor 2GH ride on the planet. As a premier tourist destination, Tivoli also offers up kiddie rides, theaters, an aquarium, an arcade, concerts, a hotel and many seasonal and special events.
3 Blackgang Chine In England
Blackgang Chine, located in Blackgang, Isle of Wight, England, came about in the 1840s, and it is full of themed lands: There is an Underwater Kingdom (that makes it look like guests are walking underwater, where they encounter a sunken shipwreck and a big blue whale), Cowboy Town (which looks like the Old West), Restricted Area 5 (full of animatronic dinosaurs) and Fairyland (with the Fairy Castle), to name a few.
There are also thrill rides, such as Cliffhanger (which sits 400 feet above the sea) and Water Force (a water slide with three chutes).
2 The Prater In Austria
The Prater is a park in Vienna, and in 1766, it was open to the public, with things like coffee shops and cafés. Over the years, it also offered hunting, a World Exhibition and an attraction called Venice in Vienna, with an artificial body of water that was made to look like the canals of Venice.
It eventually became the amusement park it is today, and the main avenue of the park is called The Hauptallee. There is also the Liliputbahn (a railway), the Republik Kugelmugel (which is actually its own small nation), a planetarium and the Prater Museum.
1 Bakken In Denmark
It is time for the oldest park: Dyrehavsbakken, which translates to The Deer Pasture's Hill and which is usually called Bakken (meaning The Hill). It opened up in 1583, and its most well-known roller coaster is the Rutschebanen, a wooden one that has been around since 1932.
There are tons of other rides here, though, like a mine train, spinning coasters, bumper cars, laser tag, swing rides and a funhouse, as well as shows (such as cabaret and those starring animals), gaming halls, live music and restaurants. Located in Klampenborg, Denmark, Bakken is truly an icon.