You would think that since the Jess headquarters is in Orlando, Florida that we would love theme parks. To be honest, I would rather try the fish at Applebees than spend a second in a ride line. But I realize I'm in the minority on that opinion. So, since you all love throw-up rides...here's the top 10 best US theme parks to visit during the Summer (according to Thrillist).
1. Universal’s Islands of Adventure at Universal Orlando Resort
Located in Orlando, Florida, Universal's Islands of Adventure has been a popular destination for thrill-seekers since its opening in 1999. From the Wizarding World of Harry Potter to Jurassic Park, this theme park has something for everyone.
Fun fact: The Incredible Hulk Coaster, one of the park's most iconic attractions, reaches a top speed of 67 miles per hour and includes seven inversions!
2. Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort
The Magic Kingdom, nestled in the heart of Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, is where dreams come true. Visitors of all ages can enjoy iconic attractions like Space Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, and the classic Disney castle.
Fun fact: The park's Cinderella Castle is 189 feet tall, making it the tallest structure in the entire resort!
3. Disney California Adventure Park
This Disneyland Resort companion park in Anaheim, California, offers a unique experience with attractions inspired by the Golden State's culture and history. Highlights include Cars Land, Pixar Pier, and Guardians of the Galaxy - Mission: BREAKOUT!
Fun fact: The park's Radiator Springs Racers attraction covers a massive six acres, making it one of the largest and most elaborate attractions in any Disney park.
4. Cedar Point
Located in Sandusky, Ohio, Cedar Point is known as the "Roller Coaster Capital of the World." With 17 roller coasters, there's no shortage of thrills at this amusement park.
Fun fact: Cedar Point's Steel Vengeance, opened in 2018, holds the record for the world's tallest hybrid roller coaster at 205 feet!
5. Disneyland Park
The original Disney theme park, located in Anaheim, California, has been enchanting visitors since 1955. Classic attractions like It's a Small World, The Haunted Mansion, and Splash Mountain ensure fun for the whole family. We've never been, but I'm told
Fun fact: Disneyland Park has a unique underground system called the Utilidors, which allows cast members and essential services to navigate the park without disrupting the magical atmosphere above ground.
6. Universal Studios Florida at Universal Orlando Resort
We call it "Adult Disney," Universal Studios Florida offers an immersive experience into the world of movies and TV. From The Simpsons Ride to the E.T. Adventure, guests can step right into their favorite stories.
Fun fact: The park's Revenge of the Mummy roller coaster has a hidden tribute to the late Brendan Fraser – keep an eye out for a golden statue of the actor while waiting in line!
7. Disney’s Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort
This unique park combines the magic of Disney storytelling with a dedication to conservation and animal welfare. With immersive lands like Pandora - The World of Avatar and the thrilling Expedition Everest, Animal Kingdom offers a diverse experience.
Fun fact: The park's iconic Tree of Life sculpture is 145 feet tall and features over 300 intricately hand-carved animal figures.
8. Universal Studios Hollywood
This Los Angeles-based theme park allows visitors to experience the magic of movie-making firsthand. From the famous Studio Tour to attractions like The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Studios Hollywood is a must-visit for film lovers.
Fun fact: The park's Jurassic World - The Ride features an impressive 84-foot waterfall drop, making it one of the largest theme park water drops in the world.
9. Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort
Epcot invites guests to explore the world and the future in its two distinct areas: World Showcase and Future World. Experience cultural exhibits, unique dining options, and innovative attractions like Soarin' Around the World. This is probably my favorite park, because of the annual Epcot Food and Wine Festival. Drinking takes the edge off.
Fun fact: Epcot's Spaceship Earth, the park's iconic geodesic sphere, is covered with 11,324 individual triangular panels.
10. SeaWorld Orlando
Blackfin be damned, SeaWorld Orlando in Florida provides visitors with a mix of exciting rides, educational experiences, and up-close encounters with "captive" marine life. From roller coasters like Mako to the immersive TurtleTrek exhibit, SeaWorld has something for everyone.
Fun fact: The park's Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin attraction houses one of the largest penguin habitats in the world, with more than 250 penguins from five different species.