The 5 Scariest Roller Coasters in the World
The degree of a roller coaster’s fear factor depends on the person riding it. Some people simply do not like roller coasters and even a small mild roller coaster is scary. For hard-core coaster riders, a roller coaster is not scary if it doesn’t have speed, height, airtime, g-forces and a roller coaster designer’s ultimate thumbs-up: huge scream factor. Recent technological advances in acceleration and design continue to push the envelope for thrill-seeking coaster riders. The best rides are scattered around the world, and though there are hundreds of great roller coasters, these are the scariest according to various online polls, roller coaster ezines, travel blogs and newspapers.
Kingda Ka Roller Coaster
Location: Six Flags Great Adventure, New Jersey
Height: 456ft (139m)
Drop: 418ft (127m)
Length: 3,118ft (950m)
Max speed: 128mph
Duration: 28 seconds
Acceleration: 0 to 128 mph in 3.5 seconds
The king of roller coasters, as well as the tallest and fastest in the world. Kingda Ka grabbed the title from Top Thrill Dragster at Cedar Point when it opened in 2005. Though it doesn’t have any upside-down inversions, it is 28 seconds of super speed strato-coaster “Oh, my God!” heart-stopping thrill. The train pulls away and quickly accelerates as it climbs to 456 feet, makes a 90 degree left and drops on the other side down 418 feet.
Location: Nagashima Spa Land, Nagashima, Japan
Height: 318ft (97m)
Drop: 306ft (93m)
Length: 8,133 ft (2,479m)
Max speed: 95mph
Duration: 4 minutes
Steel Dragon makes the list for being one of the world’s tallest and fastest, but especially for its four action-packed minutes of g-forces, drops, and fear. It still holds the world record as the longest thrill ride.
Location: Cedar Point, Sandusky, Ohio
Height: 310ft (94m)
Drop: 300ft (91m)
Length: 6,595 ft (2,010 m)
Max speed: 93 mph (150 km/h)
Duration: 2 minutes 20 seconds
Given a top ten list, Cedar Point’s Top Thrill Dragster would have made the list as well being the world’s second tallest roller coaster . Millennium Force edged it out, however, due to length – a wonderfully frightening almost 2 ½ minutes, compared to a few seconds for Top Thrill Dragster. Millennium Force is consistently voted the best roller coaster in the world and is the most popular ride at Cedar Point. With three big drops, high speeds and rating as a gigacoaster, Millennium Force is a must-ride.
Tower of Terror II
Tower of Terror
Location: Dreamworld, Queensland, Australia
Height: 377ft (115m)
Drop: 328ft (100m)
Length: 1,235ft (376m)
Max speed: 100mph (160km/h)
Arguments abound as to whether this is really a roller coaster, but everyone agrees it’s flat-out scary. It rips up the track at 100 mph, pulls 4.5 Gs at a 90 degree angle and speeds back down the same track. It’s also the southern hemisphere’s fastest and tallest ride.
Location: Hershey Park
Height: 121 feet
Drop: 115 feet
Length: 2,700 feet
Max speed: 58 mph
Duration: 85 seconds
Fahrenheit makes the list because of its one-of-a-kind 97 degree negative drop. The drop is so extreme, riders have the frightening sensation of falling out of the cars. The ride also has a 107-foot inverted loop, 2 inverted corkscrew rolls, a cobra and an airborne inverted S-roll. Add pulling 4.5 Gs in places, 2 airtime hills and two high-speed banked curves and this roller coaster gives riders 85-seconds of heart-stopping thrills.
Designers continue to push the envelope for roller coaster engineering, as well as pushing the human mind and body to extremes with g-forces, negative drops, back-to-back turns and rolls, and cars that give all riders unobstructed views of what awaits them. Thrill seekers love these scary roller coasters, and the many others that consistently thrill riders year after year.
You Might Also Enjoy These Great Rides and Parks
- Best Movie-Themed Rides
What do movies and amusement rides have in common? Nothing much unless the ride is modeled after the movie (or vice versa in the case of Pirates of the Caribbean). A great movie-themed ride is made up first...
- A Guide to Six Flags Water Parks
In 1961, Six Flags opened its first amusement park, Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington, Texas. This first park included a Native American village, a gondola ride, a railroad and Skull Island – a...
- Best Amusement Parks for Kids
Kids and amusement parks go hand-in-hand like ice cream and summer days. From the first great Americana parks like Coney Island to today’s amusement resorts, the great family vacation includes an amusement...
How much do you love roller coasters?
© 2010 Cristina Vanthul