Cedar Point vs Great Adventure

Cedar Point (Sandusky, OH) vs Six Flags Great Adventure (Jackson, NJ)

Let’s just get right to the spoiler here: Cedar wins, hands down. As a person who absolutely adores GA, it kills me to admit that. However, Six Flags has nothing to be ashamed of here. CP is just unfair in how amazing it is. No amusement park could possibly top it. Sure, Six Flags could learn a thing or two from Cedar Point, but still… it’s like Great Adventure is Tony Gwynn and Cedar Point is Ted Williams.

I just came back from my first Cedar Point road trip with my girlfriend The Virgo, friend Crackerman, and his wife Siamese Dream (formerly unoriginally known as Crackerwoman), hitting Hershey Park (thumbs way up) on the way there and Dorney Park (big let down) on the way back. Upon returning to Queens, we all wanted to turn around and go back. If you are a roller coaster fan and have been toying with the idea of a trip to Sandusky: stop dreaming about it, just do it. Everything you’ve heard about it is true (including the bad–yes, the park layout is horribly frustrating, but you really don’t care in the end). The place is roller coaster heaven. Let’s get to the comparisons, shall we?

(AGAIN, these are by no means definitive arguments, just my own personal opinion)

Top Thrill Dragster vs Kingda Ka
The Dragster is more functional, has a faster moving line, and no shoulder harness. Ka is 36 feet higher and 8 mph faster, edging Dragster for tallest and fastest (456′/128 mph) on Planet Earth, and includes a 129-foot hill after the 418-foot drop for kicks. Do any of these factors make a difference? No. As The Virgo points out, once you break the 100 mph barrier your brain stops comprehending what’s happening. When riding these two, the only thing on your mind is “HOLYSHITHOLYSHITHOLYSHITHOLYSHITHOLYSHIT!” Edge: Draw

Millennium Force vs Nitro
Unfair to pair Nitro up against MF, you say? Maybe not. Each came out around the same time, and each boasts the second-tallest-and-fastest status in their respective parks. Their designs are similar at best, but close enough in my book. What this matchup really comes down to is speed vs air time. MF is a beauty, and at a cruising speed of 93 mph, it’s a joy to ride–but I’m sorry, it just doesn’t have any of the air time I like in a coaster, something Nitro has buckets of. In my book, MF is a 9, but Nitro is a 10 for mixing the amazing speed with solid air. Edge: Nitro

Maverick vs El Toro
If you haven’t ridden both of these rides, you’re probably screaming “you can’t compare a steel to a wooden!” Typically you’re right, but in this case you’re wrong. With the constant amazing speed and ridiculous twists and turns, these rides feel very similar. The difference is that Maverick does all the things El Toro would do if it weren’t restricted to wood standards. Maverick is just… there are few words. “I want to make love to this ride” might be some of them. “I want to tattoo this ride on my face” might be a few more. El Toro, I’m sorry. You were my all-time favorite roller coaster before my trip to Ohio, but now–Edge: Maverick

Raptor vs Batman
All the stats show that Raptor is the better of the 2 inverteds. However, all the stats in the world can’t measure up to the sentimentality I have towards Batman, nor can the stats live in a special place in my heart–where Batman currently resides. Edge: Batman

Wicked Twister vs Superman: Ultimate Flight
I know these 2 rides are nothing at all alike, but here’s why I paired them off: they are both unique to their parks, and have designs you don’t often find in a common amusement park. Besides all the obvious differences, there is one glaring disparity between the 2 rides: Superman looks much better than it rides, Twister rides much better than it looks. Edge: Wicked Twister

Mantis vs Medusa/Bizarro
Let me start off by saying I don’t approve of the Bizarro makeover to Medusa. You know what I approve of even less? Getting my balls squished and having my head battered around, like I did on Mantis. Edge: Medusa/Bizarro

Magnum XL-200 vs Great American Scream Machine
Each ride is celebrating it’s 20th birthday this year. One has aged amazingly well, and is essentially an early-Nitro. The other gets worse and worse, rougher and rougher, and seemingly slower and slower each season. Scream Machine, you were my first true coaster, and we had a long love affair–but these days, if word comes that you’re getting torn down, I sadly won’t shed a tear. Edge: Magnum XL-200

Gemini vs Rolling Thunder
Gemini feels like a race that happens to be a roller coaster. Rolling Thunder is a roller coaster that happens to be a race (bonus points for the “this thing is just going to collapse one day” thrill factor). Edge: Rolling Thunder

Disaster Transport vs Skull Mountain
After years of riding the horrific Skull Mountain when bored at GA, Disaster Transport was a delight. “That is how all in-the-dark rides should be!” I exclaimed after riding it. Don’t ask me why, but for whatever reason, I just freakin love DT. Edge: Disaster Transport

Cedar Creek Mine Ride vs Runaway Mine Train
While the CCMR was fun, the RMT is one of the rare roller coasters on this Earth that scare the shit out of me. It’s so small and so old, I’m pretty convinced I’ll either fall out of it or the train will fall off the tracks. It’s truly a thrill ride. Edge: Runaway Mine Train

Wildcat vs Dark Knight
Wildcat is almost a Wild Mouse-type ride, Dark Knight is secretly a Wild Mouse-type ride. Wildcat is simply more fun because you know it’s a POS coaster before riding it, so there are no expectations. Dark Knight opened with a lot of hype, making one believe there was a legit roller coaster somewhere in its ugly box of a building–and it makes you sit through a too-long movie beforehand. It’s very irritating. Edge: Wildcat


Let’s see then, after counting up the totals, we are dead even at 5-5-1…

…except Cedar Point also carries Mean Streak, Blue Streak, Corkscrew, and Iron Dragon (not to mention SkyHawk, MaxAir, and Power Tower). Give CP another 3 points (because riding ID and the Streaks is better than riding nothing), and GA one (because riding nothing is better than riding Corkscrew).

Surprised? You shouldn’t be. I already told you Cedar was winning at the get go, dummy. CP also wipes the floor with GA in terms of atmosphere, food, and location (not that Ohio is easy to get to for everyone, just that it’s much nicer to be on a peninsula with a beach than in middle-of-nowhere New Jersey). Extra points to CP for the new Starlight Experience at dusk, truly the perfect way to wind down from hours and hours of walking, waiting, and riding.

Bottom line: Great Adventure can be done in a day. Cedar Point can’t, nor should it be.


If I eventually make it out to Six Flags Magic Mountain (a.k.a. Walley World) outside of LA, I’ll have completed what is–in my estimation–the American Trifecta of Coaster Parks. I’ll then let everyone know how it stacks up against CP and GA. In the meantime…

The Top 5 Coasters that Ham City Kev has ridden in his life:
5. Superman: Ride of Steel (Six Flags America)
4. Milennium Force (Cedar Point)
3. Nitro (Six Flags Great Adventure)
2. El Toro (Six Flags Great Adventure)
1. Maverick (Cedar Point)

Full list here.
Youtube playlist here.

If you’ve read this far, that means you love roller coasters. Nice.

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7 Responses to “Cedar Point vs Great Adventure”

  1. [...] I said after I got back, if you’re a roller coaster fan and have toyed with planning a trip to The Roller Coaster [...]

  2. Gabe says:

    I’ve been to Cedar Point 4 times. I also Highly recommend it if you love roller coasters. Go during the off season during the week if possible. You’ll be able to stay on in some cases. The only other better “roller coaster” theme park I heard of is “Alton Towers” in London. Ha, yes England. I hear they’ve got the worlds tallest drop off which goes into a tunnel under a lake where you are in total darkness.

  3. Ham City Kev says:

    Hey Gabe, Alton Towers is actually 150 miles northwest of London, and Pleasure Beach (another great UK park) is about 100 miles further out than that. Thorpe Park is actually closest to London, about 15 miles away.

    Regardless, I cannot see how any of them could beat Cedar Point. There are a handful of parks that have the quantity but not the quality, there are plenty that have it the other way around, and of course there are a shitload that have neither. The only parks I know of that have both quantity and quality are Cedar Point, Great Adventure (NJ), Magic Mountain (CA), Great America (IL), and hell, I’ll even throw in Hershey Park (PA). I’ve still a few years away from visiting Magic Mountain and a few more from Great America, but I can tell you that I loved Hershey Park and visit Great Adventure about twice every year.

    Neither of them come close to CP.

  4. Very wonderful place!! I can’t believe that this place would exist in this world. Amazing!!

  5. vinay radhakrishnan says:

    the first thing i just want to point out is, the world’s fastest ride is at Abu Dhabi, UAE at the Ferrari World. I have been on it and nothing can beat that I am certain just for the sheer pleasure of it being Ferrari for a start. Next up this a great review and I am going to be to both these places in the next week or so and its nice to see this review. If I complete Cedar point and GA, well I would be happy for having been on all the amazing and number roller coasters in the world. Thanks again…Will write with my experience hopefully :)

  6. I enjoyed reading your articles. This is truly a great read for me. I have bookmarked it and I am looking forward to reading new articles.Keep up the good work!

  7. Jersey Brian says:

    I love 10 min from six flags GA. Just flew to L.A. With my daughter to Magic Mountain for two day, and are now standing in line for Maverick in CP this completing the “tri-fecta”! Magic Mountain was absolutely worth the schlep across country. Great scenery and some nasty coasters. I have always said EL Toro was the best coaster I have ever ridden. I don’t know that I would necessarily bump it from its top spot for Magic Mountains X2…but it’s close. Two COMPLETELY different coasters, but X2 gives you an experience that no other coaster on the planet does…and that’s worth something in my book. Full Throttle in L.A. also cracks my top 5….but so far all I have rode here at Cedar is Millenium Force which was a quality coaster…but can’t hold a candle to Nitro. Will report back after ripping through CP with my top 7!!!

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