With a statement like “The UK’s most thrilling theme park”, a day trip to Thorpe Park was not to be missed. Located 20 miles outside of central London in Chertsey, Surrey UK, catered to thrill seeking adults rather then cotton candy seeking babies. Thorpe Park is proudly boosting at least three “world’s first” claims: first 10 inversion roller-coaster, first horror movie themed roller coaster with worlds steepest freefall drop, and the worlds first and only backwards roller coaster in the dark.
We were prepared to put up with long lines and arrived with a set plan to focus on the big thrill coasters first and bypassing the smaller spin around in circles really fast rides. While walking up to our first choice “Colossus” we noticed you could pay extra to get “fast track” rides. Since the UK had already taken a huge bite out of our wallets we decided to not bother, we had the whole day so we will just make the best of it while in the lines.
Thorpe Park has been in its location since 1979, with the Colossus added in 2002. The line was a never ending left and rights through trees, tunnels, roller coaster tracks with the loud rattle of speed going by, water features, garbage cans, and hornets. The entire time you are enclosed by a picket fence filled of graffiti, gum chewing teens, and the most epic soundtrack music in the world, on repeat. It’s a trying experience but easy to push through with the thought of what is waiting at the end…
The estimated time of wait posted at the entrance was 1.5 hours, about halfway through the epic music abruptly stopped and a soft voice announces that there is a “essential clean up” required which will cause a delay. The ride will not operate again until the clean up is complete. During the wait everyone is talking about “that guy”, the one that had to puke on the ride… 30 minutes go by and finally that voice comes back and we start to move again. After waiting for 2.5 hours we finally got locked into the ride and lost all negative feelings against our wait, Colossus lived up to the epic music paired with it. Now with adrenaline pumping through our systems we were eager to find the next thrill seekers dream ride.
It was Saw: The Ride, again it stated an estimated 1.5 hours wait. This line was perfectly themed with barbed wire fencing, creepy music with the odd movie clip here and there, and rusted old contraptions that made your mind wonder the vicious ways it could be used to torture someone. Then we hear it again… the most dreaded words of the day… “Essential Clean Up at the Saw ride”. The sighs of disappointment moved across the line. We all wondered if it was the same guy as before…
Soon enough a cheeky British voice comes on the speakers and announces to all, “If you have just eaten KFC poppers, Pizza Hut, and drank an entire coke slushy please get out of the line.” A little time passes and the cheeky voice comes back again stating he wants to try an experiment to get us to complete an Mexican Wave, and if we don’t do it right we will all have to try and try again. The ride will not open until we complete it right.” He then lets us all know he can see us through the security camera and the girl at the beginning of the line in the green jacket is going to start. So, low and behold our line does the Mexican wave all through the barbed-wire maze, much to the cheeky’s voice surprise we even did it right the first time.
It took us about 3.5 hours to get onto “Saw: The Ride” due to the essential clean up. But, it was one of the best roller coasters we have been on to date. We figured there is only one guy willing to clean up others puke and well, he is a busy man. As for some reason the Brits just don’t have a stomach for rides, as this essential clean up process happen to us a total of THREE times while in the park. The last time was waiting for the X:/No Way Out ride, a ride we never got to experience as it was near the end of the day, so we managed our time better and left to go ride others.
So in conclusion, Thorpe Park is a thrill seekers dreamland with at least 11 Extreme ride to choose from with many smaller rides in between. It gets our 10/10 for the amount of rollercoaster’s and the quality of them. Arrive with good company to spend many hours in line with, go to the bathroom before you get into any line to wait over an hour, and PLEASE leave your weak stomach at home. If your time is precious, think about investing into a “fast track” for the most popular coasters as it will save you hours.