Amusement parks, theme parks, ride photography uk theme park blog, alton towers, blackpool pleasure beach, behind the scenes tours, roller coasters, trip reports.

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Journey to Atlantis, Sea World Orlando.

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I have been requested by a few visitors to include some pictures from my trip to Florida last year and if im honest Ive been a bit lazy posting some of these, one request is for Journey to Atlantis at Sea World.  I didn’t get to ride this due to an ear infection picked up earlier in the week on some water other water rides. For anyone planning on visiting Seaworld in the near future from the reports Ive had its not a ride to be missed.

Originally installed in 1998 by Mack rides Journey of Atlantis is clased as a water coaster or as some enthusiasts title liquid coaster.

Manta at Sea world. testing

I have been sent the following video by the PR company for Sea world. From what you can see it looks like its going to be a hit with the park visitors.

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Manta is 3359ft in Length, with a height of 140ft with 4 inversions. Cant wait until September when I get to ride it 😉

Millennium force at Cedar Point

DSC03442Standing at over 300ft Millennium force dominates the skyline at Cedar Point in Ohio. The one time world record breaking coaster standing at an impressive 310ft has riders gasping in awe as they stare up at the huge skybound lift hill whilst waiting in the queue to ride.

I was fortunate enough to ride Millennium force a number of times during a visit to Cedar Point in 2007, we counted about 6 or 7 rides during our visit. After those experiences Millennium force dropped straight in at the number one spot as my favourite coaster.

Fountains at Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Picture 018After hearing lots of stories coming out of pleasure beach for the last couple of weeks about the new dancing fountains it was a pleasure to finally witness them for myself on this years open day February 14th 2009.

The fountains cost an estimated 80 thousand pounds and from what ive seen they are worth every penny and make what was a empty space a great meeting place for people and are an ideal play area for children as they run and duck under the fountains much to the annoyance of parents watching.

From what I could gather the fountains operate about every fifteen minutes to various pieces of music, each show lasts for about six and half minutes. It will be nice in the summer to sit down and have a drink and watch these. Well done Pleasure Beach.

Hydro Oakwood Theme Park

DSCN2396Hydro at Oakwood is a ride thats had its fair share of media coverage since opening for the 2002 season. It’s a ride built by Intamin and is over 100ft tall with a almost vertical drop into a pool of millions of gallons of water, so much so that the first drop can generate a wave nearly 50 ft in height.

Dare you stand on the bridge running over the track when the ride train, they don’t call it a soak zone for nothing. Hydro gets you that wet Oakwood even went to the length of building a changing room just for Hydro customers to get dried out and a change of clothes.

Drayton Manor, Thomas land for Christmas

DSC04905We normally only visit one theme park around christmas time and that’s Gullivers world in Warrington, but for a change this year we considered visiting Drayton Manor when they announced Thomas Land would be open in the run up to Christmas.

With a promise of snow and entertainment it was too hard to resist, plus my 7 year old daughter is a comeplete Thomas addict.

Pleasure Beach Express, Pleasure Beach Blackpool

IMG_1258Pleasure beach express has been operating at the park since 1933. Its made up of a collection of three 21 inch gauge trains and a number of carriages.

Nemesis at Alton Towers – Behind the scenes

IMG_5124opened in 1994 Nemesis at a cost of ten million pounds quickly became a favourite coaster amongst enthusiasts and the public alike.

I dont count coasters or number of rides on a particular coaster but if i were to look back over the years to 1994 my count would be well into the hundreds if not more.

A trip to Alton towers just isnt the same without a ride on Nemesis for me and many other enthusiasts. I hope you enjoy the photographs.

American Adventure Theme Park in 1990

n571531807_1385791_4886l would like to thank a freind of mine Gordon Clinton-Lindop for allowing me to use these photographs of American adventure.

They were taken during the 1990 season and I know from comments to the site and emails its a park allot of people have missed.

I only got to visit the park once during its operation and that was the year before it closed.

The Vekoma boomerang coaster featured on the left  hand side was once classed as Britains best coaster after it opened in 1989.

For anyone that have never been to American Adventure theme park, it was built on the site of an old open cast coal mine and centered around a huge lake in the middle of the park. Some people believe the demise of the park came in 2005 when they re-themed the park as a family park and got rid of the white knuckle rides  including the Vekoma Boomerang coaster they named “the missile’.

Backlot Tour, Disney Studios, Disneyland Paris

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This is a set of photographs taken during July 2008 of the Back lot tour ride at Disneyland Paris.

The ride is similar to the one at Orlando but the tour doesnt start on foot, each tour is done on the trams which you stay on until you return back to the loading bay.

Each trip lasts about 15 minutes and you have plenty of time for taking pictures during this trip.

I actually preferred this ride to the one we had done previously in Orlando back in Febraury, apart from been allot newer than the Orlando Back lot tour the duration was just right and didnt involve the pre show antics which are featured in Florida.

2008 Golden ticket awards winners

The Golden Ticket Awards are presented to the “Best of the Best” in
the amusement industry calculated from an international poll conducted
by Amusement Today. Surveys were sent to a database of experienced and
well-traveled amusement park fans around the world  in balanced geographical regions asking them to rate the “bests” in 25categories such as “amusement parks,” “roller coasters,” “shows,” “friendliest staff” and “water rides.” The 2008 winners are …

Mantis at Cedar Point

DSC03524Built in 1996, Mantis is one of the tallest and fastest stand-up scream machines in the world.

Built by Bolliger and Mabillard (B & M) Mantis is another unique ride experience at Cedar Point. Guests board stand up trains and fly down a 145-foot-tall first hill at a top speed of 60 mph.

This stand-up roller coaster turns riders upside down a total of four times, includes a 137-foot drop at a 52 degree angle.

Its a small world – Disneyland Paris


I visited Disneyland Paris in July 2008, we spent a total of 4 days on the 2 parks and 3 nights in the Santa fe hotel.

One of the many highlights for me of a trip to somewhere like Disney is the dark rides.

With attractions like It’s a small world and Pirates topping the list. This first set of photographs covers most of the small world ride, however some photographs and sets are missing due to the fact the ride is very dark in places and ISO 1600 on my camera is the best I have for low light.

Its a short ride and to me one of the great disney classics.

Ridemad forum now open

Hi, I have created a forum to add to the site today. I have had so many emails over the past few months about the site I havent been able to keep up so apologies to anyone if I havent responded. If anyone has any questions or feedback about the site then please register with the forum and ask away. If you still want to get in touch of the forum then just use the contact form on the main page. Thanks.

Link to the forums

The last tour – Southport Pleasureland Ghost Train

I was very fortunate to attend a behind the scenes tour of Southport Pleasureland the weekend before the park closed its gates for the final time.

I was in a group of about 50 members of Club Pleasure Beach and we got to ride Traumatizer (now relocated to Blackpool as Infusion) and the Cyclone wooden roller coaster (which was later demolished).

Also included in the tour was a Q&A session with one of the parks directors and a look into the workshops located behind the cyclone and finally a tour of the ghost train with the lights on.

These are the pictures taken at this event.

Behind the scenes – A closer look at Blackpools Monorail

One of the most relaxing ways to ever see a park is by taking a Monorail, the raised track can give a great view of the park and the various attractions on offer, as well as some parts of the park you wouldn’t see during a park visit like maintenance areas, offices and the in Blackpools case the Casino building.

The Blackpool Pleasure Beach Monorail is no different to this and the 10 minute journey around the park gives the visitor a great view of the world.

Pleasure Beach Blackpool bought the monorail in 1964 from the Lausanne expo in Switzerland and it was opened

Dreams come true parade, Magic Kingdom, Florida

I was fortunate to visit Disney in Florida back in February this year, and although i took a ton (literally) of photographs ive been stuck for time to post them.

Heres a selection taken of the dreams come true parade which was on mid afternoon in Magic Kingdom. For any Disney purists out there this isnt meant to be the full parade just a small selection of the photographs I had taken.

Dudley Do-Rights Ripsaw Falls, Islands of Adventure, Florida

Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw FallsÂŽ. Hop in your Log and Hang On! That villainous scoundrel Snidely Whiplash™ has made off with Nell Fenwick™! Will bumbling Dudley Do-Right™ save her in time? Will you stay dry when you plummet down Ripsaw Falls? Stay tuned for the watery conclusion of this side-splitting flume ride.

Taken from the Universal Islands of adventure website Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw falls is one of the most eloborate over the top log flume rides I have ever had the pleasure of riding, Based in the toon lagoon area of the park you cant miss this ride and the buzz of the crowds as they line up on the bridge to take photographs.

Top Thrill Dragster, Cedar Point Ohio

Top Thrill DragsterRequested by a few readers over the last 6 months, Top Thrill Dragster photographs taken during my trip in 2007, its almost a year now since I took the 23hr door to hotel room trip to Cedar Point. Amazing how time flies as you get older.

Top Thrill Dragster was introduced to Cedar Point in 2003. It was made by Intamin and has a height of 420ft, at one point it was the highest coaster in the world, only to be overtaken in 2005 by Kingda Ka at Six flags great adventure, New Jersey at 456ft.

The ride has a top speed of 120mph which is reached in a breathtaking 4 seconds.

For those that requested here’s some of my pictures taken during this trip. I hope you like them.

Behind the scenes – Skyride at Alton Towers

I was fortunate enough to get a behind the scenes tour of Alton Towers in July 2007, this is the final photo set from that trip the Skyride maintenance area. The tour was part of an organised trip arranged by Club Pleasure Beach.

The Skyride was only one of a number of behind the scenes tours that we did during this day, to see the other photographs and tours check out the Behind the scenes category.

The Skyride was installed in 1987 and was manufactured by Poma well known for moving people and engineered by Sir Robert McAlpine.