To have a successful amusement or theme park (we’ve included both in this article), you need a few important ingredients. First, there obviously needs to be a theme of some sort. Most parks don’t have a problem with this aspect, since the theme can be as simple as “rides.” Second, you need attractions. This doesn’t necessarily mean the park has to include the aforementioned rides, as attractions can also be in the form of shows, games, or anything else entertaining. That last word is key. When a park loses or lacks entertainment value, things go wrong. Guests are disappointed, attendance drops, if the park manages to stay open it can seem a little grim.
It’s important for parks — like almost any business — to adapt and improve over time, too. The amusement park that was fun 50 years ago probably doesn’t appeal to the youth nowadays, and former fans are tired of the same old experiences on each visit — especially when the price continues to increase.
Finally, there needs to be an acceptable amount of safety. Even a park that is seen as fun can have its success derailed (no pun intended) if there are too many accidents or the guests, employees, or entertainers (animals included) are at risk.
We used various online reviews and ratings to assist with the evaluation of these parks. It’s worth noting that every single location on this list has received at least a few truly glowing reviews. It goes to show that some people can find fun anywhere, and things usually turn out best for people who make the best of the way things turn out. Heck, visiting a worn, outdated, cheesy theme park might even be some folks' idea of a really good time. However, when it comes to running with the big dogs of the amusement and theme park industry, the following seven locations just can’t keep up.