Best Walt Disney World Rides for Adventure-Seekers
Walt Disney World offers something for just about everyone-from the tiniest tots to doting grandparents. Thrill seekers, as well, will not be disappointed. Disney has an ever-growing collection of adventure rides at its Walt Disney World theme parks. Here are some of the best rides for adventure seekers.
This high-speed roller coaster at Disney's Animal Kingdom is a roaring adventure to the "Roof of the World" on a search for the ominous Yeti. Set in a replica of the world's tallest mountain, the ride starts off easy with a steep climb, and then twists and drops across the treacherous terrain of the Forbidden Mountain. From the top, you'll catch panoramic views of Animal Kingdom before plunging back into the darkness. This ride is best for big kids and adults. If you have back problems or are pregnant, you might want to pass on this one.
Rock 'n' Roller Coaster
Fast action and rock 'n' roll-the two are a powerful combination on this Hollywood Studios roller coaster. One of the best parts of the ride is the hard-driving soundtrack created by the rock group Aerosmith, along with a killer sound system that includes 125 speakers and 24 subwoofers in each super-stretch limo car. The ride accelerates with the force of a supersonic F-14, going from a dead stop to top speed on the 3,400-foot track. Rock 'n' Roller Coaster offers breakneck turns and twists, swooping into three inversions. There is a 48 inch height requirement.
This attraction at Epcot involves cars and speed, so it's a no-brainer for adventure seekers. One of Disney's longest rides, the adventure begins when you board a 6-seat test car. The car is put through some of the rigorous quality checks that General Motors performs on their prototypes. The 5-minute experience includes 50-degree banked curves, hair-pin corners and lots of action. The car also undergoes some environment testing, going through temperatures that are 100 degrees apart. There is a 40" height requirement, and kids under 7 must ride with an adult.
This long-time ride at Magic Kingdom was refurbished and brought back into action in 2010. The high-speed roller coaster launches riders into outer space past stars and galaxies. The excitement starts with a slow climb up a 180-foot peak and then zips down into the darkness, where you never know what to expect. Turns are fast and furious. Space Mountain has two tracks, but both rides are almost the same. Be sure to secure any loose items or you might not see them again. And if you've just eaten, wait a few minutes before riding this attraction.
The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
This scary ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios is set in the abandoned Hollywood Tower Hotel. Back in 1939, the story goes, lightning struck the hotel, and several guests disappeared. Guests are invited to visit the cobweb-infested property and experience it for themselves. Board the elevator, and you'll encounter a most unusual ride when the contraption goes out of control. Each sequence of ups and downs opens the elevator door to reveal some surprising scenes. Apparitions appear then vaporize into a star-filled sky from the fifth dimension. The plunges are fast and unexpected, but the landings are smooth. Though your heart will be pumping, you're sure to want to do the whole thing all over again. Skip this one if you are pregnant or have any neck or back problems.
This ride is a great option when the temperature is rising and the Florida humidity has you dragging. The popular water ride takes visitors via log boat along on the adventures of Bre'er Rabbit. The adventure culminates with a dramatic plunge down a mountain peak on one of the steepest flumes in the world (52-feet down at a 45-degree angle). You're bound to get a little wet on this one, which can sometimes be a good thing in the Florida heat. This ride is busy all day, but lines are shorter in the early morning or evening.
Be forewarned: If you have any problems with motion sickness, you may want to forego this attraction. The motion simulator ride at Epcot mimics what an astronaut might go through on a journey to Mars. The ride is available in two versions-orange for extreme and green for a less-intense experience. Before take-off, you're invited to train for the mission aboard the X-2 deep Space Shuttle. Each team-member is given a special assignment during the mission. From there, you'll head inside the space capsule. Take-off is a gut-wrenching rush, followed by a simulated rocket around the moon and landing on Mars. This one is not for the weak of stomach.
Photo: Walt Disney World