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Cactus_Matt

Best Australian Theme Park And When It Was The Best

6 posts in this topic

Nostalgia about the past has been a big thing pretty much always and the theme park industry is certainly no different, especially in Australia where seemingly our parks either go from world class to pale imitations in the space of a few years (Dreamworld), high class themed experiences to bare-bones thrill ride filled replacements (Movie World) or in some cases thoroughly competent theme park experiences to absolute non-existence (Wonderland Sydney). Regardless of what you feel or don't feel about parks, past or present everyone has their memory of what constitutes the ~BEST~ Australian theme park experience and more importantly when it was at its best. So post below what theme park and what era/year constituted the pinnacle of the Australian theme park industry.

For me its pretty much just one park that occupies my nostalgic mind and that is:

DREAMWORLD circa. 2004~
I think I mentioned in a previous thread that Dreamworld 2006 was my favourite iteration of the park but upon closer reflection it was probably the park circa 2004 that was my preferred incarnation. Not only did it have a majority of its major thrill rides in operation but it had nostalgic classics such as Blue Lagoon waterpark and the Skylink Chairlift still open which might seem like minor things in the grand scheme of things but honestly I can't imagine a better ~complete~ Dreamworld experience without the aforementioned. Plus the park still had such classics as the Paddle Steamer, Stingray, Mine Ride and Avalanche still running.

That said I must give an honourable mention to Movie World back when Arkham Asylum was fully themed to Lethal Weapon (seriously I don't think an Australian coaster was ever themed as completely well as Lethal Weapon was what with the whole Chinatown aesthetic, I don't care how annoying it was to watch the mini-movie every time I still miss it). Plus Loony Tunes River Ride was basically a Disneyland style ride done a local budget and its hard to beat, I hope we get a ride of its ilk in the future but I'm not holding my breath.

Also another honourable mention goes to Wonderland Sydney  circa 2000ish~ which while never my favourite theme park (mostly because it wasn't local as I spent my childhood living on the Gold Coast) it always felt special going to Wonderland, Wooden Roller Coasters and unique flat rides FTW!

And that was my somewhat needlessly long answer to the question: What's The Best Australian Theme Park And When Was It The Best?

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Yeah, i've got a soft spot for Wonderland (what rock were you under if you didn't know?) and in it's earlier days, when the Yanks still had a lot of input into the park, it was a wonderful THEME park.

But if I had to pick the 'best' "theme" park, it'd be the earlier days of Movie World. PASS, LTRR, Einstein - maybe around 92-94ish - yes, before Lethal and Wild West.

yes folks, I did just rate MW at its best over Wonderland. I guess working for the park, and seeing its later years up close probably removed some of the polish of my memories - plus the better time for Wonderland I was younger and probably don't remember so well.

Both places were beyond magical back in the day, and the ability to suspend disbelief and immerse yourself into the worlds they created were wonderful.

Sadly the idea these days is to plonk a massive coaster wherever it will fit - and its probably a better strategy than the 'magic' of yesteryear, as we've long discussed on here before.

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Here’s my two movie world early 2000s you still had rides like Batman adventure, ltrr, wwf and lethal weapon all in the same park with the other great attractions and seaworld during the late 90s was when I think they got there peak they had so many rides compared to today with rides like Bermuda Triangle, sea viper, Vikings revenge and so many more

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5 hours ago, Smol bean said:

movie world early 2000s

Were you even alive then? 

Mid 90s to around 2001 Wonderland will always be the pinnacle for me as it was my formative years as a theme park enthusiast. I also spent most weekends and school holidays there, and the memories will stick with me forever. 

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