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Link - Article by Collins Paris and Avi Abrams

Bar none, the weirdest theme park right now may be your own work cubicle...

Well, you might still remember the "World Craziest Roller Coasters" article that was on DRB some time ago, and with the recent economic meltdown, a visit to a theme park may not be of utmost importance (even almighty Disney is laying off park staff left and right...) However, remembering the good old times, and with hope for a better future for theme parks - here is a rundown of the most bizarre ones...

Is it really your fault that you're not amused any more?

"An amusement park on steroids, growing beyond all control, feeding on an unamused and increasingly terrified public. Increasing in complexity by the hour until it has developed a twisted kind of intelligence..." - (source)

(Busy water park at Hershey's. Photo by Stephen R. Mingle)

Don't get me wrong, if a real "Jurassic Park" came into existence, I’d be the first to line up. However, there are some theme parks today that seem to have forsaken a simple fun factor and are trying very hard to get visitors... trying too hard, we might say:

(some ideas, provided by Photoshop masters at Worth1000


1. Willy Wonka is outranked by "Hershey Park", Hershey, PA

Giant huggable candies wander freely in that real world chocolate fantasy... as kids marvel at the hot steamy kisses popping up here and there:

(photos courtesy of Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Company)

Sure, you can still find Harmony at this park, but it turns out to be a cow:

(image credit: Noel)


2. Diggerland vs. Bulldozer Carnage Fantasies

This theme park looks like it’s constantly under construction. A fantasy for almost every young boy (and some adults), as they can play in a larger-than-life sandbox with larger-than-life toys. Images of rambunctious eleven-year-olds at the helm of a 40-ton dump truck immediately come to mind, and YouTube videos of bulldozers spreading destruction everywhere - but the reality seems to be quite a lot tamer:

(images via 1, Dean Thorpe)

You can drive a police vehicle there, host a corporate event (some heavy bonding there), and even rent it for stag parties... let your imagination run wild, but we're not going to elaborate.

(images via Dean Thorpe)

Diggerland is purportedly going to expand this year, building a "Reddit-Land" addition, smaller but significantly more intense.


3. Dubailand: twice the size of Walt Disney World in Florida.

Dubailand is currently in development stages (which threatens to become a permanent condition with recent Dubai economic woes), but if completed, it will be a giant theme park 3-billion (yes with a b) square foot complex.

(image via)

The Great Dubai Wheel will be one of the biggest in the world (on the right is Dubai SnowDome):

On a Ferris Wheel - to the Stars!

Actually, Dubai ferris wheel is slated to be the second highest. The highest ferris wheel in the world will be a 200-meter structure in North Bud, Shanghai, China. Note, that it's not really a wheel - the pods are climbing up and down a strange-looking arc, not dissimilar to Star Trek logo - a coincidence?

(image via)

Back to Dubai, not a small part of Dubailand will be a futuristic City of Arabia, complete with dinosaurs, monorail transport - all on Dubai patented steroids, of course:

The gateway to City of Arabia is the super-mall (of course) and biggest in the world (of course), threatened by a flock of dinosaurs:

Built, or not built, enjoy another view of a mirage in a desert (bottom image is a four arena Sports City):

(images via)


4. Dickens World, UK

The creators of Dickens World in Kent, England, promise a "dark, smoky, moody London, full of smells and mist". Steampunkers of the world, unite! Modern economy, though, may prove darker, smokier and moodier than anything these guys planned for...

(images via)

Charles Dickens drab portrayals of the United Kingdom during the industrial revolution come to life at Dickensworld, resembling a Tim Burton movie set. Now the whole family can pay to be bothered by grifters, hussies, walkabouts and other choreographed nuisances.

Animatronic "ghosts" from A Christmas Carol, a boat ride featuring a trip to the depths of a London sewer... exccciting!... A Victorian School complete with nasty schoolmaster is also among attractions (Harry Potter Theme Park - soon to open in Orlando - may have nice competition overseas)


5. Mukluk Land, Alaska

Hardly Alaska’s most unique destination, Mukluk Land nevertheless features exciting attractions like skee ball, mini-golf and large Alaskan cabbage.

(images via 1, )

Mukluk Land’s hit attraction is the world largest Mukluk, suspended between trees and adorned with white balls. There are also a few rusting snowmobiles - and a red wonder vehicle, of unknown origin:

(image via)


6. "Fantazy Land" is not abandoned, although it should be

Situated in Alexandria, Egypt, Fantazy Land is plain dangerous to anybody who enters there. Adrenaline junkies should draw insurance before checking out these rides - rusted, partly demolished, and yet still in operation (entry fee is 1.50 pounds for locals, and 30 pounds for foreign tourists, take note)

(images via)

See a lot more harrowing photos on this page.


7. Cheezy and proud of it - "Pedro Land" in Dillon, South Carolina

(images via 1, 2)

Social ignorance runs strong at Pedro Land, where you’re in for a day of stereotypes, generalities and flamingos. Play a round of mini-golf at "The Golf of Mexico" and ride a glass elevator up the Sombrero Tower.

(images via)

Yes, get a load of reality: an ugly "Reality Ride"! -

(image credit: Coaster Image)

The park also features corniest billboard ads ever:

(images via)


8. Limestone Heritage, Malta

Limestone Heritage is a theme park dedicated to - you guessed it - limestone! Located in on the Island of Malta, this destination teaches children and adults the vast importance of this stone with wax figures and interesing historic vehicles on display:

(images via 1, 2, 3)


9. Harry Potter franchise is running out of sequels. Time to build a theme park.

Coming in 2010, a billion dollar theme park will open within Universal Studios in Florida. Now readers and movie-goers of the Harry Potter mega-seller can leave Muggles behind and go explore Hogwarts for themselves. After a relaxing day of spending boatloads of money (conjuring them out of thin air, surely), enjoy a “Harry Burger” or have a glass of mead.

(image via)

I like the tag line of this experience. "Let out your inner wizard!" Amen to that - he was peeking out from time to time, but now he can be properly unleashed in Orlando.

(image via)

Also Read:
World's Wildest Roller Coasters
Abandoned Amusement Parks

Vagabond Bible is an online travel webzine that was founded by three backpackers who are currently based out of Chicago. It features plenty of useful information for the seasoned or novice backpackers.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very cool post!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

That girl in the first picture for "construction land" looks like she's having the time of her life.

Blogger Ian said...

I can't believe it. You missed the best one - Loveland - the sex theme park on Jeju-do in South Korea.

Anonymous justrobby said...

interesting list of theme parks. I wil be checking out Disney world in a few months, hope its as good as people say it is.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

i go to uni in kent, which is located about 3 miles from their largest site, in addition that site is also right next to one of kents largest clubs and i think its definatly time for some night-time drunken exploring

Anonymous Anonymous said...

it was a surprise to find the limestone heritage on this site since its not a theme park but an open air museum depicting the soft stone building traditions of Malta (i guess you have realised that im maltese! :) ) one though can try his or her hand at stone carving once you are at it.. :)

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pedro's south of the border is truly one of the saddest excuses for a theme park you could see. The ONLY reason to stop there is for fireworks, or to gas up your car... If you drive to NC on I-95 you cant miss it, its literally on the border between SC and NC

Anonymous Michi said...

The big chocolate character looks weird...

Anonymous Harold Fowler said...

Wow, that airplane propeller ride looks like fun!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

You forgot Disney's California Adventure. A theme park with such a bad theme and so poorly executed, that it is now being remodeled and expanded at the price tag of $1 billion.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wall, SD would fit on this list...

Anonymous danna said...

i go to uni in kent, which is located about 3 miles from their largest site, in addition that site is also right next to one of kents largest clubs and i think its definatly time for some night-time drunken exploring

Anonymous Noelle Lorraine said...

Hmm...House on the Rock should be here!
It's the most amazing!!!

Anonymous Dean Thorpe said...

Great page, some really funny places on there, I found to page while seeing who links to me. Two of the Diggerland pics are mine. BTW The big police 4x4 is not for everybody to drive, I think it was for only under 16's! My 10 year old daughter was driving in that pic!!!!

Blogger Avi Abrams said...

Thank you Dean, good pics and info!

Anonymous Sebastian said...

Some of the pictures with the big chocolate look a bit strange, like it came from a Willy Wonka film...scary..But great pictures though...Sebastian-

Anonymous Galvin said...

Its really amazing picture quality. Its shows the True Replica of the Thorpe Park because all the Picture are displayed from the Thorpe Parks. One of my friend suggest that more information about Thorpe Parks is http://www.enjoythemeparks.com/thorpe_park.php. I think it is best site according to my opinion....


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