“The sweetest place on earth,” Hersheypark is located in – where else? – Hershey, PA, about two hours northwest of Philadelphia by automobile. This theme park is beautifully laid out, to the point of being picturesque. It features an outstanding lineup of roller coasters, most notable of which are the tall launch coaster Storm Runner, the somewhat daunting Fahrenheit with its vertical lift hill, the double-tracked dueling coaster Lightning Racer and the breathtaking Skyrush (the park’s newest coaster, opened in May of 2012). There are more than 65 rides and attractions, including eleven coasters, a cable car sky ride and a monorail. The park has an abundance of family and kiddie rides along with a boardwalk water park.
Hersheypark offers live entertainment, including concerts on Sundays from May to the end of September. It also offers multiple dining options, from full service dining to food concessions tempting park guests with anything from pizza to falafel to pierogies. As of 2013, park guests could buy a meal ticket which includes a 32-ounce souvenir cup with 99-cent refills for $13.75. Kosher, gluten-free, dairy free and vegetarian meals are among the many choices. On the subject of comestibles, it’s worth mentioning that the legendary Chocolate World is located just outside the theme park. Many of Hershey’s chocolate products and other confections are available for purchase within the park itself. Hershey’s fudge is especially delectable.
Fast Track access to rides is available for an upcharge. This includes 9 coasters and Skyrush is not one of them. The downside of the program is that on a number of rides, certain rows are reserved for Fast Track and these rows often end up empty, so that other park guests end up waiting longer to get on.
This is a popular park and wait times for some rides is significantly longer than for others. Those who want to ride Fahrenheit are in for a longer wait because the trains accommodate only 12 riders whereas the trains on Skyrush accommodate 32.
The staff at Hersheypark is extremely courteous and helpful, one more reason why a visit to the park will usually prove to be a fun and rewarding experience. 5 out of 5 stars. For more information about rides at Hersheypark, visit www.hersheypark.com/ Photo courtesy of www.coasterimage.com/