Opened in 1974 and located in Jackson, New Jersey, between New York and Philadelphia (about an hour drive from either city), Six Flags Great Adventure is the world’s largest theme park with 510 acres.    It boasts numerous rides and attractions, including thirteen roller coasters, the Hurricane Harbor water park and a newly opened (as of May, 2013) Safari Off Road Adventure.    The fact that one of these coasters won the 2012 Golden Ticket award for #1 wooden coaster and another won the 2012 Golden Ticket award for #3 steel coaster is something for the park to boast about.   There aren’t many theme parks that have both a wooden and steel coaster good enough to be in the top ten; with El Toro and Nitro, Six Flags Great Adventure offers two of  the best thrill rides to be had anywhere.  Those seeking an extra rush of adrenaline can be launched 456 feet in the air at 128mph on Kingda Ka.  The Sky Screamer, a flying swing ride, affords a spectacular view of the park 243 feet above the ground and the Dare Devil Dive, an upcharge attraction, allows park guests to experience a 15-storey freefall at 60mph.  The park also has plenty of rides suitable for families and children.

Historically, the park featured a drive-through safari.  With the institution of the Safari Off Road Adventure, park guests can travel through the animal preserve in a safari style vehicle with a knowledgeable tour guide.

Throughout the operating season, Six Flags Great Adventure features concerts and animal shows.  It also features a variety of restaurants and food concessions which cater to almost every taste.   Costumed characters are in abundance.  One of the add-ons available at this park is the Flash Pass, an electronic device that enables park guests to reserve rides without having to wait in line.  At the lowest level, the Flash Pass  involves a wait equal to the actual wait time of a ride, the only advantage being that this makes it possible to be off doing something else while waiting for the device to go off and flash “You can ride now” on the screen.  At the highest level, platinum (rather pricey at $115 as of 2013), the wait time is cut by 90% and consecutive riding is permitted.  Season pass holders get a $10 discount on the Flash Pass. Although more and more parks now offer Fast Lane access to rides for an upcharge, the Flash Pass system is unique to Six Flags parks.

One thing this park, unlike most, does not offer is discounted admission for seniors.  Another thing it doesn’t offer is storage bins for loose articles in the loading stations.  However, it does periodically run promotions that enable visitors to obtain tickets inexpensively.   A recent promotion offered one-day admission tickets for $39.99 with three-day advance purchase online.

With nice landscaping, easy accessibility from I-195 and a stellar ride lineup, Six Flags Great Adventure is a theme park worth visiting.   5 out of 5 stars.  For more information about the park, visit www.sixflags.com/greatadventure

IMG_0654.JPG