Roller coaster fans savor every second of the ride, but there’s something really special about that big drop.
Advances in technology, design and engineering over the decades have allowed amusement parks to offer ever taller, faster and steeper coasters (with loops and other kinds of inversions as well). These big hills are getting ever more thrilling and frightening — and that’s really the point, isn’t it?
People will travel hundreds and thousands of miles to get their coaster fix, so you need to select a ride that delivers.
So what makes for a memorable, scary drop on a coaster?
“For me, it’s the height and steepness of the drops,” says roller coaster fan Patrick Lindich, who has had his own YouTube channel, CoasterFanatics, since 2016. “Standing on ground level looking up at those giant lift hills almost touching the clouds — what’s more impressive than that?
“The surrounding environment around the drop has a lot to do with it as well. Anything from tall trees to a lake or river around the drop. It all adds to the experience and makes the drop even more thrilling and scary.”
Just in time for National Roller Coaster Day (Friday, August 16) in the US, here are five roller coasters around the world with some of the scariest, most impressive drops you’ll find. Lindich also makes some suggestions of other thrilling coasters that didn’t make the Top 5 but still provide excitement overload.
Some of these coasters are fairly new arrivals to the scene while others are older favorites that have stood the test of time: