Image from Cedar Point
Maybe you have never heard the term “giga coaster,” but you most likely have heard the names of a few of these famous amusement park rides. These special coasters, of which there are only six operational in the world, are truly built to thrill. A “giga coaster” is a type of roller coaster that must be between 300 and 399 feet tall. These coasters are built specifically to maximize speed, height, and airtime. Giga coasters must also feature a closed-circuit track, meaning the trains end at the same place they began.
Cedar Point Amusement Park made history in 2000 when it unveiled Millennium Force, the world’s first giga coaster. Millennium Force calls Cedar Point Amusement Park in Sandusky, Ohio home. This ferocious steel coaster overlooks Lake Erie and was the first roller coaster to feature a magnetic braking system.
PRICING TO RIDE A GIGA COASTER
Pricing is based on the cost of admission to the parks in which these coasters reside; typically, the price of a daily admission ticket grants the rider unlimited ride access for the day. Expect to pay about $40 – $60 for one-day admission. Deals on multi-day tickets are common.
HOW IT COMPARES
We picked a few similar giga coasters to see how they compare to Millennium Force.
The Millennium Force is 6,595 ft long.
The world’s first ever giga coaster boasts a drop of 300 ft.
The Millenium forces reaches 93 mph.
At just 2:20 minutes, riders may find themselves wishing the fun lasted a bit longer.
STEEL DRAGON 2000
Steel Dragon 2000 is located in Nagashima Spa Land Amusement Park in Mie prefecture, Japan. It is the world’s second giga coaster, having opened just after Millennium Force in 2000. Since Japan is prone to earthquakes, the Steel Dragon 2000 was built with significantly more steel reinforcements than a typical coaster.
The Steel Dragon 2000 is a staggering 8,133.2 ft long.
This giga coaster drops riders 306.8 ft.
Steel Dragon 2000 reaches 95.0 mph.
Steel Dragon lasts 4:00 full minutes: plenty of time to enjoy the ride.
Red Force, located at the resort PortAventura World in Salou, Tarragona, Catalonia, Spain, is the tallest giga coaster in Europe. It is also the fastest coaster in Europe, earning it its spot in the resort’s “Ferrari Land.” Though it offers a relatively short ride, the lightning-fast Red Force is a must-ride for thrill seekers.
Red Force is 2,887.2 ft. long, which is quite a bit shorter than its fellow giga coasters.
Though the track is short, Red Force still manages to deliver a huge 367.3 ft. drop.
The fastest giga coaster in Europe reaches a blistering 111.8 mph.
This ride lasts only 39 seconds.
At over one mile in length, Fury 325 is North America’s longest steel coaster. It is located in Carowinds Amusement Park in Charlotte, North Carolina. The coaster features a scream-worthy 81 degree drop.
The Fury 325 delivers a respectable 6,602.0 ft. of track.
The Fury 325 drops 320.0 ft.
This giga coaster reaches a top speed of 95.0 mph.
At 3 minutes in duration, the Fury 325 is a relatively long-lasting ride.
Though it has been surpassed as the tallest and fastest giga coaster, Millennium Force will always hold its acclaimed spot as the world’s first ever giga coaster and is therefore definitely worth a visit. It boasts some impressive specs, and its bird’s-eye view of Lake Erie cannot be beat. For any roller coaster enthusiast, Millennium Force – along with the other coasters featured here – should be at the top of the list.