Amusement parks are amazing examples of the art of crowd control. Theme park designers spend years planning them and then analyzing how people flow through spaces and use attractions, aiming to get the maximum number of people through the most efficient spaces.
While some parks take advantage of using a small space to the fullest, others start big and stay there. Here are the four biggest amusement parks in the world.
This theme park outside of Staffordshire, England, has a footprint of 1.5 square miles.
Alton Towers is the oldest attraction on the list. It has been used as a public place since 1860. It first received the name Alton Towers in 1924 when it was redesigned to be a tourist attraction. By the 1950s a fairground had been built, and rides such as a chairlift had been added by the 1970s. Starting in 1973 the park began to take its modern shape as rollercoaster and other amusement park staples were added.
Today the park has 10 major rollercoasters, including the world-famous Nemesis, alongside many other flat rides and other attractions such as a haunted house and much more.
Beto Carrero World
The largest theme park in South America and the third largest in the world, Beto Carrero World is located in Penha, Brazil. Named after and conceptualized by the Brazilian entertainer and entrepreneur Beto Carrero, the park was first opened to the public in 1991.
The park is split in seven distinct sections, each of which features its own unique attractions, rides, and roller coasters. The park has further plans to develop attractions based on characters from Universal Studios and DreamWorks, such as “Shrek” and “Kung Fu Panda.”
Chimelong Ocean Kingdom
The newest park on the list is Chimelong Ocean Kingdom, which is in the city of Zhuhai in the People’s Republic of China. Construction began in 2010, and the park was completed in 2014 at the cost of 1.4 billion dollars.
The central feature of the park is the aquarium, and it is, in fact, home to the largest aquarium in the world according to the “Guinness Book of World Records.” The aquarium is laid out with eight different sections, each of which represents a different portion of the ocean, such as the Amazon or Polar regions. There are also features such as rides and roller coasters available for you to enjoy.
In addition, there are multiple animal demonstrations that you can attend, such as a dolphin show and a sea lion show.
Disneyland Paris is the largest amusement park in the world and covers more than eight square miles. Contained in that space are two separate theme parks, Disneyland Park and Walt Studio Park, seven roller coasters, fifteen hotels, a mall, an outlet center, an entire high-speed rail system, and a golf course.
The first attractions opened at Disneyland Paris in 1992 after years of competition between sites in France and Spain and almost five years of construction. The park was a focal point of controversy, with pushback from the French public over constructing an American icon on French soil and poor attendance in its early years.
However, Disney made good on its investment and continually improved the park. By 2000, the park was posting profits and adding more attractions every year. There are now plans to add attractions based on modern Disney hits such as “Frozen,” “Star Wars”, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
If you want to see what some of the best theme park designers in the world can do with a lot of space, visit one of these great parks and get ready to explore.