A friend of mine and I are going to hop the pond and hit up New York in June and follow it up with a road trip (flight trip?) to catch some of the parks. We're both hitting 30 this year and want to do a coaster trip like we did before we had responsibilities.
We're going to find our way to Great Adventure while in NYC and then somehow, get over to Sandusky for what is quite possibly a once in a lifetime trip to Cedar Point - then, I'd really like some practical advice in terms of what's possible, practical and advisable if we hired a car in Sandusky.
Getting off your lawn - many thanks as ever,
Is "hired a car" British for rent or get a cab? Sandusky is an hour west of Cleveland, so your best option is to fly there and rent a car. Are you looking for advice for other stuff to do in the area?
What Jeff said. Cleveland would be a better bet for a car rental. If you're talking Uber, there are Uber drivers in Sandusky (I checked once on a whim), but there's not much to do anywhere nearby unless you fancy shopping malls or chain restaurants.
Sandusky appears to have exactly one car rental place, an Enterprise.
Waldameer Park would be only a couple hours east of Sandusky in Erie, PA and well worth the trip for Ravine Flyer III alone, leave aside all the other rides and attractions the park has to offer.
Depending on how many days you'll be in Ohio and how far you're willing to drive, I'd suggest a few days in Pittsburgh for Kennywood and Idlewild, or drive south in Ohio for Kings Island.
Edit to add: if you're going to be in New Jersey, consider a visit to Morey's Piers. Great coasters, fun stuff and a cool art space right on the ocean.Last edited by slithernoggin, Wednesday, January 4, 2017 7:46 PM
Of course this all depends on the time you have, but if Great Adventure and Cedar Point are your must-dos and you don't mind driving on the correct side of the road, try this:
All those are easy drives between 2 and 3 hours, so if you're inclined enough, you could complete that trip in a week.
If you have longer, you can add in Knoebels, Dorney, and/or Dutch Wonderland that are all along that same route.
At risk of making your itinerary truly unmanageable:
If you're flying into JFK and driving to Great Adventure, your route will likely take you within a mile of Coney Island. I would definitely recommend trying to schedule a couple hours to walk down the boardwalk and ride the Cyclone and the Wonder Wheel. Definitely not the same experience you would have at Great Adventure or Cedar Point, but that's all to the good IMHO.
(If you're flying into Newark, it would be quite a bit more time and work to get there.)
When in Sandusky, I would highly suggest staying onsite at Hotel Breakers if you are financially able because:
-Walk to Cedar Point
-1 hour ERT every morning
-Discount on Cedar Point Tickets
What kind of enthusiast are you? Are you Coasters 24:7, do you like the whole theme park experience? What about water parks?
If you are a whole package kind of person and this is a once in a lifetime trip I would suggest spending 2.5 days in Sandusky. It is impossible to do every coaster in a day (without fast lane) and Cedar Point is simply much bigger then most amusement parks. I also really enjoy spending mid afternoon at the waterpark (on the lazy river) to recharge and break up the 13 hour operating day at Cedar Point.
If you go to Great Adventure, you could also go South to Six Flags America, or just skip that an go to D.C. Then, you could go south to BGW or KD, then south to Carowinds. After that, you could, in theory, go west to Dollywood, north to Kentucky Kingdom, northeast to Kings Island, then further north to Cedar Point. The longest drive would be Dollywood to Kentucky Kingdom, which is 4 and a half hours. It really all depends on how much time you have. Obviously this idea is if you have a ton of time and a huge budget.
Don't forget to head over to California for Knott's and Magic Mountain, then head back East for the Texas Six Flags parts, and a last stop at Michigan's Adventure. Should be able to knock all that out in a couple days.
Actually, just make sure to hit at least 85% of these parks.Last edited by Vater, Thursday, January 5, 2017 12:51 PM
Kpjb really has the best recommendation.
Without knowing more about how many days you have it's impossible to recommend anything with any confidence. I would suggest two nights at Cedar Point staying at Hotel Breakers. From Sandusky you have Kennywood (3.5 hours) and Kings Island (4 hours) within reach and Holiday World within reach of Kings Island. kpjp's itinerary is pretty killer too.
I would actually book three nights at Hotel Breakers and spend two days at CP and spend one day at Put-In-Bay, which is a town on beautiful South Bass Island in Lake Erie. It's often called the Key West of the north ( and they are sister cities). The Jet Express ferry boat goes to Put-In-Bay from Sandusky and has a convenient daily departure right from the Cedar Point Marina.
How quickly it has devolved into Vaters post!
Your possibilities are pretty much endless between NYC and Cedar Point. I like the idea of getting a rental car in NYC and making a looping road trip out of it. But I won't suggest specific itineraries because I have no idea what your time, budget, interests are just yet. But I'm sure I could come up with many, as could all of us here on CB.
Your title says June 2017. Coastermania at Cedar Point is usually the first Friday in June (June 2nd this year). HoliWood Nights at Holiday World is also June 2 & 3.
Thanks all, we're going to use KPJB's model, I think - but we'll likely not do Morey's and chuck in Knoebels.
Also, we're thinking of doing it along the lines of
Head down to Coney on arrival. Two days in NYC, day at Great Adventure, another day in NYC and then head off to Hershey.
If you definitely plan on hitting Hershey, check to see when concert/events are. A normally dead weekday can turn into a nightmare if there is a popular act playing that day/evening. You may want to reschedule a bit to avoid that.
Also, on a side note, Troegs brewery is literally two or three blocks away. If you're a fan of good beer (and pretty darn good food for the cafeteria-like setup), it's a nice end to the day. Or if it rains, you can even do the tour and stuff while waiting for the weather to clear.
There is, as I'm sure you're aware, nowhere to stay in Jackson when you visit Great Adventure. I'd maybe recommend driving to and getting a room in Allentown/Bethlehem after GrAdv, then hitting up Dorney for a few hours the following day. If you get there early, you'll be done by 1 pm at the latest with all the rides you want, and Hershey's about an hour and fifteen away from there.
NYC: You must visit Coney Island - even if just a few hours.
SFGAv - excellent!
Cedar Point - if you are driving from NYC to Cedar Point, there are MANY great parks in PA along the way. Hershey, Dorney, Kennywood, Knoebel's, etc... If are are flying to Cleveland for Cedar Point, I'd recommend hiring a car in Cleveland and then head south to Kings Island (new wooden coaster - Mystic Timbers - this year). Then continue south toward Dollywood or Kentucky Kingdom (small - but Louisville is a fun city) and Holiday World (wooden coaster heaven).
Also possible - Michigan's Adventure and then Six Flags in Chicago. Fly direct from ORD to LHR home.
I'd be happy to help further. My husband is British and we live near Kings Island, so would love to connect if you head this way. We both love coasters and hold platinum passes for CP and KI.
All coming together - we shall be there in less than three weeks.
For reasons I won't fully explain, we have changed things up a little bit. We're going to do two days at Cedar Point, one of the PA parks (which would you do if you could choose between Dorney, Knoebels, Kennywood or Hershey?). Plus when back in the NYC area we're going to do Great Adventure, Coney & Six Flags New England.
I think I am almost there with planning. I am just trying to get a handle on how much the tolls will be to drive Newark Airport in NJ to Cedar Point? I get lots of 'this route has tolls' but very little more information? Any help appreciated.
Of the four, and this is like asking me to choose my favorite child :-) I'd say Kennywood.
Google Maps offers the option to choose routes without tolls, but traveling from Newark to Sandusky, I'd bite the bullet and pay the tolls.
The Ohio Turnpike (ohioturnpike.org) and Pennsylvania toll road (PAturnpike.com) have toll calculators; the Jersey toll road ( state.nj.us/turnpike) doesn't, but does have a list of rates.
Ohio Turnpike will be $9.00 each way from the West gate to the route 250 (Cedar Point) exit. No idea if the route you're driving in New Jersey is tolled. You're completely skipping the PA turnpike by taking I-80 across the state.
Hope that helps. Have fun!
Edit: Gah, just realized you might be doing Kennywood, Hershey, or Dorney. All of which you'd need to take the PA turnpike on your way back. Driving across the state on the PA turnpike will run around $35 in tolls.Last edited by HeyIsntThatRob?, Wednesday, May 17, 2017 10:12 AM
Thanks Rob. Much obliged to you.
I am concerned we are going to drive flr 8 hours to find a park closed by drizzle - but it's a risk we have to take I think.
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