Best Roller Coaster (2019)


While thrill rides come in all shapes and sizes these days, nothing beats the adrenaline rush of a well-designed roller coaster. A panel of theme park experts nominated 20 coasters across the U.S., and 10Best readers have spent the last four weeks voting for their favorites.

  • Steel Vengeance

    Steel Vengeance
    Cedar Point

    The world record-breaking Steel Vengeance just debuted at Cedar Point in May 2018 as the world's tallest and fastest hybrid coaster with the steepest drop (90 degrees), longest drop (200 feet), most inversions (four), and most airtime (27.2 seconds) on any hybrid coaster. At 5,740 feet, it's also the world's longest hybrid coaster and sure to be a new guest favorite.
    Photo courtesy of Cedar Point

  • Phoenix

    Knoebels Amusement Resort

    Phoenix, a classic wooden roller coaster inside Knoebels, proves that newer, taller and faster aren't always better. Consistently ranked as one of the best wooden coasters in the country, Phoenix offers panoramic views of the surrounding hills, as well as thrills in the form of a double out and back layout and speeds of 45 miles per hour.
    Photo courtesy of Knoebels

  • SUPERMAN The Ride

    SUPERMAN The Ride
    Six Flags New England

    This 5,400-foot steel hypercoaster at Six Flags New England boasts a 221-foot drop and speeds of up to 77 miles per hour along the twisty red track. Don't forget to bring your cape!
    Photo courtesy of Six Flags New England

  • Goliath

    Six Flags Great America

    The world record-breaking Goliath at Six Flags Great America features one of the world's tallest and steepest drops, plus plenty of curves, turns and twists along the track. When it debuted, this wooden roller coaster was the world's fastest at 72 miles per hour.
    Photo courtesy of Six Flags Great America

  • El Toro

    El Toro
    Six Flags Great Adventure

    This Jackson, N.J., wooden roller coaster is known as “the bull” for its powerful and shaky train. It is also one of the tallest and fastest wooden roller coasters in the world. But this is no ordinary wooden coaster; it’s built with some of the highest-tech engineering, which contributes to a totally unique, old-school-new-school experience.
    Photo courtesy of Six Flags Great Adventure

  • Lightning Rod

    Lightning Rod

    Lightning Rod, the world's fastest wooden coaster, launches Dollywood thrill seekers from zero to 45 miles per hour – a thrilling start to one of the park's most adrenaline-pumping attractions. Themed after a 1950s hot rod, the roller coaster tops out at speeds of more than 73 miles per hour.
    Photo courtesy of Dollywood

  • The Voyage

    The Voyage
    Holiday World

    Head to the Holiday World in aptly named Santa Claus, Ind. for one of the nation’s most highly regarded wooden roller coasters. Highlights include one of the steepest drops on a wooden coaster, a world-record of five underground tunnels and a whopping 24.3 seconds of weightlessness. This is no quick ride, either. The Voyage adventure is more than a mile long, earning it the honors of one of the world’s longest and fastest wooden roller coasters.
    Photo courtesy of Holiday World

  • Twisted Colossus

    Twisted Colossus
    Six Flags Magic Mountain

    The Twisted Colossus is where old meets new, wood meets steel and traditional thrills meet modern, high-tech innovations. This hybrid roller coaster is iconic, perched on the edge of Six Flags Magic Mountain, as it brings riders through a 360-degree zero-g roll, a 116-foot drop at (gasp!) 80 degrees and many hills. The thrills are long-lasting, too. The 5,000-foot track makes the Twisted Colossus one of the longest hybrid coasters in existence.
    Photo courtesy of Six Flags Magic Mountain

  • Diamondback

    Kings Island

    Diamondback, a fast steel roller coaster in Ohio, creates the full atmosphere, complete with strobe lights, a 230-foot hill and speed topping out at 80 miles per hour. Add in a few crazy helixes, U-turns, camelback hills and a hammerhead turn. But what it’s best known for is being the first hypercoaster with a “spashdown.” As the finale, water splashes dozens of feet around the train in an elaborate special effect that surprisingly does not drench the passengers.
    Photo courtesy of Cinciterps7 / Wikimedia Commons

  • Outlaw Run

    Outlaw Run
    Silver Dollar City

    Outlaw Run at Silver Dollar City in Branson brings the world’s first double-barrel roll on a wooden roller coaster. We’re talking a 720-degree, triple, upside-down twist. Outlaw Run is one of the world’s steepest wooden coaster, with an 81-degree drop down 162 feet, as well as one of the fastest, reaching 68 miles per hour. With all of those rankings and a proud list of awards that Outlaw Run has well earned, you’d better hold onto your horses.
    Photo courtesy of Silver Dollar City

Cedar Point's record-breaking Steel Vengeance took home top honors, and for good reason. Here's a look at what it's like to ride on this winning coaster:

The top 10 winners in the category Best Roller Coaster are as follows:

  1. Steel Vengeance - Cedar Point
  2. Phoenix - Knoebels Amusement Resort
  3. SUPERMAN The Ride - Six Flags New England
  4. Goliath - Six Flags Great America
  5. El Toro - Six Flags Great Adventure
  6. Lightning Rod - Dollywood
  7. The Voyage - Holiday World
  8. Twisted Colossus - Six Flags Magic Mountain
  9. Diamondback - Kings Island
  10. Outlaw Run - Silver Dollar City

A panel of experts partnered with 10Best editors to pick the initial 20 nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote.

Congratulations to all these winning roller coasters!

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