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Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk is an amusement park found on the ocean front in Santa Cruz, California. Aside from being a fun place to pass a few hours or even an entire day, it is also California’s oldest surviving theme park, having been founded in 1907. The park is found along the edge of Monterey Bay and near to a long beach which can be easily reached from the park, so a day out in this area will offer any person or family plenty to do. In fact, right beside the park there is a big building, known as the ‘Casino’, which houses a miniature golf course, a video arcade and a laser tag arena.
The park was originally created to be a ‘Coney Island’ of California. Coney Island, at the start of the 20th century, played host to a hugely popular amusement park and, seeing this, a business man named Fred Swanton decided to set up a similar park on Monterey Bay. The creation of the park was not all smooth going, unfortunately, as in 1905, less than two years after it was opened, the park was devastated by a fire which started in the kitchen. Rebuilding began promptly and the new park, the one which still stands today, was opened in 1907.
The famous Giant Dipper was created in 1924 to be, what was then, a modern wooden rollercoaster. Its creator, Arthur Looff, was the son of Charles Looff who created the Looff Carousel, which was built in 1911. The carousel is really beautiful and is one of the few remaining brass ring machines in the whole country. While visitors ride the carousel a 342-pipe band orchestra plays early twentieth century music to really set the atmosphere.
Voted “World’s Best Seaside Amusement Park” by Amusement Today, the park features many other fun and fabulous rides aside from the Looff Carousel and the Giant Dipper. Visitors will have a chance to have fun on the Double Shot where visitors “are launched skywards at more than 3 G's to a breathtaking view of the California Coast and then experience the weightlessness of negative G forces as they are shot back down for the ultimate thrill”, the haunted castle where everyone gets a harmless scare, the Cave Train Adventure which is a glow-in-the-dark train, Skyglider, Fireball, Logger's Revenge, Rock-O-Plane, Hurricane, and a historic Ferris Wheel.
The park is so much fun, so its no small wonder that its so popular, and there are also ticket options to suit everyone, from affordable summer passes to ‘all day unlimited rides’ to options to pay for each individual ride. For the young at heart, the nostalgic, and families with children, this park is an absolute must see for your trip to California.