A popular themed amusement park located about 25 miles from downtown Cincinnati
. It is known for its many roller coasters, the most famous being The Beast, still the world's longest wooden roller coaster
. There is a large water park
, Boomerang Bay, which is included with admission, and Nickelodeon
Universe, one of the highest ranked kids areas in the industry.
Besides the Beast also has The Racer, a twin wooden coaster that is credited for sparking the "coaster renaissance" when it opened with the park in 1972. There is also Son of Beast, the world's tallest and fastest wooden coaster; from 2000 until 2006, it had a vertical loop, making it the only wood coaster to do so. There is also a large collection of steel coasters, including Vortex, Flight of Fear, and Firehawk.
From 1993 until 2006, the park was known as Paramount's Kings Island. PKI had many rides, attractions, and buildings named after Paramount and/or its better-known movies, such as TOP GUN
, Days of Thunder
, Face/Off, and The Italian Job
. In 2006, the parent company of PKI sold it and four other Paramount
Parks to "rival" amusement park chain Cedar Fair. In 2007, Cedar Fair began removing Paramount references from KI and other "former" Paramount parks, including changing the park's name to simply Kings Island.
When owned by Paramount, KI was known for installing family attractions and themed rides, but some of these attractions were notorious for theming that would fall apart. When compared to attractions at Cedar Fair, Six Flags
, and especially Universal
, and Disney
parks, Paramount's additions were seen as lackluster. PKI was also notorious for lackluster food service, spotty cleanliness, and neutering/removing classic rides, and oddly enough, a de-emphasis on live entertainment due to budget cuts in the mid-2000s.
With Cedar Fair, Kings Island has re-emphasized cleaniness, live entertainment, and thrill rides. People also anticipate the addition of new restaurants in the future. While the 2007 season was not perfect, especially transition between ownership "regimes," expect a bright future for this midwestern family fun tradition.