It was a strong end to the decade for tourist attractions around
Mega records were broken by nail-biting rides at theme parks,
stunning natural events at national parks, and huge numbers of
visitors at museums throughout 2019.
Keep scrolling to see the rides, experiences, and exhibits that
smashed records this year.
The world’s longest waterslide — measuring 3,645 feet — opened in Malaysia this year.
Stretching a mind-boggling 3,645 feet long, the ride at Penang’s
ESCAPE theme park broke the world record for the
longest tube water slide, which was previously held by Action
Park in Vernon, New Jersey.
The slide, which opened in September, is a permanent structure
that carries visitors down a 230-feet decline through the park’s
jungle terrain. The ride takes four minutes to complete. By
comparison, Action Park’s water slide is 1,970 feet and takes a
comparably paltry 90 seconds.
Breaking a world record
was never the park’s goal.
“I’m always baffled by how rides are made so short and quick. I
wanted to build rides that last a good few minutes,” Sim Choo
Kheng (pictured), CEO of ESCAPE operator Sim Leisure Group, said
in a statement.
The world’s largest snow maze was visited by huge crowds in Canada in February.
The 2,789.11-square-meter (or 30,021-square-foot) snow maze beat a 2015 record
by more than 1,000 square meters, according to CBC.
The record was set by A Maze in Corn, Inc (Canada) in St.
The new, 220-foot-tall Steel Curtain roller coaster in Pennsylvania set three records.
When The Steel Curtain at Kennywood opened in Pittsburgh,
Pennsylvania, in July, it set the record for the tallest inversion
in the world – 197 feet above the ground.
The 4,000-foot-long steel structure broke some other, more local
records, too. At 220 feet, The Steel Curtain is the tallest
roller coaster in Pennsylvania, and its nine inversions are the
most in North America.
“It’s a lot of thrills, a lot of power, a lot of fun,” said
Steelers’ defensive end Cam Heyward when he braved the ride ahead
of its opening. “If you’re looking for a good time, this is the
gut punch you need!”
The Guggenheim Museum in New York City had its most visitors ever after opening its Hilma Af Klint show.
In April, the Guggenheim Museum announced its exhibit, “Hilma af Klint: Paintings
for the Future,” was by far the most visited exhibit in its
A record-breaking 600,000 people went to see the artwork between
October 2018 and April 2019, and there was a 34 percent jump in
It was perhaps prompted by the Swedish artist’s decree that the
paintings should not be publicly displayed until 20 years after
her death – because she believed
people in the future would better understand her work. She
passed away in 1944 but the Guggenheim’s exhibit was the first
major show in the US devoted solely to her work.
The Guggenheim wasn’t the only gallery that set records for
visitors in 2019. Among others, a Bosch show at Museum Slager in
sparked the most visitors in the gallery’s history, and the
Springfield Art Museum in Missouri broke visitor records
for the third year in a row.
The Yukon Striker at Canada’s Wonderland became the world’s fastest, tallest, and longest diver roller coaster when it opened in May.
The Yukon Striker holds daredevils at the top of the ride for 3
before dropping them 245 feet into an underground tunnel. The
roller coaster’s track measures 3,625 feet.
If that’s not enough terror for you, it’s also the world’s
fastest dive roller coaster, capable of reaching top speeds of 80
miles per hour.
Kacey Musgraves helped create a record-setting display of coloring pages at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in October.
The singer partnered with the Country Music Hall of Fame and
Museum in Nashville, Tennessee, to
achieve the title on October 22.
The display included 1,500 coloring pages that were submitted by
people from 30 states. Together, the pages weighed 500 pounds.
The rainbow-shaped art piece was part of the “Kacey Musgraves:
All of the Colors” exhibition.
Yellowstone’s Steamboat Geyser — the world’s tallest active geyser — broke a record for number of yearly eruptions.
In September, the US Geologic Survey said the geyser at
Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming had erupted 34 times, the
most eruptions ever recorded in a single year.
The eruptions last anywhere from three to 40 minutes.
It broke 2018’s record of 32 eruptions. Before that, the highest
number was 29 in 1964.
Infinity Racers, a gigantic slide for head-first mat racing at Texas’ Schlitterbahn Waterpark, is the tallest of its kind in the world.
The 75-foot-tall, 696-foot-long slide is the
tallest and longest of its kind in the world. It measures
about eight stories tall.
The space-themed ride, which opened at Schlitterbahn Waterpark
in June, is 85% enclosed and takes visitors on twists and
turns through multi-colored fiberglass tubes.
State fairs across the US smashed attendance records with millions of visitors in 2019.
Iowa’s state fair in Des Moines – which had musical guests
including Luke Bryan and Dan + Shay – welcomed
1,170,375 people, breaking its all-time record by 40,115
In Minnesota, a record 2.1 million visitors enjoyed the state
fair, while Illinois’ state fair set a revenue record by making
New Jersey’s Nickelodeon Universe, the largest indoor theme park in the Western Hemisphere, debuted three record-breaking tourist attractions in 2019.
Nickelodeon Universe, the largest indoor theme park in the
Western Hemisphere, opened at the American Dream complex in East
Rutherford, New Jersey, in October.
Among its rides was the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Shellraiser,
which is now the world’s steepest roller coaster at an angle of
The Legends of the Hidden Temple Challenge became the world’s
tallest adventure ropes course, while the Shredder became the
world’s tallest and longest free-spinning coaster.
Tourists flocked to see the world’s tallest sandcastle at an annual festival in Germany.
At the 2019 Sand Sculptures Festival in Binz, Germany, a
magnificent, 57.94-foot-high sandcastle – with staircases and
turrets – broke the record for the world’s tallest.
Twelve sculptors and eight technicians worked eight hours a day
for 3.5 weeks to build the sandcastle using 11,000 tons of sand,
Guinness World Records.
Every year, tourists travel to the seaside town to see the epic
sandcastle designs. This year, they were able to see the
record-breaking design between June and November.
Six Flags’ Maxx Force, which reaches 78 miles per hour in under two seconds, broke three terrifying records when it opened in July.
The Maxx Force at Six Flags Great America near Chicago is North
America’s fastest coaster, according
to Six Flags. The park says it’s also the fastest inversion
(more than 60 mph) and tallest double inversion (at 175 feet
high) of any roller coaster in the world.
In 2019, the world’s longest cruise journey set sail from London … and it’s still going.
Viking Cruises’ “Ultimate World Cruise” left London on August 31,
2019, and it is anticipated to return to London next year after
completing a 245-day trip.
As Forbes notes, many other around-the-world cruises
typically range between 90-120 days long.
During the epic global trip, its 930 passengers will travel to 51
countries across six continents, making visits to 111 ports and
stopping overnight in 23 cities. Fares started at $92,990 per
Viking hopes to set a record for the “longest continuous
passenger cruise” with the journey. When the ship returns, it
will be met by an official from Guinness World Records, who will
verify the achievement.
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