Travelers and hometown folk alike are taking to the theme parks, with 2011 seeing significant increases in attendance from the previous year, led by Universal Studios' 29% bump over 2010, due largely to the launch of the "Wizarding World of Harry Potter".
Tampa's Busch Gardens saw a 2% increase, but found itself inside the TOP 25 theme parks worldwide at #23, and sitting at #12 in America, based on attendance. Also in Tampa, in the "water park" category, Adventure Island ranked 7th in the U.S. with a 2.9% attendance boost, hosting 644,000 swimmers and sunbathers.
Disney remained the proverbial king of these adventurelands, with the Magic Kingdom seeing a 1% increase in visits, despite a 3.6% increase in single day passes, from $82.00 to $85.00, halway through the year.
According to the California-based Themed Entertainment Association, ranked here are the TOP 25 amusement/theme parks worldwide, with their 2011 attendance figures, with every American Park in the TOP 25 seeing an increase in visits over 2010:
1/ MAGIC KINGDOM at Walt Disney World, Lake Buena Vista, FL, U.S.A.
2/ DISNEYLAND, Anaheim, CA, U.S.A.
3/ TOKYO DISNEYLAND, Tokyo, Japan
4/ TOKYO DISNEY SEA, Tokyo, Japan
5/ DISNEYLAND PARK AT DISNEYLAND
PARIS, Marne-La-Vallée, France
6/ EPCOT at Walt Disney World, Lake Buena Vista, FL, U.S.A.
7/ DISNEY'S ANIMAL KINGDOM at Walt Disney World, Lake Buena Vista, FL, U.S.A.
8/ DISNEY'S HOLLYWOOD STUDIOS at Walt Disney World,
Lake Buena Vista, FL, U.S.A.
9/ UNIVERSAL STUDIOS JAPAN,
10/ ISLANDS OF ADVENTURE at Universal Orlando, FL, U.S.A.
11/ LOTTE WORLD, Seoul, South Korea
12/ OCEAN PARK, Hong Kong SAR
13/ EVERLAND, Gyeonggi-Do, South Korea
14/ DISNEY'S CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE, Anaheim, CA, U.S.A.
15/ UNIVERSAL STUDIOS at Universal Orlando, FL, U.S.A.
16/ HONG KONG DISNEYLAND, Hong Kong SAR
17/ NAGASHIMA SPA LAND, Kuwana, Japan
18/ SEAWORLD FLORIDA, Orlando, FL, U.S.A.
19/ UNIVERSAL STUDIOS HOLLYWOOD, Universal City, CA, U.S.A.
20/ WALT DISNEY STUDIOS PARK AT DISNEYLAND PARIS,
21/ EUROPA PARK, Rust, Germany
22/ SEAWORLD CALIFORNIA, San Diego, CA, U.S.A.
23/ BUSCH GARDENS TAMPA BAY, Tampa, FL, U.S.A.
24/ DE EFTELING, Kaatsheuvel, Netherlands
25/ TIVOLI GARDENS, Copenhagen, Denmark