Photo: David McGill 71/Shutterstock

Every Roller Coaster at Cedar Point, Ranked

Ohio Theme Parks Insider Guides
by Matthew Meltzer Jul 5, 2021

Cedar Point is to roller coaster enthusiasts what Italy is to foodies. The world’s best roller coasters are packed onto a narrow peninsula jutting out onto Lake Erie, where spectacular water views await atop some of the tallest thrill rides on the planet. Steep drops, neck-breaking turns, and cell-phone-stealing inversions await below.

The problem, of course, is that if you go to Cedar Point on a summer weekend everyone in Ohio and the surrounding states will be there with you, meaning you’ll spend most of your day shuffling through lines in the hot summer sun rather than screaming your face off. The key is to know which are the best rides at Cedar Point — the ones worth braving the lines for — and which just aren’t worth the time. In the name of public service, we rode and ranked every roller coaster at Cedar Point (from worst to best), and we tell you how tall Cedar Point roller coasters are, their duration and their speed. Plus, you’ll find Cedar Point roller coasters map at the end of the post.

(Editors note: There are plenty of other rides at Cedar Point, but in the interest of brevity and avoiding heat stroke, we’re sticking to just roller coasters here.)

#17. Wilderness Run

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Wilderness Run? 19 feet
Speed: 6 mph
Duration: 50 seconds

If you go on this ride without the company of a small child, there’s a good chance security will be asking you some questions. It’s a nice, short, flat coaster that moves slower than a mediocre jogger, and the only reason to go is if you have a kid under three. Otherwise, you look suspect, and the last thing you need is Chris Hansen asking you to have a seat during your day at the theme park.

#16. Pipe Scream

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Pipe Scream? 43 feet
Speed: 43 mph
Length: 302 feet

As fun as it might seem to get spun around a half pipe the length of a football field at arterial-speed-limit velocity, this ride is more about getting little kids to say “Whoooooooa” than it is about any actual excitement. It basically spins you around on a big board while dropping you from one end of the pipe to the other, making it a little higher on the nausea spectrum than it should be for a ride this small. Even with kids, you’d do well to skip this one.

#15. Cedar Creek Mine Ride

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Cedar Creek Mine Ride? 48 feet
Speed: 40 mph
Duration: two minutes, 50 seconds

Though it’s not technically a kids’ coaster, this old-west-themed train in Frontiertown is the mildest among the grown-up-sized coasters. The ride goes up and down some runs, around some fast corners, through a tunnel, and out over the water. It’s great if you’ve got a couple of two-year-olds and want to go on something faster than a Segway, but the only other reason to ride is if you’ve just had lunch and want to let your food settle before going on something rougher.

#14. Woodstock Express

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Woodstock Express? 38 feet
Speed: 25 mph
Duration: one minute, 10 seconds

This ride is kinda like the Pixar of kids’ coasters: it’s made for children, but there’s some stuff in there to keep the grown-ups entertained too. Though it only revs to 25 mph, the short drops and quick turns make that acceleration feel a lot faster. Moreover, as a steel coaster, it has a smooth, aerodynamic ride that feels like a junior version of the big boys. Definitely do this one multiple times if you’re here with kids.

#13. Magnum XL-200

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Magnum XL-200? 205 feet
Speed: 72 mph
Duration: two minutes, 45 seconds

Much like other things labeled Magnum XL, despite the boastful name and impressive appearance, this coaster can be a disappointing and rather painful ride. It was the fastest and steepest complete circuit coaster in the world when it opened in 1989, but the old coaster can get jerky. And though the quick whips through the trademark pretzel turn are exciting, they can also leave you with thigh bruises that are tough to explain. The views from atop the 205-foot drop and subsequent loops along the beach at Cedar Point are phenomenal, and it’s a nice way to get a lay of the land. Despite its flaws, Magnum is definitely worth a ride if you don’t mind getting beat up a little.

#12. Gemini

Cedar Point roller coasters

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Gemini? 125 feet
Speed: 60 mph
Duration: two minutes, 40 seconds

Really, the only competitive thing you can do at Cedar Point other than a ring toss to win a stuffed animal is Gemini, the classic wooden coaster with a steel track and two sets of cars running parallel. The best part of this ride isn’t the 125-foot ascent and fast drop that start you out, it’s smack-talking your friends in the cars next to you while you ride up. The banked turns are extra intense with another coaster a few feet away, and while it isn’t as crazy as some of the newer coasters, this 40-year-old legend is still a must-ride if you’re here in a group.

#11. Rougarou

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Rougarou? 145 feet
Speed: 60 mph
Duration: two minutes, 30 seconds

Being Rougarou is like being the tenth man on the bench for the Golden State Warriors. Anywhere else, you’re probably an all-star, but when you’re surrounded by so much talent, you look a lot less impressive. This was the first floorless coaster at Cedar Point, and I’m sure when it opened as Mantis in 1996 it was a huge draw. Now getting pulled up 137 feet and dropped at 60 mph into a vertical loop, a 119-foot inversion loop, and a 103-foot dive loop seems kind of ho-hum after riding the rest of the park. The good news is this is still an A-grade coaster with a minimal line since other, bigger names get all the attention. So in terms of how you spend your time, it’s the best value at Cedar Point.

#10. Blue Streak

Cedar Point roller coasters

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Blue Streak? 78 feet
Speed: 40 mph
Duration: two minutes

Like many of the people of northern Ohio, Blue Streak looks a LOT older than it actually is. This meandering, baby blue, wooden coaster looks straight out of the 1920s but actually only dates back to 1965. No matter, it still hits hard for an old man, a simple out-and-back route that takes you up a 78-foot hill to start then speeds through several more raise-your-hands-up undulations before turning around and doing it again. Its beauty is in its simplicity and also in its ultra-short line, a throwback to when coasters were simpler and fun to ride a few times with minimal waits.

#9. Maverick

Maverick at Cedar Point

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Maverick? 105 feet
Speed: 70 mph
Duration: two minutes, 30 seconds

Until Steel Vengeance and Millennium Force came around, a lot of people picked Maverick as their favorite Cedar Point coaster. And for good reason. It starts with an intense LSM launch up 105 feet before dropping at a 95-degree angle at almost 70 mph. This starts a kind of mass confusion as you’re spun around a twisted horseshoe roll followed by consecutive 360-corkscrew rolls, then into a tunnel decked out with LED lights. The entire ride is fast and furious and finishes with a high-speed S-curve over water, where cannons shoot water at the cars. It’s the same high-speed chaos it was when it opened in 2007. But with newer, crazier rides, it now just seems like a lesser version of those with a similar wait time.

#8. Corkscrew

Cedar Point roller coasters

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Corkscrew? 85 feet
Speed: 48 miles per hour
Duration: 2 minutes

The ultimate oldie-but-goodie, this 1976 classic turns you upside down three times on a pretty small track, keeping true to its wine-opening moniker. This ride works well because it’s relatively slow, giving you time to appreciate the sensation of the inversions and feel just a little more lifted out of your seat when you go upside down. It’s a one-trick pony that does that trick as well as any other coaster, and with a fast-moving line in a central location, it’s a coaster you’d do well to ride a few times.

#7. Iron Dragon

Iron Dragon at Cedar Point

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Iron Dragon? 76 feet
Speed: 40 mph
Duration: two minutes, 30 seconds

Looking at this collection of dangling cars over a peaceful lagoon, one might wonder why anyone would wait in line for such a leisurely ride. And without the VR goggles, one would be right. The coaster on its own is pretty meh. But strap on the Dragon VR goggles and you’ll be as close as Cedar Point gets to a 5D attraction. Iron Dragon transports you to a medieval village where you’re a monk riding through the mountains. All of the sudden, a dragon appears and your horse bolts like it’s at the Kentucky Derby, then said dragon picks you up and flies you over fires, around other dragons, and generally through your own “Game of Thrones”-themed acid trip. It’s a creative break from the body-slamming thrills at the rest of the park and might be the highlight if you’re looking for rides with cool themes.

#6. GateKeeper

Cedar Point roller coasters

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is GateKeeper? 170 feet
Speed: 67 mph
Duration: two minutes

Though it might not be the most famous ride at Cedar Point, it’s possibly the most recognizable. This blue behemoth guards the front gate of the park with over 4,000 feet of bright blue track. It’s a classic dive coaster that forsakes some of the cliff-hanging drops of Valravn for a longer, more scenic ride. GateKeeper starts out with a 164-foot drop which has you feeling about 4Gs before flying through two more loops and another big hill. The loops feel longer than on other rides and, while fast, still give you enough time to anticipate the inversion and fully enjoy it. At two minutes, it’s just long enough to justify the line and just short enough to keep you coming back for more.

#5. Raptor

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Raptor? 137 feet
Speed: 57 mph
Duration: two minutes, 15 seconds

Raptor is loud. Like, you-have-to-scream-over-it-if-you’re-anywhere-within-a-hundred-yards loud, so it makes hanging out in this section of the park a little like living next to the airport. That aside, it’s the most aptly named ride in the park, combining the speed and agile acrobatics of a dangerous bird with its wailing noise. Lake a ravenous bird in combat, you’ll go through five inversions at a constant speed of nearly 60 mph, doing dizzying spins and quick turns across its 3,790 feet of track. Between the noise and its compact layout, it’s the most intense coaster in the park that lasts longer than 20 seconds.

#4. Millennium Force

Cedar Point roller coasters

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Millennium Force? 310 feet
Speed: 93 mph
Duration: one minute, 50 seconds

Novice riders beware: Millennium Force might not be a good idea if you’ve never done anything tougher than the teacups. Its sheer size is impressive, and during the initial climb that takes a long 20 seconds, you’ll get a fantastic view of Lake Erie to your left and the entire park to your right. And then it drops — 300 feet at 90 mph — and if you’re not ready for it you’ll black out a little as you go into your next big hill. The combination of the drop with the speed makes this an experience you’ll either love or swear off forever. But it’s exactly the kind of big-league thrill one goes to Cedar Point to have.

#3. Valravn

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Valravn? 223 feet
Speed: 75 mph
Duration: two minutes, 23 seconds

If you’ve ever wanted to have the sensation of being dangled out over a cliff without the fear of imminent death, ride the front seat on Valravn, the world’s tallest dive coaster. The first climb takes you to a perilous 223-foot drop, then holds you parallel to the ground for a few seconds — so you really know how far you’re about to go — and finally shoots you down at 75 mph. It’s the most dramatic drop in the park if you’re sitting in front, and while the rest of the ride is full of inversions and another just-as-scary 131-foot drop, it’s that first one you’ll remember for years.

#2. Top Thrill Dragster

Cedar Point roller rides

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Top Thrill Dragster? 420 feet
Speed: 120 mph
Duration: 17 seconds

In terms of the line-to-ride time ratio, this might be the worst ride in the world. But the 17 seconds it takes to complete Top Thrill Dragster might be the most intense of your life. Waiting at the starting line for this ride, where the Christmas tree lights turn from yellow to green, is the thickest tension you’ll feel all day. When that light turns, your face is peeled back immediately as you go from zero to 120 mph in 3.8 seconds. You’re then shot straight up a 420-foot loop, spun around, and hurdled toward the pavement at the same speed before ending up on the other side. Breathe right and you can scream through the entire thing.

And what is the best ride at Cedar Point? Our #1 is Steel Vengeance

Cedar Point roller coasters

Photo: Cedar Point/Facebook

How tall is Steel Vengeance? 205 feet
Speed: 74 mph
Duration: two minutes, 30 seconds

While waiting in the queue by the massive wooden frame of Cedar Point’s newest ride, you’ll notice the remnants of cell phones scattered throughout. Some of the lost souls in this cell-phone graveyard are lucky enough to be in one piece. Most have been reduced to the screens, batteries, and mutilated limbs of devices violently tossed from Steel Vengeance. What we’re saying is: invest in a locker before you ride.

Steel Vengeance — the tallest, fastest, and steepest wood-steel hybrid coaster in the world — is not only the best ride at Cedar Point. It is flat out the best roller coaster you’ll ever ride. From the initial 200-foot, 90-degree drop to the unpredictable turns, spins, flips, and inversions around the towering wooden frame, this ride doesn’t let up for over two minutes. You’ll spend nearly 20 percent of the ride lifted out of your seat (that airtime is how your phone gets tossed) with four full inversions and plenty of panoramic views of the park. It ends with four quick undulations, like a bucking bronco taking you to the finish. It’s over a mile of sheer excitement that’ll almost have you thinking the lost phone was worth it. But still, not quite.

Cedar Point roller coasters map

Enjoy the best rides at Cedar Point!

NOTE: We had chosen Wicked Twister as #12. The roller coaster, however, was retired by the park on September 6, 2021.

A version of this article about Cedar Point roller coasters was previously published on July 5, 2018, and was updated on July 5, 2021, with more information.

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