Top 3 Thursdays!If you ask me every major city should have its own roller coaster. Right there in the middle of downtown. It could be managed and maintained by the parks and recreation department of the local government. Imagine a unique, thrilling roller coaster in Chicago’s Grant Park, New York’s Central Park, or Atlanta’s Centennial Park. Until I’m elected mayor of a city or I get Obama to pass my Municipal Roller Coaster Resolution, this week’s list will have to do. This time we’ll have a look at the Top 3 Urban Roller Coasters.

3 – Manhattan Express at New York New York Hotel & Casino – Las Vegas, NevadaManhattan Express at New York New York Hotel & Casino - Las Vegas
Manhattan Express is a large looping roller coaster that’s not only in an urban area, above the strip in Las Vegas, it’s located at a Hotel & Casino themed after the Big Apple. It’s a rare Togo-designed coaster in the U.S. that I hear is pretty rough. It’s got a great back drop though. One day I’ll make it to Sin City and ride this urban monster.


Cyclone at Astroland - Coney Island New York2 – Coney Island Cyclone at Astroland – New York, New York
The legendary Coney Island Cyclone is still thrilling riders 80 years after its first rides in 1927. Located about 10 miles  south of Manhattan, Astroland is just a subway ride from the heart of New York City. I hope to make it Coney Island soon. I’ve been itching to do a Rye Playland-Coney Island day trip for years.

Thunder Dolphin at Tokyo Dome Amusement Park1 – Thunder Dolphin at Tokyo Dome City Amusement Park – Tokyo, Japan

Could there be anything more urban than literally riding up, over, down, and through sky scrapers? Tokyo is the perfect back drop for oddly named Thunder Dolphin, an Intamin hyper coaster that’s the 7th tallest roller coaster in the World. Please no hate mail from the New Yorkers.

Check out this POV video of Thunder Dolphin in Tokyo:

What’s Your Take?

What do you think about this week’s Top 3? Did I miss any urban roller coasters? Leave a comment below.

About The Author

Founder of My favorite coasters are B&M hypers and gigas. I'm also a huge fan of terrain roller coasters.

11 Responses

  1. JaMeS

    well, these coasters look pretty good, but there is a great woodie just outside of miami. its called the hurricane. i rode it when i was seven, it looks pretty old, but its not rough, and rides fine. i just dont know if its still running.

  2. The Coaster Critic

    Ah yes. You must be referring to the Dania Beach Hurricane at Boomers. It's in Ft. Lauderdale, not far from Miami. I remember landing at the Ft. Lauderdale airport and I thought I saw a mirage. You can see it from the runway. I've heard good things about it. Looks like fun. Here are some pics.

  3. Daniel

    Coney Island is actually in the south of Brooklyn, ~10 miles from Manhattan.

  4. Evan

    Manhattan Express (now known as just "Roller Coaster") should not be on any "top" list.

  5. The Coaster Critic

    Thanks, I made the correction Daniel. It's all the same to us 'non-New Yorkers'. Just kidding, I don't want to get whacked.

    Evan, I've heard that Manhattan Express isn't a great ride, but it is a great example of an urban roller coaster which are few & far between. Besides, it would clearly be on a list of the top red TOGO coasters in Vegas list too! Point taken about its quality though.

    Thanks for reading.

  6. Lucas

    I've been on the manhattan express and it was ok. I sat in the second row. There was a bit of shaking, bit not too bad like kong or mind eraser type rides. The shoulder restraints are separate from the lap bar and they slide down onto your shoulders. This decreases the visibility due to the head rest being higher than normal. the height of the lift hill is 203', but you only drop 144'. that was kind of a bummer. I didn't get air time on the 2 hills after the drop and the loopwas good.The Immeleman or dive loop was the highlight. After it twists to get you in the upsidedown position it keeps going for about 2 and a half seconds then you loop back down. After all that action the ride lost it. It is boring and I said to myself "is that it?". The ride has good momentum, enough to do a corkscrew or two, but no. Instead you hit the breaks.

    P.S. it costs $7.50 per ride and the operators tell yhe riders where to sit. That is why I didn't sit in the back row.

  7. Anonymous

    You could have put Speed-The Ride at Nascar Cafe.

    And I want Hampton's Urban coaster back. Dips looked awesome.

  8. CFC

    They have a show in Japan where if you get a certain number of questions wrong (I don't know how many), you have to ride Thunder Dolphin. I saw it on a YouTube video. It's entirely in Japanese, so that's kind of a bummer. The video is funny, though.

  9. Tom

    I saw a video on thunder dolphin on youtube and it looks so darn fun! I REALLY want to ride that.


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