General Carowinds discussion
By CoasterAddict11
#87675
I guess I'll just have to take the longer walk to the main entrance. No problem with that though, will be cool to walk under/above Fury as I approach the park. :)
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By Sean978
#87690
RollerBee wrote:I really think the building looks better, however the Plantation House was better than both.

Really? Even with its horrible capacity and worn-down look? I take our new North entrance any day over both old ones.
By uscbandfan
#87694
Love both the North Entrance and the Plantation House. While the South gate LOOKS ok, I hate it because it's so out of the way. The way I hate the county Fair section because it's not in the main flow of the park. The South Gate funnels people up a narrow hill and the coaster tunnel is almost invisible. I'd love to see SOMETHING to open it up. Maybe an open path THROUGH the current dino area with a few more attaractions in there, across the South Gate area opening up the sight-lines to Afterburn's tunnel a bit, and continuing across into the County Fair area somewhere. Maybe even continuing behind Zombies into the old Thunder Road area.
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By littlescarfgirl
#87707
Not sure if you're still looking for advice, but I'll give my two cents since your trip is coming up! I'm a somewhat reserved season-pass holder who is slowly expanding my ride horizon, so might be relevant if you have kids or less-than-thrill-seekers with you.

1. Ride wait times have been pretty short for us lately. We went on a Friday and a Sunday in April and barely had to wait for anything, definitely not more than 15-20 minutes. Nighthawk's line is always pretty long, though, but we don't usually ride it anyway.

2. I'd pick a part of the park and just start making your way around. We typically start with Rip Roarin' Rapids (North Gate) because the line is very short in the morning and then you have all day to dry off. Also Nighthawk's line gets very long, so I would say do that one early as well. (It's also toward the front of the park.)

3. I'm not the best person to give advice on seats since I tend to avoid seats that give "airtime." (And I don't ride Hurler, Intimidator, or Fury.) I like the back of Afterburn because it's faster, and the front of most everything else. It's typically rougher in the back of any of the rides. My favorite coasters are Cyclone and Afterburn, and I don't like Nighthawk or Ricochet. (Ricochet is essentially Whiplash: The Ride, but I think that's all mouse coasters.)

4. I like Vortex, you just have to be aware of head-banging. I don't like Nighthawk, I think the flying sensation is weird/unnerving and it's not worth the wait + lift hill face-up at the sun. I haven't ridden Hurler so I can't give an honest opinion, although I've heard they smoothed out the track in recent years.

5. I like the Scrambler, and the ScreamWeaver. The new Plants vs. Zombies is good, too. (And Rip Roarin' Rapids if that's considered flat.) Really any of them are good, although I have never ridden Southern Star. (I have heard from friends that the restraints are boob-squishers, though!)

6. I live in Concord so I've never stayed in any of the area hotels, sorry!

7. I think they do have early ride times, but you'd have to check the website to be sure. We usually get there a little after opening so we never take advantage of that.

8. Even if you're a passholder, you have to get your hand stamped if you want to come back to the park that day. They're very firm about it. Also don't count out some of the Planet Snoopy rides just because they are "kids rides." The Gliders ride is really fun, and I enjoy Woodstock Express. (Although I am a short person. My taller friends complain about their knees.)

That, said (and I don't even know if there is a height restriction on it anyway) but I do NOT recommend the Snoopy Flying Ace coaster. I rode it once when I was in high school and I hated it so much. My glasses almost fell off because my head hit the restraints so hard.

Have fun! :)
By CoasterAddict11
#87831
Anyone know what Carowinds' rain policy is? The forecast is calling for a chance of showers on the days I'll be there. I know forecasts aren't reliable this far out, but just in case, will they keep the rides open in the rain as long as there's no lightning?
By brendan71388
#101015
First time poster, first time Carowinds visitor...hoping to resurrect this thread from which I've already gleaned quite a bit of helpful info.

My main question from this thread is whether or not anything major has changed from the last couple years?

I am planning on staying at the Comfort Inn next door and want to know if it's still possible to walk from there to the park through the exit roads.

We will be there on a Thursday and Friday in July with the two-day all-day dining plan.

Any other tips for a first-timer? I'm mostly wanting to ride Fury and Intimidator. I'll probably try most of the other coasters once and hope to be pleasantly surprised. What are the best places to eat?

Also as a bonus, we'll be getting to Charlotte in the early evening Wednesday and I want to know the best place to get dinner. I'd like to try a local place, probably BBQ. Any recommendations?

Thanks everyone!
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By cadi40
#101016
Hi there! Glad you’ve decided to visit us in Charlotte and Carowinds alike. Fury and Intimidator tend to be the must do attractions for most guests, but don’t forget the hidden gems like Afterburn! If your looking for the shortest lines, Go to the Water Park in the morning and evening, and do the dry park during the heat of the day, when everyone is at the water park. It may be uncomfortable, but lines will be at a bare minimum.

Try out some flat rides as well, Those are always a blast and don’t disappoint. As for the Charlotte spectrum of your visit, I saw recently that ‘Midwood Smokehouse’ (or something along the lines of that title) was voted the best BBQ in the Queen City. It’s never hard to find good food in Charlotte as there is a plethora of options and diversity. I suggest you visit trendy and unique neighborhoods such as Noda, Plaza Midwood, And Southend to find the best local cuisine. I hope your into Beer & Hope you enjoy your visit!
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By Justin
#101017
brendan71388 wrote:First time poster, first time Carowinds visitor...hoping to resurrect this thread from which I've already gleaned quite a bit of helpful info.

My main question from this thread is whether or not anything major has changed from the last couple years?

I am planning on staying at the Comfort Inn next door and want to know if it's still possible to walk from there to the park through the exit roads.

We will be there on a Thursday and Friday in July with the two-day all-day dining plan.

Any other tips for a first-timer? I'm mostly wanting to ride Fury and Intimidator. I'll probably try most of the other coasters once and hope to be pleasantly surprised. What are the best places to eat?

Also as a bonus, we'll be getting to Charlotte in the early evening Wednesday and I want to know the best place to get dinner. I'd like to try a local place, probably BBQ. Any recommendations?

Thanks everyone!


I live in Steele Creek and right down the street from Carowinds. If you are looking for other things to do in the area before/after Carowinds there is TopGolf, Whitewater Center, and Outlet Mall. If you are looking for BBQ style food, Mac's [Speed Shop] is nearby on Sandy Porter Road. They remodeled and have a wicked cool outdoor patio. If you are looking to try some local crafts beers, check out nearby Carolina Beer Temple in Ayrsley. There's a bunch of stuff to do in the area. Message me if you have questions! I know the ins and outs of SW Charlotte!

Also a Carowinds tip: Don't ride Fury first! You will be let down on the other rides after that. Build your anticipation up. BUT if the weather looks wonky, ride Fury first just in case they have to shut down for storms. Oh, and there is a water park too, don't forget about that!
By jordN1414
#101018
Am I the only Charlotte local that doesn't like Macs? Went to Famous Daves while it was raining at Carowinds and thought it was great. Service and Food A+
By uscbandfan
#101020
I would disagree. I WOULD ride Fury first, come back during the day and ride again, and come back and ride Fury last. (Yes, everything else does pale in comparison afterward.)

My wife already knows that when I first enter the park right at opening, the next stop is Fury so we're on auto-pilot. Right at opening is also the best chance of getting a front-row seat because the ride-ops get finicky about row-choice once a line gets established.

If you've never ridden Fury, you MUST ride on the front and you MUST ride on the back. Two world-class experiences. I love the front because without a train around you, it literally feels like you're being pushed through the air out of control at 95 mph. (Fury and Intimidator are both literally sleds with seats bolted on top.. there is no train framework around you.) Front-row left was my first ever ride on Fury and that seat remains my favorite. Back row is a close second.

Riding Fury at night is yet another world-class experience.
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By Koallinbear
#101021
I believe Famous Daves is a must do since it is right next to your hotel. Very great food and not very expensive. I've also heard great things about Culvers across the street.
By brendan71388
#101083
I definitely plan to ride Fury and Intimidator front and back, many times. I'm usually a back row guy but like to give front a try at least once on most rides. Intimidator looks a lot of like Diamondback at Kings Island. DB is good in front but the first drop is always best from the back because you get whipped over the top.

I'm pumped! Thanks for the tips everybody!

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