If You Visit A Theme Park As An Adult You'll Be Taken For A Ride

I guess the reality is you’ll never get that unbridled joy of being a child back. The magic of theme parks is still there, it’s just seen with different eyes.

I recently had a ‘mind blown’ moment. I realised that going to a theme park isn’t the same as you remember it as a kid. I know that is probably very obvious to a lot of people. But, honestly, I thought it would be relatively the same! Spoiler alert, it isn’t. Not at all.

Mind blown.

I went to two theme parks and I hadn’t been to one since I was 10… and going as an adult is a totally different experience.

Here’s what I realised:

Seriously underwhelmed. Image: Getty.
  • It's not so much about the rides as about the merchandise. Every ride leads to a gift/shit merchandise shop. EVERY ride! WHY? It already costs you $120 to get into the damn place.
  • Lining up is for no one -- my boyfriend and I waited 90 minutes a for 90-second ride. That’s insanity, in a world where everything is so immediate, lining up is painful. But at least you end up in a gift shop after. Sigh.
  • Food is weird and overpriced -- I paid $57 for two hot dog meals. Terrible half frozen hot dog, chips and water. WHYYYYY is it so expensive? In saying that, the water was good. But for that price I would have drunk from the toilet bowl.
  • People are weird at theme parks. If you're a normal person in real life you become a freak at a theme park. Seriously, people push and shove, they get overwhelmed and frustrated and strangely entitled, it’s so bizarre.
  • People take more photos of strange things -- I saw a woman take a selfie with a speaker, like where music comes out of. And there was a Panda in that enclosure. She took a picture of a speaker NOT the panda. I mean… I also saw someone take a picture of a sausage roll. That one I understand.
  • People dress up to go to theme parks -- seriously. At Disneyland I saw women in several outfits during the day. One was a full sequined dress and heels, then into a Disney costume, then into her casual stuff. Cause: Instagram. Seriously.
It's jest supposed to be a fun day out. Image: Getty.
  • Oh also at Disneyland they sell Disney helium balloons. HEAVEN. They have them all on string. So the sellers walk around with 100 helium balloons and it looks amazing. I don’t even think they sell them anymore. Seriously… a line forms and the seller just holds the balloon strings out of shot so people can get pics.
  • There is no such thing as a perfect day in a theme park -- it's either too hot and you just sweat and it's foul or it's cold and you get rained on… and they cancel the shows and rides.
  • Audience interaction/audience participation exists at a theme park. Hell is audience participation. Oh, it’s the worst and they insist on so much of it at the shows at theme parks. They want an adult on stage to do something and the kids go wild for it. Nope. Not for me. Seriously though… Does anyone like actually like audience participation?

I guess the reality is you’ll never get that unbridled joy of being a child back. The magic of theme parks is still there, it’s just seen with different eyes. Your stupid rational adult eyes that think about commercialism, good walking shoes and regular sunscreen application.

Theme parks are fun and an escape from reality, they are just different as adults.

I guess the cool thing is now you get to watch kids (not in a weird way) and enjoy their reactions to the wonder that a theme park is for them.

(In saying all of this I will be going to Disneyland again next month. 'Cause Aladdin is hot.)

You can pre order Tanya's book Am I Doing This Right? releasing June 2018. You can also hear her across Australia on the Hit Network’s weekend breakfast, Saturday and Sunday 7am-9am. You can also pre order her book 'Am I Doing This Right?', releasing June 2018.