I love the traditional, primitive Ferris wheel. While being "on top of the world", you can take a moment to enjoy the great view of the park itself and everything around it. Although it seems an extremely dull ride to the many thrill-seekers out there, it is my personal favourite, and there must be a reason why it's always been a staple in every amusement park.
The concession stands. Yes, they are technically not attractions, but imagine spending a day at an amusement park without pizza cones, ice pops, caramel popcorn, candy, hot dogs ... it simply wouldn't be worth going.
The best roller coaster is the "Goliath" at Six Flags Great America, in the US. It broke three Guinness World Records at its debut in June, for being the fastest (at 116 km/h), the tallest (a vertical drop of 55 metres) and the steepest (at an 85-degree angle) roller coaster in the world. What's more, its rickety wooden frame makes you feel like it'll collapse any minute, which makes it all the scarier for thrill-seekers!
Rather than whooshing thoughtlessly on adrenaline-pumping, sky-high roller coasters, I prefer to savour the view from a Ferris wheel. The time it takes to make one full revolution depends on its size but there's still nothing like being alone in the sky with a good friend. Or you can ride it alone for some "me time" and reflect on life's mysteries in the wild blue yonder.
My favourites are the drop-plunge rides like "The Abyss" at Ocean Park. They give you such a unique thrill and adrenaline rush, especially if, like me, you have had a chronic fear of heights from childhood. Plus, you feel so weightless as you're coming down - like all the life has been sucked out of you!
I always love rides that involve water, so my favourite is Ocean Park's "Raging River". It's certainly not the scariest and the thrill lasts only about two seconds, but floating slowly through the forested area builds up the suspense pretty well.
The "Raging River" ride in Ocean Park is a nice way to keep cool during the summer, but imagine spicing things up with a few dinosaurs and special effects, and getting your own little preview of the movie. Well, that's the Jurassic Park ride at Universal Studios in Singapore!
Most amusement parks today are high-tech, but the Polynesian Cultural Centre in Hawaii is very natural, with no electronics whatsoever. My favourite was a canoe trip that helped me learn about the Polynesians - how they crossed the Pacific in canoes hundreds of years ago and built homes on small islands like Hawaii.
From the sense of unease when a seat belt clicks shut, rising to the top with excitement, adrenaline rushing through as you anticipate the fall and finally thrilled as you drop downwards through the air, "The Abyss" is not for the faint-hearted.
My favourite roller coaster is the "Hair Raiser" at Ocean Park. Painted red and yellow, this ride lives up to its name: your hair really does stand up because of the blindingly fast movements and the sheer force of everyone screaming - definitely one I recommend.