April 3, 2007
Burbank, CA -- Worldwide theme park attendance was up 2.2% in 2006 according to a published report. An estimated 186.5 million guests attended the world's Top 25 parks, an increase of 2.9%. The #1 attended park in the world Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World had an estimated attendance of 16.6 million.
The information comes from the annual 2006 Global Theme Park Attendance Report published on April 1 by Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) and Economics Research Associates (ERA).
According to TEA/ERA the increase reflects stability and steady, modest growth within the parks and attractions industry, for which much of the credit is due to smart reinvestment.
Disney remained the worldwide leader with a combined attendance of 112.5 million. The top eight attended parks worldwide were Disney properties.
The single largest increase in attendance was at Legoland in Carlsbad, California. A $10 million investment in the new Pirates Shores attraction resulted in a 16% increase in attendance.
Disney also reaped the rewards with their new Expedition Everest roller coaster ride. The new attraction at Disney's Animal Kingdom increased attendance by 8.9% and left the park just shy of beating out Disney MGM Studios park.
Six Flags theme parks nationwide saw a decline at the front gate. Attendance at both Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, NJ and Six Flags Great America in Gurnee, IL was down 8%. In Southern California attendance was fell 10% at Six Flags Magic Mountain even with the addition of the new $25 million Tatsu roller coaster.
Disney's California Adventure ranked #7 with a 2.1% increase and estimated attendance of 5.95 million. The park often criticized in the media and by hardcore Disney fans, is the only park in the North America top ten to move up in rank.
In Europe, Disneyland Paris continued to be the number one attended park with estimated attendance of 10.6 million.
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