ROLLER coasters and water slides are big business globally, but in SA theme parks seem to be punching below their weight.For the year to October, the Walt Disney Company squeezed US$3bn in operating profit from its theme parks and resorts — 14% more than the year before. Children and their parents continued to queue around the block at places like Epcot Theme Park and Typhoon Lagoon in Florida, Tokyo DisneySea and Disneyland Park in Paris.And it’s not just the US. British newspapers have reported that a £2bn theme park is to be built in Kent. It will be named the London Paramount Entertainment Resort and more than 50,000 tourists a day are expected to flock to it. In France, Disneyland Paris has added €50bn to the country’s economy since it opened two decades ago.Yet in SA, where there is far more sunshine and space than the UK, theme parks have met with mixed success.Cape Town’s only major theme park, Ratanga Junction, is shutting down. Ratanga Junction is owned by the Rabie Proper...

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