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Busch Gardens for Ride Lovers
It’s been almost ten years since we last visited Busch Gardens and although we remembered enjoying the park, the children were young then. Now they’re young adults and more interested in rides; would there be enough serious rides to engage them?
Cheetah hunt was our first ride and did not disappoint. It is a long ride over 400 feet and includes a figure of eight turn at above 100 feet. There are many twists and turns and the ride gets to over forty miles an hour. A great start! Some of our party then decided they wanted something more extreme and went to Pantopia to try Falcon’s Fury – this is definitely not one for the faint hearted as you climb up nearly three hundred feet, pivot in mid-air so you face the floor and then are plunged back down at speed. Not for me- I don’t do vertical drops and you should have heard the screams!
The next coaster was Cobra’s Curse – again it’s a bit different as it features a vertical lift to over 100 feet to begin, a backwards portion and also a free spin element where how you spin depends on the weight distribution in the four person carriage – great fun! On to Congo River Rapids; a twelve person raft water ride. We certainly got wet, particularly thanks to some other park guests shooting us with water cannons!
No better way to dry off than a high speed ride so those of us who felt brave went to do Sheikra next. That’s another one not for me as it features a ninety degree drop from two hundred feet with twists and turns as well.
One of our favourites had to be Montu though. This was one of the few rides we remembered from our previous trip and wanted to remember if it was as good as we remembered – it didn’t disappoint! It is still one of the world’s longest inverted roller coasters and was one of the first to include an ‘Immelmann loop’ (meaning you loop and roll at the same time). I think I like this one so much because it is a ‘top hanging’ coaster where your legs swing and to me this feels like you’re flying. I love that sensation! Kumba by contrast is a ride with large, 32 person cars featuring vertical loops, a 360 degree spiral at 60mph and plummets of a hundred feet over the three minute ride. You get to experience 3. 8 times the force of gravity but by this stage, we were taking everything in our stride!
Sand serpent is classed as more of a family ride and starts with a slow climb which feels quite rickety in small cars, however it still provides thrills as it zig zags around very tight bends and even the quite small drops are pretty exhilarating. Scorpion is also one of the original rides and is unusual because it features a full loop while riders are only wearing a lap bar which feels quite scary in itself!
By this time we were getting a little tired and decided we didn’t want to get wet again so we gave the Stanley Falls Flume a miss and decided to re-visit our favourite rides for a second time before heading for home. And the verdict? The best day of the holiday by unanimous opinion! A great park with some great rides.
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