Thursday, June 21, 2007 6:57 PM
Well, I finally made it back to Texas after almost 9 years. What a great time we had! San Antonio is one of the nicest cities that I've been to, and the people in Texas are so friendly--even at Six Flags! :)
So the first park on the itinerary was Sea World. The only other one I've been to is the Orlando one. This one wasn't quite as nice, but still a great park. Below are some random observations from the day.
- The entrance to the place is gorgeous--definitely nicer than the Florida park. Also much larger, which is good for handling crowds. Some of the paths were actually quite large, too. This park is definitely the biggest of the Sea World parks.
- The park seems a little too spread out in spots--or too empty--as they do have a lot of space.
- The Great White is a good coaster--of course it is, since it's a B:TR clone. The colors, however, are beautiful--why don't they paint more coasters these colors? The queue for the ride is interesting. Was that indoor portion originally supposed to have an aquarium or something?
- Steel Eel definitely is more interesting than Steel Force. The "out" portion of the ride has 3 decent moments of airtime in the back seat. The "back" run is tamer, but it does offer a small amount of air. The paint scheme is decent, but it could maybe use a new coat, as it doesn't look vibrant.
- For some odd reason, both these coasters do not have individual row queues in the stantion houses. They have individual row gates, but not queues. Anyone know what they did this?
- The new Journey to Atlantis is a good addition, and it's not as soaking as some of the shoot-the-chutes rides. It's about as refreshing as the STC's at Fiesta Texas and Busch Gardens Williamsburg. The theming is minimal, though. Anyone know why they got away from the more detailed theming for the JTA rides after the Florida one? The boats and the ride are very well done. The ride and turntables are very smooth, and the boats are roomy and comfortable.
- Shamu stadium is a nice arena, but it doesn't fit the Believe show as well as the Florida one. On the other hand, the Clyde and Seymore show was just as good, if not better, than the Florida one. The dolphin show was good, too.
- Food selections seem like the typical Busch fare. I wish they had a full-service restaurant like "Sharks" at SWO.
- The Texas Splashdown was an ok log flume, but it doesn't get you very wet. The rapids ride, however, looked like it would, though we didn't ride it.
- The waterpark looks old, though still in pretty good shape. It was definitely popular, at least to a certain extent. I didn't realize that it was built on different "levels" of land, which adds to its character.
- There seems to be some dead space by the lake--some sort of concrete pathway/seating area that isn't being used. It would be nice if they cleaned up some of their dead space.
- The placement of the coasters and the paths around and under them is pretty good, though it would have been nice to be able to view the second half of each of the coasters from the midway better.
- The hospitality house was pretty nice, as were the clydesdale stables.
All in all, a great day at the park. I'll be getting pictures up on my website after a bit, so feel free to check back. The next TR coming is for SFFT, which we visited the next day.
Thursday, June 21, 2007 11:29 PM
Sounds like a great visit. I'm looking forward to checking it out for my first time in August.
Thursday, June 21, 2007 11:36 PM
Sounds like fun, I really have been curious about the Sea World in Texas, can't wait for the pics. I heard it was very nice, I'm curious about how it looks compared to the others or at least the one in Orlando. I heard JTA was fun, but I think it's a shame each one after Florida is less and less. I'm sure part of it has to do with no competition from the lies of Disney or Universal in Texas.
Friday, June 22, 2007 12:20 AM
Yea, it was very nice, but that should be expected as far as Busch Parks are concerned.
It seems that this park was built to handle the crowds better than the Florida park, at least as far as some of the midways and the entrance are concerned.
Shamu Stadium, IMO, is better at the Florida park. But, if you're looking for rides, this one is king as far as the Busch Sea Worlds are concerned. With 3 water rides, 2 rollercoasters, and a water park, you'll be entertained.
The Florida park, overall, is probably a hair better in terms of quality, but that could also be because of their local competition. As far as I'm concerned, though, the people in Texas help make the parks there a good experience.
Wow--I just used the word "concerned" 4 times in one post--5 including this last one :)
*** Edited 6/22/2007 7:07:50 PM UTC by rablat5***