Jungala (new land at BGA) is slated to open in a couple weeks.
...and they're webcasting the Grand openings, April 3 for Jungala, April 4 for Aquatica. (I might even make the Aquatica one, so look for me...LOL!) ;)
I, like many of you, am not a huge waterpark person. The times when I've been truly impressed doubled this past weekend. Now I have two waterparks that are good enough to drag me away from coasters and other thrillrides.
As with all Busch/SeaWorld properties, the landscaping is...well, the STANDARD by which other parks' efforts are measured...and come up
short of the mark. My goodness there was a dazzling array of plants flowering ALL over the park. plus beautiful and consistent theming throughout. Gotta love A-B for that. The views of SeaWorld's Kraken and JtA are also quite nice... ;)
Schlitterbahn may still be the big enchilada, with its limitless space, dizzying array of unique rides, and a surreal setting in wooded Texas. But Busch/SeaWorld certainly has set up quite a nice place in Orlando, if a bit undersized. I'll have pics up soon (this weekend if not sooner, stupid NCAA tourney, hehe). There are four "towers" in the park. One is the well-known Dolphin Plunge, where two slides are set up that go through a Commerson's dolphin enclosure. There are racing mat slides (8 in all, with a neat twist at the top so each *set* of four riders ends up reversed at the bottom). Twin tube-funnels inhabit one tower, and you end up floating from the bottom of the funnel directly into the lazy river. Another tower houses "regular" tube slides. There's a GIANT play-fort area, a kids area, two side-by-side wavepools (only one was operational when we were there).
The lazy river is quite cool, and features misters and two cool "float-thrus". You can take a short-cut of sorts and float past an aquarium, or you can take the long float around to catch an underwater glimpse into the aforementioned Commerson's enclosure.
The STAR attraction to me...a "rapids-version" lazy river. no tubes allowed, but there are hi-power jets along the course that really give quite a push (or a beating if you get too close). The only other waterpark I've been to that had something like this was Schliiterbahn. And they are amazing. I have the sunburn to prove what a great time we had.
Also of note - like Universal, they have the all-you-can-eat passes, all day long, for 20 bucks. I think they were good at the one eatery location, and included beverages...but I'm not certain about that...
^matt., the trees ARE going to take some time.....there are a few full-grown ones, but most of them are smallish and will take a couple years to really provide good shade. Luckily, stuff grows FAST here...
The concrete varied pretty widely, some was smooth enough to almost create a potential slip-and-fall, other places it was quite rough. Safe, but harder on the feet. Next time I bring water-shoes... ;)
*** Edited 3/20/2008 8:54:09 PM UTC by rollergator***
In any case, from what I've seen and read about Sea World california, they treat their animals well and have programs to rescue local wildlife. So, just curious, what makes you think they are so untrustworthy?
Commerson's were selected for a variety of reasons, many of which involve their willingness/desire to interact with humans.
Short anecdote: I asked for a park map on the way out, and was told they no longer kept park maps up front (two WEEKS after opening!) - because they found too many of the maps found their way into the dolphins' enclosure. Most of the humans on the planet don't get the level of care that animals in A-B parks do.
P.S. I saw people try a variety of methods to slow down and SEE the dolphins while sliding by....increasing their time in the clear glass tube all the way up to about 3/4 of a second. It is "momentary".
edit again: Just because I *am* so nuts - we took note that the dolphins spent more time near the slide tubes earlier in the day, then seemed to spend more time in other parts of the enclosure later in the day. We "speculated/hypothesized" that the water temperature near the tubes (where the water is shallower) might have heated up just a bit...and that the dolphins might prefer the cooler waters. A-B isn't alone in being VERY respectful and cautious... ;)
*** Edited 3/21/2008 5:13:55 PM UTC by rollergator***
You must be logged in to post