Register or Login to Hide This Ad for Free!
Nov 5, 2009
It was Friday, five days into a trip to Orlando with the family and our tickets to Disney had expired the day before. For me, a thrill lover, I was thinking of this day all week. In line for Space Mountain, after riding Big (or little) Thunder Mountain Railroad. Even after riding decent rides such as Expedition Everest and Rock n' Roller Coaster, I just couldn't shake off the anticipation.

Ok, it wasn't that bad, but I was still eager to get inside the gates. We got there early to get the most out of our day, maybe too early. BGW pros will know that on many days the lots will open at around 9, the parks England (and sometimes) Scotland areas at 9:30, and then most of the rest of the park at 10. BGT opens it's lot at about 9:30-9:45, but there is a small line that develops, so be ready for that. We waited about 15 min to get a parking spot, at the front of the lot no less. We would have walked if it weren't windy and 60 degrees out. Still we ended up in the gates, with our tickets, and on our way, only about 2 min after they opened the park.

Our first stop was Gwazi. We figured that the new trains and proximity to the entrance would make this one hold long lines. We got there and waited about three rounds for the front row, which considering it moves 2 people at a time ain't bad. The crew was moving terribly slow, so it was about a ten minute wait. As we sat waiting in the station we noticed that only one side was running. We figured that there was a small chance that they'd get em both up, but on our way up the lift, we saw a group of people working on an area of track that, well, had no track. This was either really bad news for us, or the other side wasn't opening soon. Overall the ride was great, the trains make the ride. It was for sure the smoothest woodie I've ever ridden (other than that, KD is the only woodie park I've been to).

Next was SheiKra, which I still have no Idea how to pronounce, the line was short, but for Griffon pros, when you're trying to figure out where you'll end up as far as seats, remember the trains on this are 8 across.
The ride was 10 times better than Griffon. The first drop might be a little inferior, due to the fact that it levels off at ground level, but everything else was great. The loop was better, giving better airtime. The transition to the brake run really let you feel the speed, and chill of Februany. The second drop, into a tunnel was, In my opinion, better than a rehash of the start of the ride. And the splash pool creates a much bigger, better splash. Also, it is placed right next to the main path, so you can get soaked, or even just misted without going out off your way. Overall, let's trade, Tampa!

After that we headed towards Kumba. As we were walking we heard to loud roar of F-22 Raptors. Me and my dad were confused as we knew Tampa had no such planes. We slowly agreed that it must be the coaster, but it was SO FREAKIN LOUD! Seriously, after hearing it, I can say for sure that all the B&M's at BGW are sand filled. We went ahead and got in line, to find about 6 people in line for the front row, we quickly jumped in said line. After about 1 minute of standing there, we began to wonder if it was actually running, or if we were in a model roller coaster queue exhibit. Turns out they were only running one train (WHY BGT? thats the #1 theme park no-no). After a relatively long wait, I can say that the ride is similar to Alpie, but smoother and with the addition of a floor. Overall, good coaster.

After that we had hit all the big coasters(Montu was closed for the day), so we figured we'd meander. We hit up Cheetah Chase (Formerly Wild Mause, AKA Wild Izzy), which was fun, and I realized why BGW didn't really want to hang onto it. It's only got the ability to load one car at a time. So it goes at a rate of about 4 people every minute or so. The line was about ten minutes long, and it was a very slow day. it really only has a capacity of no more than 400 people an hour, if everyone was really good at getting in and out.

We then rode phoenix a few times then headed over to Scorpion. A small rough run of the mill Schwartzkopf looper. Fun, but more of a beginners coaster. With a 42" restriction, it's a great family ride.

After that we watched Cirque de Dreams, a good, and at some times disturbing show. The contortionist were, well, I can't say they weren't entertaining. In a "Ow that would hurt, I wonder how much this is messing up their body" sort of way.

We had lunch at the buffet they have. It serves pizza, pasta, dessert, and unlimited soda, all for 9.99 (less for little kids). Considering a drink (no refills) would cost you at least a third of that, it's a great price. The pizza was OK, but the pasta was great. If they're serving the alfredo when you go, try it. It's amazing. Being a younger guy, I pigged out and ate what would cost about $40 if bought on platters. This is a great place for people on a budget.

After lunch we did a few re-rides, and scoped out alot of the animal attractions. This is one thing that Tampa has on Williamsburg. It's no Seattle zoo, but it's pretty close. BGT is like two for one. Tigers, Baboons, Orangutans, Gorillas, Chimps, Lions, kangaroos...wait, I didn't know those were African. Close enough cause they pull it off. The park lacks in flats, but it has lots to do. This park is great if you bring your younger kids. I didn't go with any, but ages 10- will enjoy the huge amount of playgrounds it offers. Think Land of the Dragons, in three places in the same park.

Overall I see why BGW gets all the press, but it's still well worth a few visits. Be sure to take advantage of your discounts on admission as a passmember at BGW, it's like the icing on the cake.

Thanks for reading,
I wish I would have been on here a bit more the past month but homework has me bogged. I have a stack promo tickets for food, drinks, popcorn, etc that are expiring before I can get back I gladly would have handed off.

Did you think that the parking situation there is a little chaotic (BGT)?

I didn't know Gwazi had gotten new trains. I hope it is better compared to before. It was a major bash fest haha.

Did you pick up on the fact that Sheikra had a floor as well? That was the compromise on Griffon for the 10 wide... Lose the floor. The ten wide is also why we have a smaller immelman here with the higher G's of the wider cars.

Kumba has a hollow track and it was ordered that way to be loud. I personally think it sets the ride off with the roar of the train as you go along. How are your thoughts of the final turn's decreasing radius and higher G-forces?

That stinks you didn't get a chance to do Montu, I love that ride with the theming that they have implemented within. <3 Scorpion. Did you go into their "festhaus"?

Did you get a chance to take a lap on the railroad at the park? Did you also do Rhino Rally just outside of Timbuktu (I think it is in the Serenghetti).

I'm glad you had fun. It is more than a good quality park to change it up a bit. Did you get a chance to hop to Seaworld?

Are you a plat pass member? If you are I hope you noticed the ride once and show your pass and ride again with no wait sign. (I saw your ticket post but I am just trying to clarify)

Overall great critique!
The parking is kinda chaotic, with the whol under the road thing going on. Also I missed the entrance and had to loop around try again from the other side of the road.

SheiKra no longer has a floor. They changed it to floorless a while ago. It was originally like Oblivion at Alton towers. I'm not sure where you're going with the smaller immelman.

As far as kumba goes, I hadn't known that ALL the B&M's at bgw were sand filled. After hearing that, i know what the "signature roar" is. It sounds exactly like the F-22's at Langley.

I did hit up the "festhaus." We stop by for a bathroom break and took a look inside. It was MUCH smaller.

No railroad and no rally. We had just taken the safari at Disney 2 days before, and figured it would be about the same, just smaller scale. We planned on taking the rail road, but whenever we were near a station, there wasn't any good station to get off at. It was also kinda chilly and I didn't want to sit out in the wind wit hno way to get warm.

No Seaworld, I think I'll do that when I go down with a different party.

I have just a 2 park pass, I got in free 'cause of the Here's to the Heroes Program. I also get absurd prices on season passes (65 for 2 parks 1 year) through my MWR.
I was thinking the immelmans were different sizes.... whoops :/

I love Kumba just for the fact of that road. You feel the excitement long before it is within eyesight.

IMO the "festhaus" there is a case of they saw what to improve on with BGW, I'm sure someone like you took notice of A LOT of things that were improved on with our park.

I get you on the cold, last time I was at BGT it was 60 and the open plain of the train made it nuts. Rally is actually very different than Kilamanjaro's Safari. The segment I am talking about with be shown in a video at the conclusion of this post. I don't think it has been removed yet as rumors have suggested it would. The part is really cool at night when you have never been on it. Freaked the daylights out of me!

You would like Manta. It isn't the most intense ride built by far but it is beyond the epitome of graceful and portrays exactly what its name is.

Well whether it is you or the parents, Thank you for what you/they do for out country!
I was thinking about heading down there this summer and also stopping by seaworld for Manta and Kracken, and spending a day or two at universal. It's probably a better deal to upgrade my pass to the platinum pass.
Great trip report Fur. I'll be down there next February for SeaWorld, Busch Gardens Tampa, Universal Studios, and Islands of Adventure.
pandorazboxx said:
I was thinking about heading down there this summer and also stopping by seaworld for Manta and Kracken, and spending a day or two at universal. It's probably a better deal to upgrade my pass to the platinum pass.

Like I said up there. All the Florida parks you can wait in line once and take the next train again without waiting. Worth it!
I was also thinking you get free parking at BGT and Seaworld and Aquatica. I think that plus the price of the tickets there make it a better deal.
Scoutn757 said:
The segment I am talking about with be shown in a video at the conclusion of this post. I don't think it has been removed yet as rumors have suggested it would. The part is really cool at night when you have never been on it. Freaked the daylights out of me!

Yea, the water portion of the rally has been removed. There is track traveling through most of the old water portions for Cheetah Hunt. I think they will utilize some sort of water feature underneath the track for theming.

Here is a link from 11-09-10 showing the footers in place throughout the old rally water portion.
J0E1 said:
Do plat passes work like that in BGW? Are plat passes better than Season Passes, and do they work with those, too? By the way, how does a festhaus (German) fit into Africa?

Do, they have added benefits in Florida due to competition. They do not work like that here. That was confirmed on here actually about a year or so ago.

I call it the "festhaus" because it is pretty much one. If that was my homepark then I wouldn't and I would refer to what is here as "Desert Grill" which is what it actually is.
Consider Donating to Hide This Ad