UK theme parks from another point of view!

 
Bag_O_Laughs
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Shambhala - the new love of my life

Tue Aug 12, 2014 3:04 pm

Oh Shambhala, where have you been all my life? Seriously this rollercoaster is amazing. There is nothing more to say than that.

However this would be an awful review if that was all I had to say. So I think it’s best if I take you through my 1st ride on this glorious coaster.

I arrived at PortAventura Hotel, had a sleep (as I was in desperate need of one, I’m not as young as I used to be) once we’d explored the hotel we ventured into the park and saw Shambhala’s unique outline against the sky, intertwined with my old mate, Dragon Khan. It was about 2pm and the park was busy, so we wandered about and watched a show. Then we strolled back to the hotel for an early dinner.

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However once dinner was over and we’d had a chance to freshen up in the room I strode out of the Hotel into the park with purpose. I *semi* marched to the back of the park and when I arrived the sun was beginning its decent to the horizon. The theming in the area is impressive. It’s not quite as impressive as the Wild West area of the park but it’s still very good. I joined the 5 min queue and as a small side note I was very pleased by the free Wi-Fi which is now offered in the majority of queue lines. Although the queue was very small it was a nice little distraction to be able to whats-app some pictures of the tall beast to my mother. I probably made her stomach turn, sat at on the sofa in the UK.

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Visually Shambhala is tall, very tall and this is further amplified by the fact that Dragon Khans lift hill passes under Shamabhas. Watching trains go up the hill makes the butterflies in your stomach flutter that little bit more especially at night when the front of the train is lit up like a bit yellow arrow and all the on ride cameras light up. It makes the train look like a glowing worm flying around the night sky when viewed from a distance.

Just like that I’m sitting in the seat and I’ve locked my restraint in place, it’s at this point that I realize that I’ve got a lot of room around my booty. Perplexed slightly I have a good wriggle testing out how much movement I have and I discover I can even raise my booty from the chair a good fair way. I must say I was a little disconcerted by the level of movement and my brain for a fleeting moment starts to alarm. I get a grip however as my thighs were truly trapped in the restraint and there was no way I’m going to fall out of this thing. My boyfriend on the other hand was as white as a sheet and gripping on tightly. I guess his brain was still in alarm mode.
Ascending the lift hill the sun was setting in the distance and you get a marvelous view to the sea. The lift hill goes by surprisingly quickly and then you’re there, at the top. It’s thrilling! We were near the front and had a couple seconds hang before going over the drop…

The ride is amazing. It’s so fast, but smooth. The bunny hops give you the best air time which is of course amplified by the booty movement I spoke about earlier and the figure of 8 turn makes you just smile. The sense of freedom you get not having any restrains around your shoulders is incredible. I would even go as far to say I get a sensation of flying, even in the sitting position, which is superior to flyers such as Air. I just stuck my arms out and felt so deliriously happy. Every subsiquent time I went on this ride I came off beaming. It didn’t give me any motion sickness or headaches after repeated rides and I just fell head over heels in love with Shambhala.

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I’ve never been on a hyper coaster before and Shambhala was a brilliant introduction. To sum up, all I can say is go to PortAventura and ride this ride, It’s by far their best coaster in my opinion (sorry Dragon Khan).
 
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ponder
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Re: Shambhala - the new love of my life

Fri Aug 15, 2014 10:51 pm

Indeed, Shambhala is fantastic, particularly in the dark. I was slightly sceptical about the new B&M hyper trains, as I loved the older versions, but the way the clam-shell restraint lock across your thighs rather than around your stomach amazingly allowed for even more freedom than their previous model.

The first drop is incredible, every hill is packed with air time (especially the shorter hill they throw in after the figure-8 turn). Also, the splashdown looks incredible when lit up at night.

Sadly, my opinion of the rest of the park was very mixed. It's undoubtedly beautifully landscaped and themed, but PA's ride line-up just didn't seem to do it for me. With the exception of Shambhala, their other headline attractions are very rough. As a huge fan of B&Ms (and having ridden Hulk & Kumba previously, I do enjoy their sit-down model), to ride Dragon Khan, get a nasty jolt and trap a nerve in my spine almost ruined the day - it was our first ride of the day too!

Stampida was full of lateral forces, I never believed Furius Baco could be as shaky and uncomfortable as people make it out to be - I was wrong! And being selected to ride on the stand-up side of Hurakan Condor is a tad, err.. 'sensitive' for a bloke.

In some ways, having a coaster as awesome as Shambhala there makes it a worse park - as I desperately want to ride Shambhala again and again, but can't really justify a return to PA while the rest of their ride line-up is either painful or bland - and that is really annoying.
 
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Mark-Cal
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Re: Shambhala - the new love of my life

Sun Aug 17, 2014 8:13 am

It's fantastic isn't it !
It went straight to the no1 position of our top ten coaster list for me and my whole family the first time we rode it and after a week of constant re riding the thrill never wore off.
The freedom offered by those restraints really does lead to some awesome airtime especially if you've left yourself a bit of extra room to begin with.

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