Chakazoolu Indoor Theme Park is a small amusement facility attached to the Dana Mall, one of the oldest shopping facilities in the Kingdom of Bahrain. It is also home to Jungle Storm (#1574), a coaster which would almost certainly feature in top ten lists worldwide if more enthusiasts were prepared to venture to this part of the world. Though a relatively short ride, it qualifies as one of the most intense, aggressive, and creative designs I've seen in a long time. It is sufficiently wild that it reduced all of us to giggles, the first time that's happened to me on a coaster in several years.
The whole ride looks like it cannot possibly work, starting from the lift hill which turns right and climbs in a space that isn't much bigger than a spiral staircase. The angle of ascent is ridiculously steep, maybe seventy degrees. Somehow the train crests this with barely a jerk, before dropping into a tunnel with almost no clearance. The staff wouldn't allow us to sit in the front seat of each car for this very reason, as apparently taller people might indeed collide with the theming. The next hill had ridiculous airtime, throwing riders into the lap bar, and the rest continued in a similar vane. One ride wasn't close to being enough; we completed six laps in the end.
12th October 2010
Adhari Park is the newest amusement park in Bahrain, and it's a winner. Though it has no large scale rides, the place has a fresh and clean feel, and all the rides look well cared for. We arrived about thirty minutes prior to opening, and were hovering around the gate area when a staff member walked over to us and asked if we'd like to explore the park while we waited for it to open. This was a real treat for the photographers among us, and we made the most of the time. We also took the time to look around a small indoor area of the park, featuring five rides for younger children.
The single roller coaster is Himalaya (#1575), a production model spinning coaster from Fabbri. Though it's hard to put a finger on why, this ride did seem to be running better than the others I've been on; perhaps the warmer climate suits the machinery?
Water Garden Salmaniya
12th October 2010
In the planning stages of this trip we scanned the internet for information about Water Garden Salmaniya, but the only available data was a GPS location and a few poor quality pictures of a powered coaster. Fortunately our driver for the day was able to enlighten us; the park generally opens in the evenings, normally at around 16:00. This is undoubtedly due to the lack of visitors during working hours, but it likely also has a second fringe benefit; the darkness hides all the dirt. Our visit was at twilight when the place looked fairly grim, certainly not a patch on the two parks earlier in the day.
Super Train is a surprisingly lengthy powered coaster that covers a wide area of the park, with wide helices over water. Evacuating this ride in the event of a motor failure would probably be quite challenging, but fortunately it didn't break down today. With the coaster out of the way, we didn't hang around.