Who needs Europa when you've got this? Thus spake Martin as we walked towards the Geroland ticket office wondering exactly what we were doing here. With the possible exception of the final park yesterday I'm not sure I've ever visited a park that looked more run down and depressing before we even made it through the gate. Once inside, however, it became clear that we were standing in what once had been a worthy rival to the excellent Dream Park. Unfortunately the harsh local environment has not been kind to the place, and the problems have been exacerbated by a lack of fresh paint and a empty lagoon with a few forlorn swan boats sunk into a few inches of sand.
It quickly became apparent that both roller coasters were down, and while the Junior Coaster looked in operational condition there was no doubt in my mind that the Boomerang was down permanently. It stood forlornly in a deserted section of the park, covered in sand and with most of its wheels missing. While many enthusiasts might argue that missing wheels wouldn't necessarily affect the ride quality of the average boomerang I'd have thought the train too heavy to leave in this fashion without severely stressing the axles. One of the staff members told us that it had closed six months before, though with times here quoted in the local calendar this could have been any time since the turn of the millennium. We were left with a small consolation of the powered Dragon Coaster, which vibrated enough to shake fillings loose.
28th February 2009
Our information was that Cairo Land held a small family coaster, and while this proved to be incorrect it was still an interesting place to walk around for a few minutes, not least for the absolutely incredible humour value in seeing people riding a Tagada while wearing full length burkas. The only really unique ride therein was Space Journey, which looked like a dark ride mechanism minus all the expected scenery. It might have been fun to try out, but sadly it was closed.
28th February 2009
Three years ago my travels brought me to the Teotihuacan Pyramids near Mexico City, and while I didn't write a trip report at the time the stunning sight of the Pyramids themselves was greatly marred by the persistent and incredibly irritating locals attempting to sell fake goods to anyone who would listen. Little did I know that the Giza Pyramids would prove even worse, with an absolute barrage of people vying for our custom and generally making a nuisance of themselves, including several who claimed to be official government staff. After paying sixty Egyptian pounds for admission to the site one might have expected to enjoy the site in peace, but it was not to be.
After twenty odd minutes we'd had enough, and headed off to the infinitely more pleasant Hard Rock Café. We invited our driver to join us for lunch, traditional in this part of the world, and somewhat to our surprise (and his) it turned out that the restaurant did not in fact have a menu in Arabic. Fortunately the staff were able to translate for him!
Sindbad Amusement Park
28th February 2009
Our final park in Cairo was small but perfectly formed; it felt like the sort of facility that could have done well anywhere in the world. It had about a dozen attractions shoehorned into almost every available space in a fashion that reminded me almost of Blackpool Pleasure Beach. It is the only park in the area that does not open during daylight hours, and consequentially the place is full of bright coloured lights that make it appear almost like a funfair, albeit a very clean one!
Like its twin yesterday evening the Big Apple (#1326) operated with no braking whatsoever, meaning that by the end of the third lap I was beginning to question the security of my earlier meal, the only time I've ever experienced that sort of sentiment on a coaster of this size. The small drop out of the station on these rides becomes positively vicious at high speeds; let the reader beware!