Day two of my adventure began with a two-and-a-quarter hour drive to Jurajski Park Dinosaurów in the outer suburbs of Bialystok, a little over fifty kilometres from the Belarusian border. I was fully prepared to pay an admission fee to ride the roller coaster, but as things turned out I didn't have to – the various amusement rides were located in a free area outside of the main park gate, enabling a cheap hit-and-run.
Dino Park (#3003) is an oval-shaped coaster with tyre drives to keep the train moving. My 10zl (~€2.17) solo ride began with a half circuit in reverse, followed by an extended 25 lap forward cycle that seemed to go on forever. When the train came to a halt the operator asked me if I'd like to go again. Though tempting, I decided on balance that I'd rather keep the time in reserve for my other stops.
4th June 2022
The Illusion Farm is a beautifully themed family park that attempts to be both fun and educational. While it is home to a variety of amusement rides, they are not the main attraction – instead, most guests visit to watch shows performed by the top illusionists in Poland.
I arrived at the park in the immediate aftermath of a heavy thunderstorm. The staff member at the gate was initially reluctant to sell me an admission ticket as I was on my own, but politeness, patience, and a European Coaster Club card eventually allowed me to get the required piece of paper. Readers attempting to retrace my steps without children in tow might want to reach out to the park ahead of time to guarantee their own admission.
As usual I made my way directly to the roller coaster, only to find it in an advanced state of non-functionality. The language barrier proved insurmountable here, but I noticed several families camped out in the immediate area so I figured I might as well hang around to see what would happen. Within minutes a member of staff arrived with a number of towels, and set to work on the tyre drive mechanisms. Shortly after that a test train successfully completed the circuit and we were good to go.
Kolejka Dragon (#3004) is a double helix ride of indeterminate provenance with a minimal height differential. Its appearance was more than a little reminiscent of the powered coasters seen in Uzbekistan, albeit without the hot rail – instead, propulsion was by means of a number of tyre drives deployed at strategic locations. A tunnel between the two helices featured a set of illuminated eyes and a sound effect, and indeed the theming in general was several notches above what one normally sees in family parks. I decided to do a second ride on the grounds that I'm unlikely to be back in the near future.
I next found my way into Sekreta Komnata (The Secret Chamber), a mystery walkthrough that I couldn't quite explain; I thought at first that the artists were trying to simulate the sea, but the next room had the words "Lost in Space" painted on the wall, so who knows? I also walked through a small museum of illusions, which featured water running upwards into a tap, an illuminated lightbulb suspended in mid air, and a rotating disc that appeared to be collapsing into itself.
I'd have hung around for quite a bit longer but for the fact that the heavens opened in spectacular fashion, and as the forecast suggested it wasn't going anywhere for at least an hour I decided it would be most sensible to head back to my car.
4th June 2022
Julinek Park is a sprawling amusement park located about forty kilometres west of Warsaw. It is located in the middle of Kampinos National Park, a 146 square mile facility that is home to somewhere in the region of sixteen thousand species of animals. While I can't claim to have seen anything like that number, I did see many different interesting varieties of homo sapiens including eques in tunicas corium, gravissime auctarium masculus, and clamantia infantem. Speciales gratias Google Translate, sine quibus haec stultitia fieri non potuit.
The park has an enormous parking area that reminded me very much of the Six Flags chain, even down to the fact that the roller coaster was just feet away from cars. I claimed a spot and made my way to the ticket desk, where my admission fee was exchanged for an RFID wristwatch required to get through the gate. This seemed like a very complicated solution to a simple problem, especially since it wasn't used anywhere else as far as I could see – though presumably management had their reasons.
The amusement ride area is operated as a concession by Luna-Park Josef Kamenický, a Czech-based operator that frequently tours in Poland. Today it featured six family rides – carousel, coaster, convoy race, dodgems, flying elephants, and rotor – all of which were last seen at a travelling event in Gliwice that ran from April 26 to May 8. The star of the show was Dragon Coaster (#3005), a respectably large oval with a bonus helix that moved at a surprisingly fast pace despite having only one tyre drive motor outside of the station area.
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