Next week I’ll be returning to Busch Gardens Williamsburg for my first rides on Verbolten. I’ve been able to keep from reading too much about the event building, so I’m really looking forward to the effects and overall look of the interior. I know that there’s a drop section, but other than that, I’m in the dark. Sorry, I couldn’t help myself. So, look out for my review of Verbolten in the coming weeks as I finally get to encounter the first (of hopefully 4) 2012 roller coasters. It’s one of my Top 5 Most Anticipated New Coasters, so I can’t wait to see how it is.
If there’s time, I hope to sneak in a few rides on my top ten-ranked coasters Apollo’s Chariot and Alpengeist to see if they’re still deserving of their spots. I’m also looking forward to checking out Mach Tower and taking the kids to the Sesame Forest of Fun with another kiddie coaster for my daughter in Grover’s Alpine Express.
Will I think that Verbolten is a suitable replacement for Big Bad Wolf? Will the drop section be worthy of a coaster moment post? Will I get high fives from all of the Sesame Street characters? Answers to these questions and many more, here on the blog. And also check for first reactions on my Twitter.
Even as I’ve visited new parks and had new experiences, Busch Gardens Williamsburg has remained one of my favorite theme parks. It’s a beautiful, green park with top-notch operations. What it lacks in quantity (with regards to coasters) it more than makes up in near superior quality. For years, I’ve been begging my Mid-Atlantic friends and family to go to the park. At least now, thanks to Google Street View, they can take an in-depth look around the park and start to get a feel for why it’s not just another theme park.
If you’ve never used it, Google Street View is a feature in GoogleMaps that allows you to get a ground-level view of the area that you’re looking at. In most major U.S. cities you can pick up that little yellow man icon and drop him on roads that are highlighted blue. Then you’ll be able to move down the street from the same view you’d have if you were driving. You can also look around 360-degrees and even look up and zoom in.
A while back Google sent out their Google Trike to get areas that their vehicles can’t go like theme parks. Here’s a post and a video of a Google Trike capturing SeaWorld Orlando. Anyway, a street view is also available of Busch Gardens Williamsburg. So, drag that little yellow man onto the blue pathways in the park and see the park like a guest.
I’ve also picked a few spots to the right that you can jump to by clicking on them.
Sometimes in Street View there are user submitted photos. The photos in the second image were available when I moved down the the bridge connecting Italy and Germany. It’s one of the places many stop to take pictures. You can see how Alpengeist, Loch Ness Monster, and Griffon converge at the Rhine River. On the other side of the bridge you’ll still see Big Bad Wolf diving to the water. If you’re there today you’ll Verbolten doing the same.
Here’s a view of the Festhaus in the Germany section of the park. It’s a massive restaurant with a stage and a bunch of eating options. If you click into it and look around you can make your way to the 3D dark ride, the Curse of Darkastle.
It’s hard to photograph Apollo’s Chariot, but you can see it loom over the Festa Italia area.
You can see kids awaiting another train from Griffon to pass by so they can get cooled off by a splash. If you pan up, you can see a train at the crest of the 90-degree drop.
It looks like the Sesame Street characters waved at the Google Street View Trike as it passed through Sesame Forest. If you click into this view, pan left and you’ll see an odd view of Ernie standing by himself. Is he plotting something sinister?
I consider Busch Gardens one of the most attractive parks around? What do you think? Have you ever been to the park? Leave a comment below.