Busch Gardens is a family-themed amusement park with world-class, exhilarating rides and a zoo with over 12,000 animals. The park is situated on over 700 acres just north of downtown Tampa, Florida. It is easy to reach by car or bus. Busch Gardens has entertained millions of visitors since the park opened over 50 years ago. Busch Gardens has evolved over the decades and today offers some of the most thrilling amusement rides that can be found in the United States. If you have time to spend a day or two of your time visiting the park while staying in Tampa, you are sure to take away great memories of fun and excitement.
The Wildlife Attractions
Before there were rides, Busch Gardens’ best attraction was its wildlife display. Busch Gardens is considered one of the largest zoos in North America. The park features different sections of birds and animals. There is a pond that is filled with alligators near the entrance that you can see this powerful animals close-up through a steel fence. If you have never seen alligators close up, this will be a must-see at the park.
Busch Gardens also has re-created an African wildlife setting that is modeled after an open range in Africa. Zebras, giraffes, elephants, water buffalo and hundreds of smaller animals can be found in this section. A miniature train ride with a tour guide explains more about the animals and is the best way to view this sprawling area of the park. On the safari-style journey, you’ll be sure to even hand-feed giraffes at one o the stops. Animal attractions also include the Myombe Reserve — home to gorillas and chimpanzees — and the bird sanctuaries, where visitors can see nearly 1,000 birds from across the world.
Kids love Treetop Trails, a ropes course with a multi-level maze, crawl tubes, bridges, and climbing nets.
The park also includes a sanctuary for lions and tigers replete with caves, swimming pools and lounging areas or these magnificent animals. For an added treat, try to schedule your trip to their area around their morning and evening feeding times to watch them eat.
The Amusement Rides
There are nine major thrill rides at Busch Gardens, the most popular of which include Cobra’s Curse, Cheetah Hunt, SheiKra, and Falcon’s Fury.
The newest ride at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay is Cobra’s Curse — a serious spin coaster with a 70-foot vertical lift. Set in the Egypt-themed area of the park, Cobra’s Curse takes rides on an adventure through an archeological dig.
SheiKra — another mega rollercoaster — is hailed as the first dive coaster in North America, and has a major 90-degree drop. Fearless visitors will love the clear car floors (unobstructed views of all the drops, twists, and loops) and the surprise water feature.
After seeing real-life cheetahs at the Cheetah Run attraction, grab a seat on Cheetah Hunt. As Florida’s first triple launch coaster, you’ll speed along the Serengeti on a wild 4,400-foot-track.
Theme park visitors who prefer drops to spins and flips should ride Falcon’s Fury, which is the tallest freestanding drop tower in North America. You’ll slowly climb to a height of 335 feet, pivot to a face down position, and plunge back to the ground at a cool 60-miles-per-hour. The Park also has numerous water rides that include the Flume Ride and other rides that take you through sections of the park as though you were white water rafting. Bring a bathing suit for these rides because you will get wet! Visitors in need of something more tame should ride the Sand Serpent (a family-friendly coaster with a top speed of 22 miles per hour) or the traditional log flume-style Stanley Falls. The junior Air Grover coaster has mini-dives for kids and low-key grown-ups, while the entire family can ride together on the Congo River Rapids’ 12-person rafts.
After visiting Tampa, many people fall in love with the area’s beaches, boating and fishing opportunities, great restaurants and general lifestyle and re-locate to Tampa. If you are so inclined, remember that Tampa is located in a sub-tropical climate zone. That means plenty of year-round heat with temperatures in the high 80’s to mid-90 degrees for 6 to 7 months of the extended summer. If you purchase a home, you will definitely want to have it well-ventilated and insulated properly to minimize the heat trapped in your attic and running up your electric power bills from air conditioning. You should contact one the best companies in Tampa to help you reduce the heat in your house in the summer months, Insulation Plus of Tampa. They offer solar-powered attic fans, blown-in insulation for your attic, radiant barrier to shield your attic absorbing the sun’s ultraviolet rays and a heat barrier for your attic entrance way. The owner of the company is Ross Barall. His team does great work and your power bills are sure to decrease. You can’t go wrong with this company!