Knight Valley

25th September 2012

Knight Valley is one part of OCT East, a resort constructed by the same group that owns the Happy Valley parks. It has only a handful of rides, but in mitigation, almost all of these qualify as major attractions. Having said that, the general state of repair of the park indicated that the maintenance budget isn't as high as it should be, with at least five broken escalators and a number of closed rides. There was a tree growing through part of the track on the Waterfall log flume, indicating that it had not run in some time, and the Space Journey appeared to have been abandoned following a fatal accident in mid-2010.

Wood Coaster

The star attraction in the park now is the imaginatively named Wood Coaster (#1849), a massive ride from Great Coasters International that takes full advantage of the surrounding terrain. There is almost no straight track on the ride after the lift hill, with the majority of the layout being banked left or right at various angles. Other features include several airtime hills, a station fly-through, and a tunnel. Crucially, the ride quality matches what I've come to expect from GCI, with enough bounce to feel like a wooden coaster without anything that might be considered rough. I managed a total of eight laps during our session.

My eye was caught by the extremely impressive set in use for the Flash Flood stunt show, and as there was no particular time pressure today I decided to sit down to watch it. The performance was along the lines of all such shows, with a mixture of flying jet skis, acrobatics, fireballs, and explosions. The only really unique bit was when the two gentle waterfalls at the back of the set suddenly became massive torrents of water, which looked rather impressive for the thirty seconds or so before the tanks emptied!

The next stop was at Jungle Karting, a surprisingly long Bobkart track and one of the best I've ridden. We rode twice before heading over to the 4D Cinema. I'd probably have chosen to skip this if I'd realised it was showing Pandavision, but even still it was a nice opportunity to sit in air conditioned comfort for a few minutes!

A few of the attractions within the park can be found at the top of a mountain behind the main park. This area is accessed via a cable car or via a surprisingly fast Funicular that was quite an exciting ride on its own. At the apex, we boarded an observation tower that took us a further hundred metres up to a truly spectacular view, albeit one which was too far away from the rest of the park for anything beyond a basic overhead photograph.

Boosters

The park has a pair of genuine Fabbri Booster rides at the top of the mountain that I'd love to have tried. Unfortunately, these operate with a weight limit of just seventy-five kilograms, which excludes just about everyone other than the local population. There can't be many adult males from outside Asia who weigh less than this. I couldn't help but wonder about the reasoning behind the restrictions, given that the same ride operates all over Europe without them.

I finished up my morning with a trip on the 4000 Miles to Earth Center dark ride, which used the Spiderman system on a tour that borrowed heavily from the similarly named ride at Tokyo Disneyland.

 

Shenzhen Zhongshan Park

25th September 2012

The drive from Knight Valley to Shenzhen Zhongshan Park should have taken around forty minutes, but in the end took a little over double that thanks to our driver insisting on driving through Shenzhen City Centre. The comedy got even better after he was pulled over and reprimanded by a policeman for not stopping at a level crossing, something that I'd have thought entirely normal in China. Every time I cross a road here I find myself humming the theme from Frogger...

As it was, the thirty-strong group managed to ride both the Spinning Coaster (#1850) and the powered Gliding Dragon before returning to the coach in just twenty minutes, which has to be some kind of record!

 

Window of the World

25th September 2012

We arrived at Window of the World about ninety minutes before closing, and quickly headed for the roller coaster. The elaborately named Greenland Underground Exploration (#1851) proved to be an unexpectedly good ride, with some sharp turns and some unexpected airtime. The course was journey was taken in almost complete darkness, with only the occasional camera flash punctuating the gloom.

The only other rides of interest to me were all closed for maintenance. As such, I spent my remaining time exploring the replica versions of various tourist attractions from around the world.

Window of the World

2012


Knight Valley

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Shenzhen Zhongshan Park

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Window of the World

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