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Archived Photo Trip Reports of Theme Parks, Roller Coasters, and Donkeys!
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Postby packfanlv » Thu Jul 10, 2008 8:40 pm

Mechanic, RCFreak, arrowfanman & jew thank you for the nice comments. I really enjoy doing this thread tremendously and hearing from you makes it that much better!

Team Thriller - Most of the shows are in Cantonese, Mandarin & English. For example Turtle Talk With Crush and Stitch Encounter which are interactive CG shows are done at different times in all three languages. At the front of those attractions they have a sign with the show times in each languages.

Other shows do it differently. The Golden Mickeys is in Cantonese with two screens on either side, one in English and one in Mandarin. The Festival of the Lion King is narrated by Rafiki in English, but he speaks to two monkeys who relay what he is saying in Cantonese. It is rather brilliant.

The other spot in the park where this comes in is the Jungle Cruise. Just like with TTWC and SE they have three lines here with one each for English, Cantonese and Mandarin. We found that the jokes don't transfer well in English, since it is usually the skippers second or third language.

As for the signs, I believe they are in all three languages, but am sure that they are at least in English and Cantonese. Everything is very English friendly and most of the staff also speaks some English so there shouldn't be any problems.

PoisonedPirate - The Muppet Mobile Lab was cool, but they were only doing it in Cantonese, so we couldn't understand anything. As for Crush, the show is with a screen that has crush on it. He interacts in real time with the audience. During the show he has a few kids ask him questions. My son was picked.

HKDL is actually cheaper than other Disney parks. While the food may be about the same, admission is around $40 USD which isn't too bad. The two hotels on property aren't cheap, so I would suggest staying in Kowloon where you can catch the subway out to the DLR. This is what we did.

As for Ocean Park, they now have a small ferris wheel, but the wheel in the drawing looks to be much bigger and will be in that area on the top of the mountain that is still under construction. I agree the view will be fantastic.

Thanks again everyone!
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Happy Valley Shenzhen

Postby packfanlv » Sat Jul 12, 2008 1:23 am

Happy Valley Shenzhen is the first of what the OCT company hopes will be a theme park franchise similar to Six Flags or Cedar Fair. Currently there are only two Happy Valleys (Shenzhen & Beijing), but two more are under construction. (Shanghai & Chengdu)

Happy Valley is known for having great theming and this park doesn't disappoint in that department. My only complaint is that they list there hours as 10:30am to 10pm, but stagger their ride openings. When we entered the park at 11am, in addition to the four coasters, they only had kiddie rides open, leaving each of the three adult coasters with a 1-2 hour line. They didn't open up the adult flats until around 2pm, at which time the lines became much more reasonable.

For those that don't know, Shenzhen is a booming city just inside Mainland China bordering Hong Kong. In the past 30 years the city has grown from a small fishing town to one of the largest and richest cities in China. With that said, Shenzhen really isn't anything special and the only thing we found of interest in the city was the theme park. (BTW it was really hot and sunny when we visited so some of the pictures are a bit overexposed.) Enjoy!
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The Hong Kong metro runs all the way to the Chinese border at Shenzhen.
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After crossing the border a twenty minute subway ride brings you to the station where Happy Valley is. Emerging to the surface you can't miss this sign!
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The park entrance really isn't anything special.
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The front of the park is themed as a boardwalk with a lot of flats including a Disk-O. This area didn't open til around 2pm.
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Our hotel was part of the OCT area and overlooked the park. (Our room was on the other side of the hotel so we didn't face into the park) =-(
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This is the crappiest 4D film I have ever seen. Basically it is Christopher Lloyd running around a lighthouse in a storm and dubbed into Chinese. We only lasted five minutes before walking out.
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Nice landscaping.
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The water park is included in the price, but it to did not open until later.
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It does have a pretty cool looking Master Blaster slide though!
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Next we headed for the Mine Train coaster to get our first credit of the day.
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But this was the line we found so we decided to leave it for later in the day.
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Chinese people and mining for gold = a good show
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With the temperature around 104F or 40C I decided it might be fun to ride the splash boats.
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As you can see the ride is very wet!
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Jasmine and SR didn't want to go so I went solo. Of course I bought a poncho, but it didn't work too well.
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The poncho just wasn't made for the stress of my oversized American body and had several holes by the time we dropped. In essence, I still got quite soaked.
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The ride itself goes through about five minutes of abandoned fishing town scenery before the climb. Well themed, but quite boring.
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Past the splash boats we come to a sandy beach area with a playground and a couple of kiddie rides.
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Yay for Frog Hopper!
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We soon came to the other major coaster in the park. RCDB has a different name, but the English sign said "Suspended Looping Coaster". (Guess what kind of coaster it is!)
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Chinese coaster nerds waiting for the train to take a picture.
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Oh yah that's it! Give it to me baby.
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But the line was to long so we headed to this self powered ride.
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"Dad please don't make me take another goofy photo so you can show it off on TPR!"
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Next up stay on this spinning wheel as long as you can and please don't throw up.
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Then the team firefighter game. We are now 2-0 after our victory at Legoland a couple of years ago.
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America 1 - China 0
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The picture sucks but the theming was nice.
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We took another quick peak at the mine train but the line was still over an hour. Did I mention they were only running one train all day on both of the major coasters!
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This was like that audio show with Drew Carey at Disney's Hollywood Studios only good!
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I've been working on the railroad.......
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Yay for theming!
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The train had weird hours as well and looked to be a premium attraction so we missed this train credit. =(
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Magic Castle is the newest area of the park. It seems to be themed around the mascot seen in the picture. The children here loved saying "HELLO" to us and generally harassing us. They don't see too many foreigners in theme parks.
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"Hello, hello ...... hello ...... You speak Chinese? Hello ..... *giggle giggle* Hello .... Where you from? *giggle* America? *giggle giggle giggle* Hello!"
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Same (They were really friendly.)
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"Lets get out of here mom before those girls give me a kiss!"
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The area also has a cool underground ball battle area.
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It is really well done.
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RCDB only had the new Spinning Mouse coaster listed in this area, but when we arrived we found a bonus opportunity. They also built a "family coaster" that we didn't know about. YAY for Baby Coaster!
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It is actually a well themed figure 8.
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Credit whoring POV.
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For a kiddie coaster it was a lot of fun!
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Next up is Wild Elfin. Yes this is just the same Golden Horse spinning wild mouse that is in every other Chinese park. Get used to seeing this ride quite often in upcoming parks.
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Two cars at once.
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Lift hill.
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My main complaint about these rides is that they over brake them. This design has six separate spots where the car hits brakes. BOOOOOOOO!
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The Magic Castle also has a Santa/North Pole themed shooting dark ride that really sucked.
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The last ride in this area is the nicest themed splash battle I have ever seen.
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Shawn Reece went poncholess and got soaked. Jasmine and I sat it out.
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An amazing ride actually.
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Ok at this point we had seen a lot of park without being on a major coaster. It was time for this to change.
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The lines had died down at the mine train.
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I believe this is the same layout as the new mine train at Hard Rock park.
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The theming is fantastic.
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Its amazing that the whole thing is held up with bamboo! =)
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Almost as good as Thunder Mountain!
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Next on to the SLC.
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I believe it is themed as being in a temple.
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The headrests are extra cushy!
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The ride itself isn't too rough. (Although I have learned how to hold my head out as to not bang it during an SLC experience)
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At this point we were tiring so we headed back to the front for a few more rides before calling it a day.
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Sorry Rapids Nerd. They were closed on this day.
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Back to the uninspired boardwalk section of the park.
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The frisbee was fun.
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But this "Float Around the Area On This Round Boat in a Pointless Way" ride was boring.
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Another look at the boardwalk.
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Ok I just can't resist adding one more picture of the mine train coaster. (Following will be a few random pictures.)
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Random scenery.
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Every park in China has a double decker carousel where the top section is closed.
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Thanks Happy Valley for some "Happy Times" (Operations sucked but the park is a lot fun!)
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Postby AlmereStars » Sat Jul 12, 2008 3:16 am

wow that park has some serious theming!! the splash and minecoaster looks really awesome!

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Postby OldJJman » Sat Jul 12, 2008 6:27 am

Great pics!

Love the wheel of death!!

Thanks for the info about the lines, as I believe we are going there on the TPR trip in September!!

JJ

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Postby packfanlv » Sat Jul 12, 2008 9:14 am

^Thanks JJ. Yes I do believe you will visit this park on the trip. I can't wait to see pictures of all the TPR antics in these Chinese parks. When you visit it will be during school holidays I believe, so maybe they will operate all of the rides all day. We visited during a weekday when school was in, but there were so many school groups and youth groups that the park was pretty packed. We are heading to Beijing in two days and I can't wait to see the Happy Valley there. It looks even better!
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Postby Tikifire » Sun Jul 13, 2008 2:25 am

Thanks for all the great trip reports. I'm really enjoying reading them.

Something I noticed in your HKDL photos and in other photos I've seen of the park is all the mountains around it. That's really strange to me as I've been to DL twice and to WDW more times than I can count and seeing mountains behind familiar sights is a bit of a weirdness.

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Postby SteveC » Sun Jul 13, 2008 3:08 am

Enjoying your report Shawn; I think I spy a TPR takeover of a certain flat ride (just posted) on the China trip, for sure!

Also like your blog- and especially the maps, I guess I'm a map nerd :lmao:

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Postby PoisonedPirate » Mon Jul 14, 2008 2:04 am

That waterpark looks totally awesome! Was that leafy/green/moss covered ride in the background a log flume? Or was it part of something else?

The theming in that park is amazing, especially the mine train one. I am really impressed because my expectations of a place in the middle of nowhere would be quite low.

Why do they stagger the times? Is it for cost effectivness or something?
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Postby larrygator » Mon Jul 14, 2008 10:09 am

Thanks for the pictures and insight. I am in the process of adding Happy Valley Shenzhen to TPR's Park Index page.
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Postby packfanlv » Tue Jul 15, 2008 2:21 am

Tikifire- Yes HKDL has an awesome location and the mountains add some atmosphere. The park feels so much like Disneyland in California, (minus a few key rides) but with a completely different setting. I didn't have high hopes for HKDL (given the lack of rides and lackluster reviews), but it was a pleasant surprise. I LOVED HKDL! I can't say that enough!

PoisonedPirate - I believe that is the Master Blaster water coaster that you are seeing. It is located in the water park section. Also, Shenzhen is a city of almost 5 million people and it sits right next to Hong Kong with millions more, so it is hardly in the middle of nowhere, but I agree the theming is quite impressive.

Larry - Thanks! There are a lot more Chinese parks coming in this thread and at least a couple that TPR isn't visiting on the upcoming trip.
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