Busch Gardens, SeaWorld announce details on 2020 rides

Local News

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and SeaWorld Orlando unveiled new details about the parks’ upcoming attractions.

The parks held a dual press conference in Tampa and Orlando at 10 a.m. Thursday.

Attendees received a hard hat tour of Busch Gardens Tampa’s 2020 attraction construction site or enjoyed food and beverages tastings from SeaWorld’s Craft Beer Festival.

Earlier this year, Busch Gardens announced it would be updating Gwazi, Florida’s first dueling wooden roller coaster.

Andrew Schaffer, a member of the Busch Gardens design and engineering team, shared the new details on the reimagined attraction at the press event.

Gwazi is transforming into Iron Gwazi, North America’s tallest and the world’s fastest and steepest hybrid coaster.

Iron Gwazi will be 206 feet tall, feature a 91-degree drop and reach speeds of 76 miles per hour. Busch Gardens said the elements of the former wooden attraction will be integrated into the new ride’s steel track, which will allow for an entirely unique experience.

The new hybrid coaster is supposed to represent a crocodile, which is the largest living reptile and the overall inspiration for the ride’s adaption.

Adventure Island in Tampa will also see a new ride come 2020.

Andrew Hatcher, a member of the park’s design and engineering team, announced the latest adventure coming for families to enjoy.

Opening in the spring, Solar Vortex will make its debut as the first dual-tailspin waterside in the United States.

This new family thrill will feature three AquaLucent experiences, which will harness “the power of the Florida sun to descend colorful patterns into the slide as riders reach speeds up to 20 miles per hour,” Hatcher said.

In addition to the two new Tampa park attractions, SeaWorld Orlando will also get a new coaster of its own.

SeaWorld Orlando will debut its first launch coast called Ice Breaker. The ride will feature four launches, both forward and backward, as well as the steepest beyond vertical drop in Florida, which will be a 93-foot tall spike with a 100-degree angle.

Ice Breaker will also open in Spring 2020.

Come next year, Busch Gardens will be celebrating its 60th anniversary and Adventure Island its 40th.

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