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Need Busch Gardens advice

Busch Gardens Tampa: Is Busch Gardens worthy of an Annual Pass?

From Karin S
Posted February 13, 2007 at 9:55 PM
I need some advice. I am thinking of doing annual passes for Busch Gardens when my Disney passes expire. I'm getting pretty tired of the crowds and would like something that's fun and different. We did Universal's passes for 3 years and I got burned out. Seaworld doesn't have enough stuff to hold the family's interest, so that leaves Busch. I haven't been there in years, so I don't know if it's any good. I don't really care about the hotels or vacation packages since we live about an hour north of Tampa and we'd just go for the day. Any info is appreciated.


Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.

From Ashley Stuchlik
Posted February 14, 2007 at 1:27 PM
I just moved to Florida and bought the Platinum Pass for Busch Gardens. It’s good for two years and gets you in to any Busch park. It has completely paid for itself in my case because I get free preferred parking and get to ride again any of major roller coasters after standing in line. I go to Busch Gardens Tampa about once a week and it has not gotten old yet. I did get to go to Sea World one weekend and it was awesome. You get reserved seating at all of the shows. I can't wait to go to Adventure Island next month when it opens. So I would say definitely get the year pass. There is so much to do there and things are constantly changing, its always fun!!

From Ed Newman
Posted February 20, 2007 at 4:07 PM
I would definitely have to agree with Ashley. BGT is one of my favorite parks and it offers something for everyone. If you are a coaster fan, then you will love the world-class quality of the big coasters they have. If there are animal lovers in your family, the "zoo" and assorted animal exhibits are very appealing. The shows may not be as numerous as what you find at a Disney park, but they are of decent quality. "Katonga Tales" is a nicely staged production, that at the very least provides you with 30 mins. of comfort in the air-conditioning. The bird show is also surprisingly good (especially for kids). If you are tired of the crowds and lines in Orlando, then you will find Busch even more appealing. We have made many 2 and 3 day visits (we live in Atlanta area and stay with relatives in Tampa) and experienced numerous days with only 5-20 minute waits. If you are looking to maximize your savings, I would recommend the "fun pass" and/or the "Silver Pass". The Silver pass gets you in-park discounts plus free (regular) parking. In summary, there is a great variety to experience and enjoy at Busch. I think at the very least you would benefit from a one year pass. Even though Six Flags over Georia is only 20 mins. from our house, we would get BGT annual passes instead (we felt it was worth the effort to travel there, very nice park). Have fun !!

From Karin S
Posted February 21, 2007 at 5:14 AM
Thanks for the great input. I think I'll check it out. Orlando's starting to get on my nerves.

From Jesse S.
Posted February 21, 2007 at 4:05 PM
Busch Gardens Africa is a superb park, like all Busch parks. It has the nice animal environment like SeaWorld does, but it has the upgrade of better setter, WORLD-CLASS dining, Broadway-caliber shows (such as Katonga), and amazing rides. Roller coasters are abundant, even though they did just recently take out Python, their first coaster. The water rides are excellent, including the Congo River Rapids, my favorite ride in the park, Tanganyka Tidal Wave, and the Stanleyville Falls log flume. You can get tours like the "Serengeti Safari", in which you will be able to hand-feed giraffes. As for the dining, the Zambia Smokehouse is DELICIOUS. It and Trappers Smokehouse in Busch Gardens Europe have the best BBQ I have ever eaten, and I love my BBQ. The Crown Colony House is a great place to sit down in air-conditioning and sometimes have a fantastic view of the Serengeti below you. The food there is also very good, with many choices. I hope you enjoy the park!

From That Chick
Posted July 2, 2009 at 1:22 PM
Hello "All"...

I'm from VA - - about 2.5 hours S/W of BG Williamsburg. I was thinking about buying the Platnium pass since ROA flies to Tampa/St. Pete and Orlando for about $80 ROUND TRIP (Alligent Air)

I was wondering if there were any promo codes to get a better discount or any advantages such as "hotel discounts" or "meals" etc. We are buying 3 passes (one thousand dollars) and we would have to fly down, get a room, get a rental car etc. So it would be a bit of an "expense" for us to just "Go to FLA" on a whim... it would take more planning.

Is there any shuttle service from the airports that take you to the park?? Best hotels for the money (not a dump, but not the HILTON etc.) shuttle offsite to eat etc. ANY ANY ANY help would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Stephanie in Virginia

From Tony Duda
Posted July 2, 2009 at 8:24 PM
The annual passes used to be more valuable when they gave out 2 free beers a day but they do have some other perks. 10% off food and drink (beer too), free general parking, a few pass holder only events a year, park calendars mailed to you, discounts on some experiences (Ser. safari, etc.).
The web site does OK in listing them. There are no BGT hotels but they do have an arrangement with some local ones (also on web site). There is a shuttle from Orlando to BGT and back that is cheap that they sponsor. BGT is a good roller coaster park with 5 big ones and 2 smaller, some live shows, weekly Jan. - Mar. live touring shows.
Also their water park is next door and it is part of the premier pass (I think).

You need to decide if the gulf coast, Tampa touring, etc. are also in your plans. Tampa Bay is very much different than Orlando and has a different set of things to do.

From That Chick
Posted July 17, 2009 at 10:55 PM
Okay... bought the Platinum Pass and I've gone to BGWilliamsburg about 6 times so far, and now I'm in Tampa for 2 weeks just to hit the "sister parks". I'll visit BGT tomorrow for the first time - - I've gotten GREAT GREAT GREAT advice from TPI on BG Williamsburg and love this site in general. (really helps- THANKS for all the info)

Stephanie in VA

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