How big is BGA, is it a one or two day event?

Busch Gardens Tampa: How much time should I plan for Busch Gardens?

From A Abrams
Posted May 26, 2009 at 12:34 PM
DH & I will be visiting the Orlando area the second weekend in June. We’ve done Disney before and have decided to do BGA this time around. I’m wondering if BGA is a one or two day theme park? We will be visiting on a Saturday and Sunday and since it will be a weekend I expect a crowd, with that being said will we get to hit the major rides, shows and animal attractions in just one Saturday or Sunday at the park? Or is it best to give ourselves two days to really enjoy all BGA has to offer over a weekend? The real reason why I am asking is because I am debating purchasing their BGA/Adventure Island ticket combo and doing one on a Saturday and the other on a Sunday, but if we won’t possibly get everything in on just one day, then we planned on doing BGA for two days weekend days straight. Advice?

From William Clark
Posted May 26, 2009 at 12:37 PM
Glad you asked. I was there on Saturday and, as I posted earlier elsewhere, had a great time. Busch Gardens Tampa is a big place with lots to do. Crowds were moderate over Memorial Day weekend and the park was running everything at or near full capacity. It has been my experience that it's tough to fit everything into one day there especially if you like riding certain rides, like Sheikra, numerous times. Best advice, which applies to all theme parks, is to be there when the gates open at 9. Some must see attractions include Katonga, a musical, which had 4 shows last Saturday. You'll need time for a train ride around the park to see the animals as well as a Sky Ride for a different vantage point of the park's animal areas. Jungala, the parks newest area, houses 10 beautiful White and Bengal tigers as well as a couple of playful Orangutans. Don't miss it.

The big draw there though is the coasters. They are excellent. Particularly Gwazi, a dual wooden coaster. Also Busch Gardens offers a few interesting tours like Serengeti Safari, where you can hand feed Giraffes and other tours where you can feed White rhinos. Both come highly recommended.

Add in the water rides and bird exhibits plus a nice lunch and you have the makings of a full day.

Starting on June 6 Busch Gardens has it's Summer Nights hours. They close at 10 on the weekends. If you have the stamina you can try hitting everything in 13 hours. If you are looking for a more leisurly pace then try taking 2 days. Either way you can look forward to one of the finest theme park experiences in the world at Busch Gardens Tampa.

From A Abrams
Posted May 26, 2009 at 1:23 PM
Thanks for responding. DH & I would really love to feed the giraffes and rhinos . . . is this attraction an additional fee? Or better yet are there any rides, shows and/or attractions that are an additional fee aside from the general admission?

From William Clark
Posted May 26, 2009 at 1:36 PM
Yes, the Serengeti safari is $33.99 and takes about 30 minutes. The Saving a Species tour is 45 minutes and $44.99. Part of the proceeds goes to animal conservation as well. Both are excellent hands-on tours. There are others as well. Personally I am comfortable recommending either or both.

Lunch at the Crown Colony House also merits mention. The food there is reasonably priced and very good.

All rides, shows and attractions are included in the price of admission. Only the optional tours have an additional fee.

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