Busch Gardens to close one of its coasters next month

June 15, 2023, 2:39 PM · Busch Gardens Tampa Bay will retire one of its roller coasters next month, to make way for a new attraction.

The Florida theme park announced today that July 9 will be the final day for SandSerpent, the park's 2004 Mack Rides Wild Mouse coaster.

Busch Gardens said that it is closing the ride "to make way for an exciting new addition to the park's Pantopia area."

The park will provide exclusive early morning ride time on SandSerpent for its annual passholders, starting June 30 through July 4.

For more on the park, including a link to discounted tickets, please visit our Visitors Guide to Busch Gardens Tampa Bay.

And for more theme park news, please sign up for Theme Park Insider's weekly newsletter.

Replies (8)

June 15, 2023 at 8:14 PM

According to my Facebook memories, it was five years ago today that my daughter and I got stuck going up the hill on this. It was the second day of our two-day trip to BGT, and on both days there were no rides open when the park opened. The first day was due to a power outage in the area, but no explanation for the second day. We were at least given a front of the line pass to be used at any ride in the park that day which we used to bypass a 2-hour Cheetah Hunt line, so it worked out for us in the end.

June 15, 2023 at 8:30 PM

Mulholland Madness/Goofy Sky School clone! Wonder where its going to go? Hopefully my small, beloved local park, Western Playland, makes a move for this.

June 15, 2023 at 8:45 PM

I've ridden this coaster at BGW and BGT, its not missed at BGW and won't be missed at BGT. 2 parks, 3 names, 0 cares given lol.

June 15, 2023 at 9:19 PM

[banging on table] Gi-ga! Gi-ga! GI-GA! GI-GA! GI-GAAAAA!!!

Seriously, this plot plus the swinging ship gives them just about the perfect amount of room for the station, brake run, and lift hill out towards the back part of the property for something on the scale of Fury 325, complete with an L-shaped layout through the undeveloped land behind Kumba. I know this has been rumored for like a decade but I think it's actually possible!

June 15, 2023 at 11:01 PM

Somebody please answer this for me: outside of extremely space-limited “permanent” county fair type attractions, who the hell are wild mouse coasters for and why are they still a thing at major parks?

June 16, 2023 at 9:26 AM

Don't get your hopes up just yet evanweston. While Pantopia would be the perfect spot to place a station for a giga running along the northern perimeter of the park, I wouldn't be surprised to see the park add its own Intamin straddle coaster (maybe with indoor and outdoor sections utilizing the adjacent and underutilized Pantopia theater), especially if SWO's 2024 attraction in Antarctica is NOT like SWSD's Arctic Rescue (recent rumors have it being similar to Pantheon/Velocicoaster).

If BGT is removing a family attraction, it makes far more sense for it to be replaced with something marketed towards the whole family (though I disagree with how SW is marketing these straddle coasters), and not just thrill seekers.

June 16, 2023 at 12:59 PM

For grown-ups, Wild Mouse coasters are the "bait and switch" of theme park coasters. They're mild little fun coasters for little kids who barely meet the height restriction that gradually become white-knuckle horror buckets as you grow older and taller.

June 17, 2023 at 9:48 AM

Russell, you are assuming the SeaWorld chain acts rationally. I am counting on them remaining deeply insane, lol.

This article has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.

Park tickets

Weekly newsletter

New attraction reviews

News archive