Every Friday I look back at one of the notable roller coasters I have been on in my travels…
Time to travel to Europe for my next coaster, Shambhala. It’s situated in Port Aventura which is in the beach town of Salou, Spain. Salou is fairly touristy with an annoying amount of English pubs and restaurants but not as bad as a lot of seaside towns in Spain. You can definitely get great Spanish food, but be prepared to walk past restaurants offering you the culinary highlight of British cuisine egg and chips before finding somewhere not offering you the crappy menu because you are English speaking. Usually this isn’t exactly my kind of vacation spot, but I was there for the ex-Universal park, Port Aventura and it’s brand new B&M hyper coaster: Shambhala.
Also, as a side note Salou isn’t too far from Barcelona, one of the cities I’ve visited the most in Europe (maybe tied with Paris?) definitely somewhere that should be on everybody’s bucket list.
Back to the theme park of it all, I had been following the construction of this coaster and this ended up being a last family holiday before I started my adventure teaching and living in Hong Kong. I left them on the beach or by the pool and trekked up to the theme park pretty much every day I was there. Not only does Port Aventura have Shambhala, it also has Dragon Khan a sit down B&M that is similar to Kumba at Busch Gardens Florida, but with a much nicer colour scheme (IMHO) and the intense Furius Baco. I loved Furius Baco, even if it is a little rough, I found it incredibly fun and thrilling. The roughness was worth it for the intensity, although not everybody would agree.
Shambhala itself looks beautiful, especially next to Dragon Khan and is themed nicely for such a huge coaster. It feels tall but is not so intimidating that people should be put off. I love the way it interacts with Dragon Khan, it looks amazing and the splashdown is lovely. I enjoyed it but even though it was the main reason for going to the park, I actually preferred the other two major steel coasters at the park. All three are great coasters, it’s more down to personal preference, which I think means this park is a must visit.