Thursday, May 11th
Madrid and Sevilla

We woke up at around 8:00am or so on Thursday morning, with Parque de Atracciones being the only thing on the plan for the morning. As we both readied ourselves for the day, we watched a bit of Pasapalabra, which was some Spanish word gameshow that neither of us could quite understand the rules for! I borrowed a hair dryer from the front desk, and when I was done, we decided to have the hotel's buffet for breakfast. It consisted of eggs, sliced cheese, peaches, breads, flan and jamon iberico for Kevin, among other things.

We both checked our email, then checked out of the hotel and stored our bags. We walked over to the metro next and caught a train to the Batán station where Parque de Atracciones was. When we arrived, we were a bit surprised that we were the only ones there at opening time until we realized that the park opened at noon, and it was only 10:00am!

In an attempt to kill two hours, we took the metro back a few stops to the Príncipe Pío mall.

We wandered around, popping our heads into shops here and there, but not purchasing anything.


Kevin does his best elderly golfer impression


I'm surprised to find American baseball merchandise in Spain!


Kevin drinks the world's smallest Coke!

When we passed an electronics store, I found a power converter for 12E that looked like it should work for my camera charger, so I bought it. We also spent time browsing a toy store, a baby store and a candy store before finally jumping back over to Parque de Atracciones.

The park opened at noon, and the only rides closed all day were the Condor, the Top Spin and unfortunately, Fantasía.


I am very sad that Fantasía is closed :-(


Kevin is also sad that Fantasía is closed :-(

There wasn't much wait to get in, and once we did, we made a stop at the tattoo wetting fountain so we could apply our all day ride tattoos.


The all day ride tattoo wetting fountain


Kevin demonstrates how to apply said tattoo


My tattoo. If you look closely, you can almost see every cell in my skin.

We were a bit lost when we first arrived because we assumed we'd come in the main entrance when actually we'd come in a smaller secondary entrance.

We passed Los Fiordos with its beautiful Scandinavian castle entrance, as well as some well themed gift shops and food stands.


Abismo wasn't open, but we did get to watch it test for a while

We started out the day with the suspended shooting dark ride Cueva de las Tarantulas, which was very odd, but fun! Neither of us had seen this ride on the website, but actually I think it was listed under another name, hence why we weren't expecting it. Everything about this ride is completely hidden from view except for the loading area, so it was a bit of a surprise how long it was.

I got an ok score, but Kevin did better than me since I was taking pictures the whole time.

Tarantula was closed at the moment but was testing, so we headed over to Tornado next. There seemed to be only a few people around, but when we got up to the station...

...the ride op yelled "veinte cuatro!!!" and all these people came *sprinting* towards the coaster! We rode somewhere near the middle, and I actually enjoyed it more than I thought I would. Just as we engaged the lift hill, the coaster dropped a big black glob of stuff onto my leg!

I got spooged on by a coaster!! Whatever it was, it stained my leg, and was still visible at the end of my trip! The coaster was quite a bit more forceful than I'd imagined, which made it turn out to be a great ride.

After a bathroom break and a stroll through the Bosque Jurasico, we rode El Rio Encantado. What a screwed up yet completely wonderful ride! It was the epitome of random...

There was a sleeping giant...

...a unicorn...

...some trolls...

...a yeti...

...something that had fallen over flat on its face...

...some creepy things...

...some see-sawing creepy things...

...and all in a spinning raft ride. At one point, Kevin made the comment that he didn't understand how papier mache unicorns made me so happy...I could see world famous sites, beautiful architecture, yet it was the cheesy theme park props that made me the happiest hehe

Next we rode the suspended blimp monorail, which gave a great view of the park.


Kevin follows directions and does not "take out the arms."

The next ride was La Jungla, which was certainly a high point of the park! It was such a rip off of the Disney Jungle Cruises it was hilarious! We laughed our heads off through the whole ride.

We found Chief Nammie...

...the elephant bathing pool...

...Smiley and Ginger the crocodiles...

...Inspiration Falls...just about everything from the Disney versions except the backside of water!

We were hungry by that point, so we went back into the Zona de Maquinismo to find lunch. I grabbed a burger and he grabbed a hot dog from a nearby stand and we ate on a bench in front of the drop tower. The burger was very weird...it had almost no taste at all, which meant it was sort of like I was eating nothing. It had texture to it, but no flavor at all! The fries were great though.

Next up was Tarantula, which was a very nice little coaster that offered fantastic views of Madrid.


Tarantula, with spider theming


While this looks like an impressive photo of two trains in one pic, I just barely missed getting three. :-(


Love it..."Please do not ride...if you have a heart, have a huge bulge, or are currently getting struck by lightning

We browsed through some gift shops where I desperately tried to find a Parque shirt in XL, but they only carried shirts up to size large. From there, we went over to the kiddie area.

We tried to get the kiddie coaster credit but were promptly denied...

...so we decided on the extremely random "trip around the world" themed antique cars. The ride was short because the cars really booked it around the track, and the theming had virtually nothing to do with the counties they were supposed to represent. Most people wouldn't like that, but I thought it was great!

After the cars we rode Caballos de Oeste, these bucking mechanical horses that traveled around a little western town.

For whatever reason, we both found this ride to be hysterical! We had the greatest time taking pictures of each other riding it!

This was probably my favorite ride in the park...better than the coasters! But when we got off, it took a moment to regain use of our legs and backsides because of all the bucking the horses did!

We rode the cute little elevated train ride next, then messed around with the shooting gallery for a bit. We attempted to climb to the top of the "observation tree" but it was closed, so we opted for the Ferris wheel instead so we could get aerial pics.


Kevin takes a few shots at the shooting gallery


I decided to take over, at which time I promptly showed Kevin up.

At some point we also thought about going into the paddle wheeler on the lake, but once I got up to it, I saw that it was a walk through fun house and booked it the other way quickly! Kev went in for a few seconds but ultimately didn't go all the way through.


Kevin does his best Atlas impression


Coaster theming in the gift shop

When we were done, we popped into the main gift shop so I could find something to commemorate my awesome day. They had some very strange merchandise...

...including a first aid kit! But what I ultimately ended up with was two little clip picture holders, a square blue toiletries bag and a change purse (since I had neglected to think about that I'd be carrying around lots of Euros in change). I told the cashier, in Spanish, that I had really loved the park, and she gave me a red rubber Livestrong type bracelet that said "Tarantula" on it.

Continue to Day 2, Part 2- Arrival in Sevilla
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