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Turkey PTR - Days 8+9: Antalya (Land of Legends)

gavin

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I’ve been putting off reporting on my summer trip since there’s just so f**king much to get through, but here goes. This year, I went to Turkey, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia. I think I’ll write a separate report for each country just to keep track of it all, so here’s Turkey. This was the biggest section of the trip, taking in 3 cities (chosen because of proximity to creds)

Part 1 – Istanbul and some +1s

I don’t know why, but I’d bene putting off Istanbul for ages, not because I didn’t want to go, but more because it was “just there” and could be done at any time really. I got to the hotel in the evening and didn’t do anything, then had the next day as a tourist day.

I was staying in the Karakoy area, which was just across a bridge to most of the main tourist sites, without being stuck in tourist trap Hell. Decent view from the hotel:





And then across the river and from the bridge:









Looking back over to the other side:





I didn’t have much of a plan of action for the day, but the top sites are all pretty much clustered together. I ended up starting with the Topkapi Palace. I’m just going to do a picture dump, but it was all pretty impressive. I think I timed it well since I got a ticket and went straight in, but by the time I left there was a good 30-minute+ queue for tickets. It’s split into different areas and has a decent terrace for views back across the river.













































I’d gone in through some minor entrance thanks to the way I’d walked in from, but left via a main entrance right next to the Hagia Sofia.









There’s a bunch of small tomb buildings behind it. Nothing amazing, but free and fairly hidden, so nobody was really there.









I quite stupidly ate lunch at some place on the main square opposite the Hagia Sofia, knowing that the prices would be massively inflated thanks to the location, but it was still cheap as f**k





I’d bought some combo ticket at the palace which included the Hagia Sofia, and also meant being able to skip the queue. Another photo dump coming up; it was really impressive, especially considering how old it is.









































The Blue Mosque is pretty much opposite, so I popped in there, too. It was a bit disappointing on the inside since there’s a load of construction going on, so there’s a fake ceiling just a few feet high right under the main dome.





















Some other old s**te:





The Basilica Cistern was in the same area. It was very cool, but didn’t have any water in it thanks to renovation work, so that sort of defeats the purpose.















It was pretty late in the day by this point, but I’d managed to knock off 4 of the “must do” sites, so decided to pick up the couple of creds that were nearest the city centre. Turkey, and the whole region really, has a bunch of +1 “Luna Park” type places, most of which open around 11 or 12ish and stay open until between 11pm and 2am. I didn’t do any of these places stupidly late, but I liked these opening hours. If you’re short on time, you could potentially fill the day with tourist crap and then pick up creds at night when all that stuff has closed.

Anyway,

Feshane Dünyasi Çocuk Eğlence Parkı

Got a bus here easily enough (public transport in Turkey, Istanbul especially, is excellent: cheap, frequent and easy to use), and spent all of 10 minutes at the park before hopping on another one. Just a big apple here.

















From there it was to some shopping mall park.

Fun Lab







It was a lot more substantial than I was expecting. I knew there was just one cred in there, but couldn’t remember what (there are a few of these places over this trip and I wasn’t keeping track), but it turned out to be a pretty big one. Well, it looked big since it was inside, but wasn’t really.

It had a steep, curved lifthill that took it up into a different level of the mall where it did a turn around before dropping back into the amusement park section. After that, it was just one big helix back to the bottom. So, a bit s**t really.































I’m pretty sure I just got a taxi back to the hotel area after that. Proper park day coming next.
 

gavin

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Day 2 – Isfanbul and +1s

No culture in this bit – well, maybe a bit at the end – since this was the first of two days I’d set aside just for creds. The first major park of the trip wasn’t far out of the city centre, so I just got a 20-minute taxi and arrived for opening, though it could have been done in about 40 minutes by public transport.

Isfanbul

Formally known as Vialand, the taxi drop off/pick up was miles away from the park entrance, at the complete opposite end of the attached shopping mall. Walked past this simulator thing on the way:



First views of the park (from there at least; I’d seen it on the way in) and the main entrance:









I’d been sold some package thing, which I didn’t ask for, at the ticket office near the drop off point, which included some crap inside the mall itself. When I realised, I went to guest services to complain/get a refund on the crap, but seeing as it turned out to only be a few quid more, I just sucked it up in the end.

Anyway, despite Nefeskesen (Intamin Blitz thing) being right inside the entrance, I started with Angry Birds since it was running at 30-minute intervals and it was about to start.





Simulator. Total dogs**t as well.

Nefeskesen then. It was still only just after opening (not long after 11), and the park stays open quite late, so there were very few people around.















It was good fun, but felt slightly lacking in forces. It just all felt a bit tame to ride in comparison to how it looks. It’s far from a bad ride, and it’s very rerideable, but it felt more “Blue Fire” to me (with a stronger launch) than Intamin if that makes sense.

There’s a viewing platform near the queue entrance to get a decent look over the rest of the park.













I absolutely ADORE a good Small World ripoff. This one was actually pretty decent.















Next cred was a big apple that wasn't a big apple. There will be one or two more of these during this trip.





Other stuff: some nicely themed areas (especially a shops/restaurants “street”) and one of those stupid King Kong things.













The third cred is another Intamin, Maceraperest, which is a similar type to the “Ulven” mine trains, but I guess a slightly different layout? It was decent. Did a couple of rides on it anyway.















I did the splash boat since it didn’t seem too wet and it was sunny enough to dry off quickly anyway. Meh. The rapids was closed, as was the "Bling" thing (Starshape?) The drop tower was decent, but lacked the theming on the inside that it had on the outside.







This “Pirates” style water ride was pretty decent. There was an impressive, but overlong, preshow using projection effects and animatronics. It was all in Turkish, obviously, but they had headphones with a simultaneous English translation. I didn’t bother, and I’m glad I didn’t since they didn’t seem to work very well. Some awful German family kept having a go at the ride op in the room every 30 seconds because their headphones weren’t working. Who f**king cares honestly?













I finished up with a couple more rides on Nefeskesen before heading into the mall to use up the unwanted package crap.













I liked this park. It was smaller than I’d expected, but had a decent ride collection and a nice atmosphere. Operations didn’t seem great (small number of ride ops, slow loading etc.), but it wasn’t a problem since it was quiet. I don’t imagine it would be fun on a busy day though.

There are three attractions inside the mall, all next to each other and near the entrance I’d come in from. Safari was a shooting dark ride. Not bad.



Zindan was a ghost train. Not bad.



I think the above two rides used to be in the main park. Looking at older pictures, they seem to be in there. Maybe the park was ready before the mall? Anyway, it’s a bit cheeky to now have them as upcharge attractions in a slightly different location.

The third thing was just a small animal exhibit. Nothing special really though they had a decent tarantula collection.













Getting out was a pain. No cars were appearing on the ride hailing apps and there were no taxis coming through the mall’s pick-up point, no doubt because it was a quiet time of an already quiet day, so I was standing around for a good 20 minutes before I got out for some cred whoring.

Beyrampasa Sehir Parki

No idea where that name’s come from since it’s just Ada Park on the maps. It’s just a little city park with some rides shoved in one end, including a big apple.





















Got an absolute f**kwit of a taxi driver who didn’t know where the huge nearby shopping mall was even though it was only a 10-minute drive away, was f**king massive, and I was showing the map in Turkish. After the second time within the first two minutes he stopped to ask for directions, I just got out and walked 10-minutes to the nearest metro station.

MOi Park

Mall of Istanbul Park. Get it? Genius.



No.



Like the mall from the previous day, the amusement park area was pretty big, with a substantial spinning coaster, a kiddy cred and a bunch of flat rides. The spinner was ok for what it was, and used the space well.













































I’d never seen one of these before (seen the much older “Rotor” rides), so I was quite impressed. For anyone who doesn’t know what a rotor is, it’s just a spinning room where the floor drops out and riders stick to the wall. In this never version (I think from SBF Visa), the walls are almost transparent and the lighting inside changes. Anyway, it seemed very unique.



Next shopping mall.

Star Park



Oh.



This place just had two kiddy coasters, one ridiculously small, but it wasn’t an issue getting on either other than dealing with the embarrassment.









Next!

Florya Luna Park

In the taxi on the way, I spotted another, unlisted coaster. I just about stopped myself from jumping from a moving vehicle to get the cred, instead making a note of where it was to head back later. Anyway, the park I was intending to be my last for the day was right on the coast and had a(nother) big apple.















So yeah, I clearly doubled back on myself to get the UNLISTED CRED I’d just been past. The park was pretty much the exact same thing as the last one.

Hayrola Luna Park



















Here’s the culture bit from walking back to my hotel. I intended to go up that tower at some point, but never bothered.













And from the hotel roof terrace.













The dragon was pretty terrifying.



Not a bad day then. 6 parks and 10 creds, including an Intamin blitz and 4 big apples with the unknown/unlisted one.

It was another park/cred day the next day.
 

gavin

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Your big-apple dedication puts us all to shame.... :)
Until this trip, I don't think I even had that many. They're nowhere near as much of a thing in this part of the world. We get Jungle Mouse coasters and powered dragons instead.
 

davidm

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Your lowest-quality-available-coaster dedication puts us all to shame.... :)

(to be fair, some of the culture in the first day is very impressive tho')
 

Hixee

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Just catching up with this - quite impressed by those views. Particularly like the Hagia Sophia shots over the water, that's magnificent. Nearly as good as Nefeskesen top-hat on the hill. ;)
 

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Day 3: More Parks

The next day was put aside as another cred day. It turned into a massive faff, but everything got done in the end.

ViaSea
ViaSea was quite far out of the city, but not difficult to access. I could/should have taken the train, but there were taxis right outside the hotel, so I just did that since I left a bit later than I’d wanted. I was aiming to get there shortly after opening, but about halfway there it started pissing down. During the whole 3-week trip, this was the only time the weather was remotely a problem.

So, I got there and the park wasn’t open. They don’t open in the rain at all. I guess it’s better than paying money to get in and not ride anything, though.











The weather forecast had the rain stopping by around 1pm, so I got a coffee (shopping area attached as with Isfanbul) and sat it out for a while. Nope, still not happening, so I left. I had most of the next day free, which I didn’t want to use on parks, but at least that was an option.

Taxi to some nearby +1 then

DAL Tema Park

Listed as something else on RCDB (Via/Crazy Park), but as DAL on maps, this was shoved into the car park of a shopping mall.



It had a fancy entrance with live peacocks, and was pretty pleasant for such a small place. One crappy cred: a DAL Dragon, which is a slightly beefed up Go-Gator really.























The rain had stopped by this point, but I decided to continue with some +1 whoring, making a couple of mistakes with public transport. The whole area was covered by a bunch of small minibuses, but the routes were unclear. The destination would be on the front, and the driver would say “yes” to the place you were going to, but some were more direct and others went a massively out of the way route. I was on one of them for almost an hour before I ditched it and got a taxi. Waste of time.

Anyway, I picked up a +3 from various little parks. I’ve decided I’m not going to type up every one of those. I’ve got too much to get through and the workload/reward ratio isn’t worth the f**king effort. Here’s one of them, so you get the idea:





It was probably around 4pm by this point, and the weather had massively cleared up, so I headed back to the first park.

ViaSea Again

Only the theme park isn’t called ViaSea. The area is ViaSea/ViaPort, but the park is actually called:

Korsan Adasi (Pirate Island)

This place pissed me off. The prices for foreigners were massively inflated. You had to go to a different ticketing window - because that’s not a giveaway that you’re about to get f**ked without lube - and could only get the park as part of a package with other nearby stuff. The cheapest option was a package with either the Crocodile Park or Lion Park, both housed in a building next to the park entrance. Even if locals bought the stuff in the package, which they weren’t required to, they’d still be paying loads less.

Locals had the option of paying entrance only + ride tickets (£3.50/$4.30 entrance) or an all-inclusive ticket for £9.70/$12. My ticket, with the crappy Lion Park that I didn’t want? £27/$33. Almost three times the local price. F**king disgraceful.





Anyway, Red Fire, which turned out to be my 100th Intamin:









I liked this a lot. I’d done iSpeed, and I know I liked it, but I couldn’t remember much about it, so this wasn’t a coaster I was particularly bothered about, but it was fab. Maybe the lack of OTSRs made it better than iSpeed. I ended up much preferring it to Nefeskesen as well. It just seemed to be a lot more forceful. Second best coaster in Turkey.











These things are just a cancer on parks at the moment. Ugh.





For a brief moment, I was in a slightly better mood when I “discovered” this unlisted cred:





Exactly the same bloody thing as the one posted a bit earlier, a DAL Dragon.





The final coaster is an Intamin Family Coaster (Mine Train Ulven clone), so I completed the set of those. I liked the two of this model I’d done before (Bakken and Happy Valley Shanghai) but I think the slightly different one at Isfanbul was perhaps slightly better, or I might just be making that up. Probably not much in them.















More Red Fire.









I did rerides on Family Coaster and more on Red Fire just so that I wasn’t done in half an hour. I didn’t like this place at all. It was actually tiny, and the price gouging, in case you hadn’t realised earlier, massively pissed me off.

I popped into Lion Park since I had the ticket. Crocodile Park was on the lower level, with the cats above. It was fine, but didn’t warrant more than 15 minutes.













I got the train back into the city, stopping off at another +1 park on the way back since it was on the same line. I’ll chuck this one in since it was slightly more substantial than some of the others.

Bostanci Luna Park

Can’t be arsed to write any more. You can see what’s here:













 

davidm

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Your super-sized-go-gator dedication puts us all to shame.... :)

(the Intamins in Istanbul had always intrigued me somewhat (all the ****e +1s notsomuch) - its presumably the same company that owns the two 'major' parks - guess it was a multi-buy offer at the time and/or the Intamin salesteam had a good few months)
 

gavin

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Your super-sized-go-gator dedication puts us all to shame.... :)

(the Intamins in Istanbul had always intrigued me somewhat (all the ****e +1s notsomuch) - its presumably the same company that owns the two 'major' parks - guess it was a multi-buy offer at the time and/or the Intamin salesteam had a good few months)
Yeah, not sure now, but they were certainly the same company when they opened at least. ViaLand and ViaSea, each with a slightly different Intamin Blitz and Intamin Family Coaster in them. ViaLand (now Isfanbul) is the MUCH more substantial park though; the park bit is probably 4 times the size and has a lot more rides. I think the price was similar, but without the foreigner gouging.
 

Hixee

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Enjoyed this one, again. Love the image of you just trooping around the outskirts of Istanbul getting creds.
Locals had the option of paying entrance only + ride tickets (£3.50/$4.30 entrance) or an all-inclusive ticket for £9.70/$12. My ticket, with the crappy Lion Park that I didn’t want? £27/$33. Almost three times the local price. F**king disgraceful.
Quoting this just to support you in this frustration. Awful, awful practice.
 

gavin

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Enjoyed this one, again. Love the image of you just trooping around the outskirts of Istanbul getting creds.

Quoting this just to support you in this frustration. Awful, awful practice.
I get it, and actually support it, if you're talking about some sort of cultural relics. For example, I fully agree that Cambodians should be able to access Ankor Wat for free, or Egyptians should be able to access the pyramids, or Turks should be able to see the Hagia Sofia (or countless other examples) since it's part of their history, culture and heritage. It's fair to charge foreign visitors more to access these since it's pure tourism on their part and there needs to be money for upkeep.

But when places like theme parks piggy-back off this practice, it's purely down to greed, is a total ripoff and needs to be called out. Can you imagine the f**king uproar if a UK park tried that s**t?
 

Hixee

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Oh yeah, it's the theme park bit of it that's gross. I'm alright with it for the 'local culture' stuff as you say.

Feels like daylight robbery for a cred, though.
 

gavin

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Boring cultural bit alert…

Turkey Day 4
Parks were done. I had a train out in the early evening, so I did some more mincing around Istanbul. I had planned to go to some archeological museum which was included in the pass from earlier, but the pass had expired. Meh.

Same place as before:















Found another old cistern on the way to summat else. This one was only discovered a few years ago and it seems that very few people know about it, so I had the place to myself. Free as well and used as an art gallery. ‘twas fab.













Some old pillar and aquaduct:









Walked up a hill to another mosque. Wasn’t that arsed about the mosque, but glad I did since the views from there were really decent.





























Back down the hill and back across the bridge to the hotel.





I had plenty of time left, so just used public transport (tram and metro) to get to the train station in the east of the city. The “high speed” train to Ankara was cheap (I think I paid about 20 quid for 1st class), but I’ve been spoiled by China’s system since it felt a bit slow, was hardly a “1st class” experience, and arrived almost an hour late. Oh well.

Ankara

It’s not on most tourists’ lists when it comes to Turkey, but there’s a ludicrous new park there. My hotel was only a 10-minute walk from the train station. I got a fairly fancy one for next to nothing, and had a fab view from the balcony over to one of the parks. Cred anxiety was kicking in, but it was already midnight, so I left it. Have some blurry pictures anyway:









Park day next.
 

Hixee

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Digging those high up views of Istanbul, really cool!
 

gavin

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Day 5: Creds

Got a clearer view of Luna Park in the morning:







That was going to have to wait though. First up was a taxi to the main reason for even bothering with Ankara.

Wonderland Eurasia

Originally called “Ankapark”, there were doubts whether this place would ever open. Anyway, it has, but with a lot of stuff still closed. I was hoping that something other than the RCDB “open” list would’ve been sorted by the time I got there, but nope. Still, I guess I was lucky that the stuff on that list was open on that day.

Arrived to an enormous, empty car park.



Would this be open? (Spoiler alert: no)





The entrance area was decent enough, with a big model of the park inside the castle.













Most of the coasters were off to the left of the entrance:



I’ll just point out that this place is absolutely f**king huge, but in a long, rectangular shape. The end to the left of the entrance is crammed with s**t, while the bigger, right side is more spread out around a lake. From one corner to another is around 2km, or if you walked a straight line from one end to the other, it’s around 1.75km. For reference, a straight line from the entrance of Galactica to the entrance of Smiler is 890m. Basically, you're not getting this park done without a s**tload of walking.

Some stuff near the entrance. I had no idea the huge Intamin water thing was here. Not a cred though since it’s literally just the drop into the water. The only other one I’ve seen is Pilgrim’s Plunge at Holiday World. Was that sold, or is this a new one? It was closed anyway despite having water running through it. They were testing the lift, but didn't seem to be releasing the boats off it from what I saw.



















First cred was a big apple because I hadn’t done enough of them. There was some decent enough theming around it, including some animatronics.











Walked past these at first, wanting to try and track down everything else.





I’d seen another one if these in one of the shopping mall parks. This place also had a second on inside one of the indoor areas.



At least they were really far away from each other, unlike two huge gyroswing things within a 30-second walk of each other.





Closed. This used to be on the travelling circuit and (I think) is the only one of its kind.







This area in the far corner clearly shouldn’t have been accessible. I walked into it through some side path, but it was fenced off from all other angles.









Decent-looking kiddy area with two (open) kiddy creds. There were literally no other guests around this side of the park at this time, so there was one ride op per area moving between stuff.









More stuff. Some of this may have been open, but I didn’t see it running and wasn’t bothered about riding any of it to ask.











Weirdly, they’ve built a Beijing Shibaolai Space Trip (not open yet), which seemed to have been a dead ride type. I’ve stupidly missed two of these at other parks, which have now gone, so have never actually ridden one.







This was in some bizarre Flintstone cat area.







People! This Zierer thing was one of the better coasters, so I’m glad it was open. I also did the gross Air Race because an overenthusiastic ride op (the only one with any sense of enthusiasm that I saw that day) ran over when I was looking at it. Ugh.













The thing I was hoping would have been ready was the Intamin Jet Rescue clone, but no.







Not to worry though. This was open instead:





I hadn’t done one for a few years. Vile contraptions.







Another kiddy +1 was open.









The two spinning mouse coasters, again RIGHT next to each other, were not.







Is it a cred? Doesn’t matter; it wasn’t open.





Another one that wasn’t open:







That was the (smaller) left side of the park finished, so it was off around the much bigger right side. There were a lot of big indoor areas (some interconnected) around a lake. Dinosaur stuff first. It seems that there’s supposed to be some dark ride in here, but it’s surprisingly not ready.







Some more general stuff. One of the buildings has a bunch of kiddy rides, including a second big apple. I was trying to work out why the cats all looked so f**king creepy, and it’s clearly because they have human teeth.

























Another building had some more major rides in it, including a surprisingly decent coaster and a closed log flume. The coaster needed a minimum of six people to ride. Some bloke with his kids managed to round up some other less-than-interested people, and the ride op let us go a second time without getting off.

























4D cinema. Ugh.





The biggest coaster, Light Speed, is right over in the far corner of the park. It’s (clearly) one of the newer Intamin 10-inversion things with lapbars. It all looked very sparse, but there also seemed to be a lot of disco and chaser lights around the base of the track (these were also very prevalent in the station), so I think at night it’s probably quite fab, assuming they're switched on.

























I think I mentioned the sky loop thing was closed, but I did the Ferris wheel and a “Small World” type ride that focused on different areas of Turkey. I think it was made by the same people who did the one at Isfanbul. The style of the characters seemed very similar at any rate.





















And that was it. Because of the size of the place, I’d been there a good few hours even with a lot of stuff being closed. I’d managed 9 creds, which was good since that’s what RCDB had listed as open at least, but I’d been hoping for at least a couple of others to have been ready.

I honestly don’t know what’s going to happen with this place. It should be a decent park since there’s LOADS in it – I barely covered what was in the buildings in this report - but that doesn’t count for much when so much isn’t running yet. Will it ever be fully operational? I think there’s more chance of it closing before that happens to be honest. It’s just too big for a new park. Even if the rides were all running, the staffing costs would be HUGE, which is perhaps part of the reason so much is closed. If everything was open, they’d need literally hundreds of staff to run the place, which just isn’t feasible in a park with almost no guests. Ankara has a population of around 5.5 million, which should be enough to sustain a decent-sized park, but no real tourism to speak of. We’ll see I guess.

Onto some whoring then.

Family Park

Typical place for the area. +2 here at least. Not sure if anyone noticed before, but ALL of these tiny places seem to have a booster and Zamperla Discovery.













Goksu Park

Another crappy DAL dragon thing, but also an alpine coaster. I f**ked up here though. There’s actually another alpine coaster not too far to the north of the city, but I had in my head that this was the only one. It wasn’t bad though. Just the usual couple of helices and meander back down to the bottom.



















Crocus Park

Another shopping mall park, but nowhere near as impressive as some of the ones in Istanbul. Two kiddy creds here, but I was denied one of them. Bastards.













Luna Park Sincan
Another one of these places, only this one had TWO Zamperla Discoveries in it. There were also two creds: a big apple and powered dragon, and a third that’s annoyingly not open yet.































I headed back to the hotel after that, intending to walk over to Luna Park and then not bothering. There it is:









Next up: culture and whoring.
 

gavin

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^ Don't worry; there are more to come.

Turkey Day 6: More Ankara

It’s not exactly a tourist hotspot, but there were a few areas to check out and all very close to each other, so I went for a wander in the morning.













Ankara Castle is a bit of an uphill walk, but is the main tourist site here. Other than a museum later, it was literally the only place I saw any other non-locals, and even then they’re weren’t many. I approached it the “wrong” way through some pretty crappy area though.











In a “never in the UK” way, you can climb all over the thing, with some massive drops to certain death and no safety barriers.











A view back down to the park I still hadn’t done:















I headed back down the “proper” way, which was a lot nicer, with a bunch of shops, cafes etc., plus what I think was a fortune telling rabbit.

















Time for some +1s then. I wasn’t going to bother with this first place since it was the furthest one out of the city, but I had time and I’ve travelled further when whoring Chinese cities before.

Mogan Lake Park

It’s a lake.







There was a view over to another park, which I thought might be unlisted since I thought I was further out of the city than I actually was, but it turned out to be one I had on the list already:



Where’s the cred?!





Ugh.





It took a while to get out of here since no cars were appearing on the ride hailing apps, so I spent a while on a main road hoping for a taxi, which did eventually come. Next!

Funland

A shopping mall place with a fairly substantial coaster.

















The next park was the one I’d seen earlier from the lake.

50 Year Park

The whole park is pretty big and spread over a fairly huge hill, but luckily I got dropped off near the top, which was where the rides area was. Walking up from the bottom would’ve been a mission.

Same as the rest of them, with a big apple and Zamperla Discovery:















I walked back down, ending up in one of the areas I’d been in earlier that day, then walked back across to the hotel.













I chilled at the hotel for a bit, then finally walked over to Luna Park. I left my camera in the room on charge though, so only grabbed a handful of phone pictures.

Luna Park

It was just a scaled-up version of the others really, but with a much bigger collection of flat rides, including 3 boosters, which seemed a bit ridiculous.













Turkey Day 7

I had some time the next day before a flight out in the late afternoon, so lazed around the hotel for a bit then went to some museum which wasn’t too far away. It was pretty decent really. Look, old stuff:





























I actually quite liked Ankara. It's clearly not Istanbul in terms of stuff to do or see, but it was mostly a nice city and was all pretty chilled out. It could have been that I was still only a few days into the trip. By the end, I had a bit less tolerance for ultimately quite boring places. As I said before, I saw very few tourists around, and because of this prices were cheap and there was no hassle from touts/tour guides etc. Istanbul hadn't seemed too bad for that, but it was definitely there.

Then it was a flight to the final stop in Turkey, Antalya, getting there in the evening and not bothering to do anything until the next day, which will be the next part of this report. Obviously.
 

HeartlineCoaster

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Just over 50% success for the creds in Wonderland seems pretty decent for the state it's in.

I wonder, if they ever did get it all finished and ready, if there would ever be a day when you could get 100% in a single hit, or would it be just another example of the common mentality - you've got enough rides to be getting on with.

Also that indoor one with the dragon mouth and loop looks crazy and I want it.
 

gavin

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^ That indoor coaster was really good, especially for the size. I was expecting all kinds of dreadfulness, especially since the lift hill felt a little shaky, but it was actually really smooth.

I don't think there will ever be a time when everything will be open on the same day. If they ever do get everything up and running, I think it would make sense to try and have staggered/scheduled operating times since they'd never be able to have enough staff to have everything open at the same time.

I've just looked it up, and the park is physically 3 times the size of Magic Kingdom, with 26 major attractions and 2117 smaller ones (though I'm guessing they're including a lot of things like arcade machines in that number). There are, however, a s**t ton of smaller kiddy rides, especially inside all those huge buildings, and all of those little pieces of crap need at least one operator, which I just don't think will ever be feasible.

A smaller team of operators moving between sections which have different opening times? Smaller rides in each section on a schedule with the major attractions open full-time? Have the outdoor stuff fully open, but open the buildings for a couple of hours each? They all make sense to me.

Will it happen? No.

Days 8+9 – Antalya

Here’s a park day then. I was staying right on the harbour at the foot of the old town in Antalya. The hotel was a bit ropey, but it’s one of very few in the harbour itself (maybe the only one?) and I’d decided that’s where I wanted to be.

I’m sure a few people on here think they’ve been to Antalya since they’d have landed at that airport before being transferred by sweaty minibus to an all-inclusive resort 40 kilometres away from the actual city, where they’d eat chips for every meal and sit next to the pool for a week before leaving.

Anyway, the harbour is at the bottom of some cliffs/hills, but luckily there was this lift to get up to the main street level:



But it was closed the whole time, so it was a short uphill faff to get to the main road. Nice views back down though:

















Land of Legends

This place is pretty close to the aforementioned all-inclusives, so around a 30-40 minute drive from the old town. I had plenty of time and didn’t feel the need to rush there for opening, so I left a little later and got there using a couple of buses, which was easy enough and took about an hour. I think I ended up getting there for early afternoon. I accidentally got off the bus a bit earlier than needed though (there are stops right outside the park on the main road), so walked the last few minutes. It’s fairly obvious which way to go:







It’s more of a resort I guess than just a theme park. There’s a hotel and shopping/restaurant area out the front, part of which you walk through to get to the park.











Once you get into the park itself, there’s a water park section off to the left with the dry park to the right. These are both included in the ticket price and people were moving freely between both areas, meaning that you’ve got people riding the coasters in their swimming gear; for 90% of the clientele, this was not ok.

If I’d have bothered to do some proper research, I might have tried out the water park as well, but since none of this trip was going to be of the pool/beach type, I hadn’t packed for it anyway.

I think I remember reading that this 4D cinema fills with water, so I didn’t try it:



I’ll shove in some general stuff before we get to the creds. The park was really nice, but also pretty small, though obviously there’s loads more to it if you’re taking in the water park area as well, which is around the same size again. There’s also a dolphin show to watch if you’re a total monster.













From the flat rides I just did the skyfly thing. I’m crap at these and can never get them to do anything; this one was no exception.

The main draw here is obviously Hyper Coaster, a clone of Flash, which I’d already done and loved. However, now that there’s one within spitting distance of hordes of gammons, some of whom might deign to leave the pool between meals and visit, it’s basic as f**k and I hate it.







For such a huge thing, you can’t actually see most of it from within the park which I guess is a good thing since the substantial layout after the drop and loop is more of a surprise. It’s an excellent coaster. I’d only managed to get two rides in on Flash because it was so busy, but I got a fair few more in here to be able to form a better opinion. I think Helix still just tops this, but Flash/Hyper Coaster are a close second for best Mack ride that I’ve done.







The park was a little busy, and it was only running one train, but the queues never got too big since I imagine people were spending more time in the water park. I managed a couple of walk-on rides, and never had to wait more than 10-15 minutes for the others.











The other big coaster is one of these Intamin water coaster things. This was the second I’d done within a couple of months after having never done one before. Meh; they should’ve gone to Mack for a water coaster as well as Hyper Coaster.

















There are a couple of kiddy creds right next to each other. The smaller one apparently only allows adults on with kids, but I had no issue getting straight on. There was no queue, so I doubt they cared.











That was about it really. It’s definitely a full-day place if you’re doing the water park as well, but for just the dry park, it doesn’t need a lot of time to cover. Rerides on Hyper Coaster are a must, but when the queues are so short, even that didn’t need a lot of time.

I got some food in the food court area outside the park, then headed back into town (bus + tram this time, which seemed like it could be quicker, but wasn’t), then a taxi onto a park in the west of the city. Even if I’d had a full day at Land of Legends, this place could have been done since, like most of these places, it was open until at least midnight.

Aktur Park

Just a typical “Luna Park” place, but with 3 creds. The Ferris wheel seems new – it wasn’t yet open – and was pretty impressive; you could see it from right across the bay in the old town.



































There was another tiny park between Aktur and the old town, so I got a bus there, then walked back from the park to the harbour.

Attaturk Park



























Creds were all done, so the next day was a quiet, mostly lazy one with some general touristy stuff. I’ll just chuck it in now since it was the last day in Turkey anyway.

Antalya (Old Town) Cultch

Antalya is actually a really big city, but it’s only really the old town area that was of much interest. As I’ve said, I was staying right on the harbour, which was lovely, and the streets/hills around one side of that lead up and into the small Old Town area.

When I’d got back to the harbour the previous evening, I’d booked myself onto a 2-hour boat trip since I knew I’d have the whole day to kill and the area is actually quite small. It was alright; it just goes along the coast for an hour to some waterfalls, then back again.



























The “beach” area of the harbour:



Up into the old town:

































There was a museum back in the direction of Aktur Park which was apparently really decent, but I couldn’t be bothered in the end. I just spent the evening eating and having a few drinks around the harbour. It was an early one the next morning to head out to the airport for the next country on the trip, but I’ll start a fresh report for that to keep things better organised.

Turkey was fab. I’d been meaning to go for ages and never got around to it, so it was good to finally tick it off. Clearly, I knocked off loads of creds (just counted and it was 50), but they were part of the overall “package” of getting to see a bit of the country, and with all those crappy +1 places being open so late, it was easy to do other stuff during the day and knock them off in the evenings, so they didn’t need to be factored in to any actual planning.

Istanbul was the main point of going, and it was great, but then I was curious about Wonderland Eurasia (glad I did since I liked Ankara and I’m not sure if that park will even last) and then Antalya wasn’t too far from there and turned out to be a nice, chilled couple of days.

In terms of coasters:

1. Hyper Coaster
2. Red Fire
3. Nefeskesen
4. Light Speed
5-10. The two Intamin Family Coasters, Lav Macera, Devin Kileri, Typhoon Coaster, the shopping mall spinner
11-50 – All the other s**te

The end.
 

Hixee

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Waterfalls into the ocean? Don't tend to see that all that often. Cool!

Enjoyed this one - first time I recall seeing a report from Turkey (not unlike most of your reports to be fair), and it's been cool to see something a bit different. Sounds like an excellent trip too, actually. +50 ain't bad either. ;)
 
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