When it opens on Thursday, January 21, Bollywood Parks Dubai will offer adrenalin junkies nine new rides, including the world's tallest swing ride. The Bollywood Skyflyer stands 140 metres high and is a combination of hang gliding and free swinging, which also takes in motions such as lifting, dropping and rotating at varying speeds. Centred on a giant tower that moves up and down, the ride offers aerial views of the park and its surroundings.
Another ride that offers spectacular views is the Wheel of Stars, a 55-metre-tall Ferris wheel. This is fitted with 36 Bollywood-themed gondolas that feature characters from evergreen Hindi movies. It's best experienced at night once the gigantic wheel lights up.
Taxi No 1 is a roller coaster for children that takes them on a journey through Mumbai and, given the city's traffic, potholes and pedestrians, includes sudden breaks, dramatic acceleration, and climbing, tilting and dropping movements. The name is a reference to Bollywood's penchant for adding the "No 1" suffix to movie titles (Coolie No 1, Hero No 1, Aunty No, et al).
Tanga No 13, meanwhile, is a wacky chariot ride. Tanga refers to the jostling carts attached to horses, an outdated but super-fun mode of transport in India. The Bollywood Parks iteration has a circular motion with a wave-like effect.
A gravity-defying ride for aspiring astronauts comes by way of Rocket, located in an area built as an "alien discovery station". The free-drop ride features a horizontal lift on the way up and a chair lift that bounces up and down from halfway up the central tower.
Elsewhere, a flying carpet awaits. Hawa Hawaii (named after a popular Sridevi song from the movie Mr India) is a colourful family ride featuring a dozen double seat hang glider vehicles, with riders taking a lying-down position. The "carpet" then lifts, drops and rotates its passengers, who feel like they are flying.
If it's water rides you want, head to Monsoon Masti, which is at once a ride and a game, and features spinning baskets and a water-gun fight. Each basket accommodates four riders armed with giant water pistols to aim at fellow riders and bystanders, all of whom it is recommended bring a change of clothes.
Another boat-style ride Abra Ka Dabra tugs, twists, swivels and scoots across rocky waves, all set against the backdrop of a rustic ravine. While there's no soaking involved in this one, the unsteady boat will keep things sufficiently exciting.
Finally, the Indian Rodeo is a triple-spinning-action ride set against the vibrancy of a colourful Indian village, complete with flower garlands, holi powders and patterned architecture. The two circular platforms rotate at a speed of 10rpm along a figure-eight shaped path, and the spin can be controlled by the four passengers manning each car.
Bollywood Parks has also expanded its colourful Mela Junction arena, which will host new restaurant Namaste India.
“After extensive enhancements, the park has a whole new offering for 2021 that includes new food and beverage outlets, shopping experiences and world-record holding rides,” says chief operating officer Ahmad Hussain bin Essa. “Each new ride has been designed to give our guests an authentic and immersive experience which will transport them to the very heart of India, without having to leave Dubai.”
The park will also welcome wooden roller coasterthe Bombay Express later this year, says Bin Essa.
Tickets are buy one, get one free, priced at Dh275, until Wednesday, February 10. Safety measures are in place across Dubai Parks and Resorts, with visitors required to wear face masks, book tickets online and maintain social distancing, while rides will operate at reduced capacity.
Bollywood Parks Dubai reopens on Thursday, January 21; for more, visit bollywoodparksdubai.com