Now you don’t need to go all the way to Pennsylvania or California to get your fill of thrilling rides. It’s here at a 2 hours drive away from Mumbai. Imagica, the new entertainment theme Park from Adlabs will see you scream, laugh, get drenched and giggle like a 6 year old!
And though I am not the best candidate for rides that make your heart drop to your knees (I don’t even volunteer for the innocuous giant wheels at Juhu beach!), I found myself at Imagica last Saturday with my enthusiastic 10 year old daughter Maithili. After a 2 hour drive from Kandivili we reached the park at noon. Armed with water bottles, caps and camera we hit the park determined to get our money’s worth (we paid Rs 1200 per person). Spread over 78 acres the park appears humongous But the map handed out along with the ticket comes handy. The best way to ensure you enjoy all the rides is to tick them on the map as you finish with them.
We decide to hit the tame ones first before we go for the adrenaline-infused truly frightening rides. Our first stop – I For India was perfect. This stunning film shot from a helicopter and displayed on a 90 ft wide screen shows some of the gorgeous sights of India! Strapped to your seats and elevated to a height, you feel like a bird above the landscapes. It’s truly one of the best rides at Imagica.
Next we watched the film Prince of the Dark Waters where the larger than life mermaids swim in the 360 Dome film that is showcased all around and above on a massive screen of 3100 sq feet. The film is seamlessly projected using 6 individual Christie projectors.
Another fun ride is the Splash Ahoy where you get on board a boat armed with water guns. As you target your opponents, duck from their aim and save yourself from pirates you emerge soaked and giggling. Save this one for the last as you don’t want to roam around the park looking like Mandakini! Imagica houses 16 attractions, 4 restaurants and various live acts in the evening. Most rides are a blend of live theatre, special effects and multimedia.
Feeling all emboldened by our tryst with the first few rides, we decide to take on the more thrilling ones. We headed for The Gold Rush Express which dropped us from a height of 66 feet and sent us speeding through tunnels at a speed of 65 km/h. This one left me dizzy and disoriented. I clearly had my fill of adventure for a year! But we still more rides to tackle (remember we had to get our paisa vasool)
The Scream Machine seemed promising! We head to it and see people getting out of the ride in absolute disorientation. Here’s what happens –the wheel shaped machine first gathers some momentum by spinning. Just when you think you could handle it, it starts to swing. And mind you it’s not like your silly garden swing. This one rises to 120 degrees and pushes you to 148 ft above ground level! After watching for a few minutes we beat a hasty retreat!
By now it’s 3 in the afternoon. The scorching sun coupled with endless walks between the rides has sapped us of all energy. We decide to take a break and tank up at the casual fast food restaurant – Red Bonnet. Designed like a classic American diner it serves burgers, fries and shakes. We settle for a grilled Lamb burger (Rs 162) and Spicy Chicken burger (Rs 167) with some fries and a cola. The other eating options include Zeze Bar and Grill, Arrmada Tapas Bar and the circus styled food court Roberto’s. Prices are affordable and the quantities satisfying.
Refreshed and energised we hit the Mambo Chai Chama. The ride has you spinning around in a frenzy as you place yourself in huge tea cups. If you’re not awake when you get on, you will be as soon as you hit the first spin …no coffee needed! Spinning with a cola and a burger in your tummy is not funny. I wanted to throw up but the lady in me holds up. Thank god for the ample green cover and the numerous benches scattered all over the park.
If you loved the bumping cars at Essel World there’s a similar one here, but in water. It’s quite simple. You sit in a raft, buckle up, select your target, race toward them in your raft and then bump! Lots of splashes and giggles guaranteed.
As evening falls the park looks magical with thousands of fairly lights and live performances. It’s the best time to be at Imagica. Grab a seat on one of the many benches and watch the fun as mermaids come calling and kids go berserk under the sprinklers.
As we sit on the steps of the lagoon and watch the sun go down it’s time to see how many ticks we achieved on our map. It’s a total of 9! Not bad at all for two faint hearted.
Soon to come
In the next phase Imagica will house a water park, a hotel and retail space. Built with an investment of Rs.1600 crores the park employs over 2000 staff support.
Ticket rates: Ticket rates for the launch period, from April 18th to April 30th’ 2013
Weekday: Adults- Rs. 1200, Children- Rs. 900
Weekend/Holiday: Adults- Rs. 1500, Children- Rs. 1200
Tickets could be bought www.adlabsimagica.com, or via a phone call to +91 22 42130405 or through a travel agent.