Nagashima Spa Land’s immense kiddie area definitely has some charming newer additions. Perhaps the world’s cutest log flume lives here!
It’s called Kids’ Flume, but it’s definitely a comfortable fit for adults! And a decent length, too!
Believe it or not, the park actually has an even smaller flume ride, themed to seals. Turns out Japan really has a thing for kiddie log flumes!
Firetruck rides with water guns are also super popular here. I’m sure the new Legoland Japan has, like twelve of these.
There’s even an indoor bouncy pad area! Reminds of European “sommerland”-style parks!
One of the park’s oldest coasters is actually their standard Tivoli kiddie coaster, which, like Looping Star and Jet Coaster, actually hosts some larger trees.
Time for lunch! Here you can purchase a food ticket from a vending machine and then hand it to the kitchen attendant, who makes food to order. Interesting, totally unnecessary system, but kinda cute nonetheless.
Poor Sean is struggling to find vegetarian food! Looks like he’ll have to settle for ice cream!
Another significant Six Flags / Intamin project for Japan was the original Bounty/Buccaneer Swinging Ship rides. The local obsession with this concept lead to an ENORMOUS double version of the standard ride, the likes of which are not found anywhere outside Japan. Notice how Nagashima Spa Land has not one, not two, but FOUR total Intamin Swinging Ship rides: The classic, two big bois, and a Looping Starship.
Still not amazed?? Believe it or not, Nagashima Spa Land is home to both a Schwarzkopf Looping Star AND a Schwarzkopf Shuttle Loop. Unfortunately the latter was down for maintenance, but the good news is that this park never seems to throw anything away; it’ll probably be open on our next visit!
Speaking of which, the only coaster that Spa Land has ever actually retired is White Cyclone, whose demise certainly isn’t for naught.
Hakugei (AKA White Whale, AKA Moby Dick, AKA Japanese Steel Vengeance) is well underway and is (hopefully) on track for a March opening.
Hakugei Densetsu / Hakugei: Legend of the Moby Dick is a late 90s anime loosely based on Herman Melville’s novel, wherein space pirates from the year 4699 pursue abandoned, whale-like spacecraft in search of resources (seriously). I think what I’m trying to say here is A BETTER THEME FOR AN I-BOX COASTER DOES NOT EXIST.
I love the way rides here are arranged like giant Roller Coaster Tycoon scenario. Rides everywhere, tons of coasters, and a web-like network of walkways instead of a standard midway.
Whoever’s playing this scenario was kind enough to line dispatches up for me so I could catch all 4 focal point rides at once.
I’m pretty much obsessed with this park, tbh. I guess the only thing they really lack is a wooden coaster, but supposedly White Cyclone more interesting to look at than to ride. Japan is totally devoid of a Gravity Group or GCI -style coaster, and I think a park like Nagashima Spa Land could set a trend with something like Oscar’s Wacky Taxi or White Lightning.
Yes, Spa Land has two Huss Frisbees: a classic fairground version, and a giant park model. We’re up to…what? Six swing rides now? They REALLY love their pendulums here!
While the superstructure will remain classic white, Hakugei‘s track will be a striking blue.
Sean is modeling with Hakugei! YOU BETTA WERK, SEAN!
I see you, Dragon! If you’re looking for more evidence that this is the Japanese Cedar Point, consider that Steel Dragon 2000 is literally a perfect cross between Magnum XL-200 and Millennium Force.
With the way people over-hype up Superman at Six Flags Mexico and Steel Eel at Sea World Texas, you’d think Steel Dragon 2000 was 3rd-at-best on the totem pole. NOT THE CASE! The biggest win for the ride (besides the awesome B&M trains) is that the mid-course brake is very light; a smoother version of Magnum XL-200‘s return trip will make a fan of even the biggest skeptics. Phantom’s Revenge is still my be-all, end-all hyper/giga/mega coaster, but Steel Dragon isn’t far behind.
Yep. There are more rides here we still haven’t talked about. An S&S Triple Tower with a little hut in the middle, a dueling suspended monorail, and WOULD YOU LOOK AT THAT WATERPARK??
The blue tarp on the bottom left is a temporary hardhat area that used to be a public walkway. Can’t wait to get up close to Hakugei when it opens!
I’m hoping that, along with some RMC signature moves, Hakugei does some random Japanese Jet Coaster stuff – just to keep things weird.
Definitely adding some height!
It doesn’t look *that* big until you focus on the construction workers.
I’m already wondering what Nagashima Spa Land will do for their next coaster after Hakugei. Any guesses? Another B&M, perhaps? Wing Coasters and Dive Machines are still un-mined territory in Japan!
Honestly Hakugei is all by itself over here; maybe they’ll add some more flats around so that it’s not so isolated.
Oh look. Another flat ride was hiding in plain sight! Looks like a local take on a Huss Swing Around.
Oh, and we can’t forget the massive Intamin Spillwater.
Rapids Rides kind of got skipped in Japan, but giant Shoot-the-Chutes are very popular despite the public’s general desire to stay dry at all costs.
Oh! And they have a dueling Wiegand Bobkart here too! It was closed most of the day due to typhoon debris, but they got one of the tracks cleaned out with an hour to spare! Way to go Nagashima Spa Land!
If you squint it definitely looks like Cedar Point here, amirite?
Shoutout to Spa Land for having some of THE BEST merchandise ever. Even if you don’t consider yourself that much of a merch person, Japanese parks will change your mind – just ask Sean!
We need to get back to the coach, but it’s really hard to take your eyes off these rides when the lighting is this good.
Steel Dragon 2000 still holds the record for longest coaster, and remains the only coaster to exceed 8000ft in length. Duration-wise, however, it doesn’t feel that particularly long. It also remains one of the most expensive coasters ever built, with a price tag of over $50M; part of that is due to building the ride to Japan’s strict earthquake codes, of course.
The turnaround on Dragon is great. After it does the conventional helixy-thing, it has a weird little meandering bit up to the mid-course brake – like they weren’t sure how to go about aiming it back toward the station. I call it the ride’s Japanese Jet Coaster moment (Hakugei seriously needs one also).
Goonight Nagashima Spa Land! You are perfect and also better than Cedar Point. #sorrynotsorry
On the way out, we got nice and close to bae. Look at those twists!
Nagashima Spa Land may be my favorite park of the trip, but this is just the tip of the JAPANESE COASTER WONDERFULNESS ICEBERG! On our next update, we’ll hop over to another one of our favorite parks: Hong Kong’s Ocean Park!
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