An hour south of Barcelona with coach or train connections, Port Aventura is the leading park on the Costa Blanca and the Theme Park flagship of Cataluña.
On entering PortAventura you find yourself in Mediterrania, a charming and tranquil Spanish fishing village where you can take a slow boat to China on a picturesque waterway. So calm, so peaceful, so far so good….Suddenly piercing screams fill the air! Is the boat sinking? No, it’s just the terrified passengers on Furius Baco whizzing past at top speed above the water! You too would be screaming if you’d just been catapulted into oblivion on a winged roller coaster that reaches around 135 km/ph in 3.5 seconds! Faster than a formula 1 racing car!
Once safely across the lake, you enter the lands of Imperial China and Mongolia. If you laugh in the face of vertical loops and care not a jot for freefall towers, try Shambhala, a hyper coaster that has beaten European records for height (76m) longest fall (78m) and speed (134 km/ph) and is an intense ride that gives plenty of “air time”. There are some great rides for small children in this zone and some surprisingly good food also, in fact you could eat your way around the world in PortAventura! Polynesia is the place to go for delicious tropical fruit juices to sip under the palm trees, you can enjoy some tapas whilst listening to a lively mariachi band in Mexico and if the kids are demanding hotdogs and burgers you’ll find them in the Far West. Just don’t eat too much before going on some of the more extreme rides!
The theming of the ‘lands’ is spot on and the architecture and decor is attractive and colourful without being garish – possibly apart from the new Sesame Street play area for the little ones, SesamoAventura – but then, it’s meant to be!
There’s always a lot going on in this theme park and it can get quite busy. If you thought the Spanish national sport was football or bullfighting, you’d be wrong! It is queue jumping – you have been warned!
PortAventura is spread over a large area and although there is a lovely little train circling the park, you may well need a couple of days to experience it all.
Go early one day to avoid the queues and late afternoon the next to take in the fabulous firework display over the lake.
They have also refurbished and extended their adjoined aquatic park section, Costa Caribe to cater for those who think roller coasters are the evil inventions of twisted minds, but enjoy getting soaked! They really have thought of everything!
There are also some good on-site hotels, and the park is situated near Salou and Cambrils, the popular seaside resorts.
Who reigns in Spain?
If you have visited PortAventura recently let us know what you think of the latest additions and improvements they have made, and if it was your first visit, which attractions influenced your decision and did they live up to your expectations? Adios!