We recently visited the now infamous Space World スペースワールド in Kitakyushu. Space World made global news in December 2016 when it controversially used frozen fish in its ice skate rink to make people feel like they were skating on the ocean. A few days later it was back in the news again announcing its closure of not only the ice rink, but of the whole park. Closure will take place in December 2017 and so this year is known as the Space World Finale.
Space World is less than an hour away from where we live, so we decided to venture there to experience the finale for ourselves. There is no doubt that the theme park is looking a little tired. Paint is peeling and several of the large rides are now closed indefinitely. However, that certainly didn’t stop hoards of excited school children, along with Dan and I, having a brilliant day!
It started out shaky…we decided the to go in with a big opener on the largest rollercoaster in the theme park. It was a Thursday, so we were surprised to find ourselves in a 50 minute queue for said rollercoaster. Now, I know we are both on the other side of 30, but we were not prepared for the bone rattling ride of whiplash that commenced. OWWWWW. Days later, it still hurt. The ride itself would have been scary enough, but combined with the roughest of rides, it turned into a little bit of a nightmare as I was certain one of us would come off it with dislodged vertebrae.
After that, we needed to calm down. So, we took to the big wheel for a rest. Turns out, after the rattle ride, the park’s disheveled appearance, and clear rust everywhere, I wasn’t in a great mindset for a huge big wheel ride. I had something of a mini breakdown (again) as I became convinced we would fall to our deaths due to some sort of, in my eyes, extremely obvious mechanical fault. So, by 1pm I was feeling pretty stressed and fearful…but alive.
We thought that perhaps a second rollercoaster would help…so we took to the curly whirly rocket coaster. This was a much smoother ride and included a loop the loop. Dan had a brilliant time! I spent the following 30 minutes gagging into my hands. I just don’t think I am built for theme parks…So, it was time for a rest and a lunch of chips. The restaurant was exactly what you get with a theme park, including the really irritating repetitive music track. Nevertheless, a non-alcoholic drinks bar later, I was feeling fresh and ready to try again!
The afternoon was a big success. We opened it with a 4D cinema experience. A BBC Earth 15 minute mini film about squirrels was the perfect start. It was also hysterical as we were randomly squirted in the face with water, wind, and had puffs of air blown against the back of our heads! 15 minutes later, clutching our sides, we ventured back into the sunlight…There we decided to take on an Alien adventure. This was possibly the most terrifying experience of our lives. Dan summed it up well; “It is like all those things you fear in scary movies, in a place that forces you to walk around through them with no chance of escape”. It was a sort of horror house where you have to walk in the dark (hands out in front of you like a scooby doo zombie) knowing that you are about to be scared! And we were. Alot. Hysterically.
We then took to a roller coaster in space / the dark. It wasn’t as bone crunching or sick inducing as the morning events and so I really enjoyed it! It took us on a journey through the solar system, in an extremely dark room. After this we decided to brave another queue for the log flume. We were warned we would get wet, but as it was 26 degrees we thought this sounded like a pretty good idea. And it was! Twice! It was a brilliant ride with just the right amount of scare and adrenaline rushes, combined with a pretty large drop and some nice floating on water sections. LOVED IT!
All in all, Space World was a pretty awesome day out. I actually prefered it to USJ, as it was far more low key and I sort of felt sorry for it as a, very obvious, underdog. If you have time, before it becomes another of Japan’s lost theme parks, give it a visit!