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I mentioned in a photo above that I'd read in some Korean newspapers that Everland had closed down their version of it's a small world after 30 years of operation but I hadn't seen any official confirmation, and that it was just shuttered in the picture. My wife managed to find the confirmation though:

 

The translation in the top left corner roughly translates as: come back to find a new look. Makes it sound like we could be seeing a new theme to replace the existing one of "it's a small world" or maybe like the super-flume being an updated new ride that was pretty similar to the old flume, perhaps a new ride very similar to the old one is going to replace the existing 30 year old one?

 

 

It's nice to see it's not completely going away, though I wasn't a big fan, it never had too long a queue and the ride building was a lot cooler than other rides/restaurants in the park so it always made a great rest-stop to escape the crowds and hot sun during the summer seasons.

 

I also forgot to mention that Everland now sell their own version of glow with the show headbands for the night-time show. Unfortunately even though we arrived before opening, with Halloween being busy we ending up in one of the shuttle buses car parks so we didn't fancy staying until park closure and seeing the show and having to wait out the shuttle buses since traffic was already heavy that weekend due to thanksgiving preparations, we were taking the back-roads and didn't fancy closing traffic.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Sorry for yet another post but T Express policies are changing again: http://witheverland.tistory.com/1120

 

I figured it will probably be one of the main reasons TPR members would ever go to Everland so when it comes to T Express I try to post when something changes. Sorry if I'm repeating stuff I mentioned in previous TRs.

 

On weekdays, the queue is like most parks and will have a standby line and a fast pass line. Single rider should also be available. However the fast-pass system is a little different than other free parks e.g. Disney or Lotte World. SInce quite a few people tend to come for just the afternoons instead of having it first come first serve in the morning they have 2 time-slots. Around park opening will offer fast passes for the morning first come first serve until they run out and since a lot more rides tend to be closed during weekdays or on limited hours and late openings, I've found the lines longer in peak months (and some off peak) on weekdays than on Sundays when the park runs full capacity so the passes run out fast. They then start again with a fresh batch of tickets for the evening at 3PM if you miss out during the morning. These tickets are ONLY available at T Express.

 

Weekends/holidays will once again be reservation only until 3PM, so there will be no stand-by line and if you do want to skip the queue completely using single-rider you will also need a reservation. The stand-by line will open after 3PM but will close when it gets to the point where T Express needs to cease operations in time for the fireworks display. However these tickets are available all over the park and even though it's printed on the map everyone runs to T Express ticket booth.

 

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I know I've mentioned it before but save yourself a big wait and go to the ticket booth in aesop village (the area with the kiddie coaster), the one near the bumper cars or the one near the childrens car ride. It's nearly always empty.

 

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Another bonus of writing this post it gives me an excuse to share this very Korean video where the Everland mascots fight a virus near T Express with lightsabers and one of the safari rides amphibious vehicles.

 

[youtu_be]

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  • 1 month later...

Everland will retire their Madagascar attraction next week, at the time when I took that picture it was assumed that the show would just have a Christmas hiatus like last year for the christmas show with new mascots but the park have been advertising on the app and blogs that Madagascar is leaving for good: Adieu Madagascar

 

Everland managers have been finalizing the agreements for the pandas coming in 2016. Link In anticipation, it seems the panda that is posted all over the construction wall will become a 6th mascot for the park. Panda merchandise has started to go on sale and the character has appeared on opsters with the other 5 characters. Link

 

Also adorable baby cheetahs

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  • 2 weeks later...

Seems Toy Club starring the parks new mascots is replacing the now closed Madagascar. This show actually ran temporarily last year over Christmas in place of Madagascar when the new mascots where introduced but the fact that this year it has X-mas edition on the bottom as well as Madagascar's permanent retirement makes me think that like the fireworks/gardens/parades/tree and entrance street it will be the same show but rotate with each of Everland's season festivals throughout the year.

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Why did Eagle's Fortress have to go? Such a shame to see a ride as legendary as it be demolished, especially for a hotel.

Old roller coaster attraction at the end of its service life with rising maintenance costs, hotel that can make the park lots of money...

 

I'm not a fan of big hotel developments but, in this situation it seems generally like a good idea.

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In order to understand Everland's misfire in removing Eagle's Fortress, one should look at the following wait times for the major coasters on a day when 50000 people were in the park:

 

Attendance: 50000 guests

T-Express: 3 hours wait time (3 train operation)

Rolling X Pain: 20 minutes wait time (1 train operation)

Eagle's Fortress: 60-90 minutes wait time (2 train operation)

 

Keep in mind that lived in Korea for a while and visited Everland many times. Eagle's Fortress always always always had a much longer wait than Rolling X Pain. When Eagle's Fortress closed, Rolling X Pain was down for about six months or so and the corkscrews were replaced. Scrapping or selling Rolling X Pain and using the money to refurbish EF would have been the better move in this case due to the longer queue lines at EF.

 

If EF was indeed at the end of its life, Rolling X Pain should have already been pushing up daisies. If war breaks out in Korea, I am with the north over this. South Koreans can run their country the way they want and I can support the other side. I am convinced that God will send some madman from the north to nuke the south over the loss of EF. Samsung (owner of Everland) has brought shame upon the South Korean people for generations to come. The keys to the rooms at the motel replacing EF will not only unlock the rooms, they will also unlock the gates of hell. God's throne in heaven is attached to a car on EF.

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Y'know, thinking about it a bit, I wonder what would have happened if they decided to replace it with a similar attraction like a more thrilling Vekoma suspended family coaster or a B&M flying coaster.

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The location occupied by EF was perfect for a coaster. The hillside was used like supports. The supports used were not that tall. I wonder if they could have used the same station and supports and replaced most of the track (kept the station, brake run and lift) and added floorless trains and renamed the ride. As I said, it was worth saving after seeing the length of the queues for Rolling X Pain.

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Y'know, thinking about it a bit, I wonder what would have happened if they decided to replace it with a similar attraction like a more thrilling Vekoma suspended family coaster or a B&M flying coaster.

I remember seeing an RCDB page for a B&M Flyer that would replace Eagle Fortress for a long time but nothing came out of it.

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Given how crazy the crowds always seem to be at this park...why don't they build more coasters and thrill rides?

 

Is it space or money? Or is it that the park wants to be more of a family park and not have a lot of thrill rides?

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Given how crazy the crowds always seem to be at this park...why don't they build more coasters and thrill rides?

 

Is it space or money? Or is it that the park wants to be more of a family park and not have a lot of thrill rides?

 

You got to remember just because a park is crowded doesn't mean most of the people are there for thrill rides and coasters, a lot want the zoo part and the fireworks. Yokohama Sea Paradise is also a park that normally makes the top 25 most attended and that didn't have any roller-coasters last year while Surf Coaster got new trains and a rehab.

 

The crowds are normally from half day operations on weekdays since you can quite often find 1 ride an area will be completely shut while the other two alternate so one is open on mornings and the other on afternoons as well as half the kids rides not running. I always recommend to people that Sunday is the best day since everything is usually open but it's quieter than a Saturday. Generally weekdays can be a gamble, i've seen dead weekdays and some with massive lines (again with half rides closed), Sundays lines can quite often be shorter waits than weekdays just because all the rides being open can spread the big crowds. We went a few weeks ago and honestly the thrill ride section was one of the quietest with 20-40 minute lines throughout the day. Honestly the chairlift, kids coaster and bumper cars had longer lines than x train, rock spin and twist. Although it is nice that the parks have single rider for the thrill rides.

 

The whole of Korea has been family friendly since around 2008, since T Express and Pantheon, the only ride with a high height restriction since then was a disk-o. Children's Grand Park rethemed their park and got a new vekoma family suspended in place of the old looper, threw out their almost brand new gyro swing and even the drop tower has a pulley on the outside to make it more like a giant frog hopper. Seoul Land have had the same big coasters pretty much since it opened and it's supposed to be a busy park as well. The boomerang down south is also now SBNO apparently and the only park currently out of development phase is a Legoland.

 

Lotte World's additions since I've been here include:

 

3D upgrade to shooting ride

4d theater shooting ride

kids talk to character show (like turtle talk/stitch)

kids suspended whip ride

kids flume ride (drop is extremely tiny)

4d trackless shooting ride

gyro spin (only high height restriction addition I've seen)

circle vision dome ride

wild river simulator

wild wings simulator

wild jungle simulator

new night parade and show

kids road train

 

Everland's additions (might have missed some):

 

2nd safari ride

indoor kids cafe/playground

3d movie based on popular kids tv show (Pororo 3D)

Rio 4D

re-theme of train ride to Thomas the Tank Engine

new "cuter" park mascots

Madagascar stage show (now retired)

Charactorium (Inside building full of acitivities involving popular children's characters)

re-theme of existing ride to Korean barbie

New fun house that has a maximum height restriction of 1.5m

K-Pop hologram show

Pride in Korea 4D and VR experience

new family flume ride

Gondola to help transport people across the park sideways (the other chairlifts go up and down the mountain)

miniature garden

glamping village (think cabanas for water parks but rental tents to relax when you visit Everland)

pandas (2016)

hotel (2017)

retheme or upgrade of the it's a small world knock off boat ride (16/17?)

 

I am disappointed that I never got the chance to experience Eagles Fortress and as I've mentioned in my last few TR's, I have been going to the park less and less when there is literally only 4-5 rides I still end up doing so of course I wish every year for just 1 nice big coaster or thrill ride to come to this country but as a jaded enthusiast I'm not the target audience. I don't think all these parks in the whole country would be making these additions for almost 10 years now with out researching first and knowing what will bring people through the gates. This years attendance might be lower since the MERS outbreak kept people away during the busy months but each year the attendance has gone up.

 

One last thing, I feel like our definition of busy is very different from theirs. To us an hour wait for an older roller-coaster or 40 minutes for a thrill ride might be long but I have quite a few students who visit Korean parks regularly who go to Japan or China and would probably consider some American parks quiet on days we would think it's busy. I had one of my eldest students a few months ago tell me he thought he went to DisneySea on a quiet day because he managed to get a Toy Story fastpass this time without running.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Everland's gone quite cinematic with showing off their christmas decorations in this year's advert. Their Facebook page is currently celebrating 3,000,000 fans.

 

[fbvideo]

[/fbvideo]

 

The park also announced the water rides are going into their annual winter shut down starting this Monday until spring, makes sense considering the temperatures are dropping pretty rapidly now after a very warm December. The park was pretty quiet last few Sundays, there wasn't even reservation for T Express running and lines were around 30 minutes on a warm-ish sunny Sunday and the middle area of thrill rides was walk-on. Yet the rainy Monday, lines were much longer.... I've never understood why weekdays here can be much busier than Sundays so often. Family rides were busier at around 30 mins though. T Express hasn't been down too much due to weather but it will probably go down in 3-4 weeks after the xmas vacations end since temperatures are starting to dip below its running temperatures occasionally.

 

In all my years here, I still haven't been on the junior coaster, I thought with it being quiet I would try it out but lines never seemed higher than T Express at 40-50 minutes, granted it's a lot lower capacity but it has me thinking that as much as I keep moaning there hasn't been a ride aimed at thrill seekers in almost 7 years, I think something along the lines of Firechaser Express or Grizzly Mountain Cars would do really well as Everland's next coaster.

 

Still nothing big happening over in Eagle's Fortress's hole. As much as I would love to see the hotel a little off-site (if you've ever seen an overhead map of the Everland area you'd be surprised how many things Samsung has here just outside of Everland & the water park) and another terrain coaster take it's place, I feel kind of glad it's not there anymore. For the last 4 years it's was always there just slightly in view reminding me I made a mistake not coming here on vacation and waiting until I got my job here and came out just a little too late to Korea.

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While it doesn't make up for the loss of Eagle's Fortress, a resort hotel at Everland makes total sense... And this one happens to look really nice!

 

Agreed! It's the 16th busiest theme park in the world...they needed a hotel. Eagle's Fortress was great, but this hotel should help continue their growth for years to come. If that growth means another partnership with Intamin like T-express....

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^ Agreed, they have a hostel/Korean pension out the back and the hillside hostel as well but they're mainly for youth groups with guests as second priority (http://www.everland.com/web/multi/english/hb/hb_guide/use/How_to_Use.html)and I'm sure a lot of people would prefer their own shower and bathroom areas as well. Considering how many "love motels," as the cheaper hotels are referred to, are around the surrounding area I think a proper hotel is needed. On the map, the red circles are the hostels, one is next to the park and one is quite far away.

 

Yellow circle is where the hotel will go. I guess looking at the location they wanted a hotel location where the guests can just walk straight in and out for both the water park and Everland and the only location for that is Eagle's Fortress (for reference, the B pin is the water park and C Everland.) but for me it's just a shame with the new subway line, as well as the bus depot being moved away from the entrance as well, and most cars having to park in the shuttle bus car park, they couldn't have just put the hotel a little outside the park and put it on a shuttle bus route instead since most shuttle buses only take 5 minutes from the car park/station as it is so it's not too out of the way and used the layout area of Eagle's Fortress for a new terrain coaster. I mean one of the hostels is already miles out and I believe Samsung own most of the area, with things quite spread out such as the transportation museum which is in the top right of the speedway.

 

MA & MB are the closest car parks and you don't need a shuttle bus but they fill up super early, we've got to the park 1 hour before opening on some peak days and still missed out on parking there. 1-4 are all shuttle bus car parks, as well as parking lot 5 which is just next to 4 out of sight in the bottom right, this is also where the bus depot and subway station is.

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Garet I was just wondering what suspended coasters have you been on? By the way I really like your Korean Park updates because the amount of money that is spent on them matches not even Disney parks except on occasional years.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Have I mentioned my love for Sundays? Sadly I couldn't join my friends on their trip yesterday but looking at the lines it was once again one of the quietest days of the week image1.thumb.PNG.8db033727a04bb6a1e6e263a53659298.PNG

 

Temperatures were quite high for winter this year and it was 7 degrees Celsius yesterday when I checked the app but sadly with temperatures supposedly now going to be just above freezing,T Express is now down for it's annual rehab starting today. If past years are any indication it will probably open mid-late Feb or very early March. Due to the warm temperatures, the snow slides opened much later this year with the smaller slope opening an week or 2 ago and the bigger slope only opening recently. Since they are only there for a month or 2 they were pulling in most of the crowd with the lines hovering around 30 minutes for the smaller slope and the bigger slope for adults around 50 minutes so sadly TPR's twitter wish would only have rang true this weekend.

 

In other news Everland made some postings about suggestions for names for their pandas, It seems the park will be inheriting 2 pandas for its exhibit: one male and one female.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Here's something interesting, Everland have converted the original safari ride to a snow safari which is running until Feb 21. Although it's been pretty cold with up to -15 temperatures and some snow, the snow is artificially created as seen in one of these pictures to put the animals in a snowy environment: http://witheverland.tistory.com/1229

 

I've been told before that a lot of the rocks in the safari area for the tigers, lions etc are electronically heated with the cold temperatures about, both to keep the animals warm and to ensure they are in places so guests can take pictures easily and helps keep them from sitting in the path in the way of the buses.

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No word on the official opening date outside of "Spring" still but the 2016 addition of the Panda Exhibit can't be too far off, a lot of the outside themeing can be seen from outside the walls and all the panda merchandise has now gone on sale: http://witheverland.tistory.com/1233 . Looks like the merchandise is split based on stuff made based on real panda's, as in existing teddy bears, and others based on the two new cartoon panda characters the park seems to be adding to the roster: http://everland.com/contest/02_sub_02.html, a boy and a girl - same as the two the park will receive.

 

I've also been hearing reports that whatever is happening with the Global Village (Small World knock-off) refurbishment might be more extreme than first thought. Last I heard, they've dismantled the entire building. Based on Everland's post about come back to see a new look (date tbc) and last years Thunder Falls (a new 2 drop flume with bigger boats and turntables to replace the old 2 drop log ride), it looks like they could be completely ripping out the old ride to replace it with a newer ride system/experience of what used to be there.

Edited by Garet
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