Last time I was at Busch Gardens in Tampa it was to preview and experience the new Cheetah Hunt, a high-speed, triple-launch roller coaster that has everyone talking.
The cheetah called for my return. So did the media office, to take a Serengeti Safari. A train goes around it, a sky-ride goes over it but the jeep Safari goes right through the 65-acre Serengeti Plain. We stood in the back of an open truck with our guide, checking out free the roaming ostrich, antelope, rhinos, zebras and other African animals.
The highlight of the Safari was the giraffes. The tall, beautiful creatures surrounded our truck and dropped their long necks down, looking for treats. Those big, dark eyes and long eyelashes made us fall in love instantly. As our guide educated us on the animals, we feed them lettuce and rubbed their necks. They in turn, drooled their appreciation all over us.
Busch Gardens also offers a Serengeti Night Safari. After the park closes you get to stay, observe the animals through night-vision monoculars and spend time around a fire pit . Appetizers and "adult beverages" are provided before the tour; dessert and coffee afterwards. This looks like a really cool experience.
Something to take advantage of if you are a Florida resident; a free daytime Serengeti Safari with your park admission, now through December 15.
By the way, I DID ride the Cheetah Hunt again; front row. This time I was brave enough to let go of the harness and put my hands up like a TRUE coaster fanatic.
***COMMENTS: Thanks to all my Facebook friends for posting so many great comments. I would LOVE it if you could also post your comments here on this blog site. I've had dozens of people tell me they posted and it never showed up. Disappointing for us both. So click comment, type your comment, check the box that says "comment as" then hit post. If a word verification box does not appear next (a scrambled word to retype), your comment did not post. Thanks!