Six Flags currently owns and operates 27 theme parks and waterparks throughout the United States, Canada, and Mexico. However, Six Flags may be expanding past its current North American boundaries with its newest project, Six Flags Qiddiya.
This super theme park is one of the most ambitious parks ever and has set goals to open with multiple record-breaking attractions including the tallest, longest, and fastest roller coaster in the world.
Six Flags’ Most Impressive Project Yet
Six Flags Qiddiya was originally announced back in 2018 and is a partnership between Six Flags Entertainment Corporation and Qiddiya Investment Company (formerly The Public Investment Fund). The park will be part of a new entertainment district in Saudi Arabia called Qidddiya and will sit about 40 miles outside the nation’s capital city and is said to be a multi-billion-dollar project. The park was originally intended to open in 2022 but has faced delays leading many to wonder when or even if the park will open. However, construction of the park is currently underway.
The park will feature 28 rides and attractions across 75 acres. Several of these attractions are rumored to be record-breakers. The park will also be divided into 6 themed lands that will make this Six Flags’ most immersive and detailed theme park.
The first land will be Steam Town which is said to be a place where past and future collide. Discovery Springs will focus on water and include many water features and fountains. Twilight Gardens will focus on beautiful foliage that will glow at night. The Valley of Fortune will invite guests to experience adventure while showcasing Arabian architecture. World expos of the past will be the focus of the Grand Exposition, and City of Thrills will feature the park's signature coaster, Falcon’s Flight.
There have been several concept art photos released by Six Flags that show many of the expected attractions. From what is shown, it seems we can expect a tilt coaster that bears a striking resemblance to Vekomas new tilt coaster model. There are also images of a spike coaster, a wooden coaster, a suspended coaster, and a water coaster.
Additionally, several flat rides like the Zamperla balloon race model, a swing ride, and a spinning pendulum are also shown. Additionally, it seems there will also be a highly themed drop tower.
A Behemoth "Super" Coaster
Of course, the park’s signature attraction, Falcon’s Flight is featured in the concept art as well. This coaster is unlike any coaster ever built and is being manufactured by Intamin. The massive steel structure will be the world's tallest free-standing coaster structure, and they are calling it a "super" coaster. The coaster will break the height record at a whopping 525 feet.
But this coaster will not be like the current tallest coasters called strata coasters which feature a short layout and a large top hat hill/drop. This will be the longest coaster in the world coming in at almost 2.5 miles long. It will reach speeds over 155 miles per hour and utilize LSM launch technology. The ride experience will be over 3 minutes long. Construction of this massive coaster is currently in progress, and you can check out the announcement video for the coaster below.
So, Why Haven’t You Heard of Six Flags Qiddiya?
You may be wondering why, if this park is so impressive and will feature the world’s tallest and fastest coaster, you have not heard of it before. This is likely due to the location of the park. As mentioned, this park is going to be located in Saudi Arabia. The location of the park caused it to be a less-than-desirable destination due to both the environmental climate and political climate of the country.
Six Flags Qiddiya is currently being constructed in the desert of Saudi Arabia. This area of the world experiences extremely hot summers averaging temperatures over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. There are not many theme park enthusiasts who are willing to battle that kind of heat even for their favorite coasters. Additionally, the area is also prone to dust storms. When you combine the dust with wind, it makes one wonder how reliable many of these record-breaking attractions will be.
The political climate of the country may not be the most inviting for tourists from certain countries and communities either. Some of the most avid coaster enthusiasts say that Saudi Arabia’s unfavorable policies around the LGBT+ communities and gender are reasons they will not be planning a visit.
This could likely be why we have heard a lot of rumors and excitement around Cedar Point’s Top Thrill Dragster’s redesign breaking the height record and nothing about Falcon’s Flight (which has already been announced to break the record). With the park being part of a larger plan to draw tourists to this new entertainment district, it will be interesting to see whether this huge investment pays off.
Do you think this impressive park will live up to its intentions or will it be left in the dust (literally)? Let us know in the comment below or on our Facebook page!