Monday, April 23, 2018

Bangkok Dinosaur Planet Closes Permanently - Farewell Tribute Article with Plenty of new HD Videos for Each Attraction

I am sad to announce that the great Bangkok Dinosaur Planet theme park had its last week-end and closed permanently yesterday April 22. The small theme park located in the heart of Bangkok was supposed to be a 9 months only temporary theme park but it finally stayed more than two years and Dinosaur Planet was hugely popular and stunned everyone with its dozens of full life size Audio-Animatronics Dinosaurs. 

The reason why Dinosaur Planet close its doors is simply because the contract with the land owner on which they built the park is ending and they have to give back the land. What will happen next of all the fantastic Audio-Animatronics Dinos? I've heard that they may rebuild the park in Phuket, South of Thailand, and i'll try to check this and will let you know. When i had the luck to visit Dinosaur Planet two years ago i really enjoyed it and was specially amazed of the quality of the Dinos AAs and of how they succeeded to do all the attractions with a limited budget. 

D&M had posted previous articles about Dinosaur Planet that you can read HERE, HERE and HERE but although the closure of the park is no good news, i have a good news for you as for this farewell article i finally did the editing of videos that i had shot two years ago and posted them on Youtube. They show others attractions of the park that you've never seen before and it worth the look as there is many good ideas in them. But first, here is a video showing Bangkok Dinosaur Planet '"Central Plaza" where stands 120 feet / 40m long and 60 feet / 20 m high Dinosaurs!

The first new video is about an attraction that was close to the entrance and the perfect one to start after you entered the park. It was called "Dinosaur District" and was quite an educational attraction, teaching through many pre-shows the origin and the end of the Dinosaurs. 

After a short movie quite well done you entered in a pre-show room where different Dinosaurs species skeletons were displayed, with more infos, before entering the main show where guests could discover a laboratory where they take care of Dinos eggs and babies Dinos. Yes, Universal did it before in their Jurassic Park lands but here there is a very cool twist at the end, something that Universal didn't thought to do, and i don't tell you what it is, just make sure to stay till the end of the video!

When guests exit Dinosaur District they found in front of them the Dino Eye attraction which at first sight looks like a regular Ferris Wheel but in fact this one was pretty unique in the world as it entered twice a show building - when moving up and down - with Dinosaurs and Ice Age animals Audio-Animatronics! The concept was interesting and the final result was okay, but let's say that it probably would have been better with show scenes of bigger sizes and more depth, but they were limited in space there. Cool pre-show room too as you will see in this other new video.

The "E-Ticket" attraction of the park was "Stars of Dinos" with dozens of life size Audio-Animatronics Dinosaurs with head, mouth, neck, eyes, tail, front legs moving! Some even have the belly moving to simulate the breath of the dinos. The result is that you could stand near dinosaurs which were as big as they were in real and have for the first time the feeling that you would have had if you've been living 150 Million years ago when these giants ruled the Earth! The skin and skin colors were extremely well done, even better than the dinosaurs at Universal Jurassic Park. 

The attraction was supposed to be a ride with guests sitting in a jeep moving all around a jungle set with the Dinos - the jeep that you can see above - but for many reasons they changed their plans and guests were simply walking around and could take their time to have a close encounter with all the Dinos. I did a daylight and nighttime videos of the attraction, atmosphere is very different depending if its daylight or nighttime, so the best is to watch both videos below.

Raptor XTreme was another Dinosaur Planet attraction. The storyline was that guests enter a camp where everybody have been killed since velociraptors escaped and even a Helicopter had crashed at the entrance of the camp. After a pre-show movie in which was explained what guests had to do - to find an attache case and the codes to open it hidden in the camp the only way to open the doors to escape the camp. Then, guest were moving in the camp itself, chased by velociraptors. I didn't filmed this one but others did and you have two videos below showing the attraction, the first one include the pre-show movie and the second one shows more the raptors - people in raptors costumes. Raptor XTreme was obviously an attraction for kids and teens who enjoyed it a lot. 

Talking about kids the next attraction - "Dino Farm" - was entirely for young kids and included another good idea. Kids could literally ride a walking Dinosaur, and even make it turning left or right. Kind of "Autopia" with children sit on a Dinosaur instead than sit in a car, and most of all a very very very slow ride as you'll see in this other new short video. At the center was also an "excavation site" where children had fun finding in the sand Dinosaurs bones, like in Disney's Animal Kingdom Boneyard.

The biggest problem of these slow walking Dinos was that they needed regular maintenance, and of course because of the slow speed, the attraction had a low hour capacity, but young children enjoyed it a lot.

The park had six different areas, each with attractions and a seven attraction - a 4D ride - opened a few months after the opening, inside the giant volcano in the center of the park. 4D Deep World was a 4D attraction with guests entering inside the volcano and once inside moved in a supposed lift going down in the center of the Earth where, at a deep underground level there was - guess what? - that's right: Dinosaurs. It was a cool projection show but no filming was allowed, so no video of it.

In addition to these cool attractions Bangkok Dinosaur Planet also had a very good night show happening in the volcano area, titled "The Extinction Live show" a mix of projections on the Live Show, Animatronics Dinosaurs and actors dresses ad Dinos. I had filmed the full show and here is this other new video!

I've got a "one more thing" for you as seasonal animations also happened at Dinosaur Planet like this one, during Songkran days - Thailand new year big event around mid-April. During Songkran, Thai people have fun splashing each other with water because April and May are the hottest months in South-East Asia, and the park had transformed an Audio-Animatronic Dino who was splashing the guests on the park central plaza, as you'll see in this other video below, and more pictures are available in a previous article HERE.

Dinosaur Planet was indeed a small theme park but it had a lot of charm and will be dearly missed. Although it couldn't be compared with Disney or Universal standards, considering the price of admission - 15€ / $18 - it was really a cool and a quality experience so let's hope Dinosaur Planet will have a new life in Phuket or somewhere else. Congrats to all Thai people who had created the park!

Pictures and videos: copyright Disney and more, Dinosaur  Planet

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