Adventure World's new Goliath is no gentle giant

Photo of Angie Tomlinson

A birthday visit shows that after 35 years there is still a lot to love at Adventure World.

We march towards Goliath, Adventure World’s show-stopping new ride, to the sound of beating drums ... literally, as drums are being played as part of the theme park’s 35th birthday celebrations. I’m strapped into Goliath and its pendulum swings up 120 degrees into the air. 

The descents are gut wrenching, the 17.8m per second momentum dizzying and the hanging upside down, well, urgh. It’s fun though, and I must say, more terrifying to look at than partake in.

Goliath is slain and a fun day at Adventure World can start.

I haven’t visited since I was a teenager and there’s much the same but plenty new. 

Water Mountain endures and I take my seven-year-old on the original attraction, Rocky Mountain Rapids — still fun.

The perpetually popular speed water slides are still going, with kids and adults streaking down the hill on mats.

When it opened in 1982, when the Australian theme park industry was in its infancy, Adventure World was a trailblazer. Built in an old limestone quarry by entertainment promoter and producer Michael Edgley, it was originally the less-catchy Edgley’s Adventureworld at Bibra Lakes.

In 2000, it was bought out of receivership and $40 million has been spent over the past seven years. It shows. Besides Goliath, there’s Kraken — the longest, tallest and steepest funnel water slide in the world — and the $12 million rollercoaster Abyss. Then there’s the spinning Rampage. You’ll never get me on that. 

Kahuna Falls is at the centre of the park and a great attraction for children aged 3-12. 

A Hawaiian-themed maze of primary-coloured water slides, a spewing volcano and an enormous tiki bucket that unexpectedly tips, dumping litre upon litre of water on the unsuspecting beneath (just ask my husband and traumatised four-year-old). 

For the youngest set there is Dragon Kingdom which includes sedate twirling boat Barnacle, toddler-friendly pool and a mini rollercoaster. 

There are 29 attractions at Adventure World, people have visited 8.8 million times since it opened, and more than 7000 apply for 445 season jobs each year. No wonder when part of your job is squirting kids with a water gun. 

Fact File


Angie Tomlinson was a guest of Adventure World.


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