Urban Spelunking (Second Episode: Earth & Air)

After the upbeat endings of our watching-the-sunrise and swimming experience at Half Moon Bay, we proceeded directly to the city proper to check in at one of the most economical hotel suites in Khobar and to have lunch at the most patronized Filipino restaurant nearby. Thereafter, we headed to our second destination: Cobra Amusement Park. The said park is the equivalent of Enchanted Kingdom in the Philippines and is located at the heart of the Saudi oil industry, Dammam. It took us an hour drive to get to the place from Khobar.


The city of Dammam is largest in the metropolis and it is the commercial hub of the whole Eastern Region. Several government offices as well as judicial and administrative bodies are found in the city.


On the other hand, the Cobra Amusement Park is, of course, a place for entertainment—primarily for kids. This park lies along Prince Mohammed Bin Fahd Road in Ash Sharqiyah, and it has a land area of 1300,00 square meters that can accommodate 15,000 visitors at one time.

Howbeit, for some reason the “young goats” in us seemed to have possessed our consciousness that we suddenly craved feeling the rides. After paying SAR 10 for the entrance, we ambulated the colorful ambiance of the park until we got magnetized by this Waveswinger at 15 SAR.


“The Waveswinger premiered in Germany in 1972 as a park model designed by Zierer, built by Franz Schwarzkopf. In 1974 the first transportable Wellenflug (as it is known in its home country of Germany) premiered under the same partnership. There have been over 150 units exported worldwide by Zierer who later went on to be the Waveswinger’s sole manufacturer. The rotating top is raised via 4 sets of cables linked to a hydraulic ram inside the central column. The ram retracts to pull the cables that hold the center ring (and attached carousel) upwards; eventually tilting over a curve in top of the central pole, which rotates in the opposite direction to create its unique motion. This moving center-pole remains ingeniously hidden under the decorative paneling. The carousel is rotated by 2 motors in the roof, while 2 motors in the base turn the curved center pole in the opposite direction” (www.ride-extravaganza.com).

Seeing a group of youngsters that got in the swinger before us being thrown up in the air like happily yelling boomerangs was quite inviting not to mention thrilling. Everyone got tremendously pumped up.

5 Thanks to Leonel Tuscano for this photo.

So when the ride began to move in an oscillating wave-like motion, our bodies’ adrenal medullas were instantly filled with epinephrine. Our heart rate and blood pressure heightened when its central pole slowly tilted at its peak more so when the carousel telescopically rose and rotated simultaneous with flinging our limping yet agog bodies into the petrifying breeze. We stayed waving like flags in the wind at multiple revolutions for straight 15 minutes. All we could do during that moment was succumb to the overpowering joy and excitement by loosing our loud, bursting screams—inarticulate and piercing.

Before we finally returned to Khobar, we snapped a group selfie and photo of the Waveswinger that looks startling at dusk. 



In retrospect, breaking free from the monotony of our, for lack of a better word to describe it, adult routine by immersing ourselves in the world of the younger crowd or doing something that truly excites us (like riding the Waveswinger) is a liberating and overwhelming experience even just for a while. I now believe that there’s indeed no point being a grown-up if you can’t be childish sometimes. Simply put, the experience was absolutely a blast!

For more information about the place, please click this website: www.fun.com.sa.

9 Comments Add yours

  1. Bonnie says:

    This looks like so much fun. There is a ride similar to this waveslinger in an amusement park adjacent to our city, I haven’t rode it in years. You’re right, it’s good to break from the monotony of adult life and enjoy a thrilling ride for a day! Thanks for taking us along for the ride, loved it! 😀


    1. Sony Fugaban says:

      The pleasure is mine, Bonnie. Too bad I didn’t really have the time capture the “shouting moments”. I opted to just feel the fun without interruptions.

      Anyway, I am sure you so get the picture of how fun the experience was. Thank you very much!


  2. Weeeee…I got carried away with the fun thrills in this post. Fun place bro. It’s nice to unwind every now and just have a great time. Thanks for sharing this.


    1. Sony Fugaban says:

      Being a kid at that. Really feels great to be in their crowd at times. Reminds so much of that blissful life–free of worries and responsibilities.


  3. rommel says:

    Great panning effect on the swing. When I was a kid, it is my MOST favorite ride in Enchanted Kingdom. I used to fall in line back to back to back to back.


    1. Sony Fugaban says:

      Now, I know. What I like about “riding” the swing is it makes “us” feel really young again.
      And we really need to do that at times.


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