The All-New Mako roller coaster at SeaWorld Orlando is simply put one of the best roller coasters in Orlando! Described as Orlando’s tallest, fastest and longest coaster – it really is an experience unlike no other. It’s much more than just a thrilling ride, when I came to SeaWorld it was clear that SeaWorld put a lot of effort in creating an amazingly effective themed environment to accompany its newest ride and it really shows in the details and immersive look and feel, but more on that later.
So what is Mako? It’s a full size roller coaster – meaning, this is the real deal. It’s huge! and I mean everything goes big this time around. You start of with a huge drop, followed by additionally big drops and the sensation is just amazing, especially with the lap guard which completely frees your upper body. It goes very fast and then swirls and turns into another area, almost touching the lake and goes back.
I usually get frustrated by long queues, but this was definitely worth it! They went above and beyond with the sadictive, mysterious and adventurous soundtrack and because the ride is pretty long, you really feel like you’re going on an adventure, moving fast, but like a shark going after its prey (or is that just me?). I also appreciated the fact that while there were no loops – it absolutely fulfills the most die hard thrill seeking fan. So if you’re afraid of loops or don’t like the feeling of being upside down- Mako is perfect for you.
The queue area is just terrific. It’s themed appropriately like a shipwreck, getting you into the mood as soon as you enter the line. A nice extension of the whole zone which is called Sea-of-Mystery. Now what I like about SeaWorld’s approach was that the attention to details is pretty great, with sea shells on the ground and authentic ropes and wood columns. It’s highly themed, but still manages not to hide the fact that it’s a full size roller coaster we’re talking about. There aren’t a lot of those in Orlando and I appreciated this unapologetic approach. A good balance, I would say. You have some tidbits and trivia questions scattered across the queue and a nice video with more entertaining information about sharks. It’s important to note that SeaWorld is offering what’s called a Mako one-time quick queue, so it may worth checking out if you’re going when it’s high season and the park is packed.
Mako surrounding is called Sea of Mystery. The theming is just wonderful: the signs, the water and shipwreck elements and you can even find a decorated shark statue made out of recycled materials. Those extra touches really gives this part of the park a distinctive look which is themed, but still abstract and modern in a way. It’s a really impressive and smart balance (and I’m usually a fan of highly themed immersive environments, like SeaWorld’s Sea of Ice zone or alternatively – Antartica).
So Mako is much more than just a ride. You can find an exciting assortment of venues, with the highlights being: Fins Gifts – a nice shop with any shark memorabilia you can imagine. Panini Shore Cafe– a cafe place to grab your caffeine er.. coffee and a quick bite. If you’re looking for something that’s more upscale -there’s Sharks Underwater Grill which is a bit expensive, but offers some amazing views of sharks and other fish! entertaining you while you eat. The food is really delicious so I think it’s actually a great spot to eat your lunch. Additionally, there are some fun games for kids, interactive fun facts areas and of course Shark Encounter which is the main place to learn about sharks and see them up close.
All-New Mako – a whole new experience
I really loved Mako! and that’s coming for someone who usually likes roller coasters that are hiding under heavy theming! It felt comfortable and was pure amazing fun. The new zone is really immersive, but still modern and there is a nice assortment of experiences to discover and enjoy. Generally speaking, I really like this new direction that SeaWorld is taking with Mako artistically and fundamentally, focusing on thrilling attractions and immersive environments. Way to go! I will leave you with Antartica, just because it’s really impressive and worth visiting.