Least Scary Roller Coasters at Busch Gardens

Least Scary Roller Coasters At Busch Gardens Tampa

Does the thought of riding a roller coaster sink your heart into your stomach? A lot of people have a fear of roller coasters because they are tall, fast and go upside down.  Are you about to visit Busch Gardens Tampa and want to know which are the least scary roller coasters to ride?

The least scary roller coasters at Busch Gardens Tampa are the Sand Serpent, Scorpion and Cobra’s Curse because they are smaller, not as fast and not as long as the other roller coasters in the park.

Busch Gardens Tampa is known for having tall and fast roller coasters that draw many coaster enthusiasts to the park every year.  It seems that every new coaster they add, gets bigger and faster than the ones they already have.

What if these are not for you?  How do you still enjoy going to Busch Gardens Tampa if you are scared of roller coasters? My suggestion is to start small and work your way up to the bigger ones.

In my family, my older kids love roller coasters and could ride them over and over again.  However, my youngest son and I, don’t enjoy coasters that send your heart into your stomach.  There are 3 roller coasters at Busch Gardens Tampa that are less scary then the rest.

Insider Tip

It’s tempting to try to ride Cobra’s Curse first because it is near the front of the park. However, it is usually the busiest coaster out of the 3 because most people ride the coasters from the front of the park to the back.

Wait until later in the day and the line usually goes way down. Ride the Sand Serpent and Scorpion roller coasters first, which are located in the middle of the park in Pantopia. They have much shorter lines.

Top 3 Least Scary Roller Coasters At Busch Gardens

Sand Serpent Roller Coaster

The Sand Serpent roller coaster is the smallest roller coaster at Busch Gardens Tampa.  Out of all of coasters at the park, this one is the best to start with if you are afraid.

All 3 of my children like this ride because it has a little thrill factor for my older kids, however it isn’t too fast for my youngest.

Ride Specifications For Sand Serpent

The Sand Serpent is a carnival style roller coaster that is 45 feet tall and has max speed of 28 mph. The height requirement is 46 inches.

There are only 2 carts connected to each other as you go around the track.  In each cart, 2 people sit next to each other and there is only 1 lap bar that goes over both of you.

Track Layout For Sand Serpent

As you start out on the track, you immediately go up a first hill.  The difference between the Sand Serpent and other coasters is, you don’t immediately go down a first hill. You first go around a lot of twists and turns before you go down a little hill in the middle of the ride.  There are only 2 little hills throughout the whole ride.

Rider Experience For Sand Serpent

The Sand Serpent is a pretty smooth roller coaster. You don’t feel like you are going to throw up your lunch after the ride.  There is not a first big drop to be afraid of.  There are only a few little drops scattered throughout the ride.

The scariest part of this coaster is it has sharp turns that make you think you are going to fly off the track.  However, it’s not as bad as going down a huge hill or going 75 mph.

Scorpion Roller Coaster

The scorpion roller coaster at Busch Gardens Tampa is one of the oldest coasters at the park.  I remember when I was younger, this was my favorite ride because it’s not too tall and not too fast.

When you first pull up to the park and see the size of all the roller coasters like Montu and Sheikra, don’t get scared, the scorpion is half their size.

Ride Specifications For Scorpion

The height requirement for Scorpion is 42 inches tall and has max speed is 50 mph.  Each rider has a separate lap bar to keep them safe inside the ride. The first hill is not a straight down drop.  It winds around in a downward motion to pick up some speed.

The coaster has only 1 loop at the bottom of the first hill, so a shoulder harness isn’t needed. Wait, you may be thinking, why doesn’t the restraint bar go over my shoulders if there is a loop?  Actually, going around the loop pushes you into the seat, so you don’t feel like you are going to fall out.

When you first sit down in the coaster, the seat feels a bit cramped.  I’m a little over 6 feet tall and I have to bend my legs just to fit inside the coaster.

Track Layout For Scorpion

When you first start out, you immediately go up the first hill which is about 60 ft high.  Then you wind around as you come down and go around a loop.  The rest of the track is filled with a lot of twist and turns and going around circles.

Rider Experience For Scorpion

From my experience, the scariest part of the ride is near the end of the ride where you wind around and around close to the ground.  The coaster isn’t very tall, so it has a lot of turns that push you into the side of the seat.  It feels like you are going faster than you actually are.

Cobra’s Curse Roller Coaster

Once you have ridden the Scorpion and Sand Serpent, I then suggest riding the Cobra’s Curse.  This is one of the parks newest rides and it goes backward and spins while you ride.

Now I know what you are thinking, I don’t like roller coasters that go forward, how am I going to ride one that goes backwards?  It’s not as scary as it sounds.

Ride Specifications For Cobra’s Curse

For the first half of the ride, you go forward at a speed of about 40 mph.  The first drop is not very high but still can drop your stomach a little.  There are no loops or corkscrews that make you go upside down so only a lap bar is needed to keep you secure in the seat.  The ride is smooth and not very long.

Track Layout For Cobra’s Curse

When you first get on the ride, you will encounter a lift station that takes you directly up to the top of the first hill which is 70 ft in the air.  At that point, you will be staring at a big Cobra snake head before being released down the first hill.

As you go through the track, there are a few twists, turns and hills until you get about halfway through the ride.  Then the coaster will turn around and start moving backwards.

While backwards, you will go down a winding hill and around a few twists and turns until you come to the end of the ride.

Rider Experience For Cobra’s Curse

Most of the time when I ride this roller coaster it doesn’t spin that much. The carts will twirl a few times and then stop depending on if you are going around a bend.  However, I have seen some that will spin a lot. It all depends on the weight of the people in the coaster and where they are sitting.

There has never been a time when my youngest son was too scared to ride this roller coaster.  Your heart doesn’t drop into your stomach from a big hill and you don’t go very fast.

How To Conquer Your Fear of Roller Coasters

Roller coasters are not for everyone, but you may find yourself in a position when you feel obligated to ride even though you fear them. By following the steps below, you can successfully get through the ride even though you are scared.

  • Make sure that you are mentally prepared for the ride.
  • Start with smaller coasters first before you go on to bigger ones.
  • Keep yourself distracted while you are in line. Don’t meditate on how tall or fast the ride is.
  • Familiarize yourself with the ride layout before you get in line so there are no surprises.
  • Think positive thoughts and tell yourself you are going to have fun.
  • Choose a seat in the middle of the coaster so you can’t see all of the scary twist, turns and hills.
  • Sit next to a friend or relative for comfort.
  • Check the restraints carefully when getting on the ride so you feel secure.
  • Hold onto the handles tightly throughout the ride.
  • Take deep breaths as you get onto the ride to calm your nerves.
  • Try screaming while on the ride to calm your nerves
  • Close your eyes if you are afraid of heights
  • If you experience motion sickness, keep your eyes open so you can predict the movements
  • Don’t feel pressured to ride if you can’t get the nerves to ride

Final Thoughts

If you are staying in Orlando and decide you want to head to Busch Gardens to conquer the roller coasters, you can checkout my guide on how to get to Busch Gardens from Orlando.

Roller coasters are scary for many people. The thought of going up really high and speeding around turns in excess of 50 mph, can be terrifying.  Make sure you mentally prepare yourself for the ride before you get on the coaster.

The Sand Serpent, Scorpion and Cobra’s Curse are the least scary roller coasters at Busch Gardens Tampa.  These 3 will help prepare you for the bigger and faster coasters.

Drew Thomas

Drew Thomas is the founder of Visit Orlando With Kids and loves going to theme parks with his family. Every year he has annual passes to all Florida's theme parks and loves to share tips and tricks that he has learned over the 35 years living in Orlando.

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