A Japanese Hot Spring Haven Wants to Build a 'Spamusement' Park

Beppu, Japan—already famous for its hot springs—is promoting a whole new take on the standard amusement park. In the somewhat wacky YouTube video below, spotted by Gizmodo, the city shared its dream of building a spa-themed amusement park, or a “spamusement” park.

The viral video showcases jacuzzi-esque roller coaster cars, steam room carnival games, and merry-go-rounds that feature single-person hot spring pools. The city promised that if the video, posted on November 21, reached 1 million views, it would look into implementing the idea. Obviously, it easily surpassed that goal. (A week later, it’s at more than 2 million views.)

It’s uncertain what a spamusement park would look like in reality. It might be hard to make a jacuzzi roller coaster, but the steam room carnival games seem relatively simple to run.

The concept video comes from a city YouTube channel, named, according to Google Translate, something to the effect of “Hot Spring High Standard! Paradise Hell Beppu”—a reference to the city’s “Eight Hells” hot springs, which can reach temperatures of more than 300°F.

In a press release, the mayor confirmed that with the video surpassing its goal of 1 million views, the city hopes to now organize a task force that will help implement the whimsical idea.

[h/t Gizmodo]

Teaser image by Soramimi via Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 4.0

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Disney World is Giving Away a Glamping Trip in Pandora
Disney
Disney

Short of booking a trip to Zhangjiajie, China—to see the surreal landscape that inspired the floating mountains in Avatar, James Cameron's epic fantasy film—Disney World is the only place on Earth that comes close to recreating the wondrous world of Pandora.

As spotted by Travel + Leisure, the Florida-based theme park is hosting a contest to send one winner and a guest on an overnight "glamping" trip inside Pandora—The World of Avatar, a section of the Animal Kingdom theme park that opened last spring.

For one night only, guests will get to sleep in a luxury tent against a bioluminescent backdrop in the park's Valley of Mo'ara. This will be the first time anyone has had the chance to stay overnight in the Pandora park. Accommodations will be arranged for the other two nights, and the trip also comes with round-trip airfare and specially curated experiences like a drum ceremony, night hike, and a visit from "surprise guests." (Sigourney Weaver, could it be you?)

Don't forget the rides, either. Guests will get a private ride on the 3D attraction "Flight of Passage" as well as the "Na'vi River Journey." A writer for Insider called "Flight of Passage" the "best Disney ride yet," and a writer for Travel + Leisure said it made her cry "literal tears of joy." The lucky winner will also receive a $250 Disney gift card and a photography package and, best of all, guests will get access to any of Disney's theme parks for four days.

To apply for the contest, make a short video explaining why you deserve a getaway and click the link here to submit it. The deadline for entries is June 21, and the trip will take place from July 28 to July 31, 2018.

[h/t Travel + Leisure]

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Move Over, Star Wars Land: A Star Trek World May Be Coming to Universal Studios
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Getty Images

As Disney gears up for the 2019 openings of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at both its Florida and California amusement parks, there may be some sci-fi-themed competition on the horizon. According to Disney and More, there’s a rumor out there that Universal is planning a fourth Orlando theme park, which will include a land dedicated to all things Star Trek.

The blog also states that there have been rumblings that a Star Trek stage show at Universal would take the place of the now-defunct Terminator 2 3D show, but that’s just one option, with a Bourne Identity attraction being the other. Instead, the potential Star Trek show could be expanded to a whole area of the rumored fourth park, with a focus on a recreation of a sci-fi city, according to the site.

This rumored park would be the most high-profile Trek attraction since Las Vegas's Star Trek: The Experience (as seen in the main image). Housed at the Las Vegas Hilton from 1998 to 2008, Star Trek: The Experience included a restaurant based on Quark's bar from Deep Space Nine and the popular Borg Invasion 4D, which was an attraction that combined motion platforms, live actors, and a short 3D film to simulate a Borg takeover.

Any potential Star Trek land would be much further off than Galaxy's Edge's fall 2019 debut in Orlando. But with two new Trek movies on the horizon, and Star Trek: Discovery returning to CBS All Access for a second season in 2018, the venerable sci-fi franchise might just be able to ride a wave of momentum to become real competition for Star Wars—if not at the box office, then at least as a theme park.

[h/t Screen Rant]

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