Apollo’s Chariot @ Busch Gardens | Coaster Reviews

Roller Coaster Reviews

Apollo Should Have Been the Roman God of Airtime
After having not ridden one of my top coasters for over three years I was excited to see that it still shined. All of the pluses that had made it one of favorite roller coasters were still there.Apollo's Chariot Roller Coaster Apollo’s Chariot was designed by the legendary Bolliger & Mabillard, it offers one of the airtime-packed rides anywhere, and it’s located at one of the most critically acclaimed theme parks in the world. Needless to say if you’re a coaster enthusiast, Busch Gardens Europe should be on your trip schedule. Especially, with Griffon opening in a few months.

A Lively Station and Unique Trains
Like some of the other top rides I’ve ridden, Apollo’s Chariot still has a hyped up station that’s buzzing with excitement. It takes so little to have ride ops that simply ask how your ride was and offer a little personality. But it can add a lot to the excitement level of the experience. The trains are different from non-B&M hyper coasters. They have nine rows of four seats across that helps with ride capacity and keeps the line moving. They are also THE most comfortable seats and restraints out there. Not to mention they are elevated and open allowing your legs and arms to swing freely.

The Trip Out
The small drop off of the chain lift before the first drop is goodApollo's Chariot Roller Coaster because it allows the train to fall down the hill without the last couple cars still being stuck on the chain. The breathtaking 21-story drop to the ravine below (something Fabio would like to forget) is great. The train climbs up a second hill and drops into a tunnel. Your trip out ends with a 144′ banked, twisting drop that has the train speeding along side the ground. If you sit on the left side of the train, you get the full effect of this drop with the ground whizzing by you. All the while, Apollo offers one of the smoothest rides you’ll find anywhere. Especially in the 70+ mph category.

The Airtime-Packed Trip HomeApollo's Chariot Busch Gardens Europe
Next, you rise up into a funky helix and drop down into the brake run. You only slow down for a moment as your trip home is one to remember. They didn’t just tack on an ending to Apollo’s Chariot, some would say that they saved the best for last. After the flat track of the brake run, you fall immediately into the first of many airtime drops. The negative g-forces are undeniable as you hit three of these shorter but more intense drops back-to-back. There’s one more relatively shallow drop followed by more straight track. At this point you’re near the station and first-time riders probably assume it’s all over now. But there’s one more great airtime drop left where the camera snaps pictures of the surprised riders at the very end of the ride.

Aside from Superman: Ride of Steel at Six Flags New England, I haven’t ridden a steel coaster with so much airtime. Best of all, you can really embrace ride because of the openness of the trains. Quite often, you’re over 100′ in the air and your legs, arms, and upper body is completely free to move. Nitro at Six Flags Great Adventure, another B&M hyper coaster, offers a similar experience, but I still give the nod to Apollo’s Chariot. I’d have to say this is one of B&M’s signature rides as it has everything that makes their rides great from the design to the theming. It’s fast, smooth, and thrilling with great views. What else could you ask for? Final Rating – 10 (Superior)

Intense Roller Coasters - For Adventurous RidersApollo’s Chariot is rated ‘IN’ for Intense. It’s a 4 out of 5 on my Thrill Scale for of its height and speed.

What’s Your Take?
Have you ridden Apollo’s Chariot? Leave a comment below. Photos 1 & 3 courtesy of CoasterImage.com


  1. Since it`s a B&M, dont expect the forces to be too intense, but expect a good ride.

  2. While we are on the topic of intimidator, does anyone know if a single rider line has been announced? I know they announced it for 305.

    • I haven`t seen anything on screamscape.

  3. CC, Apallo is the Greek Sun God.

    • I'm aware Quil. Apollo is actually both the Greek and Roman sun god. Seeing as how Apollo's Chariot is located in the Festa Italia section (Italy = Rome = Roman), the ride was themed after the Roman god.

  4. I thoroughly enjoyed it because of its smooth hills, the theming, and the fantastic view at the top of the lift hill! The pre-drop causes some to scream before realizing their mistake.

  5. The pre-drop also helps reduce stress on the chain by keeping the train at a generally lower speed until completely off the chain.

  6. i've read a lot of debate or people commenting on were the best ride on Apollo's Chariot is and I wanted to throw my 2 cents in to anyone who is going to ride it. Definitely ride it in the front! This past weekend my wife and I rode in the back first then went and got front row seats and without a doubt (IMO) the front had the best airtime and exciting ride! No matter where you sit it is great but the front gets my vote for the best seat!

  7. I loved this ride but my friend kept yelling "CRAP I'M GOING TO DIIIIIIIIIIE" It was hilarious. Now I want to ride front row!!!!

  8. i need to work in a trip to busch gardens this summer. i need to persuade my parents. 😉 lol would you guys say this is a good ride for a teen and not scary? i love coasters but haven't been to BGW yet. only KD! 🙂

  9. shut down while i was in line grrr

    • hate when that happens 🙂

  10. I love this ride.. It was my first coaster EVER. (what can I say, my girlfriend is persuasive). Anyway, quick question.. If I love AC will I enjoy Alpengeist?

    • They're completely different rides. So I'm not sure. If you like loops then you may like Alpengeist. Let us know what you think after you ride it.

      • Loops to me are okay. I like large drops more then loops.. Give me more of a thrill.. I shall report back after I ride Alpie.

        • My first coaster too! Went to BGE in August and rode Apollos Chariot, but then chickened out on the others… shame on me! Going back in a week to ride all 4. Oh, and Coaster Critic, this website has been a big help for me getting interested in roller coasters, and helping get over my fear, so thank you 🙂

  11. I noticed your thrill scale and have most of the coaster's i'm interested in rated.. But not this one? Would you consider this one a level 3 thrill or a level 4 intense ride? Thanks! Great review.

    • Apollo's Chariot is a 4 out of 5. I've started adding the thrill scale just since I created. I haven't gone back to my older reviews like this one add the scale, but ask and ye shall receive. I've added it above.

  12. Thank you very much! Love the blog.

  13. I have ridden Apollo's Chariot, I think it is BG's best ride, however Griffon is smoother.

  14. I rode this when I was nine. I didn't realize it was a hyper coaster. I just wanted to get on. I loved it.

  15. Sweet ride! Though I think Nitro is better, faster, scarier.

  16. It is a good ride. It has lots of airtime and comfortable seats. However, it is a bit bumpy. Not at all rough, but shaky. And the straight sections after the first drop and after one of the hills on the way back were kind of strange and made the ride that way. I prefer Nitro because it has no straight sections and is somewhat smoother.

  17. The best part of this ride is the restraints and cars. You feel SOOOOOO open! It's ridiculously comfortable, almost like it was molded to fit your lap. Something about enjoying a ride with most of your body free is incredible.

  18. loved the zero g airtime! great coaster At a great park

  19. Doesn’t Diamondback at Kings Island hold the world record for most “airtime”? Isn’t more, better?

  20. Apollo’s Chariot is tied with Griffon for my #2 spot right now.:)

    I rode for the first time (right outside seat, 6th row) last time I was at BGW, which was October 13.
    My thoughts: Those restraints are really comfortable. Although it seems like there’s not much holding you in, it also does NOT feel like you’re going to fall out. (Sounds contradictory, but anyways…) The reason I’m mentioning the ‘eek-I’m-going-to-fall-out’ feeling is ’cause in the queue line, my dad went on and on about how you don’t feel secure, the restraints are loose, blah, blah blah. I think he just didn’t want to ride it and was trying to get me to not want to either ’cause it’s most definitely not true. And he said there was n’t any airtime-that’s crazy!! There’s airtime all over Apollo’s Chariot!
    On that first drop, I just put my hands up and SCREAMED. Best drop yet for me! I like going at 70+ mph w/ just a lap bar; it’s great!

    My rating: 10/10 (Absolutely nothing wrong with it IMO:))

    I still want to ride the very front and the very back.;)

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