It wasn’t too long ago that SeaWorld Orlando released their first collectible medallion machine, and now here we are seeing the same thing happen at Busch Gardens in Tampa. I have heard that there were some previous versions of collectible coins available at Busch Gardens but since I’ve been visiting the last few years the only versions I’ve found were pressed pennies. Here we are however with the first new machine and maybe more to come.
This park is huge, and there is plenty of walking to be done. Especially for this new machine we are on the look for which I have heard it towards the back of the park.
Past Morocco, the Sesame Street area and one plenty of different animal exhibits you will eventually find yourself near one of the largest coasters in this park called SheiKra. The nearby gift shop for this area is called the Kariba Marketplace. I remember on one of my first trips to this park there used to be a pressed penny machine in this location, but it’s been gone for quite some time now.
Of course inside there is plenty of generic souvenirs and some themed around the nearby SheiKra coaster. Tucked away behind some tracks of hoodies I spotted the machine we were searching for.
The wrap design on this cabinet is great and of course matches perfectly with the park. Not being a huge coaster fan, when I visit Busch Gardens it’s primarily for the animals and coins of course.
The medallion designs available here at this machine include a Lion, Elephant, Tiger and a couple Giraffes. The designs are nice, but nothing too fancy or unique in my opinion.
The reverse side of all coins have the same image which is of Busch Gardens logo including a few animal silhouettes and does specify Tampa Bay, Florida which I really like. We found the coins recently at SeaWorld had their logo but includes the cities of all their domestic parks which made them feel a little less unique.
I almost forgot to mention that also like SeaWorld the cost of these coins has increased. The individual amount per coin is still $5, but the cost to buy all four at once is $18. Again this is really pushing the limits I think, and I’ll be curious if they are to sell as many of these at this price point. I feel like more people will be picking one coin at most instead of picking up the full set. I think it would be really popular to have a set of coins themed for all the coasters available in this park, but I guess generic animals are probably an easier sell to a wide range of guests. I’ll be interested to see if they release some more of these medallions or maybe we can get some new pressed penny designs instead. Keep on Collecting!!