After years of being a tabloid fodder for its accidents and faulty thrill rides, Star City has just had a colorful, futuristic makeover and is now back in business. Star City has been the favorite hangout of families and friends, especially those who cannot afford to go to Enchanted Kingdom in Sta. Rosa, Laguna. Thousands flock to this theme park as ever before since Star City is a repository of Filipino pop art, with many Disney-themed rides, restaurants, shopping stops, and recreations of lost and exotic worlds (like that of dinosaurs, Egyptians and Eskimos) designed to tease the senses.
Star City offers thrill rides and attractions for the whole family. These rides range from slow-moving choo-choo trains to the extreme Star Flyer, a rollercoaster that has claimed a life in the name of adrenaline rush.
For those not into rides, the park has special sections dedicated to recreated worlds. The Dino Island (P100 entrance) aims to be a mini Jurassic Park, complete with hundreds of robotic dinosaurs that imitate the movements and sounds of the real thing. At the end of the dino tunnel is a small museum of prehistoric fossils, including what is said to be the skull of a Homo Erectus and the skeletons of a 20-foot dinosaur.
For those in for a scare fest, Star City has several horror houses, albeit lackluster for some guests. One is Egyptian themed, with frighteners costumed like mummies and dead pharaohs. Just across the park’s “Egypt” is the “Antarctic,” or the Snow World, that is. The temperature in Snow World (P100 entrance + rent for jackets, socks and mittens) drops below zero, enabling visitors to enjoy a piece of winter wonderland in tropical Manila. This section’s carved slides are a smash hit among children, allowing them to experience sledging amid a background of giant carved ice statues, ice castles and igloos. A special kind of camera, the one that can withstand extreme chill, is needed to take photos inside the exhibit.
Near Star City’s entrance, there is a marked foyer leading to Aliw Theater, one of the oldest theaters in the country. Located just across the street from CCP, Aliw Theater offers free magic shows, acrobatics, ballets and other performances, especially during holidays. On the other side of Star City is Kart Track, a karting circuit catering to those who want to try go-karting (P250 per race, 12 minutes).
Shopping and dining
There are a lot of food stalls inside the park although most of these offer more expensive treats as compared to those in front or outside Star City. The park’s administration, too, does not allow food to be taken inside, so it is best to take your lunch or dinner first before going in. Hygiene is another issue among restaurants both inside and outside the park so caution must be observed.
For shopping, inside the park are rows dedicated to faux jewelry, imported clothes, toys, and other assortments. The prices here are the same with other flea markets in Manila.
Fees and opening hours
The park is open from 1 p.m. to 12 midnight, daily, and from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. in December 31 and from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. of the next day in January 1. Entrance to the park is P60, entrance + three rides: P250, entrance + ride-all-you-can: P300, entrance + ride-all-you-can + Dino Island/Snow World: P350, entrance + ride-all-you-can + Dino Island + Snow World: P475.
Best time to visit
The best time to visit the park is on a weekday for seasonal discounted rates and for avoiding the crowds, which might hinder you from enjoying the park’s amenities or trying all the rides if you come on a weekend or a holiday.
How to get there
Star City is in Sotto St., CCP Complex, Roxas Blvd, Pasay City, Manila. It is just beside CCP and in front Harrison Plaza Hotel. The easiest way to get there is through a taxi (flag down rate: P30) from anywhere in Manila. Alternatively, you may ride the LRT Line-1, get off in Vito Cruz Station (P15), ask where the terminal of orange jeepneys is, and ride one going to CCP. Ask the driver to drop you off at the side of CCP’s main building. The fare is only P7. From CCP, you can just walk towards Star City.
If you are coming from SM Mall of Asia, you may look for the terminal of orange jeepneys in front the mall. Ask for those that will directly pass by Star City. The fare is only P7.
Telephone: +632 833-4483, +632 6899 3496, or 832-6121 to 22.