Theme parks are undoubtedly a fun day out for the whole family. Whether you love the adrenaline of a looping roller coaster, the apprehension of a water ride that may or may not soak you or the gentle back and forth of a classic pirate ship, there are many laughs to be had and memories to be made.
Some of Europe’s largest, and even those on our own doorstep, are too big to be fully enjoyed on a day trip. That’s why so many people choose to make the thrills part of a two or three-day theme park holiday which can often include some time to relax too.
Europe has some fantastic parks to choose from and they’re always expanding and developing ideas. Here are some of the newest attractions to look out for.
Efteling – Symbolica
The latest addition at Efteling in the Netherlands is a ride for the whole family to enjoy together. Take a seat in one of the rotating cars and be transported through a magical world of wizards, fairies, kings, queens and inquisitive sea creatures. Inside this fantasy land, nothing is really quite what it seems.
The ride was opened at the back end of 2017 and has quickly become a favourite for visitors. Kids love the interactivity and the fact that you never quite know what you’ll encounter next.
In 2018, Efteling is also trialling a new queuing system. It works in the same way as Disney’s Fast Pass concept but you choose a time to return to the ride on your phone. If the trial is deemed successful it could be implemented across the park and cut queuing times significantly.
There’s yet more excitement on the horizon too. An application has been put in to extend the park by adding a new attraction to be completed by 2020. A three-hectare site has been outlined for this proposal and it’s all part of an even bigger goal to expand everything into 'World of Efteling 2030'.
Phantasialand – F.L.Y
Work has started in Phantasialand, located just outside of Cologne, on ‘the longest flying coaster’ in the world. Due to be positioned within a new steampunk area of the park, it has been dubbed project F.L.Y but many people are unsure whether this will be the name of the ride.
As well as being the longest, the original press release also claims that F.L.Y will be the first ever launched flying coaster (during which riders get fired out of the starting blocks rather than being pulled up a hill by a chain). Some rumours even say that the experience will start with riders sitting upright before being moved into a flying position sometime after launch.
Early indications seemed to suggest that the ride could be up and running by the end of 2018, but it looks as though the summer of 2019 is a much more realistic estimation.
Tivoli Gardens – Tik Tak
Tivoli Gardens, in Copenhagen, is one of the oldest theme parks in the world and is celebrating its 175-year anniversary in 2018. To mark this, a new ride has been created in the form of ‘Tik Tak’ (Tick Tock in English).
Riders sit inside a capsule made of gears and levers and prepare for a journey through space and time. As the cars spin both vertically and horizontally, you will pull almost 4Gs as you struggle to keep your last meal down.
The new ride is due to open any day now and it’s hoped it will be just as popular as the 29-year old ‘Spinning Top’ that it replaces.
PortAventura – Five New Attractions
Last year, Spain’s PortAventura opened a branded new park themed around Ferrari. Ferrari Land is located just next door to the main PortAventura World and 2018 will see a collection of new children’s rides added.
The additional attractions are Junior Red Force, a smaller version of the park’s Red Force, the fastest and tallest roller coaster in Europe; Kids' Tower, a platform which is slowly hoisted to a height of 9 metres and then drops riders to earth; Crazy Pistons, a series of rotating seats shaped like pistons that also rise up and down; Champions Race, a ride where children sit in a Ferrari whilst spinning round and can lift and lower their car with the press of a button; and Red Baron, which is similar to Champions Race but you sit in planes instead of cars.
Europa-Park – CanCan Coaster
After a devastating fire that ripped through a large area of the park earlier this year, Europa-Park has recovered well and things are still on track for the CanCan Coaster to open this summer. Reimagined from the former Eurostat coaster, the new ride is themed around France and the Moulin Rouge. It will be located within the giant dome that sits at the centre of everything.
That’s not the end to the excitement though as 2018 sees a range of new shows (one of which includes Paddington Bear) and experiences. For example, a new VR adventure is available on the Alpen Coaster, giving riders an entirely new futuristic perspective.
Work has also started on a new water park called Rulantica. The construction is taking place close to the entrance of the resort and also includes Europa-Park’s sixth themed hotel, Kronasar. This exciting addition will be ready for the end of 2019 and will add a brand new dimension to Germany’s largest theme park.
So, if you’re excited by any of these new attractions, why not book a theme park holiday with us? Our friendly team will tailor-make a trip to suit you and you can simply sit back and let us do the organising. Call Fred.\ Holidays on 0800 988 3369 or click here to submit an online enquiry.