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Where to go besides Universal and Disney?

david10225

Active Member
Original Poster
I've got a Ton of miles burning a hole in my pocket and I'd like to use for a trip that includes a world class theme park..really anywhere in the world. Looking for a suggestion for me to research. I was planning on a second visit to Japan, but they r really dragging their feet to reopen the country. Seems like that young guy on YouTube is always talking about these European parks, but I don't want to limit myself plus how to choose! Thanks!

David
 

Mike_Wazowski

New Member
I've got a Ton of miles burning a hole in my pocket and I'd like to use for a trip that includes a world class theme park..really anywhere in the world. Looking for a suggestion for me to research. I was planning on a second visit to Japan, but they r really dragging their feet to reopen the country. Seems like that young guy on YouTube is always talking about these European parks, but I don't want to limit myself plus how to choose! Thanks!

David
Hi David! Don't know if you're still considering doing this but if you're looking at Europe I'd highly recommend doing Efteling and Phantasialand.

Efteling is a Fairytale themed park in the Netherlands that originally opened in the 1950s with some of the highest-quality, most atmopsheric dark rides I've ever ridden, comfortably on the same level as Disney and Universal. The whole park has this lush, leafy but slightly unnerving gothic vibe to it and it rewards exploration with something to discover around every corner. I went in intentionally looking at as little as possible to be surprised and I was blown away.

Just over a 2 hour drive away in Germany is Phantasialand, a fairly small but densely packed theme park with some great coasters. Particularly of note as are their two newer incredibly-themed areas Klugheim and Rookburgh, with the latter especially being a contender for my favourite land I've ever been to with a steampunk hotel built around a rollercoaster! Nearby is also the wonderful city of Cologne if you're looking for a bit of culture while you're there.

I think the two parks compliment each other well with Efteling having great dark rides and atmosphere, whilst Phantasialand having great theming and coasters. For me alongside Disneyland Paris these are my three favourite parks in Europe that I've been to so far!

Let me know if you'd like to know anything more about these wonderful parks.
 

david10225

Active Member
Original Poster
Thank you so much for responding. I've heard of Phantasialand before and seen some YouTube Videos. I think there is a young man that visits parks throughout the world that has done a few from there including that steampunk hotel you mention. From what I can gather, these places are accessible by bus or train? I'd rather not rent when on vacation. Also, how would the language barrier be? Still enjoyable if you can only speak or understand English? Any recommendations for a hotel at either park (I'd rather stay close enough where I don't have to drive anywhere)

Certainly Europe would be an easier trip to a return to Asia. The secret I guess is to sneak a trip in between pandemic waves :)

David
 

Mike_Wazowski

New Member
Thank you so much for responding. I've heard of Phantasialand before and seen some YouTube Videos. I think there is a young man that visits parks throughout the world that has done a few from there including that steampunk hotel you mention. From what I can gather, these places are accessible by bus or train? I'd rather not rent when on vacation. Also, how would the language barrier be? Still enjoyable if you can only speak or understand English? Any recommendations for a hotel at either park (I'd rather stay close enough where I don't have to drive anywhere)

Certainly Europe would be an easier trip to a return to Asia. The secret I guess is to sneak a trip in between pandemic waves :)

David
Hi David!

When I went I was originally planning on driving between the two but ended up last minute having to take public transport on the fly. It wasn't as straightforward as driving but still fairly easy (mainly via train with a bus at either end) and I think it took around 4.5-5 hours.

In terms of language barrier I found in both countries English to be essentially perfect basically everywhere (I learnt a few basic phrases out of politeness but this isn't necessary). From an attraction perspective there was only one attraction in both parks where I felt my enjoyment was significantly reduced due to a language barrier (Villa Volta at Efteling which has a long audio-based pre-show). Everything else was either visual, intuitive or had some form of translation available.

For hotels, with Phantasialand I stayed a night in a hostel in Cologne the night before and then did a one night stay at the steampunk hotel (Hotel Charles Lindbergh) at Phantasialand. The package for one night was actually relatively good value for money (two days tickets, some queue jump tickets, two meals) but it is very much a "theming over comfort" hotel. Each of the rooms is a very small 'aeronaut cabin' with no windows and twin beds. Personally I adored it, especially sleeping in an incredibly immersive environment right next to rollercoaster but it's definitely an acquired taste! The park has another couple of hotels which are a bit more conventional.

For Efteling I stayed at the "Hotel de Kroon" about a 12 minute walk from the park and also had some very good value for money packages including tickets. It was fairly functional/basic but was part of the GuestHouse Hotel next door if you want something a little nicer. The park also has a range of accommodation which I didn't consider due to budget. From when I've looked out of curiosity it looks pretty nice though worth noting their holiday homes are weirdly limited on which days you're allowed to arrive/leave.
 

abaker1975

Member
If going to Europe, I would recommend Europa Park as well. I think a trip with Efteling, Phantasialand and Europa Park would be a great trip for theme park fan who values the whole package of theme and world-class rides.
 

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