Wed, August 1st, 2012 - By

Five European Theme Parks

There are many great theme parks throughout Europe, here are five of them.

Tivoli, Copenhagen, Denmark

The seasonal theme park and gardens complex in Copenhagen, Denmark known as Tivoli Gardens, opened in 1843. It is the second oldest amusement park in the world. The park’s wooden rollercoaster, Rutsjebanen (or Bjergbanen) the Mountain Coaster, is pretty famous and a classic. Another roller coaster, The Demon by the concert hall, features a Zero-G roll, a loop and an Immelmann loop. Additionally, a thrill looping plane ride named Verigo and the Star Flyer (the world’s tallest carousel) providing panoramic city views combine to make the park both pretty exciting and unique. As well as the rides, the park is the site of Tivoli Concert Hall for classical music (also used as the venue for the 1964 Eurovision Song Contest), the open air commedia dell’arte style Pantomime Theatre with its amazing peacock’s tail mechanised front curtain, the 8–16 year old Tivoli Boys Guard dressed in Royal Danish Guard bearskin garb, the summer months live music concert series  Friday Rock and as a host for some of the Copenhagen Jazz Festival top acts.

Futurescope, near Potiers, France

The Parc du Futuroscope in Vienne, about 10 kilometres from Poitiers, uses  audio-visual techniques, cinematography including some unique 3- and 4-D cinemas and multimedia. Its metal and glass pavilions (eg Animaux du Futur, Pavillon des Robots and le Kinémax), designed by Denis Laming, are art works in their own right. Some of the attractions include Dances with Robots, Fly me to the Moon 3D, Arthur the 4D adventure and Cosmic Collisions.

Gardaland, Italy

Gardaland, near Italy’s Lake Garda, features an amazing 32 rides and 6 roller coasters. These include Ramses, an interactive dark ride, Fuga da Atlantide, a water coaster, Raptor a prototype wing coaster, Magic Mountain, a steel sit-down coaster and Blue Tornado, a unique steel inverted coaster. It’s Europe’s third most popular thrills and spills theme park.

PortAventura, Salou, Spain

The theme park/resort complex of PortAventura in Salou, Spanish Catalonia, can be reached by car or train from either Barcelona or Reus. It includes an aquatic park (Costa Caribe).  Furius Baco is a wing rider roller coaster with a top speed of about 135 km per hour and the Boat Ride is based on Mediterranean and Chinese area themes. These rides are complemented by the likes of Far West, an old wild west town/sculptures area, the thrill ride Stampida (a dueling wooden roller coaster) and its junior version Tomahawk, the whitewater Grand Canyon Rapids adventure, the Silver River Flume and the mine train El Diablo-Tren de la Mina.

Kongeparken, near Stavanger, Norway

The King’s park (Kongeparken) by Ålgård village near Stavanger in Norway provides over 50 different adventure rides for all the different family members. The theme of bears dominates (choose from Storm and the Icebear, Pysjamas, the King and the Queen of Bears and others), with the Sword in the Stone, Tilt Tower and the King of the Hill rides being the most recently introduced.

Image credits: Heather Cowper, Luis Irisarri, Eric, Joao Maximo,

Karen Bryan

As well as writing about travel, Karen Bryan offers tips on saving money, frugal living and how to live well on less, on her site Help Me To Save

Posted : Wednesday, August 1st, 2012 at 10:00
Category : Activities, Holiday Tips
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