Most Americans have probably never heard of Efteling but it is one of the largest amusement parks in all of Europe and even one of the largest parks in the entire world. It is also one of the oldest theme parks in the world. The park is actually older then Disneyland. Efteling still has the old world charm. Even though it is one of the worlds top theme parks it still is able to keep the old charm that it originally had.
Efteling is not like any other theme park in the world. The park is a mix between a really high end fairy tale town type park and a full blown amusement park will roller coasters and everything. The park originally started out as a fairy tale town style park. Over the years the fairy tale section has grown, improved, and been updated. In terms of storybook villages this is by far the very best one. The park is a great family friendly place.
The park can be divided into thrills, and fairy tales. The fairy tales are mostly for little kids. Unlike local story book lands the fairy tale sites are not just slides or wooden statues. One popular fairy tale site is the worlds largest animatornic dragon. In a cave you can see a show with animatronic witch and fairies.
The park clearly developed from a simple fairy tale style park into a more traditional theme park. You can easily see the change by the rides. Some of the older rides are simple rides. But the newer rides are often more thrill rides to cater to young adults.
There are many rides that will remind you of Disneyland. There is a ride that is a haunted house style ride. The ride has a few scenes that are very similar to the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland and if you have ever been on the Haunted Mansion you will notice the similarities. Another ride similar to Disney is a pirate ride. There is a wonderful dark ride that children will love that takes you into the world of fairies, it is possibly the best dark ride at the park. Another dark ride takes you on a humorous trip around the world much like It’s a Small World. If you think they are ripping off Disney you may be right but Disney and Efteling have a good relationship, the park even helped out Disney when they built Disneyland Paris. Some of the park designers are even friends with their Disney counterparts.
The park then began to put in roller coasters. There is a great bobsled coaster. There is a water rapid ride which is pretty good. They have a dueling coaster. They also have a water coaster the Flying Dutchman. They also continue to add to the Fairy Tale Forest. The park is one of the most beautiful in the world and is well manicured.
If you find yourself in the Netherlands and have kids or are a big theme park fan then you will have to check out Efteling. The park is worth a visit just for the architecture and landscape. This should be on the top of your list of sites to see in the Netherlands.