Think about a French theme park. Disneyland Paris, Walt Disney Studios or Parc Astérix may be the first things coming to your mind right now. Or are you thinking about Puy du Fou, that famous show and entertainment park in Western France? It really doesn’t matter, but you probably didn’t think about Nigloland and that’s a shame. Nigloland is a family theme park in the Champagne region and it’s well worth a visit. Don’t expect any world-class theming or breathtaking thrill rides at Nigloland, but the atmosphere is amazing and most areas look stunning.
Nigloland offers a total of five rollercoasters and four of them are built by Mack Rides. The highlight is Alpina Blitz, a Mega Coaster inspired by Intamin’s famous Mega-Lites. If you’ve ever ridden such a coaster, you probably know that Mega-Lites are awesome. Despite their limited height and length, these rides are fast, intense and lots of fun. Mack’s version is pretty good as well. Some curves do get a little rough, but the overall experience is nice and Alpina Blitz offers some good airtime moments. Another great coaster is the neighbouring Spatiale Expérience, a Mack indoor coaster. This ride (the name translates to Space Experience) reminds me a lot of Europa-Park’s Eurosat before its big refurbishment in 2018. The coaster features identical trains, a spiral lifthill and the snappy transitions which were typical for Eurosat. Add some cheap space theming and you may get an impression of the ride experience. It’s definitely no Space Mountain, but I actually liked Spatiale Expérience and its unpredictable lay-out a lot.
We visited Nigloland during an incredibly hot day and because of that, crowds weren’t too bad. We even managed to ride almost every boat ride and some of the park’s flat rides. One of the most recent additions is a free fall tower with a height of 100 metres. This attraction is beautifully themed and the views of Nigloland and the surrounding valley are extraordinary. Another great thrill is Jukebox, a stunning flat ride with a sixties theme. The ride’s female operator even wears a polka dot dress to match the theme, which is a very nice touch in my opinion.
If you’re a Disney lover, you will recognize a few attraction while visiting Nigloland. The Niglo Show, for example, is based on Disney’s Country Bear Jamboree (even that moose on the wall was copied!). The park also has a Mississippi paddle-steamer and a boat ride called African Cruise, which is obviously inspired by Jungle Cruise. I definitely missed the Skippers and their silly jokes, but most scenes are identical to this classic Disney attraction.