“One of Europe’s best family theme parks”
Ten years ago, Freizeitpark Plohn was nothing more than a regional amusement park in German Saxony. The park had been around since 1996 and although locals probably loved it, foreign coaster enthusiasts had no reason to travel the (long) way. However, that changed in the year 2009, when Plohn opened a wooden roller coaster manufactured by Great Coasters International. This was a bold move for such a small-scaled amusement park, but it worked. Freizeitpark Plohn appeared on the wish list of many coaster fans thanks to the opening of El Toro. Still, this wasn’t Plohn’s only smart move. In the following years, the park continued to present major expansions and the theming level has also risen steadily.
As mentioned above, El Toro is one of the park’s highlights. This GCI has everything you’d expect from a modern wooden coaster, but in a slightly smaller size. Don’t get me wrong: it’s a fantastic ride with great transitions, but it’s not as impressive as Troy at Toverland or Wodan at Europa-Park. However, one of El Toro’s greatest strengths is its location. The ride is intertwined with the park’s log flume and the whole area is beautifully landscaped.
Although thrill seekers will appreciate El Toro, I’m sure they’ll love Dynamite even more. This coaster was added in 2019 and it’s a true beauty. Freizeitpark Plohn opted for a Big Dipper by Mack Rides, so you could consider this as Lost Gravity‘s sister. And I’d like to apologise to Walibi Holland, but this younger version is definitely better than Lost Gravity. Dynamite lacks the fantastic first drop you’ll find in the Netherlands, but it’s got a smoother ride, better elements and it keeps its speed until the final brake run. Amazing roller coaster and even the queue is impressive!
Another example of pure Plohn magic is Miniwah & The Secret of Gold Creek City. This powered coaster was also designed by Mack Rides, but its best feature is the theming. Miniwah is a combined dark ride and roller coaster with awesome Far West theming and it even has a pre-show in the station. One of the greatest family coasters in Germany, if you ask me. Freizeitpark Plohn’s other three coasters are a lot less interesting from my point of view. Be sure to get your credit on the Big Apple, conquer a monotone spinning coaster and be amazed by Plohseidon’s smoothness, but these rides aren’t special at all.
Freizeitpark Plohn started as a fairy tale forest and that’s still an important part of the park. You shouldn’t expect the same level as Efteling or Hong Kong Disneyland, though. While walking through Plohn’s Märchenwald, I actually notice that the park’s theming level has increased dramatically in recent years. In the nineties, the park apparently didn’t care for high-quality decoration. This is also noticeable while riding the park’s only dark ride: an underwater adventure (that seems to be designed by a child) called Plohni’s Tauchfahrt.
WORTH A VISIT?
Ab-so-lutely! This is an amusement park with some weaknesses, but the strengths are definitely on the winning side. Freizeitpark Plohn offers a great atmosphere, it has several world-class family rides and the park is just stunning. The staff’s friendliness could use a little improvement, but most other aspects of the park are on point. Due to its remote location, Plohn isn’t easy to combine with other well-known German parks. Still, it’s worth a considerable drive.
Photo Gallery 2020
Is this a hidden gem in the German theme park world? Would you prefer El Toro or Dynamite? And what about that cheap-looking fairy tale forest? Share your opinion in the comments section at the bottom of this page.