NEDERLANDS // ENGLISH
What is Phantasialand?
If you’re reading this, there’s a fair chance that you love amusement parks. In that case, Phantasialand doesn’t need a big introduction. Over the past decades, this German theme park has become legendary thanks to its unique rides and themed lands. Phantasialand is in a cramped location and expansion possibilities are very limited. However, the park has managed to transform this weakness into a major strength. Rides are built in an extremely compact way, using different levels and tight layouts. Despite its limited surface, Phantasialand is home to several world-class attractions. A visit to this park should be on your bucket list, especially if you’re into thrilling roller coasters.
Do they have roller coasters?
Space is limited, but Phantasialand offers more coaster tracks than almost every other European theme park. That’s mainly due to the fact that Phantasialand loves to build long roller coasters. This park is home to a super-long VR indoor coaster, a Vekoma Mine Train with 3 lift hills and an Intamin Blitz Coaster with a total length of 1.320 metres. Yes, I’m talking about an iconic machine named Taron. Taron opened in 2016 and it’s been considered as one of the world’s greatest coasters ever since. It’s easy to see how that happened: Taron boasts a surprising layout, it’s got comfortable trains, the medieval theming is superb and the second launch is nothing less than amazing. The ride’s awesomeness comes with a price: everybody loves it, so queues can get pretty long. Ride Taron in the early afternoon for the shortest waits (or wait until the closing time, as Taron feels considerably more intense in the evening).
Another beauty in Phantasialand’s coaster assortment is Black Mamba. This ride opened in 2006 and it’s got everything you’d expect from a B&M Inverted Coaster. Black Mamba is smooth and it remains forceful until the final brake run. The biggest strength of Black Mamba, however, is its landscaping. In order to reduce noises, the layout was placed half underground. This results in constant near-misses and it greatly improves the sense of speed. Black Mamba’s exotic African theme rounds it all off in a stunning way.
The latest addition to Phantasialand is Rookburgh. This new zone is directly connected to the Berlin-themed Main Street and it features a steampunk theme. Phantasialand has taken its time to finish the project (to say the least), but Rookburgh finally opened its gates in September of the year 2020. The area is home to a brand-new hotel and several F&B outlets, but the true star of Rookburgh is undoubtedly F.L.Y. This next-generation Vekoma Flying Coaster includes two launches, two inversions and approximately 1.200 metres of track. Impressive, isn’t it?
Watching F.L.Y. may be considered as a privilege. Phantasialand created a magnificent new land and the coaster itself is nothing less than sexy. The experience, however, isn’t entirely my cup of tea. I don’t often call a roller coaster too long, but I really think that F.L.Y. would’ve been nicer if it had half of its current length. Don’t get me wrong… the seats are comfortable, the ride starts with a surprising dark ride section and F.L.Y.’s smoothness is remarkable. Still, it made me slightly nauseous and F.L.Y. lacks a highlight in terms of coaster elements. It just keeps going on and on, while intensity remains similar the whole time. It’s not bad, but I prefer a Taron-like experience, which includes a ‘soft’ beginning and an intenser second part.
At Phantasialand, almost every attraction is unique. The indoor Wuze Town is one-of-a-kind, there’s a well-themed interactive dark ride like Toy Story Mania, the park’s Top Spin is amazing and they even have an indoor free fall tower. During hot summer days, be sure to pay a visit to Phantasialand’s two water rides. River Quest is an extremely popular rapid river that was integrated in a medieval castle. It’s more thrilling than almost every other rapid river on Earth: it features 3 drops and there’s a large chance of getting soaked. The park’s other water attraction isn’t any less legendary: Chiapas may be considered as one of Europe’s greatest log flumes. It has a huge final drop and theming is superb, but Chiapas especially deserves praise for its music. IMAscore created a truly magical soundtrack for this ride and you’ll especially remember the song that’s played in the Día de los Muertos scene. Don’t miss this great attraction.
Is Phantasialand worth visiting?
A trip to Phantasialand will never fail to amaze. Even during this calmer visit (the only notable queues could be found at F.L.Y. and Taron), Phantasialand provided a full-day experience. This used to be different in the past. My opinion about this park has changed dramatically in recent years. I used to consider Phantasialand as a messy park. The contrast between old and modern rides was immense and I just couldn’t appreciate the park’s chaotic layout. Phantasialand has completely reinvented itself during the past 15 years, though. The park has changed beyond recognition and the quality of the attractions has risen rapidly. Many recent additions even belong to the world top within their genre. I’m thinking of Black Mamba, Talocan, F.L.Y., the sublime Chiapas and the beast called Taron. I’m sure Phantasialand is already thing of its next big novelty, so the future looks bright. Of course, Phantasialand still has its flaws. Certain parts of the park look dated, the Mystery entrance is horrible and some staff members could use some hospitality training. Perhaps this could be fixed in the near future? We’ll see.
What are your thoughts on Phantasialand?
Is Rookburgh one of the best themed lands in Europe? Does F.L.Y. deserve its legendary status? Or do you prefer a ride on Taron, just like I did? Share your opinion in the comments section below.