As much as teens enjoy hanging out in malls and cafes, most teens crave and yearn for something more thrilling and exciting. Turn towards the next neighbourhood and you will be greeted by the many malls and typical cafes every modern metropolis has to offer, a copy and paste of the previous neighbourhood. Of course we still are very much interested in the latest outfits from H&M, as well as the latest FIFA game that finally came out in stores. It is just that in this awkward gap between a kid and an adult, we are still restless and reckless, looking for the thrill and adrenaline that come hand in hand with adventure.
And so, apart from the typical malls that we visited oh-so-many times, how about something that will make your heart skip and your palms sweat? This place very much matches the vibrant and exhilarating nature of a teen - fast paced and filled with adventure, this is the place for teens to be. Grab your sunglasses and some sunblock (unfortunately adventure doesn’t come with air-conditioner in tow) and explore the top 10 theme parks in Europe that will give you one hell of a ride.
1. Disneyland, Paris: You are never too old for Disney
One of the most visited theme parks in France and Europe, Disneyland Paris encompasses two theme parks (Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park), several resort hotels, a shopping, dining and entertainment complex, and a golf course. Have a taste of magic as you enter the spectacular world of Disney. Packed with rides, shows and parades, this magical place will not only enchant the young, but those who are young at heart.
The most popular way to get to the famous Disneyland theme parks is to go by Paris’s city centre. Line A of the suburban commuter trains called RER terminates at Marne La Valee station, which is adjacent to the front gates of Disney Village and the theme parks at Disneyland. The journey takes around 40 minutes. Paris is also host to other more sedentary attractions too! Imagine if the fairytales you have been reading and watching are real, and that you have a chance to meet them face to face! Isn’t this a dream come true? Well, it’s time for your dreams to start becoming reality with these five incredible lands in Disneyland Park, filled completely with classic attractions, shows, and street parades. Rub shoulders with swashbuckling pirates, zoom through time and space and look on in awe at the unforgettable firework and light displays over Sleeping Beauty Castle, a magical experience like no other.
Address: 77777 Marne-la-Vallée, France
Price: More offers on the website. Children below 3 do not need to purchase a ticket.
Opening Hours: 10am-9pm
Contact: +33 825 30 02 22
Website: Disneyland Park
1.1. Walt Disney Studios Park
Ever wondered how your favourite Disney movie was made? Discover the secrets behind the most magical scenes of Disney films and television all in Walt Disney Studios Park. Immerse yourself in the timeless fascination and affection for cinema and television - from legendary moments in motion at Toon Studio to the mind-boggling effects of the Backlot - these 5 production zones in Walt Disney Studios Park are bursting with thrills that will drop you and your little stars smack bang in the limelight. Located right next to Disneyland, so you don’t have to find your way around again. Walt Disney Studios Park is one theme park worth visiting.
Walt Disney Studios Park
Address: Place des Passagers du Vent, 77700 Chessy, France
Price: Many offers on the website. Children below 3 do not need to purchase a ticket.
Opening Hours: 10am-7pm
Contact: +33 825 30 02 22
Website: Walt Disney Studios Park
2. PortaAventura Park, Spain: A historic ride along 6 different civilisations
Attracting more than four million visitors per year, PortaAventura Park is one of the most visited theme parks in Spain. Take a tour of PortaAventura Park and explore the six civilisations and their many tasteful attractions. From mild rides such as those in SésamoAventura to daredevil ones that will make you scream your lungs out, PortaAventura is great because it is fun for everyone. Be sure to check out Shambhala - the biggest and fastest roller coaster in Europe (drops 78m or 255 feet at 135km/h or 84 miles/h in one place) as well as Furius Baco, PortAventura’s incredible horizontal catapult that flings you at 135 km/h in just 3 seconds. These are all very terrifying (and when we say terrifying we even mean terrifying to watch) so to those who aren’t hardcore daredevils, we give you the immunity to chicken out.
The most convenient way in getting to PortAventura, Spain is probably by the use of train. The resort has its own stop on the R-16 line, so all you have to do is stop there for a day of unforgettable fun!
The resort will also feature a new theme park in 2017 called Ferrari Land that will host the fastest and tallest roller coaster that goes as fast as Formula 1 cars.
Here is a sneak peak of what is to come:
Address: Av. Pere Molas, km 2, 43840 Vila-seca, Tarragona, Spain
Price: from 55 USD for adults and 48 USD for children and senior citizens. (More promotions on the website)
Opening Hours: 10am-12am daily
Contact: +34 902 20 22 20
3. Europa-Park, Germany: Discovering Europe all at once
Also known as “Most popular European Park without the Disney name in front of it”, this park houses 13 roller coasters, 14 European themed areas and 100 attractions and fabulous shows. This miniature Europe has been spreading its magic to almost five million visitors per year. Have a taste of the different cuisines Europe has to offer in Europa-Park, for the food and tastes all vary according to whichever country-themed area you happen to be in.
Ringsheim train station is just 4km (2.5 miles) from Europa-Park and is regarded as the official stop for Europa-Park - from here you can reach the main entrance of Europa-Park and the Europa-Park Hotels by taking the 7231 bus service, which runs at regular intervals.
As for the roller coasters, we recommend Silver Star - 1.6 km (5249 feet) long and three minutes of intense screaming - one of Europe’s biggest and tallest attraction to date. Also exhilarating is Blue Fire, an impressive journey past rugged cliffs and breath-taking landscape that will turn you upside down not once, but four times. Still, Europa-Park is one that is able to deliver both comfort and thrills, something not all theme parks can do.
Don’t say we didn’t warn you - see above a virtual experience for all those keen on Blue Fire.
Address: Europa-Park-Straße 2, 77977 Rust, Germany
Price: from 42 USD
Opening Hours: Summer season (9am-6.30pm) Winter season (11am - at least 7pm)
Contact: +49 7822 776 688
4. Gardaland, Italy: Fantasy, adventure and adrenaline
Set in front of an idyllic backdrop of Lake Garda, Italy’s leading theme park attracts nearly three million people a year and has been ranked fifth in the top ten amusement parks in the world by Forbes magazine. With 34 rides in total including five roller coasters, family-oriented rides such as carousels, mini-flumes and Peter Pan rides, Gardaland also has a hotel and a SeaLife aquarium.
Gardaland Park is only 2km (1.2 miles) away from the station of Peschiera del Garda (on the Milan-Venice railway line).
For thrill seekers, you can now satisfy your craving for adrenaline by taking a ride on Raptor - we promise it is as awful as it sounds, but in a good way. Descend in a vertical drop, test your nerve on the wings of the dizzying peaks, and get swept away on a reckless and terrifying flight.
If that isn’t enough, try out Oblivion: The Black Hole, the newest “dive roller coaster” which opened in 2015. Fall from a dizzying height… into a vertical descent of oblivion…. where this mission is a no return.
Address: Via Derna, 4, 37014 Castelnuovo del Garda VR, Italy
Price: 48 USD is the standard ticket but 40 USD for children under 10 and senior citizens over 60. (More promotions on the website)
Opening Hours: Different timings for various seasons, check the website for more information
Contact: +39 045 644 9777
5. Tivoli Gardens, Denmark: This garden will leave you breathless
Opened on 15 August 1843, this famous amusement park and pleasure garden is the second-oldest operating theme park in the world. With its dreamy whirl of enchanting rides, twinkling pavilions, carnival games and open-air staged shows, this enchanting and alluring garden is a tourist attraction even for people who are not fans of rides.
Tivoli is most romantic at dusk - stroll with a loved one in this enchanted garden or catch the many concerts held in the exquisite Glass Hall Theatre. In fact, Tivoli was a major inspiration for the Disney parks as Walt Disney loved its relaxed and breathtaking charm. Tivoli is located just a few minutes’ walk from City Hall, and steps away from Copenhagen Central Station.
Still, every angel has its demons, and for Tivoli it is literally The Demon. Scream your head off, while hanging upside down, for this wild ride features three amazing loops and reaches 28 metres (91 feet) at its highest point. We also welcome you to try The Roller Coaster, a wooden roller coaster built in 1914 and Tivoli’s most popular ride.
Here is a sneak peek of how The Demon feels like:
Well, if you feel like you aren’t up for it, don’t go forcing yourself up there! Tivoli is more well known for its calming rides such as The Star Flyer, the world’s second-tallest flyer in the world. It offers you panoramic views of Denmark that will definitely leave you in awe.
Address: Vesterbrogade 3, 1630 København, Denmark
Price: from 16.5 USD on Mondays - Thursdays, 18 USD on Fridays - Sundays (More details on the website)
Opening Hours: 11am-10pm from Sunday-Thursday, 11am-12.30am on Friday, 11am-midnight on Saturday, from April-September, reduced hours for rest of the year
Contact: +45 33151001
Website: Tivoli Gardens
6. Alton Towers, UK: Let your food go on a roller coaster ride too!
The perfect blend of thrill and family oriented rides, this electric theme park includes nine roller coasters, two hotels, and a state-of-art indoor waterpark. Be mesmerised by the many events organised - the Scarefest during Halloween is actually frightening, the spectacular fireworks every end of the season and the Santa’s Sleepover every Christmas.
The nearest train station to Alton Towers is Uttoxeter, which is accessible from a large number of UK train stations including London, Birmingham and Newcastle upon Tyne, where trains depart every hour. If you are looking to stay in the UK for a longer period of time, do check these places out too! Thrill seekers can look forward to The Smiler, the world’s first 14-loop roller coaster. Its twisting track combines the world-beating 14 loops with a speed of 85 km/h (53 miles/h), causing you to hang upside down 14 times. Also try Nemesis, an inverted roller coaster that still proves to be one of the best in Europe. Inverted on the track, it corkscrews, spins and races over the twisted steel track, making it one of the most heart-pounding, exciting and exhilarating rides you will ever experience!
As though all these roller coasters aren’t enough, head down to Britain’s first roller coaster restaurant where diners watch their food do loops to get to their table via a 40m (131 feet) roller coaster, all exclusively here at Alton Towers! Each dish is placed at the top of the ride by chefs, and travels at speeds faster than Mo Farah when he won his Olympic Gold medal.
Address: Farley Ln, Alton ST10 4DB, United Kingdom
Price: from 63 USD for ages 12+, 56 USD for 3-11 years, 31 USD for ages 60+ and free for kids below 3 years
Opening Hours: 10am-5pm. Check the website for more details.
Contact: +44 871 222 3330
Website: Alton Towers
7. Parc Asterix, France: The stories of Asterix
With over 39 attractions in this exciting park, this themed-driven amusement park has also included rides and themes from historic cultures such as the Gauls, the Romans, the ancient Greeks, and recently, the Romans - all in its distinctive visual style of storytelling.
Located a few kilometres from Paris, this theme park can be reached easily with the Metro: Palais-Royal lines 1 and 7. Exit via the “Carrousel” entrance (on Rue de Rivoli) or the “Pyramide” entrance (in the middle of Cour Napoléon). On the shopping level, take the escalator located in Hall Charles V to access the coach park on the 3rd floor. This theme park invites the whole family to an incredible journey back in time, with the comforting company of the characters from the comic books of René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo: Asterix the brave – a sworn enemy of the Romans, his friend Obelix the deliverer of menhirs, Dogmatix his faithful dog, Panoramix the Druid, the pretty Falbala, and more.
Especially known for its large variety of roller coasters, experience an incomparable feeling of lightness as you glide along at 60km/h (37 miles/h) on La Trace du Hourra, and enjoy a new thrill with every turn. Or if you prefer heart pumping and quick breaths, we recommend Goudurix, a gigantic roller coaster best suited for risk takers! Admire the perfect scenery with a gentle climb before plunging back to earth at a speed of 75km/h (47 miles/h) - this adrenaline ride goes through seven loops, with one crazier than the other.
Get a taste of the mighty Goudurix with this video:
Address: 60128 Plailly, France
Price: from 57 USD for 12 years old and above and 48 USD for ages 3-11 years old
Opening Hours: 10am - 6pm from Wednesday - Sunday. Closed on Monday and Tuesday.
Contact: +33 (0) 826 46 66 26
Website: Parc Asterix
8. Efteling, the Netherlands: It is so huge!
Located on 200 hectares (494 acres) of land, this humongous amusement park includes Efteling Theme Park, Hotel Efteling, Efteling Golf Park, Efteling Events, Efteling Media, Efteling Theatre Productions, Efteling Radio, and Efteling Village Bosrijk, offering complete entertainment for everyone. The theme of the park is largely based around fairytales and legends, which explains why the landscaping and architecture are simply stunning. To get to Efteling, you will need to take a 1-hour bus ride from s-Hertogenbosch, which is not a hassle at all if you ask us.
All the magic and fantasy must look nice, but this is not just a place for girly princesses. Daredevils, we welcome you too! Turn your world upside down with the Python, as it goes through numerous twists and turns which you have to withstand.
If that is still unsatisfying for you, we offer you George and the Dragon, a wooden roller coaster newly furnished in 2010. As you enter, you queue through the dragon’s swamp and then have to decide which side you will choose to ride, fire or water. The queues then split, and are identical except for the red and blue flags decorated. You then get up to a speed of 46 km/h (29 miles/h), swerving round corners and soaring up and down hills before flying past a dragon you have to duck before it spits fire at you!
Address: Europalaan 1, 5171 KW Kaatsheuvel, the Netherlands
Price: from 42 USD for adults, free for children below 4. Check the website for more promotions.
Opening Hours: 10am-6pm daily. Check the website for more details.
Contact: +31 (0)416 537 777
9. Liseberg, Sweden: The most fun in Scandinavia!
Make sure you spend enough time here, because there is plenty to do here in Liseberg. With many rides and attractions during summer and Christmas, we guarantee plenty of laughter, excitement and hair-raising experiences. Of course we would strongly encourage you to try the electric range of roller coasters here, but if you insist that plunging down full force into the earth isn’t your thing, there is still plenty to explore - gardens, a sculpture park, hotels, bars, and restaurants - a place that is fun for all. It is easy to get to Liseberg, with the nearest tram stops located at Korsvägen and Liseberg at Gothenburg. Try everything from flying teacups, bumper cars, the Ferris wheel, a circular roller coaster - you name it, Liseberg has it! The newest and most physical ride is AtmosFear – the tallest free-fall attraction in Europe that subjects you to a g-force of 4 when you plummet 116m (380 feet) in 3 seconds at 110 km/h (68 miles/h). Leave dinner until afterwards if you don’t want to make a mess!
Address: Örgrytevägen 5, 402 22 Göteborg, Sweden
Price: from 10 USD for adults, free for children under the height of 110cm (3.6 feet). More offers on the website.
Opening Hours: Opening hours vary. More information on the website.
Contact: +46 31 40 01 00
10. Siam Park, Spain: More than just a water theme park
Get a taste of Thailand here in Europe, for this water theme park was opened by Her Royal Highness the Princess of Thailand Maha Chakri Sirindhorn herself. Built in 2008, this huge water theme park is decorated tastefully in the mysterious and exotic style of the ancient kingdom of Siam. It features a variety of slides for you to relax and simply “let it slide”, bars and restaurants when you get hungry, and a sandy beach for you if you would like a nice tan. Regardless of age, the water kingdom of Siam appeals to everyone! You don’t even have to be a swimmer to enjoy the slides, water rides and fun!
Also, if you think that getting all the way here is a hassle, be relieved to know that Siam Park provides its own double decker buses to pick up guests at Los Cristianos, Las Américas and Costa Adeje.
For thrill seekers, we have what you are looking for here too. Get your pulse racing with the Tower of Power, a near vertical 28m (91 feet) drop that will plunge you into a real aquarium and The Dragon, a ProSlide Tornado with a light show inside the 20-metre (66 feet) wide funnel that will leave you breathless. Also try the Mekong Rapids, a river rapid ride in which you have to slide down a water slide in an inflatable rubber float. Try not to laugh as you descend down the slide, we don’t want you getting full on water!
Address: Av. Siam, s/n, 38660 Costa Adeje, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain
Price: Adults from 41 USD, Children 3-11 from 28 USD
Opening Hours: May-October 10am-6pm, November-April 10am-5pm
Contact: +34 822 07 00 00
Website: Siam Park
Adventure awaits in Europe!
And so, we hope these 10 adrenaline pumping theme parks in Europe did make your butt itchy enough to want to explore these theme parks yourself. We understand if you don’t know where to start, it has been a blur for us too! These roller coasters sure did give us one hell of a ride. Still, shake off those sweaty palms and get those emotions in check, and start planning for your next adventure! It’s hard to guess which you will choose from this long list, but we know for sure it will be amongst the top 10!
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