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Matt N’s Europa Park Initiation 26th-30th April 2022

HeartlineCoaster

Theme Park Superhero
Great stuff, always really enjoy seeing your perspective on new things and it's nice to see that you're having a blast after all that over-planning.

I'm guessing it's not cool to love Mako any more, now that I've said it's the best one!
 

Matt N

CF Legend
I'm guessing it's not cool to love Mako any more, now that I've said it's the best one!
No, it’s definitely still cool to love Mako! To be honest, my memory of it could be more based upon the fact I haven’t ridden it in 6 years as opposed to it necessarily being a weaker ride than Silver Star, and from memory, there’s phenomenally little in it; speaking honestly, I think either could probably be my number 1 and I’d be happy.
 

Matt N

CF Legend
Sorry to double post, but to be honest, having slept on my number 1 coaster bombshell, I think I may have made it a tad rashly. Mulling it over, I think I still liked Mako slightly more than I liked Silver Star from memory. I think it was ever so slightly more refined and some of the elements had a tad more impact. I think I just absolutely loved riding Silver Star loads of times, and that may have spurred me to make the bombshell I did, but mulling it over, I still think I liked Mako a tad more as a ride.

That’ll teach me to post things like that before mulling them over…
 

ThomVD

Giga Poster
Reading your trip report brings me back to my first visit to Europa Park and how excited I was. I'm glad you enjoyed it! I was there on the same days with Tilen and CookieCoasters so we may have been the enthusiasts you heard talk in the Silver Star queue. I think Silver Star actually wasn't running at its best, the trims were on quite strongly. But it didn't kill the ride, there was still plenty of airtime to be had. Wodan on the other hand was running amazingly! I agree with Euro Mir and Poseidon being rough and not that enjoyable, although Euro Mir sorta makes up for it with the catchy soundtrack and Poseidon for being very picturesque. I wasn't too fond of the retracked/rethemed (overly trimmed) Can Can coaster, since I was a big fan of the raw out-of-control intensity of Eurosat, but perhaps you would've found that one a bit too rough to enjoy.
 

Matt N

CF Legend
30th April 2022 (Europa Park Hotel Resort, Travel Home and Trip Summary)
Today was considerably less busy than the last 3 days, so as such, my report of our actual day will be far briefer. We had no 4th day on our entry tickets to Europa Park, but our flight out of Baden-Airpark was not until 7pm, so after checking out of our room at 11am, we had time to kill. And as we were on a huge resort and hadn’t explored too much of the other hotels aside from our own (Castillo Alcazar), we decided to have a relaxed amble around the Europa Park hotel resort for the day.

As we didn’t really have anywhere to be, we didn’t leave our room until close to the 11am checkout time. After breakfast and packing were done, I spent my time timing the throughputs of various different rides out of the hotel room window; I could see Wodan, Blue Fire, Atlantica, Euro Mir and Silver Star very easily, which made for perfect dispatch timing conditions!

After leaving our hotel room, we initially had a little amble around El Andaluz and the exterior area of that hotel:
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Then, we crossed over the road and strolled over to Bell Rock to take a look in that hotel:
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I’ve got to say, all of Europa’s hotels are stunningly themed; we were looking around Bell Rock, and that has so many stunning little details, but on reflection, all of them do!

After a stroll around Bell Rock, we headed down a path into the town of Rust to briefly explore, passing by the other side of Bell Rock while we were there:
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We then headed into Hotel Colosseo, where we ambled around the piazza area for a bit. We wandered back up to the Colosseum to take in the views of the surrounding area, including of Rulantica and of the piazza and fountains:
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After that, we sat and watched the fountains for a good few minutes. I must say, they really are captivating to watch, and such a cleverly designed little touch! (I apologise, as after the Colosseum, my picture taking stopped for a good few hours…)

We then headed into Pizzeria La Romantica for some lunch after having a delicious evening meal there on Wednesday. I’ve got to say, sitting outside in Colosseo’s piazza eating lasagne was a very nice way to kill time; it’s such a nice environment!

After that, we then went inside the Hotel Colosseo lobby and had a look in the shop before having a sit down and also looking at all the pictures on the walls (the IAAPA Wall of Fame and such). The Mack family have certainly hosted a lot of celebrities at Europa over the years, and I don’t think I’ve ever been to a theme park before that displays its array of industry accolades so prominently!

We then headed into the Colosseo cafe for a little dessert. I had a lovely bowl of caramel ice cream, and that was certainly a nice way to finish off our trip!

After that, we headed back over to El Andaluz and sat in the lobby for a few minutes just taking in the surroundings:
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After our brief sit down, we then headed to our car to leave Europa Park Resort and head to Baden-Baden for our flight back to London Stansted. Interestingly, the travel home is where we encountered quite possibly our longest wait of the trip; getting out of London Stansted took nearly 1.5 hours all in.

So, that was our final day! I apologise for today’s slightly dull report; I tried to make it sound as interesting as possible, but we really didn’t do that much. It was a nice relaxing end to a wonderful trip, though!

To add a bit of heft onto today’s slightly dull report, I may as well do my final summarising thoughts…

Trip Summary
Well, the trip has now ended. And what a trip it’s been! As most of you probably know, it’s one I had been planning for some time, and it was my first ever trip to Europa Park, a heavily revered theme park and a place that was high on my bucket list!

So, did Europa Park live up to the hype, and was it worth my many years of wishing to go there? Definitely. Without a doubt, it was all worth it.

Europa Park is truly phenomenal. Stunning. Breathtaking. Joyful. I can think of so many superlatives to describe it, and when I say them, I mean every single one of them. In my opinion, Europa Park is a truly exceptional theme park for so many reasons, and despite my sky-high expectations, it did not disappoint in the slightest! It delivered in so many different ways for me, and there is so much I could say about it, but a few particular things that stood out to me were:
  • The ride lineup is phenomenally well-rounded, and incredibly expansive: Europa has an incredibly well-rounded and expansive ride lineup. Rides-wise, you’re totally covered regardless of your taste. Europa has a plethora of coasters, including some absolutely phenomenal thrill coasters, yet it also has an expansive lineup of dark rides, a solid selection of water rides, and a wide array of very light-hearted, relaxing filler rides to stumble across! Yes, it might not be the most thrill-packed theme park on earth, with giant drop towers and huge coasters around every corner, but the thrill rides they do have are excellent, and more than satisfy anyone yearning for thrills, in my opinion! Silver Star is intensely rerideable, and such an epic ride in my opinion, and if you get bored of riding Silver Star, you’ve got Wodan, which is an exceptional coaster in its own right, and even though Blue Fire isn’t quite on the same level of brilliance as the other two in my opinion, it’s still a really excellent coaster, and an incredibly solid ride for thrillseekers! And I think EP caters to the whole family demographic wonderfully; I can think of so many Europa rides that would have young children, teenagers and grandparents alike all stepping off with huge smiles on their faces! So all in all, Europa Park has a exceptional ride lineup with almost universal appeal, in my opinion!
  • The park as a whole is phenomenally well-rounded: Building upon my point about the park’s phenomenally well-rounded ride lineup; I think the park is extremely rounded in other aspects too! Everything has been thought about with Europa; ride hardware is not everything here. The theming and presentation are absolutely impeccable. The food is really nice and there’s a wide variety of things to pick from. The park is filled with nice little touches of flair and things to notice and look at. The atmosphere is lovely and relaxed throughout. I don’t think there’s one element of theme parking that the Mack family haven’t thought about and attempted to include within Europa Park, and for that reason, I would challenge anybody to visit and not find something to enjoy. Even if you’re not overly into rides, there’s a hell of a lot you can enjoy at EP. It is a true chameleon of a theme park, more so than any other I’ve yet visited; you could have totally different days at Europa Park and they would all be equally fulfilling. Do you want to hammer coasters non-stop? You can do that! Do you want to ride dark rides and discover wonderfully random rides you never knew existed? You can do that! Do you want to have loads of different food & drink? You can do that! Do you want to just sit back and take in a really pleasant atmosphere without overly exerting yourself? You can do that! At Europa Park, you can spend a day doing just about anything and it will always be fulfilling!
  • The theming is surprisingly phenomenal: One thing that did surprise me about Europa Park was just how phenomenally well themed it is throughout. With it not being a Disney or Universal park or having the same kind of budgets, I was unsure how well themed it would actually be, but I was stunned at how beautiful every area is and how much effort is put into theming each ride and making it really special. The theming is absolutely exceptional at Europa, and while it’s not as grand in scale as the best parts of the likes of Disney and Universal, it’s very consistent, and there are so many little details interwoven around! I’d go as far as to say that while it doesn’t hit the highs of the big 2 theming-wise, I’d argue that Europa is generally more strongly themed than, or at very least matching, a fair proportion of Disney & Universal stuff. I certainly think the general level of theming and detail at Europa is at least up there with, if not above, some of the more weakly themed parts of the big 2, which really surprised me.
  • The park has a wonderful vibe throughout: Interestingly given it’s quite a big player with huge visitor numbers, Europa feels remarkably relaxed throughout, and the vibe is absolutely wonderful in every area of the park; even as someone who doesn’t particularly like large crowds, I did not find one moment in Europa even vaguely stressful! Also, the park has a real feeling of warmth throughout that I can’t quite place my finger on; in a bizarre way, it almost reminded me of the warmth of somewhere smaller like Paultons Park, and it was very endearing!
There are so many things I could say, but those are just some of the main ones!
So all in all then, I was blown away by Europa Park. The place felt special; the second I stepped through the gates each day, I just felt my face curl into a grin of wonder! I probably looked quite silly, but it was truly brilliant and it truly made me happy; I could have spent many more days there! There are just so many things I loved about the park, and it truly resonated with me on so many levels. For that reason, I’m going to drop a far more decisive bombshell than last night’s, that I don’t see myself u-turning on tomorrow morning; Europa Park is my new favourite theme park in the world, of what I’ve visited. There, I said it. I love the theming, I love the coasters, I love the dark rides, I love the atmosphere; there’s just so much I love about it! Islands of Adventure (my previous favourite) is without doubt a phenomenal theme park, but Europa’s raw breadth of attraction lineup, consistent theming quality and phenomenal coasters are just something else for me!

In terms of some key stats of interest; let me just break it down:
  • New coasters ridden: 12
  • Coaster count after trip: 91
  • Favourite ride: Silver Star
  • Favourite roller coaster: Silver Star (#2 overall out of 91… after some careful thought, Mako remains top dog)
  • Favourite non-coaster: Piraten in Batavia
  • Favourite dark ride: Piraten in Batavia
  • Favourite water ride: Fjord-Rafting
  • Overall ride count: 50 (over 3 days)
  • Highest 1-day count: 21 (on 29th April 2022/Day 3)
  • Most ridden ride: Silver Star (ridden 10 times)
Thank you for reading this report over the last 5 days! I’ve loved recounting my first experience of Europa Park to you each day, and I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my reports!
 

Sandman

Giga Poster
Excellent read Matt.

You've put a lot of consideration into your thoughts and it's nice to know you appreciate all of the finer details at what is one of the best parks in the world.

I'm glad you had such a good time and can't wait to read more of your opinions as you steadily tick off more great parks!
 

Howie

Donkey in a hat
I'd say that was a resounding 'Job Done' then, Matt!
Bucket list park done, and done properly.
+12.
2 new Top 3 coasters.
3 new Top 10 coasters.
Personal ride counts beaten.
Etc etc etc....
You're gonna be buzzing off this weeks and weeks!

Only one question left to answer: Where next? 😁
 

Matt N

CF Legend
I'd say that was a resounding 'Job Done' then, Matt!
Bucket list park done, and done properly.
+12.
2 new Top 3 coasters.
3 new Top 10 coasters.
Personal ride counts beaten.
Etc etc etc....
You're gonna be buzzing off this weeks and weeks!

Only one question left to answer: Where next? 😁
I was certainly super pleased; this trip delivered in all kinds of ways for me!

Coasters-wise, I was pleased as punch to have a new #2 and #3, as well as a new #10 bringing up the rear of Europa’s big 3! I had very high hopes for Europa’s big 3, as they directly paralleled my existing top 3 prior to visiting (Mako, Icon, Wicker Man), but I was still stunned at how a park can have 3 coasters that good! Even though Mako is my number 1, I’ll admit that Silver Star did surprise me to an extent; I had very high hopes, but I’m not sure I was necessarily expecting it to be as phenomenal as it was (I certainly didn’t expect it to give Mako the tough competition it did) based on how most enthusiasts don’t overly like it. I had high expectations for Wodan, as most seem to rave about it and have it as their favourite EP coaster, and it definitely didn’t disappoint! I’ll admit I was slightly underwhelmed by Blue Fire, as I’d been told by a considerable amount of people that it was vastly superior to Icon and I’d be blown away by it based on how much I love Icon, but it’s still a brilliant coaster that I thoroughly enjoyed.

In terms of other things; I was pleased to be able to experience such a wonderful theme park with such a wide variety of brilliant attractions, both coaster and non-coaster, and I was extremely pleased to have a new favourite theme park at the end of it! And the personal stats were satisfying too; I’ve finally gotten more than 20 rides in 1 day, and I’m now getting agonisingly close to a triple-figure coaster count!

Where next, you ask? Well, it depends on what lens you’re asking the question through.

If you’re asking about “what park will you be visiting next?” full stop; my next theme park visit will be Drayton Manor on 9th June. I’m really looking forward to getting back there for the first time in 4 years, giving Apocalypse a send-off, reriding the likes of Shockwave, and experiencing some new things I didn’t do on my first visit!

If you’re asking about “what new European theme park are you visiting next?”, however; I’m thinking PortAventura. The park as a whole is on my hit list, as it looks beautiful (almost like a European Islands of Adventure!), and my love of Silver Star on this trip has given me a significantly renewed urge to ride Shambhala! Most seem to rank it significantly higher than SS (for instance, you yourself appear to have Shambhala in your top 5 looking at your signature, whereas I’ve never heard you especially rave about Silver Star), and it looks to have a plethora of those joyful B&M Hyper hills, so I can already sense that I’ll really like it!
 

Eyebrows

Hyper Poster
Great report Matt! I don’t usually find myself reading all the way through a TR, but this one had me coming back to hear what you had to say.

On another note, I can’t wait to see future Matt’s top 5 made up entirely of B&M hypers ;)
 

Matt N

CF Legend
On another note, I can’t wait to see future Matt’s top 5 made up entirely of B&M hypers ;)
Provided they all keep up the same epic airtime, smoothness and general fun factor and rerideability of Mako and Silver Star, I could certainly see that scenario!

I apologise, as I know that having B&M hypers take up your entire top 2 is a bit dull and unvaried, but I just love both of the ones I’ve done more than any other coaster I’ve ridden; I think the B&M Hyper Coaster is a simply phenomenal genre of ride based off of the 2 I’ve ridden!
 

Eyebrows

Hyper Poster
I apologise, as I know that having B&M hypers take up your entire top 2 is a bit dull and unvaried, but I just love both of the ones I’ve done more than any other coaster I’ve ridden; I think the B&M Hyper Coaster is a simply phenomenal genre of ride based off of the 2 I’ve ridden!
No need to apologize, Matt! I was just having a bit of fun, you’re allowed to like whatever you want. Plus, there are lots of people with multiple B&M hypers in their top 5 or 10. You said it well, they’re a phenomenal ride type!
 

Rush

Giga Poster
I spend most my time lurking these days but just wanted to post how enjoyable it was to follow your time at the park Matt!

Your positivity and the level of detail you've written and shared with us captures the excitement and joy at being at a park for the very first time. If someone were to ask why we were all enthusiasts, this is a perfect representation of it. I've not yet been to Europa and reading this has me tempted to book myself a trip (although I will probably hold off for their new coaster in '23).

Can't wait to hear more from your travels! :)
 

Matt N

CF Legend
I spend most my time lurking these days but just wanted to post how enjoyable it was to follow your time at the park Matt!

Your positivity and the level of detail you've written and shared with us captures the excitement and joy at being at a park for the very first time. If someone were to ask why we were all enthusiasts, this is a perfect representation of it. I've not yet been to Europa and reading this has me tempted to book myself a trip (although I will probably hold off for their new coaster in '23).

Can't wait to hear more from your travels! :)
Thank you for your nice comments! If you do end up going to Europa, I'm sure you'll have a great time; I'd recommend it to anyone!

In hindsight, I should probably have held off until Voltron in 2023 as well, but I was pretty eager to go abroad after COVID, and we still had a phenomenal visit; I certainly don't feel like I missed out on anything having been before Voltron opens!
 

Smithy

Strata Poster
Genuinely nothing wrong with having those hypers at the top - ultimately your top 10 should be about what you think matters. For me, it's which ride would I choose to go on right now if I had the chance - and that wouldn't necessarily be the 'best' ride, but it would be the most enjoyable, if that makes sense. I can't even remember what my top 10 is any more, but I know that the top few rides are fairly interchangeable depending on conditions, and also what I've ridden recently (and therefore experienced). If I ride Wickerman, it makes me want to get back on Balder desperately. If I ride Icon, I'm desperate to get back on Helix. Never feel you have to apologise for your top 10!

On a separate note and trying not to get too soppy, I love this report precisely because it's everything that's great about CF. A young lad who clearly has a massive passion for theme parks - asks around and gets input from several people who have experience and advice for him - and then being able to read the reports in relative real-time and see someone's enjoyment come to life as a result. All of us have been Matt at some point, and most of us have this forum to thank for it.

You guys 🍻
 

Thecoasterrus

Mega Poster
I've thoroughly enjoyed reading this whole report. It reminded me of my first visit and how blown away I was. Matt you have got me really hyped for my visit to Europa this month!
 

Matt N

CF Legend
Matt N's Ode To Europa Park: A Review from my First Ever Visit
Now I know that I did a brief summary of my thoughts on Europa Park at the end of this series.

However... now I've been back for a couple of days, I'm finding myself wanting to say a lot more than I said in that summary. It feels like I hardly scratched the surface of what I wanted to say about Europa in the closing summary of this trip report series. I apologise if this comes across a tad random or soppy, but I wanted to talk about Europa in more depth and talk about what I thought of it and why I fell in love with it, as both a way to inform the Europa regulars on here that having now been, I get it, as well as to reassure anyone who hasn't visited and is possibly a little sceptical as to whether Europa will be for them.

So; Europa Park. Where do I begin?

To say that I've wanted to visit Europa for a while would be an understatement; ever since I livestreamed the GTAs back in 2014, when I was only 11 years old, and saw Europa Park get awarded the award for "World's Best Theme Park", I thought to myself "I need to go there". And then I read TowersStreet/EuropaStreet, where all the members absolutely waxed lyrical about Europa even back in 2015 or whenever I started lurking around there, my excitement intensified, and Europa Park became the first big bucket list place I felt like I needed to visit. I'll be honest, I did not know a huge amount about the park at this point, but I knew that everyone loved it, which was all the incentive I needed.

I would always say to my parents about Europa Park, and their response was always "we'll take you when you're 18". Seeing as I was probably no older than 12/13 at the time, this seemed a very long way off. And when I finally turned 18 in July 2021, COVID had happened, meaning that the much mooted 18th birthday trip to Europa Park was unable to happen. I did get a nice trip to Legoland Windsor and Paultons Park, though, so every cloud has a silver lining, I guess!

So it's safe to say that my first trip was a very long time coming. However, my parents did stick to their word, and finally ended up booking our trip for April 2022. The excitement began.

However, I'll digress that after the trip was booked, my skepticism and trepidation began to grow. I'd often heard Europa compared to Disney (I like the Disney parks, don't get me wrong, but I never really fell in love with them), and I'd heard a number of reviewers say that EP was "mediocre" and "massively overhyped", particularly through the lens of thrills (I am personally quite thrill-centred when reviewing theme parks, although they're admittedly not the be all and end all for me). So I had very high expectations, but also a degree of trepidation. I was thinking "Will it really be as good as they all say? Will I even like it that much?".

So, did EP live up to its insane hype, and were my years of wanting to visit worth it? Most definitely. I had phenomenally high expectations and hopes, and somehow, there was not one single thing about Europa Park that disappointed me. It truly is absolutely exceptional, in my opinion, and there are numerous reasons why.
Ride Selection
Let's start with one of the principle elements of any theme park; the rides! Europa Park's ride selection delivered and then some, in my view. Of all the theme parks I've been to, I honestly think Europa Park has the most well-rounded ride selection. By my reckoning, it has at least one really excellent ride in each category of coasters, dark rides and water rides, with a plethora of others accompanying it, and that's without even getting onto the array of other wonderfully random attractions; Europa has you covered whatever your taste in rides is and however high your appetite for thrills is!

Yes, the park isn't the most thrilling theme park on earth, with drop towers, huge RMCs and nuts launch coasters rammed around every corner, but I think the thrill coasters that EP has are plenty satisfying enough to quench any coaster lover's thirst for thrills; I'm reasonably thrill-centred, and they were certainly more than enough to leave me feeling fulfilled! I know that none of Europa's thrill coasters are especially intense per se, but what they are is extremely fun and rerideable. And as someone who values fun and rerideability in a coaster more than out-and-out intensity, that suited me down to the ground! Silver Star, my favourite coaster at EP, is truly euphoric and absolutely breathtaking, in my view; an epically fun and intensely rerideable coaster with phenomenal airtime, and it shot straight into my #2 spot! Wodan, a close second for me, is also truly exceptional; it's absolutely demented, packed with airtime, and is so much fun, in my opinion! And Blue Fire is also a really excellent ride; with how I've been referring to it as "a distant third among Europa's big 3", you'd be forgiven for thinking that I didn't think much to it, but that couldn't be further from the truth. BF is great fun, in my opinion, with some lovely hangtime, a punchy launch, and a smooth ride experience, and that last inversion is absolutely amazing! When a ride like Blue Fire is being relegated to "distant third" status, I know that a park's thrill credentials are delivering for me, and I was slightly stunned at how one park can have two coasters as phenomenal as Silver Star and Wodan (both in my top 3!)!

Even pushing aside Europa's big 3 thrill coasters; many of Europa's plethora of sideline coasters are really great fun, and will put a smile on your face whether you're a young child, a teenager or a grandparent! And the park also has some really big hits, with truly universal appeal, in terms of dark rides and water rides as well; Piraten in Batavia is a truly spectacular dark ride (my favourite outside of Florida, and I like it a fair bit more than the original POTC at Magic Kingdom), and Voletarium is also a really solid, well-done dark ride as well. And I thought Fjord-Rafting was a really strong water ride too (I'd probably say it's my favourite water ride outside of Florida). Not to mention that for every big-ticket ride, there are about 5 smaller ones; in my opinion, one of the wonders of Europa Park is how many smaller sideline attractions there are. And in many cases, I don't think relegating them to "sideline attraction" status does them justice at all, because EP still weave a lot of magic and care into them; many of the smaller dark rides, for instance, are really quite fun in their own right, and even though some admittedly aren't as strong as others, in my view, something about stumbling across that type of attraction is really quite wonderful, and their presence makes EP's lineup so expansive, and you're never, ever short of things to do! I spent 3 full days at Europa, and there are still plenty of attractions I didn't experience and plenty of nooks and crannies I didn't even set foot in; it's truly massive!
Theming
Let's now talk about Europa's theming. I was unsure how well themed Europa would be, as they don't have the same types of budgets as the big duo of Disney & Universal, so I have to admit that I was stunned at how beautiful Europa is. Some of the vistas are absolutely stunning, and the general standard of theming and presentation at Europa is absolutely impeccable, in my opinion! Every crevice of Europa Park is packed with charm and detail; even many of the sideline attractions have stunningly detailed queue lines and great theming! For my money, Europa's general standard of theming is easily on par with the big 2; while they never hit quite the same highs as Disney & Universal in terms of raw scale and detail of themed vistas, I'd argue that the park is very consistent, and is easily on par with, if not more strongly themed than, a surprising proportion of Disney & Universal stuff. I also found that the themes really resonated with me; perhaps controversially, I've always liked the world style of theming, and I really enjoyed World Showcase at Epcot. When I left Epcot in April 2019, my thought was "World Showcase was great! If you removed Future World from the equation, gave each country a bit more depth and added considerably more rides, I think you'd have a truly epic park!". And as I was walking around Europa Park, I realised; 3 years ago, I was essentially describing Europa when describing the Epcot of my dreams. Theming-wise, I think the park is easily on par with World Showcase, and when you have countries with far greater depth and the amazing ride selection that Europa has, then I think 2019 Matt N was right; it did make a truly epic park!
Atmosphere/Warmth
Another thing that makes Europa great in my opinion is the atmosphere. I'm not someone who likes busy places, so with Europa being a 6 million a year theme park, I was unsure if I'd find it too crowded for me, but I found Europa to have a consistently relaxing and wonderfully pleasant atmosphere throughout, which made the park absolutely wonderful to be in, in my opinion; I never once felt uncomfortable within Europa Park! Adding onto this point, I found the whole place to have a wonderfully warm feeling about it throughout that I can't quite place my finger on; it almost reminded me in many ways of somewhere like Paultons Park, and I found it very heartwarming! I don't know quite what causes it, but the place feels very warm, special and magical throughout; "magic" is a cliched term within theme parkery by now, but I genuinely felt a very true sense of magic within Europa, and even setting foot in the place put a huge smile on my face; it's just so nice to be in!
Efficiency/Operations
I somehow haven't even mentioned the efficiency yet. My word; they don't mess around, do they? On the whole, Europa is a phenomenally well oiled machine, and that's perhaps most evident when you set foot into their coaster stations. It feels like you hardly have time to blink between sitting down and the train being dispatched; the hosts are literally running up and down the platforms, in some cases, and queues move phenomenally fast as a result. I attempted dispatch timing, and my results ended up being very unreliable, as you're never stood still long enough to get a good reading! With very limited levels of Fastrack compared to the average theme park also being added into the equation, queues that look massive do not take long at all; me and my mum rode Silver Star one day when the queue was bursting out of the Mercedes-Benz Hall and through the outdoor switchbacks, and we guesstimated that this queue would ordinarily be in the ballpark of an hour. It only took 15 minutes. Talk about efficient!

Before I ramble too much (as I'm conscious that I've already rambled quite a bit), I'll just conclude by saying that the key thing I love about Europa is that it is a true chameleon of a theme park. More so than anywhere else I've ever visited, it is well and truly shape-shifting; it can be whatever you want it to be at a given point in time. You want to endlessly reride coasters? You can do that! You want to discover dark rides and go on a world-class journey of immersion? You can do that! You want to just relax and take in pleasant, well-themed surroundings? You can do that! You want to eat & drink from various different outlets? You can do that! Europa Park just says "yes" to absolutely everything and delivers upon whatever your demand is extraordinarily well; you can spend a day focusing on just about anything at Europa Park, and every day will be equally fulfilling! Most theme parks I've been to seem to hone in on either thrills or immersion, but Europa Park is a wonderful cocktail of both, and I truly love that. I find it absolutely amazing how I can go from repeat riding 2 coasters in my top 3 to experiencing wonderfully themed dark rides to just strolling along taking in pleasant, well-themed surroundings all in the same park; that is no mean feat, but Europa somehow pulls it off!

So the big question is; after all the hype and obscenely high ratings, is Europa my favourite theme park I've ever visited? I can answer that rather decisively; yes. Of what I've visited, Europa Park is my favourite theme park in the world. Don't get me wrong, Islands of Adventure in Orlando, my previous favourite, is an absolutely phenomenal theme park, with an amazing ride lineup and exceptional theming making for a truly impeccable theme park experience that never stops giving and always feels well and truly magical, but Europa just nails every single aspect of theme parking, and is just so expansive and wonderful and consistently high quality in thrills, theming and everything else in between that it's absolutely unrivalled within the sphere of theme parks I've been to, in my opinion. I may have only visited once, but I got it and I felt the magic right from the off; it is a truly stunning theme park, and one I've truly fallen in love with. I can't wait for my next visit!
 

witchfinder

Hyper Poster
Great trip report Matt, sounds like you had a blast. Still not been to Europa myself and this just made me want to go even more. Maybe later this year or definitely next...

Can we get a count on how many times you said "[ride] was on a [time] minute queue, so we decided to give it a go" please? 😆 I'll be honest, I was really hoping to see you say that you decided not to give a ride a go at some point ;)
 

Hixee

Flojector
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Social Media Team
I counted a whopping 46 instances of the word "phenomenal" and it's variations. I'm thrilled that you were so impressed with Europa, Matt. Truly I am.

Loved this report. Cannot wait for the next one.
 

Matt N

CF Legend
Great trip report Matt, sounds like you had a blast. Still not been to Europa myself and this just made me want to go even more. Maybe later this year or definitely next...

Can we get a count on how many times you said "[ride] was on a [time] minute queue, so we decided to give it a go" please? 😆 I'll be honest, I was really hoping to see you say that you decided not to give a ride a go at some point ;)
I counted 37 instances of that phrase and its variations in total; I think that phrase is almost a cornerstone of my reports at this point, along with “So, how was the ride? Well…”!
 

Furiustobaco

Mega Poster
you’ve managed to put it in how I feel about Europa into perfect words!

I agree Matt, Europa is about as versatile as a park can get. you can mass ride roller coasters, you can immerse yourself in their side attractions, you can have a day watching shows, or you can eat and drink yourself to death with some of their pretty cafes and restaurants.

I find I always assign my usual 3 days into like “okay day 1 coasters, day 2 shows, day 3 just chill and rerides”.
i have been to Cedar Point which is practically one of the best coaster collections on earth. But I always find myself craving Europa more. I think you’re bang on with the versatility comment!

I think with Europa even when you’re not riding stuff you still feel like happy. The views are usually pretty, sometimes you have entertainers walking around, and the atmosphere is enchanting.
Its a park where rides are just like a cherry on top. you could ride only a few rides and still have an amazing day there (shows, food, atmosphere, ect)
 
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