Photo trip report from Phantasialand, August 16th-18th 2021
During our nationwide lockdown we started making plans for our first big trip since Emma was born in March 2020. As we wanted to check out F.L.Y. for a long time, we looked for a price worthy package at Phantasialand and found one. After booking two nights for two adjacent rooms for seven people in total with park view and balcony, breakfast, parking and park entrance at all three days, we were down to 75 Euros per person per day - a great value since park entry only was regularly 59,50 Euros at the same days!
We booked for August in hope for great weather, but hat only around 20 °C (70 °F) and showers of rain throughout the three days. But in the end, it didn't matter. With Sarah, me and the kids, my brother and his kids completed our gang. We chose this constellation so that one group can always ride the big ones while the others did some rides with the kids. With three days to go, we had a lot of time and no desired ride had to be left out. To tell you some general facts about the park: COVID was still a big thing in Germany, so masks were required in all indoor areas as well as in all rides and queues. Also, baby switch, line skipping systems, choosing of rows (including front line rows) in coasters and single rider lines were not available at all coasters and attractions. Some rides were completely closed, as Hollywood Tour, for example.
When we arrived on monday morning, we were very pleased how nice hotel Matamba looks from the outside. There was a big queue for check-in, around 15 parties were before us. At first, I have to admit that we were a bit annoyed how long it took them to check everyone in, but when we waited our time, about one hour, we knew why! Check-In was awesome, no open questions afterwards, tables booked for breakfasts and the african dinner on tuesday and completely ready for three exhausting park days! So we stored our luggage, threw over the rain clothes and headed to the park. Out of the Matamba garden, you get spilled right into the middle of the park directly to Black Mamba's loop.
Nicole and me directly ran to get in line at F.L.Y. while the others went to Wuze Town with the kids. When we arrived in the Berlin section and I saw the portal to Rookburgh for the first time in real, I was baffled. It looked better and bigger than in every picture I have seen so far! Inside the tunnel, it even got better. I have to say, that I stopped following the construction progress after F.L.Y. went full circuit because I didn't want to spoiler myself in any way, so everything I saw was pretty new for me. Hearing this, you can imagine how my face expression was when we stepped out the tunnel and stood right in the middle of Rookburgh! This place is the most immersive theme park area I have ever been so far (no Disney or Universal yet)! The tunnel is like a time machine to the 1920s. Everything is themed so well. Not only the shops, even the litter picking park employees were completely in character - awesome! We directly got in line for F.L.Y. which had a minor breakdown that occured several times a day. After 15 minutes they opened the gate again and we walked through more than half of the line. For those who don't want to be spoilered, I wont do any description of queue and ride here; you'll find it down by the ride reviews. But when the seats turned and we went onto the launch track, heaven broke loose! We were completely dry because of the completely roofed queue, but outside it was pouring and we were front row! This was one of the most crazy coaster experiences I ever had! We were not able to open our eyes more than a little bit and were completely drenched after our ride! And F.L.Y. is really intense. Imagine riding Maverick without seeing anything or eyes closed.
So we met the others ond switched the rides. Paul and Emma had done all the rides in Wuze Town, so we went to Maus au Chocolat. I sat down with Emma, who took a nap, and waited for Paul and Nicole. Afterwards, we went down the Berlin raod to the kiddie rides down there. It's a very beautiful area, we enjoyed it a lot! After a second F.L.Y. lap, we went to the hotel to get our rooms and some dry clothes, take a shower and prepare for our evening dinner. As we had not booked anything for our first night, we planned on going into the city of Brühl. We found a very nice italian restaurant online, Grissini! It's definitely a hit and I really want to suggest it for anyone going to Phantasialand! The owner was very nice and they went above and beyond to give us an awesome time on a regular monday evening with us as the only guests. Food was great! After dinner, we went back to the hotel and sat down at the bar for beer, cards and whiskey - which was just another great decision on this trip!
Our second day started with a big breakfast in the african restaurant and a new plan for the park: As we were the first ones to be at Black Mamba, I took the kids so that the other four could get a quick ride which took us only about 15 minutes total. After that, we went to the other, yet untouched, half of the park and started with a couple of laps on Colorado Express, or - by far - favourite mine train! Luckily, I had two back row rides - by far the best seats - and one front row ride. After that, we split up again for riding F.L.Y. another time and do a lot of kiddie rides. I used the moment that the others were riding F.L.Y. and the kids were tired and took a nap in the handcart and just sat down in the middle of Rookburgh and watched everything around me. It was a great time and I cannot tell if I sat there for 20 minutes or two hours. The truth will be in the middle, but time just flew by watching this place and this coaster!
As it started raining again and the kids were in desperate need of a real nap, Sarah went with the kids for a hotel break while Nicole and me conquered Taron and got it off our to do list. After waiting for one hour we had an airtime filled, great back row ride. After not having ridden it for five years I honestly forgot how good this ride can be! Now we went back to the hotel, picked up the napping crew and went for a second park run. At first, the water rides were our target, as we had the opportunity to take some rain clothes with us and weather prediction showed drizzles anyway. So we went to Chiapas and River Quest. Man, I really forgot how good those two rides are! Chiapas is by far the best log flume out there! So long, so nicely themed! Really good and without any line due to weather! Great music on the ride. And River Quest is still as drenching as it ever was! I wish one of those would be at Holiday-Park! Drenched as we were, we decided to go to the other side of the park again. Of course, F.L.Y. was one of our targets as the line was down to 30 minutes because of the weather. It even struck again when we were directly in the station waiting for out train. Afterwards all of us went on a trip to Wuze Town where we did some laps on the Winja's and went on our very first ride with the Tittle Tattle Tree in the middle of Wuze Town. We were particularly surprised how funny this little ride is. You even get a little bit floater air!
On our way to the hotel Sarah and me took our chance for two last minute rides on Black Mamba which were great!
Back in the hotel we prepared for the main event of the day: the african dinner in the hotel restaurant! We honestly please everybody sleeping at hotel Matamba to book some tables and do this! You get a lot of authentic african food as well as european classics. Some meats as ostrich and zebra and fishs are even freshly grilled by the chefs as you see it in mongolian restaurants! This went on to be a great evening and a delicious meal. Needless to say that the evening ended again in the bar, this time cocktails were on the list!
Having done all we really wanted to do, we went for a lazy and relaxing third park day. We started it right after park opening with Taron which was again a great experience. After this we strolled through the park and ended up at our favourite places: Berlin with Rookburgh and F.L.Y.. We were lucky, as everyone got a rainless front row ride what was a perfect ending of riding the big ones for that trip! The other groups went on Maus Au Chocolat with Paul. The last things we did were riding all the things Paul wanted to ride in Wuze town, picking up some merchandise and go home.
All in all we had a great trip. Three days were the perfect duration for a party with two kids. We would have ridden a lot more and spent a fortune more if baby switch and fast lane would have been available. Phantasialand regulars will know that lines are always present on the major attractions, no matter what day of the year it is. Yes, we skipped a lot of rides just because lines were too long for what it was, for example Crazy Bats, Talocan or Raik. So we had to choose what was most important for us - and this was by far Rookburgh and riding the things our kids were allowed on. Being based in an on site hotel was essential for our trip. The fact, that the hotel, the restaurant, the bar and all of the employees were so great was an additional benefit.
I will shout it out once more: Go to Phantasialand! Sleep there! Get immersed by this park!
F.L.Y.: Warning! For all people who think like me and don't want to know much about queue and ride: STOP READING NOW! For all the others: This is the most awesome roller coaster experience (read: from area over look, queue until the actual ride) I've ever had! I don't know how often I've ridden it in the three days, but I know for sure I would have ridden it twice as much if Fast Lane and/or row choosing would have been available! The queue is one of the most perfect queues out there in the coaster world. You don't wait in stupid zigzags (Hi, Taron). You start right under the first launch and go one big round through Rookburgh. The complete queue is covered, so neither rain nor sun is an issue. A full queue means roughly one hour of wait. During the queue there are many references about flying like blueprints from actual planes and airships to the office of an engineer. After making the circle you go underground. What looks like an subway station becomes a waiting hall of an airport with all the things you know. Big (fake) advertisements, security checks, boarding, ... . Of course, everything is themed to the 1910s and 1920s. About five minutes before boarding you reach the main hall of the airport where massive projectors play a video of how the security measurements before your flight are enforced. When entering the boarding area, you are given a silicon wristband which gives you the opportunity to use a locker. You don't have to use a locker, but you are obliged to wear the wristband. Without wristband, you cannot leave the landing station after your flight. When you pass the lockers, you have to put everything you have in your pockets in the locker, including phone, keys and wallet. After the lockers you have to go through a metal detector. If you "forgot" something in your pockets, you will have to go back to the lockers and queue again. So you would lose roughly five minutes. On the pro side: The lockers are at the end of the queue line, so you have your phone with you for the majority of the wait time. If you pass the detector, you are ready for boarding. As most of you have already seen, you are going to sit down like a normal chair and get your vests on. The vests are very comfortable. It's like the GateKeeper vests without the tightening, so basically it feels like lap bars only, which is crazy for a flying coaster. From this point on, everything goes fast: The train starts and you're looking to the outside, passing some fake advertisements. The train ascends and speeds up and without a beep the track twists, your seats turn and you are in the flying position looking outside and seeing the sky again fort the first time in 30 minutes! And as all of this now wasn't good enough, the real highlight is yet to come! The launch is not very fast, but due to the nature of the flying position it feels really intense. If you have a front row saet, you don't know where to look first as you twist and turn through Rookburgh! I feels like you are on Harrys broom after it has been to a meth party. The inversions are very tight and the near misses just awesome. You even have some real great airtime moments, which are better in the back. The last three curves before the booster launch are so much fun. Then you are boosted up through the hotel and the even better second half begins. For me, there is not one very good moment on the ride. Every second, every inch is awesome. It's a complete experience, from launch to brake. After exiting the ride, you are back to your lockers and use your wristband to exit through a different subway station.
All in all I had two front row rides, but the first one in torrential rain doesn't count because we weren't able to see anything. The back row, which we had also, provides the best air, but the booster launch fails a bit because acceleration fades already before you even are on the upstairs part of the boost. I've ridden it in almost every row. I don't think there is a really bad row. I think row one has the best visuals and one of the middle rows provides the best overall experience.
Winja's: Due to the COVID restrictions you had to queue outside. You weren't able to choose your side (Fear or Force) or even seat. So I only got a ride on Force which was pretty good, a lot better then I remembered. But I stays as it was: spinning coasters and backwards driving aren't my thing.
Taron: The last time we rode it we only had one ride in the back of the train which was mediocre. This was five years ago. When we went to Phantasialand later, we skipped it because of that. But his time, things were different! On our first ride i felt airtime in the very last row I didn't feel any time before! Forces were great! So I highly advertised a second ride and Sarah, who was also sceptical, also mentioned how awesome it ran! Such a shame you weren't able to choose your row. For a guaranteed front row ride, I would have waited one hour for a third time.
Black Mamba: As we weren't able to choose rows we were spilled in the middle of the train. Usually I only choose front rows on B&M inverted coasters, but this time I really enjoyed the middle rows. It was running great. I just love this short but intense and punchy ride. There is not a single bad moment on the whole trip through the jungle. Heavily recommended for binge riding!
Colorado Adventure: This is just the best Mine Train! The three lift hills with the three following sections offer three rides in on trip. The dark middle section is just plain fun. I love having fun with the people on the Chiapas lift hills. And the last section ist great. The best airtime is definitely found in the back row. But I also had a front row ride and that also was fun. I really look forward for Paul being tall enough to ride it!
Chiapas: It's just the best log flume that ever wet my panties. The first minutes floating through this amazing themed artificial south american palace is umcomparable to every other log flume I've seen so far. the drops will make you wet early. But the last drop under that bridge, the upwards shoot and the airtime before the final drenching is just crazy!
River Quest: Every ten meters in the queue line you'll read: You will get wet! You will get drenched! And the sings aren't lying. If you like that to happen and you want to go on a unique raft: This is your place to go! Starting with the elevator and the first drop, this ride is just amazing and unique!
Maus Au Chocolat: As Paul was tall enough to ride it and smart enough to aim and shoot, this was our number one go to ride if others were riding bigger things! I just love the story. It's a lot of fun and the details in the rooms are great. Make sure to stop her for a cream battle against the mice!
Tittle Tattle Tree: It's basically a tamer kids power tower. Tied up on steel ropes you get shot under the roof of Wuze Town, get some air time up here and speed down again. This happens a lot of times. When the other set of ride cabins is being loaded, you get a rest on the very top and can see the Winja's from a very unusual perspective. It's a great ride without any age restriction!
Kiddie Rides at Wuze Town: Paul did them all and didn't get enough. The "Fröhliche Bienchenjagd" was his favourite, followed by "Wolkes Luftpost" and "Würmling Express". "Der lustige Papagei" was also good. It's a nice variety off different rides, so the shyer kids, like Emma, will find also enough to ride. In addition, there are also some playgrounds.
Kiddie Rides at Berlin: Directly at the main entrance are the big carousel, a kids ferris wheel and a plane ride called "Bolles Flugschule". Paul was allowed riding alon on all of them which was great, because so one could look after Emma while he rode. Together with the nearby Wuze Town you see quickly why we spent most of our time at this side of the park.
Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed our trip report. Here are some photos of our tour:
This is the portal to a whole new world. Be ready to get stunned once you enter.
After passing the time tunnel, this is you view. I was really speechless.
Just look at these details in this one picture
I love how all the workers are set into the area.
Picture from the beginning of the queue line. The building in the background is Hotel Charles Lindbergh.
This is the booster launch right through the hotel.
This is the beginning of the underground queue. The empty queue on the left side is the closed front row queue.
Again: Look at the details!
I took this picture to show you the effort they made. This is the very end of the overflow queue. Rarely anybody will see this ever as I did. But it's still detailed to the max.
I really enjoyed sitting right here with the kids and watching the people in the trains.
What a beautiful mess of twists and turns and track and supports!
Here you see the pre security check area and the films that explain you the securits checks and measurements. You're getting your wristbands ...
... put everything inside the lockers ...
... and will be blamed if you forgot something. They really enforced the "go back to the beginning" rule.
After the film, you get your wristbands here. The green dots are the lockers. No photos can be taken after here.
This gem you can only see from the queue line. It is an actual, functioning cherry picker that war painted rusty so it can remain in the area without disturbin the optics! Awesome, Phantasialand!
Taron. Another beautiful mess of track.
One picture for the track nerds.
The weather we had made Taron look a lot better than it normally does!
Never noticed these "lamps" in the overflow queue.
I just love thispicture. Airtime, Hairtime, Stormtime and Funtime in one picture.
I've never been to this photo spot before.
You get some great views of the wohle track.
But you'll never get the whole coaster in one shot.
Interesting to see how intertwined Mamba is. You don't have that feeling when riding.
Of course, we've also ridden Colorado Adventure. Love the setting.
Speaking of setting: This is perfection!
Warning: You will get wet if you stand here for a longer time!
This rare picture of the Winja's is taken from the Tittle Tattle Tree in the middle of Wuze Town.
And this is the Tittle Tattle Tree!
The Maus Au Chocolat queue is one of the most lovely ones ever created.
Themed so well and authentic.
The main entrance with the kiddie ferris wheel.
Big park, big nap! This is why we use the handcart for parks.
The grand carousel at the main entrance. Unfortunately, the upper section was closed because of the COVID protocol.
Paul insisted on riding the horses solo.
Emma and me opted for the carriage and a snack.
The picture speaks for itself. The brown thing is actually F.L.Y. track. We were sitting less than two meters away fron the train.
One of the warning signs at River Quests. So true. Funny thing is that all of that can happen in one raft! Some people may be drenched while others will ask them how that could happen.
Frog shot of Sarah and Paul.
The hotel queue at check in.
Our daily out of bed morning view.
The parents bed.
Bathroom with walk in shower.
The kids bedroom, designed as a tent. Directly annexed by Paul.
Night shot from the outside.
Hotel garden at night from our room.
The bar. My place.
The african restaurant during breakfast.
The hotel garden. You can reserve these tables for dinner.
The lagoon with Paul bravely conquering the bridge on his own.
The balconys are our rooms. Photo taken out of the garden.
This is the hallway to the restaurant. It's designed as a childrens playground.
We wanted to go to the bar. Emma was already wasted. She took a nap. We took some other things. Great evening for everyone!
Restaurant Grissini in Brühl city center. Highly recommended!
Dessert is always the end of something good! This was the homemade tiramisu at Grissini!