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Europe 2016 - Robb & Elissa Traveling Around Riding Stuff


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What are the others in the Top 5 parks?

I didn't say top 5. But my top three resorts in the world would be (Not really in this order):

Tokyo Disney

Walt Disney World

Europa Park

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Love these updates, Robb. Thank you and Elissa for taking me to Europa Park way back in '08...so FUN and now the Euro Mir theme song will once AGAIN be stuck on repeat in my head for weeks. Can't wait to return there one day hopefully.

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1. No "Virtual Queue" option. I get that Europa Park prides themselves on capacity and their queues are some of the fastest I've ever stood in with some of the best operations, but having said that, just about everyone in our group would have been willing to spend 50EUR each to not have to wait 35 minutes for Blue Fire or Silver Star every time they wanted to ride. And the reality is they probably would be out spending money on some of the amazing food while they wait!

 

I think here and Phantasialand are 2 of the highest parks on my bucket-list to go do even maybe edging out a Florida trip by a margin. For us, now our son was just born, it probably would be once in a lifetime for Florida (as in 10 year saving plan) and the downside of being a teacher in Asia is the only time off falls in the avoid like the plague weeks for theme parks (1 week end of July and another Christmas & New year week). Plus, airplane tickets go sky-high since nearly the whole country has that time for vacation and on our budget it would be a v cheap hotel so fast pass + might work against us. That's not a dig at Disney since that's our own personal situation but what I mean is if Europa Park ever installed this it would leap over all the other parks on my list by a considerably huge margin as the place to save for.

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There`s something I would like to ask: Did your last stay at Europa change anything about yout opinion of the park and the hotels? Some people here in Germany think that the park is not developing in a good way. I don`t share that opinion...I think it`s better than ever. What do you think ? I would also be interested in Elissa`s opinion as I remember you both ranking Europa Park pretty high after your last stay in 2012 !

 

Greeds...GeorgeT

Edited by robbalvey
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Robb...all of them. I was just interested if you think it got even better or if you also see negative changes. I know that you like the park VERY much

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It really says something about a park when you have to sit and really think about how it can improve from an already sterling status. The park looks fantastic and clearly there's a ton to do there over 3 days!

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Robb...all of them. I was just interested if you think it got even better or if you also see negative changes. I know that you like the park VERY much

I saw no negative changes in the park at all.

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I think Europa has passed Tokyo Disney on my personal park/resort bucket list, not by much but man that place looks amazing. It's like a perfect mixture of everything, themeing, food, coasters, water rides, dark rides, resort hotels. It makes me wish Epcot had a major coaster somewhere in the world showcase. And it makes me wish Epcot had a raclete stand, heck can they just add Switzerland to the World Showcase with a raclete stand and Blue Fire Matterhorn already?

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It's the sign of a good park that most of Robb's "complaints" can be boiled down to "give us more ways to give you money"

I also want to make it clear that they aren't "complaints" in any way. I have absolutely nothing to complain about at the park. Areas of slight improvement? Maybe. But not "complaints."

 

Personally, I cannot stand people who go around park complaining and nit picking things.

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It is a sign of a great park that asks "what can we do better" rather than just rest on their laurels of your outstanding review.

 

This park impressed me so much when I visited with TPR in 08 (?) and it looks like it has continued to improve.

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We drove about four hours from Munich (while visiting for Oktoberfest) to go to this park and it was one of the best vacation experiences that I have ever had in my life. Europa simply blew us away with their theming, fast operations, food...and of course, great beer!

 

It was amazing to see the fast dispatches, but one thing that I noticed was that the employees expected people to put their stuff in a bin, sit down and put on their seat belt or pull their lap bar down...and people did so in a timely and orderly fashion. Another "never in America" factoid.

 

I now wish that we would/could have spent the night at one of the resorts, but we had our hotel in Munich booked for the week so we trekked back there after the park closed.

 

I vow to go back to Germany someday...and hope to visit Phantasialand, Holiday Park, Oktoberfest and of course, Europa Park.

 

Thanks for posting, Robb!

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I've really enjoyed these reports of a lot of awesome places I probably won't get to visit. That Sky Fly looks cool, and though I normally don't do spinning/flipping rides, I'm actually looking forward to getting to ride Ninja Turtles at Mall of America in about 3 weeks. Your video has gotten me excited for it. Thanks for doing this; I know trip reports are a lot of work, and I really appreciate the effort put into documenting your travels.

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Thank you Robb for the kind words, it was great to have you here and we are glad that you enjoyed your stay.

 

Let me get back to your points.

 

EDIT: So Europa asked us "Is there anything we an do better?" and even the most perfect resort probably has a few things that you may think "I wonder why they do this?" or "I'm a little surprised by...." and while there really are not many things I can think of, these are a couple of questions/comments since they asked:

 

1. No "Virtual Queue" option. I get that Europa Park prides themselves on capacity and their queues are some of the fastest I've ever stood in with some of the best operations, but having said that, just about everyone in our group would have been willing to spend 50EUR each to not have to wait 35 minutes for Blue Fire or Silver Star every time they wanted to ride. And the reality is they probably would be out spending money on some of the amazing food while they wait!

 

It's actually a question of philosophy here at Europa-Park. The Mack family as owners of the park wants every visitor at each day of our season to be able to experience as much as possible of the park in the same way. This is why we continously look into the least possible downtime, the fastest operations, and also into extending the park hours depending on the number of visitors in the park (to just name few items).

 

We actually like that people tend to forget about the outside world once they got into the park and we think that we would make more people sad and upset when they realise that you get better service when you pay more as if you would make people happy by giving them the chance to buy fast passes.

 

We know that this is standard in airlines, trains, cars and everywhere in the world, but for the moment we would like to keep this thought within the park.

 

HOWEVER: At our Horror Nights event we talk about a very different audience and a different concept of rather an event than a classic theme park experience. There we actually sell Fast Passes, but we currently can't imagine to introduce this to the park itself.

 

2. Speaking of food - The park has some of the best food items we have ever had at the park: Raclette, fresh Crepes, Poffertjies, Gelato, Burrata, Waffles on a Stick, the list goes on and on... and as much as we loved the food, we felt the wait times at many of the food stands took quite a while. Now would we rather wait for freshly made crepes, Raclette right off the grill over pre-made warmed up items? Absolutely! But there were a few times where it seems a bit long.

 

3. Beverages at more food stands - There were quite a few times we were looking for a "Bottle of soda or water" and found many snack stands that did not sell any drinks at all. A fridge stocked with water, coke, coke zero, sprite, even just a small handful of options would have been nice.

 

Got it, we will forward these comments to our F&B department.

 

Thanks for your visit and we look forward to see you soon again!

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Great pics and report as always... nice to know that you are still like our European Parks so much.

 

And little fun fact about River Quest: Did you know that it had a kind of Freefall/DROP-Element in it, but it was deactivated because of some safety reasons from the German-TÜV. It was the last drop... this one was contructed to stop the boat and then fall down, but if i remember right the missing safety belts in the boats made it to risky that someone could get hurt. Here is one pic i found which shows the mechanism:

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pic source: https://www.phantafriends.de/topic/15-mystery-river-quest/

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Twister 360 Degree Video:

(Watch using the Facebook mobile app!)

 

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We have arrived at one of my favorite "traditional" amusement parks! @gronalund!

 

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Upon entering @GronaLund we are immediately given lots of beer! Yet one more reason why we love this place!

 

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First we were given as much beer as we could drink followed by plates of meat! We love @GronaLund!

 

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Games at @GronaLund you actually have to WORK for to get a prize! But they are damn fun and the prize is WORTH it!

 

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Garbles wanted a little bit of popcorn...

 

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Grona Lund has three awesome tower rides and next year they will add a fourth "Falcon's Fury" style!

 

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This fun house @GronaLund is seriously kick ass and it will KICK your ass!!!

 

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Jetline @gronalund might be one of the oldest coasters in Sweden but it still really kicks ass!

 

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Twister is a fantastic @thegravitygroup woodie built in a very tight space!

 

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Was a great first night hanging out @gronalund! Will be back tomorrow!

 

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Good morning from @GronaLund! Mattias, Johan, and Peter once again welcome us to their amazing park!

 

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Starting the morning off right @GronaLund with some rides on Jetline!

 

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Next up was the wild mouse @gronalund which is one of the best in the world! Intertwined with other rides!

 

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In honor of Sarah being scared of dark rides, we did a dark ride tour @GronaLund with one of the ride designers!

 

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Peter showed Sarah all the dark ride prop gags with lights on so she could face her fears!

 

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And then half way trough he turned off all the lights and scared the bejesus out of her! lol It was epic!

 

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Dark ride tour was great! The new version of the ride has all kind of cool tricks in it!

 

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Taking a few more rides on Twister! @gronalund's insanely compact but amazing @thegravitygroup woodie!

 

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To get truly "Insane" rides on Insane we put Sarah on one side, Jere & Garbles on the other!

 

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We then put the big boys on one side and @gronalund's Mattias on the other! Thankfully he came back alive!

 

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Kristen got to ride Eclipse with Mattias @gronalund's owner. She loved it!

 

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Remember that time when we CLIMBED @gronalund's 400 foot tall Eclipse? Video:

 

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Sarah is about to enter House of Nightmares. Did we mention she is deathly afraid of haunted houses?

 

WATCH THIS VIDEO!!!!

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The many faces of Sarah while in @gronalund House of Nightmares! lol

 

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I love parks that have year-round haunts and @gronalund's House of Nightmares is just fantastic!

 

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House of Nightmares was really well done! Lots of great sets & props!

 

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Getting photos of @gronalund Twister can be tough since it's so compact and twisted!

 

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It's impressive @thegravitygroup managed to get the Twister track safely through that Jetline support!

 

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When you don't have a lot of room you build rides on top of buildings and rides on top of other rides!

 

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The girls are BACK at the fun house again!

 

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Took another trip through the @gronalund fun house which really is one of the best in the world!

 

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Two reasons why I love visiting European parks!

 

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This gives you an idea of the layout of @GronaLund in Sweden. Super compact park loaded with awesome!

 

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I just love the ridiculously huge boxes of candy you can win from the games @gronalund!

 

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Here is a unisex restroom which has existed in Sweden for YEARS without any issue. Why can't this work in America?

 

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I love that @gronalund converted a side of their drop tower to a stand-up!

 

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The level of disturbing things you'll see standing in line @gronalund dark ride is the stuff acid trips are made of!

 

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Elissa totally kicked those damn mole's assess!!!

 

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Garbles slung his shot and became a VIP here @gronalund!

 

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There is just a beautiful European feel about @gronalund I mean, it IS in Europe after all!

 

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The sad & pathetic are getting in their kiddie coaster credits.

 

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Awwww... Romance on the @gronalund Tunnel of Love ride!

 

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This ride needs more killer whales...

 

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Meeting some fun characters hanging out @gronalund today!

 

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This new Asian food offering @gronalund was really good!

 

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We ordered Dan a beer @gronalund and this is what we got!

 

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I cannot pronounce the name of this restaurant @gronalund but it is damn good!

 

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We were all given VIP backstage passes for the @BlocParty concert @GronaLund tonight!

 

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Having a great time watching @BlocParty @gronalund from the VIP area! Cheers to #BlocParty!

 

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Absolutely FANTASTIC visit to @gronalund in Sweden today! One of the top traditional amusement parks in the world!

 

OH! ONE MORE THING! If you have made it this far, then you need to respond to the following...

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Filthy hobo or an actual VIP? Reply with your vote now!

Edited by robbalvey
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It's actually a question of philosophy here at Europa-Park. The Mack family as owners of the park wants every visitor at each day of our season to be able to experience as much as possible of the park in the same way. This is why we continously look into the least possible downtime, the fastest operations, and also into extending the park hours depending on the number of visitors in the park (to just name few items).

 

We actually like that people tend to forget about the outside world once they got into the park and we think that we would make more people sad and upset when they realise that you get better service when you pay more as if you would make people happy by giving them the chance to buy fast passes.

 

As much as I already thought Europa Park looked like an amazing place, that I look forward to finally visiting someday, this response makes me respect the people who run it tremendously, and hold the park in even higher regard! This philosophy is what I hold to as well, and why I dogmatically oppose all forms of Fast Pass, Fast Lane, or other skip-a-line systems that are not equally available to all people, regardless of financial station. I don't say this to spark that argument again (certainly not in Robb's TR thread), but rather to just say that it refreshing to me to see that there is a park out there who hasn't "sold-out" to the allure of making even more money, at the expense of all guests feeling treated equally! Kudos to Europa Park, and you've given me just one more reason to get there, ASAP!

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Great report, looks like you're having an absolute blast! Gröna Lund is indeed a fantastic park!

 

By the way, did they recently repaint Jetline? The colors looks so fresh in the pictures!

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Great report, looks like you're having an absolute blast! Gröna Lund is indeed a fantastic park!

 

By the way, did they recently repaint Jetline? The colors looks so fresh in the pictures!

 

Yes, I think they did it for the last season, don't remember if they did the whole thing then or not. But it looks absolutely fantastic now, and with the newish magnetic brakes you could almost believe it's a brand new ride!

 

I really hope they will repaint Vilda Musen soon though, it's starting to look really worn.

 

Also, great TR! So many amazing parks I need to visit, some for the first time and some again, and again..

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