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Netherlands 2018 Trip Report (Complete!)

Visited a theme park and have a wild time?!? Post your trip report here and tell us all about it!

Post September 1st, 2018, 6:05 am
mkingy User avatar
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Walibi Holland


The trip begun with one of the major parks in the Netherlands, Walibi Holland. It’s worth noting that Xpress is actually open before the rest of the park, however if you’re not entering the park as the gates open you’re likely to queue for this much longer than you would towards the end of the day as you can’t determine the length of the queue until you are in it! It was a scorching day so water rides were a welcome cool down, and the park actually had a giant water fight in the middle of the day! Dirk joined us for here this part of the trip

Goliath is the European sequel to Expedition GeForce - but that is roughly where the comparisons should end. Goliath has the burst of exterme airtime but it’s nowhere near as intense, the ride favours S-Hills and low Helixes to the ejector airtime which is fun, but not my preference. The stengal dive is really cool though, as Dirk pointed out - if you lean out the car you can technically get fully inverted! Definitely put a big grin on my face though!

Lost Gravity is Mack’s debut big dipper model, using 2 row trains and wing style seating to allow tight layouts and interesting elements. This is most notable of the drop, which twists into what is almost a dive loop but with all the rotation happening at the apex of the lift hill. This gives a different sensation from the left side of the track where you are whipped around the track, to the right side where the car pulls away from beneath you. The trains then navigate a low airtime hill followed by a weird top-hat stall element. These three elements were probably my favourite section of ride in the whole trip - the ride just felt so out of control and fun. The theming was fairly complete, although basic and it did feel as you exited the ride that you were someplace you weren’t meant to be.

Robin Hood
is an out and back woodie which is due for the RMC treatment next year. It was an alright woodie, which obviously needs some TLC which is obviously won’t be getting hah. Some nice airtime generally ruined by jackhammering. Wheel seats to be avoided. Enjoyable ride nonetheless.

Speed of Sound is the park’s Vekoma Boomerang - with new generation trains and a light package to go with it. Unfortunately the light package wasn’t in great condition which didn’t help the experience - but the trains certainly did. Far from my previous experience of a boomerang (The Missile at American Adventure that is now situated at Pleasurewood Hills) it was pretty smooth which meant that you felt the forces without being rattled around. Props for the lack of a yank on engaging with the second lift chain.

MP Xpress is a spaghetti bowl coaster, and something I’d been looking forward to riding as a fan of compact coasters. Unfortunately the ride didn’t really live up to my expectations, it was fairly weak force wise and the layout petered out towards the end. The queue on the other hand was pretty cool, bit of a haunted hosue walking maze with a few interesting jump scares.

Drako is the kiddie/family coaster of the park, reasonable addition although lacked any real atmosphere. Not the worst coaster in the park.

El Condor is the original Vekoma SLC coaster, our first iconic ride of the trip. My mother told me if you can’t say anything nice then don’t say anything at all. So that’s El Condor.

Other notable rides include:
Water rides Crazy River (decent log flume) and El Rio Grande (medicore rapids ride),
Tomahawk, an SBF Visa reverse discus / frisbee whose seat arrangement seemed to move when the ride reached the apex of the swing and Excalibur (Large huss top spin whose jets were non operational unfortunately).

Overall I enjoyed my day at Walibi, it’s a decent park with a nice selection of coasters, flat rides and water rides which feels balanced. The main thing that the park needed was better pathing, we often found ourselves having to double back on ourselves to get to a different area, and it’s really disappointing that Goliath feels tucked away at the back of the park when it’s one of the parks best attractions.

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Venray Kirmes

On the evening after Walibi Holland we ventured into Venray where we were staying with Herman as there was a local fair, or Kirmes. The atmosphere was pretty good a big difference from the local fairgrounds in the UK. We got the credit Super Mouse which was your classic slightly violent mouse spinner and rode the Breakdance Power Dancer and drop tower The Tower with its tilting seats. Naturally this were all operated faster than their associated park models and I enjoyed my visit!

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Slagharen

Another early start as we headed up to the North East of the Netherlands for Slagharen for another 2 credits. Slagharen somewhat reminds me of Flamingo Land in the UK - started out as a fairground with rides in before adding some more quality attractions. The difference being Slagharen has bothered to implement a theme (western) which greatly helps the experience even if the operations are arguably as bad.

Gold Rush is the parks main attraction, a replacement for a Schwarzkopf Looping Star (whose plaque is present in the park) and is a Gerstlauer Infinity complete with triple launch and a complete circuit. The ride begins with some nice hangtime from the reverse launch and then some decent airtime over the hill, but the ride somewhat passes quite quickly and in reality doesn’t really offer too much more in my opinion. A fun ride nonetheless, but not something I’ll likely be riding again unless I’m in the area.

Mine Train
was actually the first ride we rode when we got to the park, and stretches out alongside the entrance. It would be interesting to see this replaced in the future with something quite imposing, much like driving alongside X2 at SFMM. The ride itself was good enough - decent family coaster with quite a nice station.

Other rides of note included:
A Schwarzkopf Enterprise which actually reached 90 degrees and felt much faster than the Huss counterparts, A drop tower inventivly called Freefall in which due to technical difficulties we ending up sitting in the seat waiting for longer than the ride experience and queue line combined and a quirky but well done boat ride called Wild West Adventure towards the back of the park.

Slagharen was a nice park, and like a couple of others had a waterpark attached to it which I think if we were interested would make it a full day park. As it happened we had a date with Cranger Kirmes, so left the park a little early having done everything we’d planned to!

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Cranger Kirmes

The journey to Cranger Kirmes was certainly an interesting one, after filling up with Gas just outside of Slagharen Herman’s can ceased to start, a mechanic was called and sometime later we were at a garage getting a new battery fitted - we eventually made it to the fairground to meet back up with Dirk (and Miep!) and after a quick pit stop for Currywurst and a very alcoholic Long Island Ice Tea we hit up the rides!

Alpina Bahn is sort of like Goliath is to Expedition Geforce, same company, looks similar but provides a vastly different ride experience. The positives were still there but the laterals thrown in here there and everywhere were fantastic and a tonne of fun. If it wasn’t for the sheer intensity of Munich Looping this would rank above it - it perhaps is better than a 5 car (opposed to 7 car) Munich Looping.

Hollenblitz is another famous one I’d expect to see on a lot of bucket lists, this mostly indoor spinner is a fantastic visual spectacle with giant waterfalls a wonderful backdrop and a giant sign. It’s hard to leave a real review of this as me and Jammy basically hit a corner perfect mid way through the ride and spent roughly a minute spinning out of control, I don’t remember much other than blurred lights and Dirk exclaiming that we were spinning a lot! Also note this was after having to down a good portion of the long island iced tea, fortunately it sat well enough with me and I survived.

Other attractions that we rode of particular interest were Hexentanz which we think is the last remaining ride of it’s type in the World - which is a shame due to how fun this ride was, and Voodoo Jumper in which I bagged the final ride of the night, which operated past the closing time of the fairground and as such I rode without music nor flashing lights - a different experience to say the least!

Cranger Kirmes is definitely a must visit in my opinion if you find yourself around when it is on. Food, Beer, Coasters, more flat rides than you can shake a stick at - one of my favourite places to be!

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Toverland


The closest park of the trip, Toverland gave us (and more importantly Herman) a nice lie in, we met up with PvM and Hyyyper here (unfortunately we didn’t manage to visit Ward who was working that day - sorry!). The park was rather slow starting - with everything seemingly not running or running limited capacity and led to quite substantial queues by the time we arrived. Me and Jammy also had a bit of chill out in the middle of the day where we experienced burgers with cucumber instead of gerkins… criminal!
I’d visited Toverland last year on my tour of Germany so I actually skipped the Booster Bike in favour of reriding Troy, which is by far my favourite ride in the park, and in the Netherlands. That ride just constantly puts a smile on my face and I enjoy every ride on it, including the cold morning runs.

The big new thing for Toverland was Fenix (accent or not), a B&M wing rider promise with an interesting layout and great visuals. The ride itself has the classic quality of a B&M but actually throws you through the elements more than B&M have done in the recent past. The helix is a good as it looks and the airtime hill, whilst partially ruined by the vests, is still decent. After this though the ride ends rather abruptly, it probably needed another 15 seconds of ride time to really stand out as a fantastic coaster for me. It’s also worth pointing out the ride had terrible technical difficulties during our visit, going down several times - hopefully this is sorted in the near future.

I also got the opportunity to ride Maximus Blitz Bahn this year, the powered bobsled, which was a really fun experience and I’m a little gutted I didn’t make time for it last year - but y’know, Troy at night (amirite Gouldy). Props to the queue line, interesting and made the queue almost fun.

Thankfully the day got better after the initial misfire - the new area is really fantastic (the restaurant was good too!) and Fenix and the boat ride Merlins Quest are great additions to the park. It will be interesting to see where they go from here - be it to expand further or build upon the first area with the booster bike to create a more complete feel. The new entrance certainly now makes you feel like you’re entering a theme park and not some warehouse!

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Nice trip reports! It's a bit of a shame we visited Toverland on one of the busiest days I've ever seen but at least the park is small enough to do everything in there.

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De Waarbeek

De Waarbeek was a credit hit before we hit up Hellendoorn - but the park itself is an adorable little amusement park with a shabby feel to it without feeling run down. We only spent an hour or so here, but we did get to ride a classic Hully Gully, a Schwarzkopf Calypso and a bizzare whip type ride that was a bunch of fun. The main attraction however was:

Rodelbahn
is the *oldest steel coaster in existence - essentially a railway coaster which needs 2 people to ride to make the circuit, but won’t operate in the rain (we’ll forgive these engineering problems due to its age! :P) this was a lovely right turn only trip around the park, with the ride op having to help the brakes to stop our 3 man car stop in time! Worthwhile little detour.

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AvonturenPark Hellendoorn

Having grabbed the credit at De Waarbeek we headed to a pretty quiet Hellendoorn - the forecast was thunderstorms so we were keen to get the credits incase the inclement weather shut down rides! With Toverland fresh in the memory - this park could really do with an entrance overhaul to really welcome you to the park.

Tornado is a old skool Vekoma Tornado (creative) which is a weird one on my bucket list having grown up with The Corkscrew at Alton Towers. This was actually relatively smooth, although the front was absolutely brutal in the entrance to the turn after the loop. The trains are not designed for lateral and the corner is not meant to be banked like that! Overall a fun little model, a good thrill for a small park.

Rioolrat’s direct translation is Sewer Rat which had a great likeness to Raptor Attack (formerly Rat Ride) at Lightwater Valley in terms of its theming. Simple to pull off but effective. The ride was pretty decent, mostly in the dark with a small outside section. Much like Tornado was a fun ride, although nothing special.

Donderstenen was probably my favourite “kiddie credit” because it was absolutely crammed with flora that you could grab on your way around the ride. It was raining pretty hard when I rode this and I was in the Back Seat (best seat) so I got a pretty intense ride I must say.

Other rides of note included:
Montezoomers Revenge - a 16 seat model Top Spin that ran the shortest but most intense cycle of the park models I’ve ridden. So. Many. Flips. Discovery Club - a fun shooter that I won at and Wild Waterval (translation needed…) which was terrained log flume with a decent drop (that seemed to operate during thunderstorms…?)

Avonturen Hellendoorn was a great little regional park in my opinion, had a nie amount of thrills and family attractions to be a worthwhile day out every other year. We braved the rainstorms on this and we were rewarded with them generally getting things open and keeping things open pretty well.

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Preston’s Palace

An indoor funfair based at a hotel. We were given various ticket things we had to exchange for other ticket things to get into the fair to then exchange for more ticket things to exit the place. Bizzare. We rode Energy Storm which was terrible and completely pointless, Octopus which was a Polyp which ran at quarter speed and had no physcial brake to stop the ride (cue slowly rotating to a stop), Disk-o which was… a Disk-o and Extraordinary Bikes which me and Tom failed spectacularly to get to invert - our legs were just too long!

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Efetling

The second and final major park of the trip - Efetling boasts a huge park with a mixture of rollercoasters, dark rides and a giant forest of fairy tales and stories. I think this was probably the most anticipated park on everyone’s list - the only disappointing news was that the Intamin Bob was out closed for maintenance. Hopefully they find a solution for this iconic ride - although it may well end up making room for the next Efetling expansion.

Baron 1898
is the park’s latest creation, a mini dive machine courtesy of B&M. THe ride is fantastically themed, with a small pre show before ascending the lift which is expertly themed as a mine tower. What follows is a series of elements fairly typical of modern B&M, nothing exceptional but nothing you can point at to be wrong or poor. I don’t think this ride is about to blow anyone away - but it is such a photogenic ride!

Joris en de Draak
is what I’d consider a proper family GCI. It throws you about a bit, has some nice drops and hills (nothing too severe) and the entire racing aspect is done so well, with the winners entering the station first to unfurling banners and cheers, the losers to boos. I rode this many a time and enjoyed all the seats - the backseat with a slightly generous lap bar position probably topped it for me though. I’d have loved Wickerman to have ridden similar to how this rode.

Python
was recently retracked from first drop all the way to the final brake run. Whilst there are many opinions on the beauty of the new supports and track style the real problem here was the bizzare “get a ticket before you queue” system - akin to a free fast track. It’s terrible and just means the queue is for the system and not in the place that, you know, is designed for such a thing. Nonetheless with the new Vekoma trains and new trackwork this thing rode incredibly smoothly - but I’ve been told it’s been killed of some of the airtime due to the wonky transitions - I’m not sure I care.

Vliegende Hollander is a dark ride that becomes a rollercoaster, and probably should’ve stuck with the former which was actually really good. Reminded me of Valhalla in a good way.

Vogel Rok is a classy Vekoma Family coaster that basically shows Phantasialand how to do a dark family coaster - fantastic fun and great throughput.

Symbolica
was the dark horse of the entire trip for me. I was absolutely enchanted and I find dark rides to be at best a time filler. From the brilliantly devised pre show to the different paths you could take, a diverse tour around the palace was a bunch of fun and I gladly rerode this straight after the first time!

Other rides of note included:
Droomvlucht - an interesting inverted transportation ride with a nice finale, Piraña - a rapids ride with incredibly repetative music and tricky water cannons, Carnival Festival - a particularly socially uncomfortable dark ride, Fata Morgana - an interesting boat ride that made more sense having had the story explained to us and finally Pagode - a beautiful (especially at night) observation tower that is emphasises Efteling as a place.

I think Efteling was probably my favourite place of the entire trip, it had great rides and a charm that reminded me of Europa. It’s only major problem is the endless switchbacks and cattlepen queues that made up the vast majority of rides. Thankfully on the newer iterations this appeared to be changing. This is a must visit park if you find yourself in the Netherlands however
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Drievliet

Next up a trip to Drievliet - a real out of the way park nestled within an industrial park and with no real room for expansion the park is basically one long rectangle. The park was surprisingly nice and whilst many rides seem to break down, there was a mechanic who’d turn up, WD40 the bits that should be moving and the ride opened back up shortly after.

Formule X was the original X-Car, and really it’s a shame more weren’t made based on this one. Fitting perfectly with the family orientated nature of the park it had a solid launch and nice hangtime on the first element. A short pop of airtime on the next hill then a particulary forgetful return to the station.

Dynamite Express was a solid Mack mine train, picking up some nice speed towards the end of the ride as these tend to, however slowed down way too early on the final lap leading to unprecedented squishing of the person sat on the inside of the curve.

The other Maurer - a wild mouse called Kopermijn, which was fairly typical, good fun but nothing surprising.

Twistrix was a bit like Hollenblitz but without the spinning, themeing or layout. SO actually it was just a rubbish family coaster.


Other notable rides included:
A small Huss Breakdace - Draaikolk which span backwards as well forwards (was pretty useless), the world’s worst haunted house and the most well hidden Enterprise Kwal which we walked straight passed without realising it was there until later in the day!

Drievliet was kinda underated for me, don’t get me wrong, it’s not a fantastic must visit park, but they’re doing a pretty good job with what they have - and I hope they continue to find success moving forward!

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Dippiedoe

Not sure how much words can dignify going to this park for the singular credit Tyfoon. Think we spent as much on entry as I did riding Olympia Looping last year at Winter Wonderland - I know where I’d spend my £8 given the choice.

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Thank you for all of these TRs and the photos, it has been an interesting read. I'm still super curious about that Vekoma ride's retracking, and it's always funny to me when GCI's are randomly family rides and randomly not depending on who is riding them lol.
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Joris is definitely a family coaster. The whole first airtime hill is a weird way of avoiding any sustained airtime and there's loads of weird transitions that aren't designed to be particularly forceful - just interesting. Plus everything in Efteling is tempered in terms of intensity because it's a family park.

Python's retracking echos this sentiment - they basically removed the intensity the ride had by smoothing out the trackwork and getting rid of the transitions that had weird forces.

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Duinrell

The final park of our grand tour of the Netherlands was just down the road from Drievliet - and probably the place we saw the most English people. The park is situated on the West side of the country so perhaps it’s easy for English holiday makers to get to - I’m not sure!

Falcon is the parks resident Eurofighter 320 model. The ride is nicely nestled in the woods and has some nice theming elements to make it feel a bit more exciting but in reality beyond the classic Eurofighter first drop these models don’t have a huge amount of reridability.

Dragonfly
was probably the best family coaster on the entire trip - a Gerstlauer that was fast, smooth and had lots of little burst of airtime and lats. Really cool ride - there should be more of these in the world!

Kikkerachtbaan
was a Tivoli Large - like with Falcon this benefitted from the trees and also with the interaction with Dragonfly. I nice coaster which fitted well with the feel of the park.

Other Notable rides inculded:
Madmill - a HUSS frisbee which was pretty fun, Rodelbahn - the world’s most disappointing bobsled coaster that somehow broke down and Wild Wings - a Gerstlauer sky fly (which I love).

We didn’t ride the bizzare shoot the chutes ride with an enclosed car as it was quite a long queue and we ran a little low on time as we had to catch the plane that day. Duinrell was a nice park though, certainly one I’d like to stop off at again sometime, as long as operations were better. Burbs managed to have his Churros he’d paid for given to someone else.
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Favourite 5 Rides

Troy
Goliath
Alpina Bahn
Fenix
Symbolica

Overall 5 Rides

Helix
Taron
Troy
Shambhala
Nemesis

Post September 14th, 2018, 1:15 pm
herman116 User avatar
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Nice tripreports!

Too bad the last half of the week it was really busy in the parks because the weather wasn't hot as hell anymore.... I think some of the parks didn't know what to do with the amount of people they got. ;)

Post September 19th, 2018, 11:26 am

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Great TR! Wish I could have made it out to Europe again this year. I need some more Efteling!


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