Day 4 – Efteling
After some more needed sleep in the Eindhoven hotel, we got up early to make our way to Efteling for exclusive ERT on Baron and Joris!
Baron was great and to me, felt like a smaller but longer Oblivion. It was only my 2nd dive machine so was always going to get compared! Was great fun though with some fantastic theming, even if I wasn’t quite sure what was supposed to be going on (a theme that continues with virtually all dark rides today!) (7/10)
Joris was also great. Managed to get a back row ride on both sides during the ERT and the water effect took me by surprise! The racing element on these coasters are always fun, especially with a large group like CF when split across both trains. Not quite as good as Troy though. (7/10)
During some faff waiting for the park to officially open after the ERT, we headed over to Joris’s dragon for photos.
Once the park opened properly, we headed over to Vliegende Hollander. Had heard mixed things about this ride and was thinking to myself as to why KumbaK have only ever built 1 coaster but went into this with an open mind. The theming inside was fantastic and the outdoor section is very photogenic. As for the actual ride, the dark section is brilliant but the actual coaster section was severely lacking and didn’t really do anything. As I said at the time, great dark ride, ok coaster (5/10)
Next up was the old Vekoma looper, Python. Didn’t do much but wasn’t as rough as I was expecting. While they’re never anything special, I do have a slight soft spot for this type of coaster, the generic looper that doesn’t do much without gimmicks. This may be caused by the overall gimmickyness of UK coasters though, leaving me wanting something normal. (6/10)
The long walk to Vogel Rok was made next. Was another great ride and the theming inside definitely helped it. The onboard music was very cleverly integrated with the station music so I didn’t notice the transition! Ride itself fairly average though. (5/10)
Next up was Carnival Festival with the annoyingly catchy music. Fun though and much longer than expected.
Drromvlucht was next and had one of the longest queues of the day. Free wifi helped though and I was actually able to use my phone! (and catch up with the Pokemon Go bandwagon.). Ride itself though was great, fantastically themed throughout even if I wasn’t sure of the storyline!
Lunch happened and I joined the group doing Raveleijn who decided to run halfway across the huge park for food! Surely, anywhere nearby would have been easier? Food was good though and quite like the self service system (even if I did cause faff by not having the change for it and the change machine not accepting my €20 note!).
After the rushed lunch, we went to watch Raveleijn. I had heard a lot of good things about this show so was expecting great things. The theming on the set used was fantastic but through not understanding dutch, I wasn’t quite sure of the storyline. Did love the big dragon setpiece used though!
After lunch, it was time for the park’s madhouse, Villa Volta. Again, since I don’t speak dutch, I wasn’t too sure of the storyline but was still able to enjoy the ride. Again the theming on it is incredible. I find all madhouses pretty samey so ride itself was nothing special.
Afterwards, we made our way to the park’s bobsleigh coaster, Bob. This was my first time on an Intamin bobsleigh so was interested in how the ride compared to the Mack counterpoint. Ride itself was fun but felt very stop-start due to all the MCBRs. Certainly banks a lot more than Mack bobsleighs though. (7/10)
Pirana, the parks rapids, were done next. Exceedingly average but definitely better than Rumba Rapids at Thorpe. The boat overtaking going on was also fun.
Fata Morgana was next, another indoor dark ride that I wasn’t too sure of the storyline for. Again, the theming was incredible throughout, cannot fault the theming at this park.
Afterwards, a quick look at the park’s model railway, Diorama was done. As with most model railways, it was very well made with a lot to look at. I especially like the night-time section but it would be best enjoyed if there was more time.
Next up was Spookslot! Went into this expecting a ghost train of sorts, the animatronic show was definitely unexpected! Was good though and hard to keep an eye on everything at once!
Afterwards, a quick walk past the building site of Symbolica was made and the building looks fantastic! The amount of detail on the outside can only bode well for the theming on the inside!
(even the back of the building is fantastic! Seemingly didn’t take any photos of the front)
Now for possibly the most famous part of the park and the reason the theme park is here, the fairytale forest! This was fantastic but was completely unaware of how long it all was! Was in there for what must have been at least 1 and a half hours! Would like to do it again but would most likely get a 2 day ticket for the park and do this the morning of the 2nd day to ensure I enjoy it fully without rushing to get everything done. This would also give time to enjoy the rest of the park more.
The fairytale forest took up the rest of my time in the park before having to get to the airport for my flight home. Had just enough time to catch the end of Aquanura and have a browse of the shop.
Overall: Great park but as I mentioned above, I feel it requires 2 days to enjoy it fully (1 day park, 1 day fairytale forest + rerides). Would love to go again and Symbolica just makes it this prospect even more tempting!
After hitting bad traffic on way to airport causing me to panic about my flight, I managed to catch the flight after running across Schiphol! Big thanks to Sue there for driving as quick as the law allowed and re-assuring me I’d get home somehow!
As a bonus, 2 rows in front of me on the plane were Ian and Jordan Wood lookalikes! (not great photo, looked better in real life). Ended up following them through Bristol Airport as well!
Trip Overall: Fantastic trip, so happy I filled that last minute place that opened up on a spur-of-the-moment decision. Big thanks to everyone who drove for driving, Ian for organising, and everyone for being such great company!