The Ram-a-Lama Coaster


The last day of my rollercoaster trip through France was to start with a bang. The roller coaster 1066 – not to be confused with the refreshingly charming Lager Kronenbourg 1664 – caught my attention a long time ago, when I saw the first pictures completely by chance on the roller coaster database Rcdb. It was clear, I would have to visit this place sometime. In the meantime, one or the other novelty was added in Festyland, but I didn’t know much about the amusement park, which was founded in 1989, until my visit.

On the outskirts of the small town of Carpiquet near Caen is the access road to Festyland. You can park your car in the car park directly next to the national road 814; the park itself is on the other side of this road and can be reached via a wide tunnel, which however has a simple corrugated iron look instead of the discotheque of Gardaland. The entrance area itself is inviting and immediately transports you back to the time of the Belle Époque. After a pleasant chat with the cashiers and equipped with the latest edition of the Festy Telegraph – the park’s rather elaborate guide to the amusement park – it was time to go exploring.

National 13 and La Tour d’Esnambuc

Past numerous children’s rides – including the National 13, which is unfortunately not named after the Périphérique of Caen, but after the road that leads to it – and the park’s cafeteria, you will immediately head for the park’s larger rides. The first stop is the small family free-fall tower La Tour d’Esnambuc, built by Zamperla. The ride on the Sky Tower offers a great view and numerous mouth changing hops, which should encourage especially younger park guests to ride it continuously.

Drakkar Express

I personally prefer to get my hands on a Soquet rollercoaster. It’s a good thing that the Drakkar Express has been smiling at us for quite some time now. The entrance of the ride is located in the elaborately designed Viking theme area, home of the park mascot and figurehead of the theme park. For this we turn left from the main path at the Chevauchée de Guillaume horse riding track.

The ride on Festyland’s oldest roller coaster begins with a left turn, after which the lift hill is reached after a straight stretch of track. Following the gradient of the terrain, the ride goes straight up. Here we enjoy the view of the surrounding area a little before we plunge into the valley. With momentum we now pass through a valley parallel to the main path, which has been beautifully set in scene with a small waterfall and a pond. Following the bend to the left, we climb a hill and plunge down again rapidly towards the ground. In Close Call with the vegetation on the left side we now pass through another hollow, where we also change direction for the first time. In a 270° helix adapted to the terrain, we gain some altitude, whereupon we cross the just completed route and immediately throw ourselves on the ground in a left turn. Now we race over a small hill at the back of the station, followed by the final helix in a shallow curve leading up and down. After a short climb the station is reached and the train is braked. A second round follows.

The Drakkar Express is a very nice children’s roller coaster of French design, but a little tamer compared to other rides of the manufacturer. The ride is great and can convince by its adaptation to the existing terrain. Unfortunately, the exit of the ride leads back to the main Festyland track, so that you have to walk around the final helix of the ride for possible repeat rides.


The next attraction on our circuit is the Air Race Miolnyr. This rollover ride made of 30t steel offers an exciting, slightly monotonous and absolutely dizzying ride with rollovers in a continuous loop. A great deal, for which the investment of one million Euro was absolutely worthwhile.

Niorty and Troll Roll

Next door, the children’s area of Festyland captivates in all its splendour. In addition to a small teacup carousel and a jump around featuring a frog design, this area is particularly impressive with its covered ball pool and the two novelties for this season. With the Rockin’Tug Niorty and the Troll Roll children’s railway, a really beautiful rides symbiosis has been created, which can rarely be found in theme parks. A really nice area, which will certainly appeal to the little ones.

Pirat’Ak, Cap’tain Roc and Le Grand Tournoi

Meanwhile, we return to the main trail, where we continue down the hill. Here you will find the Pirat’Ak rubber dinghy slide and the Cap’tain Roc boat swing, two classics that no French amusement park can do without. A little wilder, however, is the Disk’O Le Grand Tournoi. Pressure-packed and extremely fast, the disc takes you over the U-shaped track.


One level further up we meet more rides from Italian production. Apart from the chain plane Tourny and the Valhalla mountain and valley railway, the Eretic swing is particularly eye-catching. Typical for Zamperla, it offers a swinging ride with all kinds of airtime moments. Unfortunately, the Discovery type ride turns monotonously in one direction, which makes the ride not very diversified, although we are not on a HUSS swing. A pity!


So for the right shoot we have to go to another ride. Luckily there is a hydro lift from Zamperla in Festyland. Those who know these rides know what to expect here – everyone else will be absolutely surprised by the wild slide of this rafting ride: There are simply no comparable installations that get the hang of it.

The journey on Kaskade begins comparatively harmlessly. After a short bend to the right, the vertical lift of the ride awaits you, which takes you up quickly. Once there, the lift cage tilts forward and we immediately roll onto the water slide. With momentum we are now thrown into the first helix, whereupon we start to rotate constantly in circles. After a wild S-curve manoeuvre along the tower, we spin around in circles at an abnormally high speed, which makes the subsequent splashdown look like a game of Russian Roulette: you never know in advance who might be caught. A fun for the whole family! Now the quieter part of the trip follows, where numerous elements of a classic rapid river await us. In contrast to the prototype from the Italian Leolandia, the return to the station is a little more compact. You pass through a course full of hairpin bends and several zigzag straights before you are allowed to get off at the station, if you want to. Repeat rides are guaranteed.


Let’s get on to the roller coaster 1066, because the short train with the ram head is a truly remarkable ride. Built directly at the slope, this coaster uses it absolutely skilfully for its wild ride. Furthermore, the ride looks simply great due to the half-sided medieval scenery at the lift of it.

The journey begins with a right-hand bend leading into a tunnel. The ride begins with a right turn into a tunnel and is immediately followed by the ride’s lift, which takes us up quickly. Once at the top, we immediately descend the 17m high descent. On a steady slope we now race through the valley in a wide right turn. With momentum we then climb a hill, where a long downward helix awaits us. With full power we go through the following valley before we shoot up another hill. With a little bit of airtime we start the next shot. In a steep turn we make the last manoeuvre of the ride and rush through the deepest part of the ride. With a lot of verve we climb up the slope to the plateau, whereupon the braking distance of the ride already awaits us. Shortly afterwards we reach the exit position of the ride.

1066 is a very short roller coaster, but one with a very grand ride. The track is crossed with a lot of pressure and vigour. The ride characteristics are excellent. Here I would have liked to get on more often. Unfortunately, at some point the ride went into the lunch break and I had another destination on my list.

Pictures Festyland

Conclusion Festyland

Festyland is an extremely beautiful and harmonious amusement park, which looks a bit like a Zamperla Wunderland due to its many rides made in Italy; but as is well known, this is not a bad choice. Coupled with some rides from Soquet, it is an excellent family amusement park that can entertain you for several hours.

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A park full of bees

Parc du Bocasse

The last stop on my journey through France lies directly on the route to the ferry port of Dieppe and thus directly on my way back to England. In the small village Le Bocasse you will find the amusement park Parc du Bocasse. As so often in France, the amusement park has developed from a small restaurant. As early as 1967 the gastronome Jacques Chabaille put up some playground equipment, which was then supported by some bigger rides and the park’s first roller coaster in the 80s. When Max Chabaille took over the amusement park, not only the park grew, but also the target group of the park. In 2015, the park expanded its grounds, so that a new themed area including an entrance area could be created.

And through the elegant wooden gate we enter the amusement park. Right at the beginning of our tour of the Parc du Bocasse, we immediately notice the new orientation of the park, which is really worth seeing. Instead of alot of smaller additions, the park went bigger and more substantial. Not only do the rides here look excellent, they are also much larger than in the rest of the park.


The first one is the log flume Splash-o-Saure by the French manufacturer Soquet, which is more reminiscent of the ride Mami Wata from the Austrian amusement park Fantasiana Erlebnispark Strasswalchen and could therefore have come straight from Hafema.

After leaving the station, you quickly reach the first lift, which takes you up a few metres. When you arrive at the top you are turned around on a turntable in the direction of the descent, but you leave it backwards. Well moistened, you now bob along the canal for a few bends until you reach the central tower of the ride. In here you will find the vertical lift of the ride, which will take you up to the starting point of the big drop. Without any great skirmishes you go down immediately, whereupon a quite decent shower is waiting for you. After another bend you reach the station of the ride again. With a bit of bad luck you can get drenched by another boat – very similar to the old log flume Wildwasserbahn II of Heide Park. You leave the ride via a footbridge past the run-out section.

The Splash-o-Saure is a really good log flume. It is really nice to see more and more new rides from Soquet in the recent years. But before I get all sentimental, let’s take a look at an older ride from the same manufacturer, which is located on the other side of the park, which is divided by a road.

Train de la Mine

The Parc du Bocasse also has a classic Train de la Mine. The variant here, however, has a very remarkable helix right at the start of the ride, which makes the ride stand out a bit. The course is then skilfully and fluently initiated by a beautiful steep curve. On the following hill we change the direction of the ride for a short while, whereupon we enter another downhill helix. After two full turns we leave this helix again and immediately dedicate ourselves to a little bunny hop. After a tight turn below the first helix we immediately approach the terrain and follow the course of a small hollow. After a straight line and a left bend we reach the final curve of the ride, whereupon we immediately find ourselves in the station of the roller coaster.

The Train de la Mine is a very nice family roller coaster, but it lacks the more daring moments of other Soquet roller coasters. Nevertheless, the ride is a lot of fun and has an optical highlight and a really nice start due to its high-mounted helix.

Electro Spin and Flash Tower

As the French round boat slide rafting Colorad’Eau next door was unfortunately not in operation at the time of the visit, we will now turn our attention to the rides next to it. They are all made in Italy, and this also applies to almost the entire area of the park. The more exciting rides Electro Spin and Flash Tower are from Zamperla, other rides are mostly from SBF Visa.

Speedy Gonzales

In fact, the Parc du Bocasse offers an exceptionally large collection of smaller children’s rides. These are now gradually being integrated into the park’s theme-based activities, and some of them are certainly worth seeing. The small roller coaster Speedy Gonzales, which has a very compact layout in the shape of an eight, is still completely without design.

Pirate’s Plunder

In the back corner of the Parc du Bocasse amusement park, we then come across other fairly large rides, such as a Rockin’ Tug and a boat swing. There is also a simulator, as well as an interactive theatre by Alterface. Instead of the well-known western shooting, we go on a treasure hunt with a Jack Sparrow blend and get rid of skeletons. Terrific fun!


But the biggest surprise of the amusement park awaits us in a small hall marked Apiland. What looks like a museum about bees from the outside, turns out to be a lovely dark ride inside, which just doesn’t want to end. The ride is simply outstanding for a theme park of this size.

Jurassic Twister

On the way to the exit we take the roller coaster Jurassic Twister with us, which rides like any other Zamperla spinning coaster. Shortly afterwards I’m sitting in my car again and leave the Parc du Bocasse in a very good mood. French family parks simply have what it takes 😉.

Pictures Parc du Bocasse

Conclusion Tron-Tron-Trône

A little later I am already on the ferry to England, whereupon my journey through France comes to an end. It was nice; but it was not cheap either. However, the French amusement park landscape is definitely always worth a visit. With a few exceptions, the parks are all great, the public is usually very pleasant and the rest of the country is also very relaxed; you just shouldn’t be so fooled by French people abroad. In any case, come and visit them, it’s worth it.

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