Batavia is burning – and you want to go there?


Well, who would have thought that Batavia would actually burn down one day. Two years after the disaster at Europa Park, we were determined not to miss the new edition of the Piraten in Batavia dark ride, as well as some of the other novelties of the last three years.

The Novelties of Europa Park


The Voletarium in the entrance area of the amusement park marks the beginning of our little round-up. The ride is the first project under the guise of the Adventure Club of Europe, a fictitious adventurer’s club that links the innovations of the last few years a little bit and is therefore also supposed to function as a trademark of Europa Park. As with the new water park Rulantica, this is taken ad absurdum by various novels, making it difficult to follow the plot once again.

Leaving it at the essentials, however, the Voletarium is a so-called Flying Theatre by the company Brogent Technologies. The flight simulator offers a breathtaking, but very family-friendly, flight through Europe. However, not every transition between the individual scenes is successful, nor logically implemented, so that the film comes across as a little weak in comparison to the really well-done film of Fuji Airlines in Japan’s Fuji-Q Highland or that of Sky Voyager in Australia’s Dreamworld.

Nevertheless, the Voletarium’s location enhances the front section of the park. The ride is coherent overall and is ideal as a ride for in-between.

Jim Knopf – Reise durch Lummerland

It’s the same with Jim Knopf – Reise durch Lummerland. In the best Europa Park style, they did not miss the opportunity to integrate another licence into the park – this time one that is mainly known in German-speaking countries. The children’s locomotive Old’99, which previously had a circus theme, was redesigned for this purpose. It’s old decoration found a new home in a small pavilion of the neighbouring marionette boat ride. Accordingly, you now travel with Emma the locomotive through Lummerland, well-known from the book by Michael Ende, which is a really great experience, especially for smaller children.

Snorri Touren

It’s a similar story with the immensely popular dark ride Snorri Touren, which moved into the basement of the Scandinavian themed area when it was rebuilt. On this tour, Snorri – the mascot of the Rulantica water park – leads us through the legendary water world outside the gates of Rust. Thanks to the vivid design and the largely successful media integration, the ride does a lot of things right – only the short slide sequence, in which the car drives onto a moving platform, is reminiscent of early Playstation 2 titles due to its spongy graphics, and thus dulls the actually coherent overall impression immensely.

Madame Freudenreich

Something you can somehow forgive the cute Snorri for, you can’t forgive Madame Freudenreich for the life of her – after all, the Universum der Energie used to be the most coherent dark ride in the entire theme park. Now the ride is no longer even a shadow of its former self, but an attraction you should at best stay away from. Smaller children might still enjoy the Alsatian gugelhupf dinosaur mash, but I can’t think of anyone else who could halfway tolerate this baloney.

Eurosat CanCan Coaster

It’s a good thing that the Green Fairy has moved in directly above it. Since its redesign, the indoor roller coaster Eurosat CanCan Coaster has taken us on a sensory intoxication. Driven by absinthe and the familiar sounds of In A Second Orbit, we climb up the drum lift in familiar fashion before the Galop Infernal kicks in and we basically encounter a brand new roller coaster.

Like in a CanCan, we swing through the curves. Past large black-light backdrops, we race faster and faster through the dome and are even lifted out of our seats a little in between. The fact that the experience is absolutely smooth makes the ride all the better.

Eurosat has always been a good indoor roller coaster. A bit rough on the ride, but quite entertaining. Eurosat CanCan Coaster on the other side is one of the roller coasters of Europe. Perfectly balanced, atmospheric and with a great show value. Everything is just perfect on this ride.

Eurosat Coastiality

But that really only applies to the CanCan Coaster. There is also Eurosat Coastiality. While one side has been able to soar to new heights thanks to its collaboration with the Moulin Rouge Variety Theatre, the other side is betting on a VR experience based on Luc Besson’s Valerian – The City of a Thousand Planets.

In principle, I find VR roller coasters fun and Europa Park has already shown on the Alpenexpress Enzian what you can squeeze out of a roller coaster. Despite the outdated graphics, the first film was a revelation beyond compare. After that, many parks joined the VR trend and there seemed to be no stopping them. Fortunately, as quickly as the trend came, it disappeared again, so it’s a little surprising that Europa Park is the only park in the world that continues to promote the technology. Thanks to the resort’s stand-alone attraction Yullbe, however, this is actively no longer happening in the parks.

Eurosat Coastiality is, at least in theory, an extremely passable upcharge attraction that barely if at all affects the capacity of the Eurosat CanCan Coaster thanks to a separate station, which eliminates one of the main points of criticism of VR roller coasters. However, the ride is strenuous and not very impressive thanks to the outdated graphics. The show value of the roller coaster is completely lost, which is why there is no incentive for a repeat ride.

Piraten in Batavia

Meanwhile, the dark ride Piraten in Batavia, which has undergone a complete makeover thanks to the new construction, offers plenty of reasons to go on a ride. What was previously a long-winded rip-off version of Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean is now much more independent thanks to a consistent storyline around the adventurer Bartholomeus van Robbemond and his otter Jopie. The Piraten in Batavia ride is thoroughly entertaining and offers an overall high show value, which is why it should by no means be missed.

Pictures Europa Park

Closing Words

As you can see, Europa Park has been in quite a redesign frenzy in recent years. Some of the projects were long overdue and some of the park’s attractions would actually still like to see such changes. Not every upgrade is a success and not every licence is a plus for the park, but in general the Mack family’s drive is positive. They are trying to show a world-class amusement park to an ever-growing number of visitors, but unfortunately they often forget that great attractions do not need additional media integration.


What is your opinion about Eurosat CanCan Coaster, Piraten in Batavia and the other Novelties? Just write them in the comment field below the report or in our social media channels:



The Steel Eel

History of SeaWorld San Antonio

What hasn’t one already heard about SeaWorld Parks. The park in Orlando has been one of the most famous amusement parks in the world since the 1970s, and the park in San Diego, California, has been offering a successful – albeit still rather critical – mixture of animal and amusement park since 1964. The most exotic park in 1970 was the one in Ohio, which, in agreement with the nearby amusement park Geauga Lake, only featured marine animal shows. Shortly before the takeover by Anheuser-Busch, the fourth and last SeaWorld Park in San Antonio followed in 1988.

First of all, it is important to note that only people who come to the park especially for the marine animals will be satisfied. Thanks to the current expansion offensive on the part of the amusement park, this may change at some point, but without the shows, SeaWorld San Antonio undoubtedly offers far too little for the extremely high admission price.

Tour of the park

Super Grovers Box Car Derby

Now that that has been cleared up let’s start our tour through the theme park. Right at the beginning we come across the large children’s area Sesame Street Bay of Play. Here you’ll find an oversized playground and a handful of selected children’s rides, including the Super Grovers Box Car Derby roller coaster. Known as the Shamu Express until 2018, it featured an orca-shaped train. After the recent rebranding, Grover guides us in his soapboxes through the oval-shaped layout by the manufacturer Zierer.

Steel Eel

Since some areas of the park were closed for annual ticket holders, I was forced to head for the park’s biggest roller coaster, the Steel Eel.

This roller coaster from Morgan has been in the park since 1999 and features the typical out & back layout of the manufacturer. The Steel Eel is the smallest representative of its kind – which fortunately doesn’t mean anything, because the steel eel knows how to entertain its riders very well.

After a short dip out of the station, the train immediately enters a curve, which releases the train into the lift. Arriving at a starting height of 46m, you immediately rush down the increasingly steep first shot. With a speed of65 mph and a good pinch of positive G-forces, the train goes straight through the valley. On the following camelback hills we are lifted out of our seats twice in the most beautiful floating airtime manner, before we head for another valley close to the ground. Immediately afterwards we are already approaching the intermediate brake. With noticeably reduced speed we turn into a steep turn, which serves as a prelude for the brilliant bunnyhop finale. The speed rush takes us over several smaller and smaller hills, which can tear you out of your seat. Last but not least we cross a supply track in a wide S-curve before we reach the braking track of the layout.

The Steel Eel is a great roller coaster with a good amount of floating airtime, which probably gets even more when the coaster is run in and under the (more normal) Texan temperatures. At least I had a lot of fun on this ride, but unfortunately the dispatch was very slow, because first the seatbelt and then the bar are checked, which means you only saw the train rolling over the track every 5-10 minutes.

Wave Breaker – The Rescue Coaster

At the nearby Wave Breaker, fortunately, things looked a bit different and after a short wait, it was possible to go on a rescue mission sitting in the first row. After a short turn you get your mission briefing in a hangar, before you accelerate via a friction wheel launch. Immediately you go up a hill in a slight turn, which you leave in a wide steep turn. After two ground-near swings, you’ll make a right turn, followed by some ground-near maneuvers. A steep left turn leads us to the second launch section, which presses you into the backrest as usual. This is also followed by a high hill, which you leave in a steep left turn. Once again on the ground, we whizz across the lake in slight swings before we make our way back after a left turn. This takes us over a multitude of very flat hills and pressure-laden passages before we even reach the braking section of the layout.

Wave Breaker: The Rescue Coaster is a very cool roller coaster with a beautiful pacing and a good flow. It is a lot of fun to ride over the high hills and ground level passages. Of course the ride is not comparable to Djurs Sommerland’s Juvelen or Le Pal’s Yukon Quad, but this roller coaster is an excellent and welcome addition to the otherwise rather meager portfolio of the amusement park.

Great White

A good nine years after the amusement park opened its doors for the first time, SeaWorld San Antonio presented its first roller coaster to visitors. The Great White is the seventh delivery of the popular Batman layout from the manufacturer B&M and at that time the only ride of its kind in Texas. Compared to the rides at Six Flags Fiesta Texas and Six Flags Over Texas, the Great White is the one where the park took the most effort and adapted the terrain to the ride’s layout. The result is a wonderful ride, which even after more than 20 years of operation is largely without any parallel. The ride through the two loops, the Zero-G Roll and the two corkscrews is simply timeless and mercilessly intense.

Rio Loco

An equally timeless classic are rapid rides. The ride through the rapids is always a refreshing experience, especially since there is also a waterfall here that catches everyone in the boat. The Rio Loco was my first rafting ride through a waterfall and is therefore especially memorable. As well as the Arab family, who entered here with a big suitcase. I have seen a lot of things in amusement parks, and it remains a mystery to me that the employees let them ride.

Sea Swinger and Riptide Rescue

This year, a new area is being created with Turtle Reef, where the rescue of sea turtles will probably be the theme. However, the aquarium was still under construction. The two associated rides Sea Swinger and Riptide Rescue could already be tested. These are a Zamperla Discovery and a HUSS Airboat.

Journey to Atlantis

The last attraction on our trail along the central lake is the Mack Rides SuperSplash Journey to Atlantis. The water roller coaster is similar to the Atlantika SuperSplash from Europa Park, but does without the small hill during the final descent, making the ride more like a classic Shoot the Chute. The wetness level of the ride is however very manageable.

In the end, all that remains is the animal shows and show feeding. Since the combined entrance ticket with the water park Aquatica San Antonio was a little bit cheaper online than the regular entrance ticket, I was drawn to the neighboring water park until the show One Ocean.

One Ocean

Just in time for One Ocean I got myself a tasty beer at the Food & Wine Festival and then watched the orca show. Generally I’m glad to have seen a whale up close, but the show itself was a waste of time and largely consists of soaking the visitors in the front rows with salt water. This was well received, after all it has been part of the concept since the 70s, but honestly, you don’t have to see the show.

Pictures SeaWorld San Antonio

Conclusion SeaWorld San Antonio

SeaWorld San Antonio is a huge theme park, but it lacks attractions. Fortunately, the original concept has been heavily criticized nowadays, forcing the park to expand massively in order to survive at all. The animal shows will give way to another range of attractions over time, so you can look forward to the future of the amusement park with great anticipation.

What is your opinion about the marine animal park SeaWorld San Antonio?  Just write it in the comment field below the report or visit our social media channels:


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A positive surprise at Europa Park

Europa Park

As expected, Europa Park was a bit fuller on this holiday. Stupidly enough, this already turned out at the cash desks, so that I could not enter the park before 10 o’clock. After I had overcome the first hurdle in the middle of the path of standing French people the way to the big roller coaster novelty of the year Wodan – Timbur Coaster could be taken.

Past the topic areas Switzerland and England I went immediately to Russia and Luxembourg, where besides the advantageous monorail, at least this one has a station in the theme area Iceland, the revolving theatre show Historama, the small dark ride Schlittenfahrt Schneeflöckchen, as well as the revolving gondola roller coaster Euromir are located.


The Historama is actually a great attraction, after all, you can learn a lot about the founding family Mack and their history. But the first room is simply – like many things at Europa Park – much too cluttered. The last room, however, is very naked and shows the self-congratulation of the family. Of course, you can be proud of your own lobbying, but it leaves a very bland aftertaste, which is why you should avoid this attraction at all costs.

Schlittenfahrt Schneeflöckchen

The Schlittenfahrt Schneeflöckchen, on the other hand, is an absolute must. Although Bench – The Ride is actually very well visible, it is unfortunately a bit lost in the Russian themed area. The ride itself is one of the best dark rides in the park, despite its inconspicuous appearance, and should therefore be tested by every visitor. The soundtrack is suitable for the ear and effectively underlines the cheerful atmosphere of the ride.


A similar catchy tune can be found on the prototype of Mack’s spinning coaster, the Euro-Mir roller coaster. This roller coaster is a remarkable ride, because thanks to a drum lift and some blocks the capacity is high enough to keep the queue constantly moving, at least it does, if there aren’t any problems in the meantime. The ride is powerful and if you are lucky enough to ride the second part backwards, it’s really awesome. The curves tapering steadily towards the end form a racy finale, which you can unfortunately only find very rarely.

Whale Adventures

With the monorail arrived in Iceland you can see one of the biggest misdeeds of the park. How one can get the idea to remove the outer cannons of the interactive water ride Whale Adventures remains one of the biggest mysteries of all; after all, as a passenger one wants to get wet. The popularity of the attraction has at least suffered a big slump, after all, the ride is now only interesting for the smallest park guests.

Wodan – Timbur Coaster

In the background you can see a coaster that unfortunately hasn’t been awarded the title again until this year, because actually there should have been a wooden coaster at Europa Park long ago. Wodan – Timbur Coaster is the name of this gem from GCI, whereby the subtitle Timbur Coaster is of course absolute nonsense. Despite the fact that I didn’t really have any expectations of Wodan, I was positively surprised by the ride.

Wodan is, in contrast to most other GCI tracks, not a real Twister, but a mixture of Out & Back Coaster (straight course with several hills) and Twister (curves, baby!) and thus a mixture that doesn’t appeal to everyone and will disappoint especially the Twister fan fraction. Fans of the neat Out & Back layout will definitely find their fun on Wodan, though.

Walking through the queue of the wooden roller coaster Wodan you will be surprised at first how professionally everything has been laid out, after all you are not standing on uneven terrain somewhere between the wooden roller coasters like at Eftelings Joris en de Draak, but on a well constructed wooden path, pass some beautiful caves dedicated to various themes of Nordic mythology and march below the big helix at the beginning of the ride. Quite strange is the circumstance that nothing has been scribbled yet.

After finally being divided into the rows, the trip on Wodan can already start, but the trip to the lift alone is a real highlight. After climbing it, after an unexpectedly high drop, the ride continues with full force into the first curve only to be released quite steeply into the actual first drop. The following curves, tunnels, hills and valleys on Wodan are a dream, but the driving fun is interrupted by a rather unsuccessful part of the layout, only to be released into the last curve combinations. The whole thing is laid down on Wodan with a brute force I didn’t expect in Europa Park anymore, the constant high speed does its best.

Wodan is not a perfect wooden roller coaster, but it is one of the better ones I have come across from time to time. It beats the often highly praised twister Troy in his sleep, but can’t hold a candle to Joris en de Draak Water. Also in national comparison Wodan lags behind the colossus of the Lüneburger Heide, but in southern Germany it is the first choice, which is also a rather easy game with its one competitor.

Blue Fire Megacoaster

Since I criticized the neighboring Blue Fire Megacoaster three years ago too deeply, another ride had to be dared to update this criticism if necessary. As always, pure chance wanted me to take a seat in the second row and thus find an optimal basis for comparison, and to my surprise a lot has happened.

The dark ride part is still absolutely nonsense, after all there is now an animatronics that tells you that something is going wrong. The launch has increased in intensity and is now similar to the launch of a Vekoma Launched Coaster and not the Dutch company’s Motocoaster. Therefore the following part is not driven through so slowly anymore and you can finally guess that the looping is a looping. The part after the block brake is still not very exhilarating. The corkscrews are still going too fast, at least hangtime would be an advantage here, the curves that lead into the still failed roll are somehow stupid and so one is happy to be back at the station again.

Blue Fire is a nice roller coaster for in between, but that’s it, I still can’t understand the hype about the ride and probably never will. The real attraction next to Wodan in this area is and will be the coffee house in close proximity to Blue Fire.

Tiroler Wildwasserbahn

Passing Portugal with his wannabe Spillwater imitation Atlantika Supersplash, where I had to give up a ride due to time reasons and listlessness, I went to Austria to finally get wet. The Tiroler Wildwasserbahn is one of the best in Europe and due to its first shot it is definitely a very wet log flume. You won’t notice the age of the ride at all, so you can literally race through the canal, just like on the Wildwasser 1 in Heide-Park. It is nice to see parks taking care of their rides and renewing them if necessary.

Alpenexpress Enzian

The Powered Coaster Alpenexpress Enzian shares a grotto with the log flume and a walk through the magical world of diamonds. The ride itself has quite a bit of speed and, like the other attractions that share the grotto, is worth a ride just for the scent in it. The wave swinger next door shows that the park also knows a thing or two about rides and runs it, untypically, not on a low flame.

Jungfrau Gletscherflieger

Speaking of rides, the best flat ride Europa Park is in the Swiss themed area and is called the Jungfrau Gletscherflieger. This unique ride is not dissimilar to a Zierer hang-glider, but it offers much better comfort and more fun and can show a high degree of swing, especially when riding at ground level. Since the waiting time at most roundabout rides is close to zero, you should definitely try a ride or two on this ride.

Schweizer Bobbahn

The Schweizer Bobbahn in the same theme area is not really a good roller coaster despite its idiosyncratic layout, which you can somehow understand on a prototype. However, for the family audience of Europa Park, which certainly didn’t come in contact with any other bobsleigh coaster, this is certainly sufficient. But the beautifully designed inner courtyard and the general design of the coaster can convince.

Matterhorn Blitz

Three years ago, the extended Wild Mouse with vertical lift Matterhorn Blitz was my 100th roller coaster, a fact I was not very satisfied with. However, as my reputation against Wild Mice grew from year to year and I got to know the dead-braked X-treme racer from Legoland Billund, I have to admit that the ride is definitely worth a ride. Unfortunately the layout does not correspond to the standard layout and a certain madness as you can find on a Wild Mouse by Gerstlauer or Maurer Söhne is missing, but you can take a ride without hesitation, even if you should reconsider this at a certain queue length.


In the French themed area you can find by far the best roller coaster of Europa Park, the dark roller coaster Eurosat. Due to the immense capacity, one never really queues for a long time, even if the queue is full. The ride itself is very powerful, although slightly jerky and equipped with some strong jolts. The curve combinations are sometimes so bumpy that it can only be good. The biggest innovation are the magnetic brakes which bring the train to a halt with such a force and without any acoustic warning that it borders on sheer madness and underlines the characteristics of the track.

Universum der Energien

The ride Universum der Energien hidden under the roller coaster is the best dark ride in Europa Park. Some would say it’s the sleepy, boring boat ride Pirates in Batavia, but such a ride has to be consistent and not overloaded and that’s the ride through the land of the dinosaurs.

Silver Star

One of the novelties for this year can be found in the Mercedes Benz exhibition, where they have fortunately decided to decorate the walls with new motifs. To make the whole theme more French, the racing driver Michel Vaillant is now decorating the hall. Unfortunately, the cult intro song for the cartoon series was not included, which would have been good for Silver Star.

The ride, built by Bollinger & Mabillard, looks quite good from the outside, scores with its height and its speed, but apart from that the ride can’t do much. Unfortunately the ride comfort is not equal to any ride built by Intamin of this height and so there are annoying vibrations in the valleys. The floating airtime is unfortunately on a very low level, at least I remember it a bit more pronounced and the last curves don’t make the ride any better, so that the ride is the worst coaster of this manufacturer in Germany, even if the Black Mamba from Brühl is only a touch better.

Magic Cinema

At Magic Cinema you can watch a new film this year, which is a daring self-production. The story is suitable for children and seems to have been made perfect for the French audience by the well-rehearsed effects, after all I have never seen so many people being scared by such predictable things.

The animation of the film surprised me in a positive way, I only expect such a detail accuracy from a few companies, only at one point I would have wished for something more, because at least I could hardly make out a difference between before and after immersion in the water, and at the same time animals in particular should just drip with water. The 3D effects are offered in a purity that I have never seen before in a theme park. The child-friendly humor is very similar to the humour you are confronted with, especially in Denmark, which is a pity. There was a part with a flat joke that only I could laugh about, which, like in the new Muppet movies, speaks rather against the audience and not against the kind of humour. Here I would have wished for more in this respect. One part that could have been better avoided is the part with the Euromausi and the commentary about the men, in general you could have avoided the Euromausi in the film, because apart from the fact that she is there she makes no difference. Apart from the dubbing voice of Euromaus, it has to be pointed out that Böckli is one of the leading roles in the film, after all the best mascot of Europa Park, as well as the commentary with the wooden roller coaster Wodan.

Piccolo Mondo and Geisterschloss

In the Italian themed area you will find last year’s novelty, but also two dark rides. The short ride in Piccolo Mondo through Italy is well done, due to the high kitsch content again a bit too kitschy, for in between the ride is at least quite nice. The big dark ride Geisterschloss right next door offered a live assassin in the queue but otherwise the creepiness was gone. The ride is neither convincing as a dark ride nor as a ghost train, everything is mercilessly overloaded and simply not nice to look at. The fact that you leave the ride through the little horror shop doesn’t make the ride any better, but it gives you an idea for the redesign of the ride, because Audrey II would surely be happy about food on the assembly line.

Pegasus, Poseidon and Fluch der Kassandra

One area that is best visited late in the afternoon is the area of the EU’s problem child: Greece. Here you can find the witches swing Curse of Cassandra, the darkride expedition Atlantis, as well as the two roller coasters Pegasus and Poseidon.

Pegasus itself used to be the most airtime-rich roller coaster at Europa-Park, three years later I was surprised not to feel it anymore. In general, the ride did not stay in the same condition as before, so in contrast to the newer Carrecaminos Bip Bip from the Spanish Parque Warner, the ride was even slightly jerky.

Poseidon is still the epitome of a water coaster. A great, although at some points borderline, track and shot rides where you can also get wet with a little luck complete the experience. The setting of the ride and the possibility, like on Atlantika Supersplash, to get into a soak zone is still exemplary.

The fact that Spaniards babbling from all sides can spoil a ride in a witches’ swing was shown in Parque Warner, but that three prepubescent girls are enough is a pity and shows once again that the youth is absolutely spoiled. Such a type of attraction is only visited for one thing: the story and the music. Since the story is unfortunately lost in the Fluch der Kassandra anyway, you should at least be able to let the music take effect on you.

Pictures Europa Park

Closing Worlds

The Europa Park is and remains one of the best European theme parks, the fact that I didn’t watch any show this year was only because the only show I was interested in premiered at the end of the month with Ornella de Santi. Especially worth mentioning is the way the park’s opening hours are handled, so far no visitor has to leave the park before one hour after the original closing time, which is neither possible nor common practice at most other amusement parks.

What is your opinion about the wooden roller coaster Wodan? Just write it in the comment field below the report or visit our social media channels: