On the road with the Loopinggrufti


One day I received an e-mail from Michael Singer – better known as Loopinggrufti in the amusement park scene – with reference to the Vertigo carousel, which makes its rounds at Tivoli Gardens. Since he was already standing in front of the ride a few years ago, it was very important for him to finally get into the ride. We talked and after some time it came like it had to come and we drove together to Copenhagen.

We have booked the Tivoli All-Inclusive Package of the Tivoli Hotel. Even if the name suggests it, the hotel is not located at the park, but some streets away from the park. We travelled with the Flixbus from Hamburg, which (if the route goes over the ferry connection Puttgarten – Rødby) is a quite inexpensive and pleasant connection. But we went back over the Storebælt bridge, which made the trip more like a torture without a break. Arriving at the hotel we immediately went to the amusement park.

Tivoli Gardens

In no time at all, the object of desire was selected. A short time later Michael was completely enthusiastic. Although the Tivoli has meanwhile abandoned the backward ride program on its crazy propeller, the ride was still able to convince with its versatile ride. Over the course of the day, more laps followed. At the end of the day we even snuck into the queue, which was noticed. Shortly afterwards the queue was opened again, so that we were able to legally wait in line.


Directly next door the roller coaster Kamelen was built this year on the place of the roller coaster Karavanen. Thus Kamelen is already the second iteration of the roller coaster Mariehønen here in the park, which shaped this roller coaster type from Zierer in 1974. The model is no longer called Tivoli Coaster, but the layout passed the test of the time with flying colours.

Fata Morgana

Something you might not have been able to say about the HUSS Condor, as over time many rides of this classic 80s ride have disappeared from the scene. But suddenly in 2014 a new model appeared in a Chinese amusement park. A few years later, the Tivoli also decided to follow up with Fata Morgana. This makes the ride the first of its kind in Europe. In addition to the classic gondola design, the model also has two rigid gondola rings – very similar to the Intamin Spinning Star at Cosmo’s World Theme Park in Kuala Lumpur – with an outward-facing driving style. These gondolas were then equipped with a new lifting technology this year, which initates an additional rocking movement.

The ride is simply terrific. The view of the city of Copenhagen is ingenious and the rocking of the gondola makes the ride a successful mixture of thrill and relaxation. However, the praise refers only to this version of the ride, as the other version lags behind the original. The ride is rather jerky and you bang permanently into the upper and lower stop of the now mechanically (instead of hydraulically) controlled swing track. This is a pity, because otherwise a second generation HUSS Condor with the mixed gondolas would definitely be a recommendation for many other amusement parks, but this only leaves the advice to chose the more “thrill-heavy” gondola type.

Tik Tak

I wonder if we can say the same thing about the Mondial Shake Tik Tak. This rides replaced the old, but very stylish, HUSS Break Dance Snurretoppen this year. While the old ride was quite open, the shake got a roof, with a huge clockwork, which is a nice eye-catcher. The gondolas are quite detailed and represent small time machines. The ride itself is fast, although without many rollovers.

VR on Dæmonen

Another novelty for me was the VR movie on the B&M roller coaster Dæmonen. The film is exclusively made for Tivoli and shows in a very artistic way the fight of a Chinese dragon with a demon. The whole thing peaks in a fireworks display, whereupon you find yourself at a Chinese New Year celebration. Unfortunately, Dæmonen is a very intense roller coaster, which makes the headset press quite hard on you. Otherwise, Dæmonen in the VR version is definitely worth an experience, especially as the graphics of the film are of high quality and don’t resemble a 20-year-old computer game. The experience is definitely a recommendation, even if it can be uncomfortable.

Pictures Tivoli Gardens

Closing Words

In general, a visit to the Tivoli is always a recommendation. On 06.12.2019 the new roller coaster Mælkevejen will open. This replaces the roller coaster Odinexpressen, which entertained the visitors in Tivoli Gardens for 33 years. However, nothing was to be seen at our visit yet, but the pictures on Rcdb promise an as funny ride as the old Powered Coaster did before.


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Fun for the whole Family

Parc des Combes

If the track gauges of some model railroaders become too large, then a theme park can also be created as a result. That’s roughly how the history of the Parc des Combes can be summed up. In 1985, the model railway enthusiasts from Le Creusot and the local politician, and later president of the NPO Chemin de Fer Touristique des Combes, Serge Chevalier decided to revive the old track of the Chemin de Fer des Crouillottes..

Originally, the line was used to transport slag from the blast furnaces of the Usines Schneider to the Plateau de la Combe for disposal. However, it was already shut down and dismantled in the 1950s. Now the line had to be re-laid. The tracks, rails and sleepers were taken from the Creusot-Loire – a recently bankrupt steel company. Five years later, the first 2.5 km section was opened from Parc des Combes station down to the Combe Denis. The current 5.2 km circuit of the Train des Combes was completed five years later. A station was also built in the centre of Le Creusot, not far from the SNCF station. This was accompanied by the construction of the third section, which was completed in 1999. Since then, during the French summer holidays, it has been possible to travel by the Train des Deux Vallées over a distance of 10 km from the city centre up to the amusement park. In addition, on selected days in July there is the possibility to travel by steam train.

In 1996 the construction of a summer toboggan run from the Wiegand company took place. The success of the Luge d’été laid the foundation for the park’s current orientation. In 2003 the Déval’Train, a family roller coaster from the Dutch manufacturer Vekoma, followed. The subsequent years are characterised by smaller novelties, before the Alpine Coaster 2007 set new standards in visitor numbers. In 2011 Vekoma presented the Family Boomerang, a new development, which made the Parc des Combes famous nationwide. In 2013 the interactive roll-over ride L’Escadrille, also a new development from Technical Park, followed. The French must have liked this, otherwise the next step for a park of this size is hardly explainable, because in 2017 a Flying Fury moved into the park with Canad’R. This is one of only two rides worldwide! Vraiment magnifique!

Before we dare to climb up the mountain to the self steering propeller, we have to get the Pass Partout, the all-you-can-ride whistband of the park. Of course, there would also be the possibility to buy single tickets, but this is only worth it if you have come to the Parc des Combes for up to four rides and are not interested in the Train Touristique. Of course you can also buy a special ticket for the train ride if you are not interested in the theme park. The actual entrance is free.

Alpine Coaster

Passing the station of the Combes, which includes the park’s restaurant and a number of smaller children’s rides, we make our way to the two toboggan runs. We join the queue on the left and are immediately the first passenger of the day of the Alpine Coaster.

During the ascent we have an excellent view of the upcoming attractions, especially the Canad’R. At the top we steadily increase our speed in several small zigzag curves. In the following serpentine curves we cross several smaller waves, which make us lift up a little bit out of our seats. Shortly afterwards we race towards a helix. With now pronounced speed, we race through a long left turn and soon over a beautiful jump. Unfortunately the short and enjoyable ride ends after another right turn.

Luge d’été

But before we get right back into the Alpine Coaster, we dedicate ourselves to the Luge d’été. Parallel to the ride we just tested, we climb the lift hill, but then turn right at a slightly lower altitude. After another right turn, we quickly increase our speed over a steeper gradient. A left turn and a small zigzag passage follow at high speed, before we see ourselves in a right turn with a pronounced cross slope. Now several left and right turns follow in quick succession, which can also throw you off track. After a jump and another right turn the ride ends.

It is difficult to say which of the two rides is the better one. I personally enjoyed both of them very much. Since none of the French visitors even had the idea to brake early, both rides were experienced at full speed. In general, however, the Luge d’été seemed to be more popular with the visitors.


Via stairs we now reach the station of the roller coaster Déval’Train. The ride on the classic roller skater layout with a length of 207m is particularly convincing because of its embedding in the surroundings and the high degree of theming. Of course, this ride features several laps, so that the little ones get their money’s worth.


The Boomerang roller coaster is a little more exciting and faster. However, it is only available for groups of 6 people or more, so I had to wait here for some time for my ride. Especially in the low season you should not be too early at the Parc des Combes, because it takes some time until a sufficient number of people find their way up the mountain. But you will have the Canad’R all to yourself as soon as it opens. One way or another, at some point the time had come, and since only a few people got off after the ride, it was possible to take one lap after the other.

The ride itself begins with the ascent of the reverse lift hill. Once in the starting position, you are stopped briefly while the friction wheels are pushed apart. Now the track is free and you race straight down the just climbed track. You cross the station at 60 km/h and then shoot into an uphill left turn. Now you race through a valley, before an upward helix leading over hill and dale joins up. The train loses its momentum on the undulating spike that follows, whereupon it reverses direction and passes the track backwards. The train then comes to a halt again in the station.

Family Boomerangs are definitely a great roller coaster type. Therefore it is even better that the Parc des Combes has recognised this with the English amusement park Drayton Manor before all others. Although the original layout with its undulating course does not offer a distinct speed profile, this does not detract from the fun of riding. It is even better when you can do several laps at once.


The next attraction on our mountain ascent is the aerobat L’Escadrille. After the success of the Gerstlauer Sky Roller and the Sky Fly from the same company, the Italian manufacturer Technical Park has come up with its own interpretation of an interactive roll-over roundabout. Insofar it is nothing unusual, as it is good manners to adopt successful concepts from other manufacturers. Instead of a direct copy, however, the focus was on an intensified development of the well-known paratrooper ride.

Although I knew in advance that the ride is not really exhilarating, one should always be open-minded about new rides. So first of all the positive: The gondolas are comfortable and the wings also fit well in the hand. But now the negative: Whether you move the wings or not does not change the ride. This means that permanent rollovers are impossible right from the start, and whether you like it or not, at some point everyone will go head over heels through the pit. Hourra…

In general, the concept of a modified paratrooper is not wrong. But the ride on the aerobat is simply no fun. From my point of view, the ride is just too steep to take advantage of the interactivity of the ride. That’s a pity, because the concept itself has potential.

Woodside 66

Well, in that case you’d better get into a modified Apollo 2000. With the Woodside 66, a sidecar from Technical Park has been in the park since this year. The swing of the interactive compressed-air ride can be controlled by the throttle twist grip on the motorbike, at least until the air runs out at some point. But after a few laps on the ground, the wild or not so wild rocking can start all over again. A really great ride, which has quickly gained popularity in the amusement park industry.

Something that unfortunately did not benefit the last ride on our exploratory tour through the Parc des Combes. Although very popular with fans, the Flying Fury is still in the shadows, probably due to its low capacity and technical complexity. But all this has not stopped the Parc des Combes from putting the ride on a mountain where everyone can see it from afar. You wouldn’t believe how high the 37m high ride can seem when you look down a mountain during the ride.


Due to the interactive nature of the ride on Canad’R it is difficult to reproduce the ride in detail. However, it looks something like this: ” So, I now have the joystick in my hand, how does it go forward? Okay, now I’m going in circles. What happens if I move this control to the side? Aha, now I turn over to the side. Next I pull the joystick towards me, aha, the propeller is now moving clockwise. Well, then it can start”. After this short period of getting used to it, everything is ready to get down to business. Friends of very strong accelerations can also start a turbo phase, in which the plane switches to automatic for a short time, then straightens out and accelerates with 5G. Depending on which direction you hold the stick, this happens either forwards or backwards. You have to be very careful not to expose yourself to a Grey Out or even a Black Out – apart from that the ride is quite nice.

So much so, in fact, that I tried out the wildest driving manoeuvres several laps at a time. Sometimes you can lose your orientation quite a bit during the ride, but no matter if you are upside down and turning sideways through the station area or do laps with permanent side rollovers, I only had the most extreme ride when the ride had a fault shortly after the start and then went to zero position. Interestingly, the boom then drove at snail’s pace and counter-clockwise for a complete lap before reaching the entry position. In the beginning it was very relaxing, but at the latest with the hangtime part and the fabulous view at a height of over 30m it became quite frightening. Luckily you can trust Italian technology, but the ride was closed for a while after that.

Later on I was able to do some more laps on Canad’R, but after my sixth ride I broke it down. Shortly after the ride started, nothing more happened and I could wait – at least halfway comfortable – for a good 15 minutes to be released from the ride. In the late afternoon the ride started again, but then I had to leave again for my next destination.

Pictures Parc des Combes

Conclusion Parc des Combes

Parc des Combes is a very pleasant small theme park with a rather interesting portfolio. Hardly any other park of this size offers so many – for the country – unique rides. If the park continues to develop in this direction, you will have to go to Le Creusot all the time. The Parc des Combes is already a must-see for every lover of really good rides. Moreover, the park can be perfectly combined with Le Pal, a park that you must experience one way or another. If you are also a friend of narrow-gauge railways, you will definitely have fun here.

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The home of the old Danish Rutschebanen


I wanted to visit the Danish amusement park Tivoli Gardens for quite a while now. Unfortunately, visiting the Danish capital as a German student on a budget, this was not at all easy. Ideas to go on a road trip throughout Scandinavia were abandoned due to the lack of passengers to come along. Even day trips turned out to be not necessarily wise due to either high tolls or ferry fees, so that the cheapest way to travel from Hamburg to Copenhagen is surprisingly by train, although it takes quite a while even in an ICE. As at the beginning of the week there was supposed to be a return trip in the late evening and the hotels were comparatively cheap during an overnight stay from Sunday to Monday, a short trip to Copenhagen was quickly arranged. The Deutsche Bahn proved to be less reliable and the offered return trip could not be booked. A little research then resulted in a bus connection via Flixbus returning at the same time, which should actually arrive slightly earlier at the Hamburg main station.

The outward journey turned out to be a little nerve-racking. It all started with a bus, which actually didn’t show up (as it passed my station way too early), which resulted in a drive to the city where I parked my car nearby my university. It came worse, when a smelly stranger slept on my shoulder in the rail replacement service on the Danish part of the journey.

Tivoli Gardens

Arriving at the station, the reward for the morning’s exertions was immediately apparent, which was why I exchanged the prepaid all-inclusive ticket for admission, the wristband for unlimited rides on the rides, as well as the vouchers for a visit to the in-house aquarium, the meal and the ride photo. This package cost online around DKK 190 more than the regular entrance fee and the wristband, but as the meals in this city are generally in a similar price range, this is highly recommended. The offer varies according to the general price structure of the restaurants, so in cheap restaurants one additionally gets a big drink, in medium-priced restaurants a small drink, as well as in high-priced restaurants only the meal remains served. Without the voucher, I would have spent 210 DKK in addition to the 25 DKK saved at the aquarium, as well as the value of the ride photo.


Since I used the less frequented entrance at the main station the ways led me fast and directly to the over 100 years old wooden roller coaster Rutschebanen and thus to the longest-serving roller coaster of Europe. On the occasion of the anniversary Tivoli Gardens gave the old lady an elaborate cosmetic operation, reminding her of her original design – which had been redesigned out of respect for arriving guests from the alpine countries, as they should not be reminded of their homeland immediately after leaving the train station by the peaks of Rutschebanen. As is generally the case with the so-called Scenic Railways, the Rutschebanen also has a brakeman riding in the train, so that the ride is controlled by his know-how and can be quite exciting at the same time.

Shortly after the train entered the station it disappears into the first tunnel. After a left turn, the train engages in the elevator cable and is quickly carried up to the top. For a short moment, you can look into the Fun House Skaersilden beneath the ride. At the top you can have a short look at the alpine design before going down the first slope. With full speed we pass the first valley and then a camelback. Back at a higher level, a turn is now made with a pronounced speed, so that one involuntarily wanders from one side of the train to the other. After leaving the ice cave, the train dives down into the depths before reaching about half of the starting height. Barely braked, the next turn is made, which is the reason why a single rider changes sides again. Immediately after a short straight section you go downhill and shortly afterwards a fast-paced interplay of curves begins. Here a short S-curve is taken before a right-hand turn, which is further intensified by the gently rocking cars. Along the station you follow the same sequence of elements as at the beginning of the ride and immediately enter another cave. In this one you execute a combination of curves which would have been used in the computer game Roller Coaster Tycoon, ideally on a Virginia Reel. After a small turn to the right follows a small turn to the left, which then changes into a larger turn to the left. Shortly afterwards you leave the tunnel and are led into the station by the brakeman.

Rutschebanen is a timeless classic, which still excites the visitors today. The way the train takes the cars through the numerous mountains, valleys and bends is simply stunning and is further enhanced by the constant change of the cars’ sides for single riders. The design of the layout is worth seeing and creates a through and through original appearance in connection with the trains and the accompanying personnel, which you would not want to miss in Tivoli Gardens.

Skaersilden and Minen

Below the old Danish roller coaster you will find the Fun House of Tivoli Gardens – which is well worth a visit – as well as the boat dark ride Minen, which was apparently upgraded by a lot of Peng Peng or better said interactivity. The stream channel passes larger and very detailed scenes, whereby it is better to skip the interactivity function of the boat altogether and enjoy the ride.

Himmelskibet and Snurretoppen

The 80m high Starflyer Himmelskibet is located above the sleek and surprisingly fast moving Break Dance Snurretoppen. Here one notices for the first time that the Tivoli Gardens does not trust its foreign visitors without any amusement park experiences particularly much. As a result, the dispatching takes ages, despite the already optimised loading process. On the way up to the loading station, one is basically reminded at every meter which things one is not allowed to take along; a counted group is then let into the area with the luggage rack. Here, a very detailed verbal briefing is given which things one is not allowed to take along. Afterwards, only one of the possible access ways is opened. Then, the riders are forced to knock on their trouser pockets and are warned to go back in case of positive results and finally to take their things out of their pockets. After a quite decent ride with a fantastic view over the city at the same time, one is now left in a separate area on the other side and is held there until everybody has received their things.


Interestingly, however, the dispatch was still reasonably justifiable, as the routine had become established during time. Aquila, an Zamperla air race from 2013 has a thoroughly abstruse dispatch time, as everyone sitting in the car is asked if they still have anything in their pockets, although the system never sweeps over the heads of others and the potential danger is minimal. Compared to the prototype in the Portuguese water park Aquashow Park, the ride is not very entertaining and thus falls behind the expectations.


In the immediate vicinity, just like everything else in Tivoli Gardens, is the entrance to Odinexpressen, a Mack Powered Coaster built in 1985. Throughout the entire visit there was always the longest queue of all the roller coasters, which was not due to the total duration of the ride of three laps, but rather to the fact that the people waiting for the ride were only allowed to enter the station when the train was already empty and each bar was checked individually.

The ride begins with an ascending helix to the left, followed by a change of direction above the station. A wide right turn leads the train upwards, followed by a left turn. On the roof of the arcades, a 540° downward helix is executed, after which the train always leads downwards at a clear speed parallel to the ascent. Once again above the roof of the station, the train plunges surprisingly fast to the ground and passes through a narrow righthand helix, whereupon you pass through the station at top speed.

Odinexpressen is a very nice example of a powered coaster due to the very well designed and space saving layout. Similar to the English Merlin Entertainments Group’s parks, the mood at the ride is outstanding and the delicious smell during the downhill helix on the roof probably served as inspiration for the Alpenexpress Enzian at Europa Park.

Den Flyvende Kuffert

Next to the arcades you will find the dark ride Den Flyvende Kuffert which tells the fairy tales of Hans Christian Andersen in many scenes with cute little dolls. The ride in the flying suitcases is held in either Danish or English, whereby you have to listen carefully to avoid being distracted by the narrations of the other gondolas. During the long ride, which always leads up and down, one gets a good insight into the well-known fairy tales.

Tivoli Aquarium and Linie 8

The Tivoli Aquarium is located in the foyer of the Concert Hall, a theatre with a capacity of 1660 that plays classical music as well as musicals. The Tivoli Aquarium is not included in the entrance fee and has smaller aquariums and a 30m long reef with more than 1600 inhabitants. In front of the concert halls there is the station of the historical railway line 8, which takes a little tour through the Tivoli Gardens.


Passing by countless restaurants we now enter the furthest corner of Tivoli Gardens, where the Arabic theme area of the park is located. Strangely enough, most people from the region spend their time in the Tivoli Gardens here and unconsciously create the proper atmosphere. Located directly at the edge of the park is a Suspended Flying Carpet by Zierer. Monsunen is the only one of its kind in Europe, with only a second ride being installed in the Japanese theme park Nagashima Spa Land. The ride resembles the standard model of the Flying Carpet of the same manufacturer, except for the different sitting position. The only difference is that here not the upper body reacts to the movement, but the legs. Altogether the ride is a very interesting and above all massive installation with an interesting lifting technology for the boarding platform.


Directly opposite you can find the small Tivoli roller coaster Karavanen made by Zierer. Their Tivoli coaster was an initial success in the Scandinavian countries, which led to many installations worldwide. Karavanen itself features a small variation of the original design, which made it a slightly more dynamic ride, which almost automatically makes everybody in the train smile.


The most interesting facility in this area is by far Vertigo, a Flying Fury by Technical Park. In the early years of this ride it was possible to rotate the passenger carrier around its own axis, as well as the axis of the main arm, by yourself which resulted in a rather wild and individual way of riding. There was also the possibility to press a button for full throttle which let to an acceleration of constant 5G. Since the technology for the steering is unfortunately susceptible to errors – which i doubt very much and would rather blame the riders, which did not understand the ride – two automatic programs are used nowadays.

The ride begins with a few rollovers in the station area with a simultaneous rotation around the vertical axis before the ride continues at a lofty height. Of course, the machine also goes upside down through the station before the nacelle is locked and the machine accelerates to a speed of 120 km/h. Over a period of time you will experience a constant 5G, while your field of vision will slowly but surely narrow. This is where the only difference between the driving programs becomes apparent, as this passage is performed either looking forwards or flying backwards. After a few, almost uncountable laps, the speed is slowly reduced and you turn upside down again. The small aircraft now performs its last rollovers and then slowly approaches its parking position.

Vertigo has an amazingly versatile ride to offer with its only 2 minute long ride program. As almost always in life, a backward driving style makes the ride much more exciting. The waiting times at Vertigo are among the longest in Tivoli Gardens due to its capacity, but as a single rider it can take as little as 15 seconds. However, in both cases you should definitely take a ride and try out both ride programs.

Gyldne Taarn

The last major attraction in this area is the golden painted Gyldne Taarn, a Turbo Drop Tower by S&S. This is a normal freefall tower where – similar to the freefall towers of the manufacturer Fabbri – you are shot downwards, which results in a pronounced airtime. Sadly, the Gyldne Taarn isn’t good at this when being compared to other towers of the same manufacturer.


After such a disappointment you need a good ride. Thankfully, the B&M floorless coaster Dæmonen is nearby. This ultra-compact installation offers an untypical ride in the tightest of spaces. Usually, the ride features the lowest waiting time at Tivoli Gardens.

After reaching the maximum height of 28m the train runs over the crest and the first small drop. The train is now thrown into the first curve and crosses a direction change at dizzy height, a righthand helix follows to reach the starting height for the next drop. As soon as you have survived the combination of curves you immediately descend and shortly thereafter enter the looping of the ride. The subsequent change of direction takes place in an Immelmann just before the world turns upside down again in the Nul-G Loop (Danish for Zero-G Roll). Depending on your position in the car, you will be wonderfully torn back and forth, a truly incomparable experience. The final turns and hills towards the brake run are just as wild, offering some great airtime moments. Soon after, the ride is already over.

Daemonen is awesome, although a bit too short. From the first curves you can feel that this machine is by no means a sensitive one. The looping and the Immelmann support the general intensity of the ride tremendously, but they lose all meaning in consideration of the truly delicious Zero-G Roll and the great finale.

Pictures Tivoli Gardens

Conclusion Tivoli Gardens

The amusement park Tivoli Gardens is a worth seeing amusement park not only because of its long history. The atmosphere is very similar to that of the Pleasure Beach Blackpool, except that it is smaller and generally more tidy, which can be seen in the Smøgen alley. The rides have a thoroughly good quality and the many restaurants and small gardens create an ambience in which one likes to stay. The prices however are quite high and you may be surprised how many people use the ticket system and pay more than they should. A ride on Daemonen for example costs 75 DKK – which is about 10€ – the Wristband itself is available for 210 DKK, therefore it pays off after just three rides. During a well visited Sunday I was able to ride all the rides I wanted within four hours. A visit in the evening can be a great way to experience Tivoli Gardens without missing too much. Except there is the Fredagsrock Event, where the entry to the park is far more expensive during the evening (so make sure to visit the rides during the day to enjoy a great rock concert for free in the evening).


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