On my last visit to Heroldsbach, I was faced with closed gates at the Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn; in the low season, the amusement park is sometimes only open during the week. This time, however, a visit fell on a quiet Sunday within the high season.
Before we even get close to the castle that gives it its name and can pay our entrance fee, we are already in front of the first attraction. In the bat centre we can learn a lot about the animals in a fun way.
The theme park originated in 1975 in the castle garden of the moated castle of Thurn. The origin of today’s Baroque castle complex was a fortified residential tower surrounded by several moats, which can be traced back to the year 1422. In 1747, the Bamberg cathedral chaplain Lothar Franz Horneck von Weinheim acquired the estate and began to convert the former knight’s castle into a Baroque pleasure palace.
The area around the castle mainly invites you to dangle your soul, and you can also explore the water around the moated castle with rowing boats and pedal boats.
The first ride on our way to the western town is the small interactive water ride Piratenflotte. Along the way we also find numerous adventure trails for the younger park visitors before we then come across the Monzabahn vintage cars and shortly afterwards a fort.
The western town inside extends over a main street and a large square with a western show. The main restaurant of the theme park is also located in the saloon. However, the culinary offer is not quite adapted to the ambience, which is a bit of a pity.
The main attraction in the Western Town is the Steampunk VR scooter. This bumper car is unique in the world because it is the only one with virtual reality (VR), which is a thoroughly immersive experience. A film is shown where you end up fighting a robot spider and where the ride floor suddenly curves. The quality of this trumps the VR attractions of most amusement parks and makes for an absolutely coherent overall concept.
To be honest, I’m surprised why the VR trend was mostly used on large roller coasters and thus went under again after a very short time, when it’s precisely the implementation on standard rides that offers a much better experience. Bumper cars in amusement parks always have the charm of a fairground and don’t really fit into the big themed worlds of today, but with the right idea you can definitely upgrade the classic ride principle, be it the former Space Race in Hansa Park or with the VR experience here. I only hope that in the future more parks will invest as courageously as Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn.
Behind the Western Town is the entrance to the park’s log flume. The ride, built by Reverchon, also has a rather classic appearance at the Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn, although the waiting area is quite unusual. The ride offers a total of two drops, with the smaller one offering an additional wave. The degree of wetness of both drops is within reasonable limits.
In addition to the Knappenschule electric horse track, the chain flyer Kettenflieger, the family free-fall tower Ritterschlag and the boat swing Schaukelschiff Fledermausflug, park guests in the Magic Valley mainly romp around the tournament square, where the knights’ tournament takes place.
Quite unusually in a theme park, you can experience a real jousting tournament at Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn. Two teams face each other in a jousting match. This is an exciting competition between good and evil. Despite the very simple story, the acting is extremely convincing and the games and the fight choreographies with sword and shield are breathtaking.
The VR roller coaster is a classic family roller coaster made by Zierer. The roller coaster, which is about 9 m high, offers a 220 m long, winding layout that is ridden through twice in a row.
Animal park and playgrounds
On the other side of the park there is a large playground and several smaller rides, such as the two Butterfly roller coasters, the carousel Schwanenkarussell and the Wasserbob dinghy slide. To get there, however, we have to pass through the beautifully landscaped game park. This is best done on foot or by taking a ride on the Westerbahn train ride or the monorail Schwebebahn.
Pictures Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn
Conclusion Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn
I really liked Schloss Thurn. The steampunk VR-scooter and the knights’ tournament are two highlights that you can’t even find in the big theme parks around the world. So a visit is definitely recommended, especially for families with smaller children.
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