Erlebnispark Schloss Thurn in the small community of Heroldsbach, Bavaria is a medium-sized amusement park in Germany. Opened in 1975 in the gardens of a Baroque pleasure palace, the amusement park hosts a solid selection of family-friendy rides, interesting attractions and breathtaking shows.
Highlights of the Animal and Theme Park
What a Joust
The awesome bumper cars experience
A nice family roller coaster with the option to use VR
In recent years, Legoland Germany, like no other Merlin Entertainments park, has seen some great additions to its offering. The park finally became a full day destination. Since my last visit in October 2015, the park added the themed area Lego Ninjago World, two new rides to the Land der Pharaonen area and added a new B&M wing coaster to its line-up, as part of the Lego Mythica themed area.
Lego Ninjago World
Lego Ninjago World is so far the biggest extension Legoland Deutschland ever experienced. The themed area is based on the popular Lego Ninjago brand, famous for its well made TV show Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu. Back in 2017, it was the most expensive expansion of the park to date. The area offered a unique interactive dark ride experience that you could only experience at Legoland parks.
Lego Ninjago The Ride
Lego Ninjago The Ride is the first interactive dark ride where the passengers are using their hands only to target. The ride system is using an array of sensors to catch the movement of the hand. Depending mainly on the height of your hands and the angle to the sensor, your hand movement input is interpreted and a colour dot appears on the sensor so that you know where you are actually aiming. The whole process is not that intuitive and so confused hand waving actually is a good way to score quite a lot of points. The movements can be refined on the many screens the riders pass-by or stop right in front for a longer film sequence.
Overall, Lego Ninjago The ride is a very solid dark ride. Sure, the technology is not as sophisticated as the Web Slingers at Disneyland Paris, but for a worlds first, this ride system is actually quite alright.
Lloyd’s Spinjitsu Spinner
The newest addition to the Lego Ninjago World is Lloyd’s Spinjitsu Spinner, a Sunkid Loopster. This ride basically takes the old Luna Loop concept by Heege to a new level and is one of the hidden gems at the park. As you control the rotation of your ride vehicle, you can have a rather gentle ride, a ride full of backflips or you could try to take the whole ride in an upside-down position; albeit this is not that easy, as the ride vehicle will rotate back into its starting position after a while and you have to adjust the rotation quite often.
Land der Pharaonen
The Land der Pharaonen themed area was once created to house the interactive dark ride The Temple as its standalone attraction right next to the entrance to the Legoland Feriendorf resort. In 2019, the area was expanded with the interactive rides Pyramiden Rallye and Wüsten X-kursion.
The Pyramiden Rallye is one of the classic rides from Metallbau Emmeln that you would like to see more often in family theme parks around the globe. The interactive ride is a nice work out for the whole family trying to extinguish fire in a pyramid located in the middle of the desert. While the story of this ride does not make a lot of sense, it still is one of the nicest additions we saw in Legoland Deutschland in recent years.
The Wüsten X-kursion by RES is an interesting tower ride: the passengers can control the rotation of the gondolas, as well as their ride height by pulling a rope inside the gondola. Overall, rides can have a nice gentle observation ride towering the Land der Pharaonen section of the park and get a nice view onto the new themed area Lego Mythica right next door.
Lego Mythica is the newest area at Legoland Deutschland. It is based on the Legoland own IP. Its centrepiece is the Maximus roller coaster by B&M. The two family drop tower Fire & Ice Tower by Zierer and a small playground supplement the area. Lego Mythica is the most expensive expansion so far for the theme park.
Maximus – Der Flug des Wächters
When thinking about a roller coaster at Legoland, nobody ever would come up with the idea of creating a B&M wing coaster featuring two inversions, but somehow this project came true with Maximus – Der Flug des Wächters. The statics of the ride speak for a very family friendly ride, which we now want to have a closer look onto.
After we have finally left the extremely trivial queue behind us, the ride can already begin. Following a left-hand bend, we immediately reach the lift of the ride. Having reached the top of the lift hill at 17 m, we immediately drop down towards the ground. In an upward helix we experience a little pressure before flying over a small hill. In the following valley we experience the highest forces of the ride, before going straight into the first inversion of the ride. After the corkscrew, we continue our way to the left, before we change direction in order to prepare for the grand finale of the ride: a roll above the entrance portal. Shortly thereafter, we find ourselves in the brake section of the ride.
Maximus – Der Flug des Wächters is a fine ride for what it is: a nice family ride and the first one to feature an inversion for many of the park guests. The ride on the left side of the tracks is the overall better ride experience, while the right side offers a more pronounce ride through the first helix.
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Since 2019, Austria’s largest amusement park has been part of the French amusement park group Compagnie des Alpes, which operates the Walibi amusement parks and Parc Astérix, among others. While it is a shame when a family-run amusement park is bought out, on the other hand, this can create completely different opportunities that ultimately benefit the park. Especially with regard to the investment-friendly Compagnie des Alpes, we can look forward to numerous new attractions.
One of the last investments before the takeover was the double family freefall tower Almjodler made by Zierer. The two freefall towers are interestingly located right next to the Verrückte Vogelscheuche, creating a fun little corner of family-friendly vertical rides, with all rides being equally popular.
Der durchgedrehte Wirbelsturm
Also from Zierer, the Kontiki Der durchgedrehte Wirbelsturm moved into the park in 2019. This is a rotating swing on rails that causes a lot of excitement – especially for the smaller guests of the family park.
Like hardly any other ride before it, the Zamperla NebulaZ is taking the theme park world by storm, including the Familypark in 2021. The visually stunning ride offers a wild ride that is, however, very family-friendly.
Intamin’s Biberburg log flume is the biggest ever attraction in the park’s history. Instead of being built somewhere on the edge of the park, the ride is located in the middle of the theme park’s farm area and therefore looks as if the ride, which opened in 2022, had always been there. The log flume is equipped with all kinds of technical gimmicks. For example, there is a clever switch track that allows you to gently enter or exit without a noticeable jolt, and a vertical lift that takes passengers up to a height of 17 metres.
The ride in the spacious boats begins immediately with a short shot into the cool water. Well moistened, we then enter the Biberburg Zentrale, where a small dark ride section awaits us. Back in daylight, we bob along the canal for a while and enjoy the view of the upcoming journey before we enter a sawmill. However, instead of being reduced to rubble, we quickly leave the mill in reverse and immediately descend the second shot. After a few bends, the path leads us below the last shot, where the vertical lift is waiting for us. Having reached the starting height of 17m, we race down the big drop and immediately over a hill, which leads us into the final water pool. Well soaked, the return to the station follows.
The Biberburg is a really nice log flume ride. The integration into the existing themed area and the clever use of the terrain speak for themselves. Despite the three drops, the ride’s level of wetness is manageable. Unfortunately, the final hill lacks a bit of airtime; a slight lift-off on the hill would have made this really good flume ride an even better one. All in all, the Biberburg is a very successful novelty for the Familypark.
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