What do you look for in a holiday? City sightseeing, a beach break or an adrenaline-fuelled theme park trip? If you’re after the latter then you’re in the right place, as we’ve created a list of the best theme parks to explore within Europe. And, with ferries to Europe able to get you there in just a few hours, the fun can begin even sooner! So, look no further for your run down of the top 10 theme parks in Europe and get planning your next break.



Welcoming you 365 days a year, Efteling is an enchanting theme park filled with a fairytale atmosphere and a wide range of thrilling attractions, ideal for the whole family to enjoy.

Set amongst natural surroundings, you can glide through the magical world of fairies in dream flight Droomvlucht, get lost in the Fairytale Forest or take a ride in the Flying Dutchman. Spend precious moments together during the exciting live show Raveleijn and take in the biggest water show in Europe, Aquanura, or defeat the fire-breathing dragon on the rollercoaster Joris en de Draak.

You can reach Efteling easily from Amsterdam by car or public transport which makes it the perfect day trip for thrill-seekers. But, to get the most out of it, we recommend staying several days in one of the hotel rooms or charming self-catering holiday homes on-site.




If the huge rollercoasters and heart-racing rides are a bit overwhelming, especially for smaller children, then Linnaeushof is the perfect alternative. Europe’s biggest playground is home to pirates’ nests, pedal boats and miniature golf tracks, as well as climbing frames, trampolines and slides. It’s the ideal place for children to be active and let their imaginations run free. Much of the equipment has been modified for wheelchair users so the playground is easily accessible for anyone with mobility issues too.

The water playground is open from May to September and an indoor playground with air carts, mini cars and a playground street is open all year round. A separate playground for toddlers provides fun and games for little ones with the reassurance that they’ll be safe and sound with kids their own age.

Linnaeushof is only a thirty-minute drive from our port in Ijmuiden or a short bus or train ride from Amsterdam. There is no accommodation on site but there is a range of accommodation for all budgets close by.


Amusement Park Duinrell

Amusement Park Duinrell combines thrill-seeking rollercoasters, a huge swimming pool and a harbour with real rowing boats. Little ones can enjoy the vast playground and entertaining children’s shows, while older kids can try the park’s latest rollercoaster, The Falcon.

Adrenaline junkies can ride the rollercoasters such as the Mad Mill, Wild Wings and Dragonfly and water lovers can hit rapids in the Tiki Pool, swimming beneath waterfalls, zooming down turbo slides and through water funnels in this tropically heated waterpark.

Discover characters from fairytales around the park, swing back and forth on the pirate ship, enjoy a spot of mini golf or try out the bumper boats in the lake!

If you’re exhausted after one day at Duinrell, why not book into a ‘Duingalow’, a bungalow on Duinrell grounds and make a trip of it?



Parc Astérix

Less than three hours drive from our ports in Calais and Dunkirk is Parc Astérix, the fun filled amusement park based on the stories of Asterix which has 42 attractions to enjoy.

With rollercoasters, rides and live shows incorporating historic themes from the Romans, to the Greeks and the ancient Egyptians, this is a theme park with a difference. Cling on to a giant discus as it is thrown on Discobélix, spin, zoom and fly on the rollercoaster Oziris and take to the rapids in Romus et Rapidus.

Live performances include magic shows, Roman tales and a chance to meet the famous characters from Astérix. You’ll also get the chance to see dolphins and sea lions at the Théâtre de Poséidon!

With a range of adrenaline pumping rollercoasters, thrilling family rides and attractions suitable for younger children, there’s something for everyone at Parc Astérix. With two hotels on site, including a ‘hanging city’ on stilts, you can stay in the heart of the forest that’s within walking distance of the main attractions.



Disneyland Paris 

A list of European theme parks simply wouldn’t be complete without Disneyland Paris! Explore themed lands, classic rides and gaze at Sleeping Beauty’s castle. Test your sea legs on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride, take to the skies on Dumbo the Flying Elephant or take it easy on the teacups. For the thrill seekers amongst you, try the Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain or the Finding Nemo themed rollercoaster, just two of many rides in the park.  Don’t forget to catch the nightly firework display which lights up the sky with vibrant, sparkling colours all set to a Disney themed soundtrack.

There’s a wide selection of restaurants within the park to choose from, including a Ratatouille themed restaurant, Chef Remy’s, which offers typical French dining prepared by everyone’s favourite rat chef. Take your seat on a giant champagne cork, hang your coat on a humongous fork and sit beneath a huge paper umbrella while you dine in style.

Birthday boys and girls can enter the park for free, and for those after something even more special you can head to Auberge de Cendrillon to enjoy a royal breakfast with a Princess! You can also stay in the park with an array of accommodation choices, including a grand chateaux style hotel fit for a King or Queen!




As well as traditional theme park rides, Futuroscope has a range of interactive experiences to enhance your imagination and sense of discovery.

Journey into space in a 4D IMAX experience with a real-life astronaut, visit the planetarium to see cosmic collisions and set off on an extraordinary 3D adventure onboard Planet Power, which takes you on an interactive journey aboard a solar powered aircraft around the world.

Sharpen your senses in the Journey into the Dark attraction where you are guided along a route cloaked in darkness by a blind guide, experiencing through smell, sound and touch the wonders of the world, from New York to the Himalayan peaks.

Children can become real-life magicians onstage in Illusio – a magical destiny and the whole family will enjoy the spectacular performances from Cirque du Soleil which incorporate acrobatics, pyrotechnics and aquatic effects.

Little ones can get a glimpse into their future at Futuropolis, a miniature city where kids get to be adults for the day which includes an electric car track, an aqualympic stadium and even an airport!

As the only one of its kind in Europe, this unique theme park is well worth a visit!





Europa Park is the largest theme park in Germany and second most popular theme park in Europe. Home to 13 rollercoasters and several themed areas, including Austria, Luxembourg, Ireland, Italy, England, France and Grimm’s Enchanted Forest, there’s something for all ages.

The park can accommodate up to 50,000 guests per day which hints at the massive size of the space. It includes attractions such as Bloody Mary’s Mansion, a horror house with live actors, the Blue Fire Megacoaster which goes from 0 – 100km per hour in only 2.5 seconds and the Enchanted Forest Cinema in Grimm’s Forest.

Little ones can discover the wonderous world of the seven dwarves, while older children can enjoy a game of bumper car football and the whole family can enjoy a range of rides across the park including Atlantis Adventure and Fjord Rafting.

There are plenty of food outlets to choose from too, which are all themed on foods from around the world, and there’s accommodation options nearby for every budget. A host of live shows are performed each day and the park is even dog friendly so your four-legged friend can come with you!




Phantasialand is a park for thrill seekers, with some of the fastest, wildest rides you’ve ever seen. Its main rollercoaster, Taron, has broken four world records, while Raik is a family rollercoaster with sensational speed, and the Black Mamba rollercoaster will turn, spin and shuttle you up and down leaving you dizzy and disorientated. The water attractions include River Quest and Chiapas, which will take you through roaring waterfalls, deep gorges, a 53° drop and will leave you soaked yet smiling.

The park is separated into different areas: 20’s Berlin, Mexico, Africa, China, Mystery and Fantasy, and there are several daily performances throughout these locations, including ice performers, dancers and acrobatics. The best part is that entrance for birthday boys and girls (and adults) is completely free!

The park is only open during the warmer months, from April to November, so it’s worth planning your trip ahead. With a range of thrilling rides, laid back attractions and breath-taking performances, there is something for the whole family at Phantasialand.

Just a short drive away from the vibrant city of Cologne, it’s the ideal place to visit on a short break or holiday to Germany.


Heide Park

Heide Park in Northern Germany has five themed areas: Lower Saxony, Pirate Bay, Transylvania (with an impressive castle), Land of the Forgotten, and Wild Wild West. It also boasts the steepest wooden roller coaster in the world (Colossos) which is not for the faint-hearted, the world’s tallest drop tower (aptly named, Scream), as well as a beautiful surrounding landscape of bright flowers beds, a lake and woodlands.

Feel your stomach drop on the Big Loop, take a journey to the Dragon Cave or go rafting on the river for a family friendly activity. Try your hand at mountain rafting on one of the largest white-waterways in Germany, enjoy a Pirate Show and see if you can avoid getting wet on the log flume!

With other, calmer activities such as sand painting and live shows, there’s plenty to do when the rollercoasters get a bit too much.

You can stay on site too at the Adventure Hotel with themed rooms or in self-catering cottages in the Holiday Camp.


Tropical Islands

You can enjoy a hot climate any time of year at Tropical Islands, which is just a short drive away from Germany’s capital, Berlin. Sand, sun and swaying palm trees will greet you throughout the year in this covered theme park. Slide down Germany’s highest water slide, swim through the luxurious lagoon and bury your toes in the soft sand. Discover the world’s largest indoor rainforest and even take to the skies in a balloon ride! Children can enjoy mermaid swimming, scuba diving and water scooter riding, and on truly sunny days the outdoor area, Amazonia, has a white-water river and area for surfers to test their skills.

With plenty of accommodation options at the resort, you can make your tropical holiday feeling last longer, any time of year.

Take a look at our ferries to Europe, one of the easiest ways to get to some of the best theme parks on the continent.

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