Enchanted Forest at Europa-Park is Anything but “Grimm”

Posted by Andrea Shockling on Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013

Dwarf City in Enchanted Forest at Europa-Park

It seems that everywhere we turn another fairy tale-themed area is opening at an amusement park around the world. From Fantasy Faire at Disneyland in California to Adventure Park in Sochi, Russia, favorite storybook characters and folk legends are coming to life through new rides, shows and immersive environments for guests of all ages. Recently, Europa-Park in Germany announced a moderate expansion to their Enchanted Forest, featuring additional stories by celebrated German folklorists the Brothers Grimm. Joining the existing rides, shows and walk-through houses will be six new fairy tales for 2013: Cinderella, Doctor Know-all, the Golden Goose, Rapunzel, the Valiant Little Tailor, and the Wishing Table. But perhaps even more exciting, the plans this year pave the way for a major new family attraction, Arthur – the Ride, based around the modern fairy tale film series Arthur and the Invisibles, that will open in Enchanted Forest in 2014.

Sleeping Beauty in Enchanted Forest at Europa-Park

Currently, Enchanted Forest is primarily a spot for younger children and their parents to explore. Tucked amongst the trees in a quieter part of Europa-Park, the area harkens back to the days of pretend with plenty of detailed nooks and crannies and fantasy props. Highlights within the area include Dwarf City, a low-key tracked ride with the Seven Dwarves, and Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, a two-story walk-through display set. The one exception to these more traditional themed environments is the very modern 3D experience in Grimm Library. A magic mirror and talking furniture greet visitors before the show, and interactive 3D effects take guests on an intimate storytelling journey with the Brothers Grimm.

Cinderella in Enchanted Forest at Europa-Park

For the 2013 expansion, Europa-Park added six new fairytale features to the Enchanted Forest. Doctor Know-All appears to be the most extensive addition at this time, with a walkthrough house promising to “answer any question” through interactive components and animatronics. The Wishing Table, part of the story “The Wishing Table, the Gold-Ass and the Cudgel in the Sack,” is a new animated show in the Fairytale House with an animatronic donkey who spits coins at visitors. Cinderella is being billed as an “interactive photo point” rather than a full attraction, where children can put themselves into the story with the three dimensional character displays. These stories and the other new Brothers Grimm characters join the existing cast to further establish a magical environment for visitors.

Doctor Know-All in Enchanted Forest at Europa-Park

Every theme park expansion brings new things to explore, and the fairy tale attractions in the Enchanted Forest will certainly be welcomed by families this season. But we’ll admit we’re already looking ahead to 2014 with the exciting announcement about Arthur – The Ride. In addition to the movie series, Arthur is also the star of a popular 4D experience at Futuroscope. Europa-Park’s Arthur – The Ride will be developed in collaboration with Arthur and the Invisibles film director Luc Besson as part of a significant family-friendly expansion also including a carousel and kiddie drop tower. Currently under construction, Arthur looks to be a suspended coaster-style ride that will definitely be the most thrilling experience in Enchanted Forest.

Arthur - The Ride in Enchanted Forest at Europa-Park

We’ll be watching as construction on Arthur – The Ride continues throughout the season. Introducing this modern fairy tale inspired by the legendary King Arthur to Enchanted Forest will be a great way to keep the attraction feeling fresh. While the classic Brothers Grimm stories set the scene, reimagined classics like Arthur should feel just as at home in this magical world at Europa-Park.

Image sources: europapark.de, latimes.com

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