Efteling is set to stir your imagination with its fantasy-themed fun and storybook setting. Immerse yourself in the enchanting Fairytale Forest, where heroes from the pages of your favourite fables come to life. Carousels, toy towns and merry-go-rounds mean old-fashioned fun for the little ones, while daredevils can go upside down, freefall and battle dragons on the roll call of rollercoasters. Steam trains, spinning cauldrons and castles in the sky are all here too.
Once upon a time
Step into the Fairytale Forest to see storybook legends from the Brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Andersen. The Little Mermaid, Pinocchio and Little Red Riding Hood are all waiting in their woodland homes to say hello. You can even peep at Hansel and Gretel’s candy house and wave at Rapunzel in her tower. Even if you don’t speak the same lingo as the Dutch-talking tree, it’s a magical experience that’ll leave you all charmed.
The show must go on!
Keep your eye out for characters, shows and stunts popping up throughout the park. In Raveleijn, you’ll spot villagers trying to defeat the evil count and his five-headed, fire-breathing dragon! Over at Symbolica Castle, Princess Pardijn and Pardoes the jolly jester promise to keep you well entertained. Check out what’s on stage at the grand Efteling Theatre too. The visuals are so spectacular, even the Dutch shows are super easy to follow.
Expect plenty of places to put your feet up for a rest between rides, with milkshakes, pizza, snacks and sweets to hand all over the park. For something a little more theatrical, you can step back in time to sit down for a three-course, medieval banquet. Or delve into a traditional Dutch delight as cook’s mate Polle plates up a pile of his secret-recipe pancakes for you. There’s a Thai-style takeaway, a Turkish kebab shop and an under-the-sea-style eatery too.
Best for big kids!
If you’re feeling brave, Baron 1898 plunges you face first into a mineshaft at speeds of up to 90km per hour! Daredevils will definitely want to ride Captain Willem van der Decken’s water coaster too, before slaying the dragon that guards the double-track wooden rollercoaster. Hold on tight as you escape the Python’s stronghold on the double loop and corkscrew ride, then take on Vogel Rock’s pitch-black track. And it doesn’t end there – you can try to keep your balance in the rotating Cursed Villa and jump aboard the world’s largest swinging ship.
Best for little kids
On Droomvulcht, you’ll take a ride through a secret world where you’ll meet heaps of magical creatures, from fairies and gnomes to trolls and elves. Uncover the treasures of the East with a boat ride through a forbidden city, and step into a carriage to discover Symbolica’s fantasy palace interior. Visit the astronomy tower, glide across the ballroom and float under a night sky full of neon butterflies. Don’t miss meeting Jokie and Jet for a keepsake picture, and make sure you take a spin on the beautiful, 100-year-old fairground carousel.
Explore the park
Open the map to start plotting your own legendary adventure. The Fairytale Forest, a Far Eastern forbidden city or the medieval village of Raveleijn – where will your fairy story start?
Sit tight at the sides as you watch a group of courageous villagers on horseback save the village from the wicked Count Olaf Grafhart. Sword fights, a princess trapped in a tower and a fire-breathing dragon make this show the stuff of fairytales, all right.
Aquanura: evenings throughout summer
Get ready for an epic display as the elements come together to create magic in front of your very eyes. Four giant frogs kick off a moving water and light show set to soul-stirring sounds of classical music. Fireworks don’t have anything on this showstopping spectacle.
While you wind your way through the Forbidden Forest, keep your eyes peeled for the old storyteller. This weary old wise man collects fairy tales from the trees, ready to enchant you with his tales when you bump into him.
Getting to the park
By car, it takes about 1.5 hours to get from the centre of Amsterdam to the park. First, pick up the A2 in the direction of Utrecht. Take the Waalwijk exit onto the A59, then the Waalwijk/Kaatsheuvel exit onto the N261, and follow the signs for Efteling. Or take the hour-long train ride from Amsterdam Centraal to Tilburg, followed by a 20-minute bus journey to the park.