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7 reasons why Efteling Park becomes the Disneyland of the Netherlands

Every Dutch adult will remember the Efteling with awe. The park is older than Disneyland, and it is said that Walt was inspired by a visit to Efteling, though this has never been officially confirmed. The park is designed in the style of a magical fairyland, with a strong emphasis on storytelling. It’s difficult not to become completely immersed in fantasy while visiting Efteling. At the Fairytale Forest or one of the theatre shows, you can get lost in the world of narrative, complete with fire breathing dragons and live horses.

So here are seven reasons why you should put Efteling on your family’s bucket list.

Efteling park is beautiful

Efteling-netherlands
Efteling-netherlands

Efteling, which opened in 1952 in a forest straight out of Little Red Riding Hood, has kept its original character and natural surroundings. As you walk through the woods, you’ll come across Hansel and Gretel, Pinocchio, talking trees, and enchanted scenes.

Everything has been tastefully designed to blend in with the surroundings, no matter how surreal some of the rides are. You can appreciate its beauty by riding the old steam train around the entire park, or by flying 150 feet above the park on the flying Thai Pavilion, which offers incredible 360-degree views.

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You’ll spend less time waiting in lines.

Efteling-netherlands
Efteling-netherlands

Download the fantastic Efteling app on iOS or Android and connect to the free park wi-fi to see how long queues are in real time, allowing you to plan ahead and spend less of your day in a queue.

If you stay in one of the on-site hotels, you will be able to enter earlier than general admission. We had already been on three rides before 10.30am by combining the two on our recent visit.

You’ll enjoy the food as well.

Efteling-netherlands-food
Efteling-netherlands-food

Many theme parks limit your food options to what comes with your fries. Efteling, on the other hand, has so much great food to offer, as well as a wide variety. There’s something for everyone, from delicious Dutch pancakes and waffles with strawberries and cream to Thai curries – and it’s all reasonably priced.

Efteling park is something for children of all ages.

Efteling-netherlands
Efteling-netherlands

The older rides are also enjoyable. While younger children will be enthralled by dozens of gentler and more traditional story-telling encounters based on Hans Christian Anderson’s fairy tales, thrill seekers will not be disappointed. There are three roller coasters, including the Python and the vertigo-inducing Baron 1898, as well as a cool water flume ride that had my teenage son grinning from ear to ear.

They have hotels to suit every need.

Efteling provides a variety of lodging options. We stayed in a well-designed family room with bunk beds for the kids at the newly opened Loonsche Land hotel, which is a 15-minute walk from the park.

There are also brand new lodges here, as well as the high-end Bosrijk village, which includes an indoor pool, for self-catering.

Efteling park can be combined with a trip to Amsterdam.

Amsterdam-summer
Amsterdam-summer

Efteling is ideal for a few nights. It combines the best of both worlds, with plenty of thrilling rides and a magical atmosphere all wrapped up in a refreshingly authentic and, dare we say, old-fashioned groove.

It becomes even more affordable when combined with a trip to Amsterdam, which is only a couple of hours away by car or train and offers even more magic for both adults and children.

Explore Amsterdam’s canals by pedalo, eat giant stroopwafels at the Albert Cuyp Market, and visit the Kattenkabinet, a gallery dedicated to art about cats with a few of its own furry friends roaming around.

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It is easily accessible from the United Kingdom.

There are numerous options for getting to Efteling, which is about a 90-minute drive from Amsterdam or three hours from Calais. Our preferred route is the overnight Stena Line ferry from Harwich to the Hook of Holland, which takes about seven hours.

The following morning, it’s a short drive from the port to Efteling, and you’ll arrive just in time for the park’s opening. Overnight cabins are reasonably priced and comparable to cruise ship standards, with comfortable beds and their own ensuite bathroom. The food is varied and of high quality, and there’s even an on-board cinema showing the latest movies, as well as a children’s entertainer to get the kids in the holiday spirit.

Maris Lopez
Maris Lopezhttp:////my-lifestyle.co
Hey there! I'm Maris, an American girl who is passionate about adventure, the outdoors and all things travel!
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