Lovers of history, culture and cuisine have travelled Western Europe to thrill the senses, but there are other, wilder ways to quicken the pulse in the Old World. Along with housing some of the planet’s finest works of art, Europe is also home to some of the world’s scariest rollercoasters, the kinds that weaken the knees and render you unable to focus on any framed or sculpted masterpieces. Here is a country-hopping tour of some of the new thrills in the Old World.
Furius Baco, Spain
Accelerating from O to 84 mph in 3 seconds on a long, flat track, Furius Baco is more speed than elevation. This blazing coaster, located in PortAventura Park in Salou, Spain, propels its riders on either side of a strange barrel-like vessel, and starts with the antics of a wild chimpanzee. To recover, you can holiday in quiet, relaxing, Spanish style.
For thrill seekers who have never experienced the body-twisting force of a double corkscrew inversion, the Goudurix of Parc Astérix in Plailly, France, is one ride to put on your list of must-tries. Once you gather your senses you can explore the more refined cultural destinations of France.
Dragon Khan, Spain
With enough steep drops and inversions to have you questioning gravity, Dragon Khan in PortAventura Park is a big tall ride that offers commanding views of the surrounding area of Salou, Spain. As an anecdote to this adrenaline rush some travellers might opt for a more relaxing Spanish island experience.
The Balder, Sweden
Built almost entirely of wood, The Balder in Sweden’s Liseburg theme park takes people on a swift journey through what appears to be an old construction site, but there’s method to this Scandinavian madness of low beams hoisted precariously overhead.
The Ultimate, UK
Rollercoasters are supposed to be fast and furious, but at six minutes long, The Ultimate at the UK’s Lightwater Valley seems to roll across the breadth of the island like a runaway bullet train. Along the way you’ll reach speeds of 50 mph and heights of more the 30 metres.
Have you ridden any European roller coasters that rival these thrills?