Efteling is a theme park in the South of the Netherlands. It’s the biggest, and most popular park in our country. And it’s one I’m extremely fond of. Whether you’re still in doubt if you should visit it (yes!) or if you want to come fully prepared, these are the 6 things you must know before visiting Efteling!
1. Efteling is about an hour and a half drive from Amsterdam
Most of you will be arriving in Amsterdam. Another great place to visit of course, however, not what we are here for today. If you are staying in our capital, it will be about an hour and half drive to the entrance of the park.
If your driving to the park on a week day, you will encounter quite some traffic. Especially, during morning and afternoon rush hour. It can take up to an extra hour of travel time if you decide to drive during rush hour. So, make sure you calculate traffic jams into your plan.
Another way to travel to Efteling is by public transport. You have to take both a train and a bus to your final destination. This will take about 2 hours, depending on your starting point. It’s not the most efficient way to travel, but it’s a lot cheaper. And a good solution when you don’t want to drive.
Efteling has a car park for a few thousand cars, which can get full on very busy days, but usually there will be plenty of parking spots available. Parking costs €12.50 a day, and the best way is to buy a parking ticket in advance through the Efteling website or app.
2. Efteling is not just for kids
In the Netherlands there is the common misconception that Efteling is a theme park for kids. This is partially true.
One of the most popular spots in the park is the Fairytale Forest. This part of the park is loved by kids of all ages. You can visit the castle of sleeping beauty, see a dragon, a giant, a talking tree, Pinocchio being swallowed by a scary fish, it’s all there and so much fun.
But, there is so much more to explore.
There are dark rides, water rides, a haunted hause, there is even a teacup type of ride. And did I already mention the rollercoasters?
3. They have some of the best rollercoasters in the country!
Did you know that Efteling has a few amazing rollercoasters?
The best one, in my opinion, is Baron 1898, a rollercoaster with an almost 90 degree steep drop straight into the ground. This one is so much fun and should be on the list of all rollercoaster fans.
Another amazing coaster is Joris and the Dragon, a wooden dual coaster, which will make you bounce in your seats at a high speed. During the ride you will have to fight the dragon and beat the other team to it.
Part water ride, part rollercoaster, The Flying Dutchman is another must do on your list. Here you travel on the dark sees at night, when you encounter the Flying Dutchman ghost ship. Now you have to do everything that’s in your power to flee the ship and it’s horrible fate.
The most classic coaster in Efteling is called Python. A steel coaster with several inversions. Not the most exciting coaster in the park, but still a definite must do. It will get your adrenaline running and takes you back into Efteling’s past.
The final rollercoaster is actually the newest one in the park and it’s called Max&Moritz. This is a family coaster, made for kids who want to experience coasters for the first time. Not as exciting as the ones mentioned above, but still fun, especially when visiting with younger kids.
4. One day usually isn’t enough
If this will be your only Efteling visit, one day might not be enough. Especially, when visiting during the busy summer season. The park hours will be extended during those busy times, but so will the crowds.
So, if you want to make sure you can experience everything, ride every ride, see every show, then adding another day to your visit is a good thing to do.
This also gives you a good excuse to stay on property!
5. You can stay on Efteling property
Efteling has one hotel and two bungalow parks for you to choose from when staying on site.
The Efteling Hotel is maybe the most magical. This hotel is located about 5 minutes from the park, and you can even enter through a private entrance. If you have the budget, I would stay in the themed suites. They are amazing. There are multiple princess themed suites, a Flying Dutchman suite, and even a Coca Cola suite. They are expensive, but they are the most beautiful rooms in the hotel. The standard rooms are pretty nice, and luxurious too. Plus, theme park admission is included in your stay!
The same counts for a stay in any of the other Efteling accommodations. The bungalow park Bosrijk is catered more towards families. It even has an indoor swimming pool! You can rent appartments or full houses, whatever suites your party the best. All the accommodations are located approx. 10 to 15 minutes from the Efteling entrance. There is free tram transport available if you prefer not to walk.
Finally, the last Efteling accommodation is also a bungalow park with a large appartment building. This one is more for adults who also want to enjoy the nature surrounding Efteling. Did you know that Efteling is located next to a national park? Very beautiful, and really nice to explore if you have the time.
6. Efteling is open all year round
The final thing you must know about Efteling is that it is open all year round. The most popular time to go is spring, when temperatures are nice, and crowds are still low. Also, late summer, early autumn can be a really nice time to visit. We usually go in June or September, and have sunny weather and low crowds evert time.
During the winter months the Efteling has a small festival called Winter Efteling. It’s a celebration of traditional Dutch winter fun and activities. With ice skating, hot chocolates, and small fires to keep you warm.
Most rides will be open during the winter, with only the water rides being closed on very cold days. The other rides will be open, but keep in mind, Dutch winters can be cold and wet, and most rides are outdoors and will be closed during the rain.
Also, when visiting in the winter, make sure to bring enough warm clothes, and some extra pair of socks just to keep your feet warm. Efteling is fun during the winter, but come prepared!
These were the 6 things you should know about Efteling. Let me know how your visit went!