March and April see themeparks around Europe reopen for the Easter holidays and the 2017 season, many showcasing at least one big new attraction. The following is our pick for the year, whether you like pulse-quickening thrill rides or gentler experiences.
This year sees this themepark, zoo and aquarium launch its new Gruffalo River Ride Adventure – a worthy replacement for the much-lamented and highly eccentric Bubbleworks. There'll also be new Gruffalo-themed rooms in the on-site Safari Hotel.
The new attraction at this younger kids' themepark for 2016 is LEGO® NINJAGO™ World – opening in May and featuring the interactive 4D LEGO® NINJAGO™ The Ride, Zane’s Temple Build and a climbing wall. There'll also be a second on-site hotel, the LEGOLAND® Castle Hotel, as of July 2017.
An extension of C Beebies Land will delight younger visitors to this long-standing attraction, to include the Go Jetters Vroomster Zoom Ride and The Furchester Hotel Live, as well as a new C Beebies Land Hotel to join the existing on-site accommodation options.
REST OF EUROPE
The French mega-park celebrates its 25th anniversary this year in style, with two new shows and the new Star Tours Reawakens: The Adventures Continue 3D attraction.
This quirky history-themed park in the Picardy region of northern France is introducing a brand-new rollercoaster, Pégase Express, this year, complete with a backwards section.
This themepark of the moving image in the Poitou-Charentes region is debuting The Extraordinary Journey, a 'flying theatre' with a tilting floor, offering an immersive world tour.
The Catalan themepark best known for being home to Europe’s tallest, fastest coaster, Shambhala, is opening its hugely anticipated Ferrari Land in 2017, incluing the highest and fastest vertical accelerator rollercoaster in Europe plus a Formula 1 simulator.
The themepark by northern Italy’s Lake Garda is adding a new Shaman VR rollercoaster for the new season, taking riders into the world of Native American Indian spirits.
Read about our favourite themepark hotels with kids.