October 23, 2012, 10:45 AM ·
We started our Attraction of the Week feature last month with a look at Efteling's Fata Morgana. Today, we return to the Dutch theme park to shine the spotlight on another beloved dark ride: Droomvlucht.
Translated as "Dreamflight," Droomvlucht debuted in 1993, Efteling's 12.5-million-Euro response to the opening of Disneyland Paris the year before. Designed by the parks creative director, Ton van de Ven, and featuring music by Ruud Bos (who also composed the music for Fata Morgana), Droomvlucht takes riders through an elaborately decorated world of fairies, trolls, and fantasy landscapes.
You ride in suspended vehicles, a la Disney's Peter Pan ride, through five scenes: Castle Realm, Wondrous Forest, Fairy Garden, Heavenly Strongholds, and Squelch Forest. The ride also features one of my favorite dark-ride effects: a star field. I know, they're pretty simple and relatively inexpensive, but I know so many people who just love them. Let's just put this out there: Every theme park should be required to have at least one dark ride with a star field effect. Who's with me?
Let's take a ride on Droomvlucht [The ride starts at 1:50. The rest shows you the exterior and queue]:
No, there's no plot here - this isn't a narrative-driven dark ride. It's an impressionistic experience - a visit into a dream realm, where one scene leads into the next without explanation, things look a little crazy, then spin out of control at the end, and only your therapist has an explanation. Hey, at least this is a pleasant dream, though, and not some dark, dystopian nightmare. (Don't worry, fans of the darkness, I'll be offering you one of those types of rides next week!)
If you've visited Efteling and ridden Droomvlucht, please consider submitting a rating and review on our Droomvlucht page.