We heard about the “Nowa Holandia” (“New Netherlands”) Family Theme Park located in Elblag few weeks before arrival. We decided to include this place in our expedition plan through eastern Poland. We started our journey on the north of the country, first visiting Malbork, and even spent one day at the sea. Now, our route is going to the east direction. So Elblag was on the way.
Children love to play, and the Family Amusement Park, which was built in Elbląg was a great place to get some entertainment for the whole day. Park is accessible from two sides – main gate is in front of the S7 expressway near Shell gas station and second one is on opposite side. There is also the restaurant with the same name “New Netherlands”. The second entrance is less marked, located on the back of the park – it’s more for the local people who are not using S7 road. As there is two entrance and two ticket offices there is of course also two gates. What is unusual, to go to part of park attractions we needed to go outside to the public road for a while to go to the other side of the park.
The park has some strange rules. It prohibit to bring own food inside. It is rare and strange, we didn’t experienced that kind of restriction in any previously visited theme parks. Fortunately, you can pass entrance multiple times a day, so we could go outside to the car for some snacks. As a result of this rule in general people were eating sandwiches on parking lot. It looked strange. Maybe the reason was to force people to buy food in catering point inside the park. However it should not be done this way.
Tickets were wristbands attached by the park service at the ticket office. It was possible to buy a family ticket, also Large Families card members had a 10% discount. We used it! Regular price at the entrance to the park for a family of 5 was PLN 98. At the entrance we have got a map with all attractions.
Theme park is located in the area covered by the artificial channels which are common around Elblag. The land parts are connected to each other by small bridges. There is an option to rent pedalo and make some cruise through connected channels (requires additional fee).
Few words about sanitary of this park. It was dirty and unpleasant there. First square near entrance had mobile toilets only (not in the building) and also mobile water tanks. Toilets were not emptied for a long time, smelled badly. Additionally water tanks were empty so there were no water at all to wash hands. It was literally a drama. Fortunately, after this first unpleasant surprise at beginning, further was better.
There is a lot of attractions in the park. We were welcomed by a lion and took a photo with him.
First set of attractions was inspired by illusions, and therefore we found:
– Enchanted faucet which pours water, but was not connected to the pipe,
– Mad tunnel,
– Crooked house (a bit too small)
– The illusion of great furniture – huge chair,
– Head on a plate,
– Cabinet of mirrors,
– land of laughter with “pasta” commonly used at the pool playground
We went further. After a while, in the distance, a Giant Lion slide appears. It was the largest inflatable in Poland – 28 meter high slide nominated to make entry to Guinness Book of Records. The children fell into indescribable joy!
Here a small note from the service park: younger kids could use only small parts of inflatable – steeper slide was dedicated to older children. Inflatable is also accessible by adults. We just needed to take off our shoes to get there. From the top of Giant Lion there was a great view of the surrounding area. We could select one of two slides. A large dose of excitement for kids (and parents as well). Next to the slide we had a restaurant and ice cream parlor, benches and tables with umbrellas. Here parents might take a rest when don’t have more energy to play.
It was hard to take kids away to next attraction, we promised to come back here again when we will go to the car.
Nearby is another set of attractions, this Time King Arthur’s manor – Camelot. Here kids could pull the sword from the rock and make some tiny fight. Knights clothing were also possible to wear, however it was very warm in knights helmet. We made some knight fight there.
Next, there was playground with few small inflatables, balls pool and trampoline. We decided to play here at the return. By now there was maze that we wanted to visit first. It was very easy to pass this labyrinth because main route was heavily trodden. Idea was cool, unfortunately walk through took less than 3 minutes.
When we were at the exit of the maze there was a circus where we could take a ride on a pony. Girls had to do that.
Next point was cruise by small ferry (water tram) that took us for a while along the artificial channel. During the cruise we could see Stonehenge replica and Moai Island monuments. It was nice to have such break in walking. Our legs could rest for a while.
When cruise has ended we went to the Monster Island. It was best attraction in theme park. It is rare to feel fear in theme park. During a walk small sensors were activating monsters sounds and turning on mechanical constructions that was laying in the water. Few monsters, including Yeti, were hidden in the forest. Girls believed that they are real. You can watch they reactions on our movie. Only one place had uncovered speaker, all other were nicely hidden. Justine was afraid so much that she didn’t want to cross the bridge while monster laid underneath. Fortunately with parents she is not afraid of anything so we could continue our walk.
Next we reached mini Zoo. Here we discovered very tired animals that was hiding from the sun. One pony was laying on the ground and looks like dead. We noticed that to park service and they didn’t react at all. It was terrible.
From mini Zoo we went to Viking village. It was called nicely but in real it was only one shed that was not accessible at all.
Finally we were going back to parking. By the way we stayed for a while at Gold Mine. Here Kris was trying to find real gold in the sand. There were inserted some special small clods colored by gold paint that looks like real gold. Kids could separate them in the sieves.
Last attraction was Giant Lion again, as we had promised. That’s all. Kids were almost sleeping (pumped out of energy). Mostly because of sweltering heat and amount of attractions. Park service in such hot day put some water sprinkler where kids were able to soak a bit.
Conclusion: Family Theme Park “New Holland” (“Nowa Holandia”) is good place for active rest for whole family. Everyone has some own preferences and it is hard to prepare something universal for everybody. Amount of attractions is so big that sometimes we were thinking it is too much of them. Some of them were not related to other. We are thinking that it would be better to decide to use one theme and try to be the best in this niche. If there is biggest inflatable Giant Lion why there is no other big inflatables? While walking in this park we felt a bit lost what the main theme of the park is.
It is young theme park and we think it will change in future. We hope that it will be change for better.