Europa-Park is the largest Theme Park resort in Germany, and the second most popular in Europe just behind Disneyland Paris and before Efteling. It is located near the town of Rust, in Baden-Württemberg (Southwestern Germany). The closest big cities are Freiburg and the French city of Strasbourg.
The park's main theme encompasses Europe's various cultural features, stereotypes and landmarks in nations-themed areas. The park's symbols include The European Union's flag's blue color and yellow starsnote and a Mickey Mouse-Expy Mascot, Euromaus◊. Famous landmarks include the giant silvery sphere that houses the "EuroSat" rollercoaster, the panoramic "EuroTower" and rollercoasters such as "Silver Star" note , "Blue Fire", "Wodan" and "EuroMir".
The park opened in 1975, and it is now home to 13 very high capacity roller coasters and can accommodate up to approximately 60,000 guests per day. It counted about 6 million visitors in 2017, 82 per cent of which didn't come for the first time. Rides are built and maintained by the Mack Rides company, which owns the park and builds rollercoasters for other parks throughout the world.
Tropes of the park include:
- Augmented Reality: The "Coastiality" system with virtual reality headsets is available on some rollercoasters in the park, such as "Alpenexpress Enzian". "EuroSat - Coastiality" is themed after Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.
- Charlie Chaplin Shout-Out: Employees cosplaying as Charlie Chaplin's famous Tramp/Charlot character can be seen in the park at times, and during the parades.
- Darkest Africa: The park has its own equivalent of Jungle Cruise.
- The Dead Can Dance: Skeletons in period clothes can be seen dancing at a ball inside "Geisterschloss".
- Dem Bones: Plenty of animated skeletons can be seen inside "Geisterschloss".
- Eiffel Tower Effect: The park features downscaled replicas of some famous landmarks such as Rome's Colosseum (a hotel named "Colosseo"), a Santorini Island-styled village or the Globe Theatre.
- Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: The dark ride "Universum der Energie" mainly features animatronic dinosaurs.
- Fairy Tale: Some dark rides are themed after Western Europe's fairy tales (those of Charles Perrault, Hans Christian Andersen or The Brothers Grimm for instance). The Russian district has a dark ride themed after Russian fairy tales.
- Gay Paree: The French district has Parisian style restaurants, a statue of Joan of Arc and "EuroSat" is themed after French cancan since 2018. Somewhat subverted in that there aren't only Parisian clichés, there's also a restaurant that makes Flammekueche (a dish from Alsace, the neighboring French region to the park) and the dinosaurs breeder of the revamped "Universe of Energy" is an old Alsatian woman.
- The Grotesque: A great many animatronics of the Haunted House fall in this category.
- Haunted House: Europa-Park's spook/horror ride is situated in the Italian district and called "Geisterschloss" ("Haunted Castle" in German). It has prominent Renaissance inspirations, from the outside's architecture to sceneries inspired by Titian.
- Historical Villain Upgrade: The Haunted House is described as belonging to the Medici family. Now someone's got to explain the Frankenstein's Monster experiments, tortures, creepy dinners and balls and so on...
- Horny Vikings: A whole area is themed after the world of Vicky the Viking, which uses this trope a lot. Plastic toy helmets with horns are sold there, and they're quite popular.
- The Igor: This animatronic guy◊ greeting people at the entrance of the Haunted House.
- Jump Scare:
- Used aplenty in the Haunted House, naturally.
- The giant stone head of a Balinese mythological monster that marks the start of the "Pirates in Batavia" dark ride also counts, since it appears in the dark out of nowhere with a thunder sound.
- Large Ham: Most of the park's speaking animatronics speak loudly and dramatically.
- LARP: The Spanish district has an arena that features shows such as Gladiator Games and a medieval jousting tournament.
- Lilliputians: An area and dark ride/rollercoaster are themed after Arthur and the Invisibles. There are oversized plants and Big Creepy-Crawlies inside so guests of the park feel like they are the size of the book/film series' lilliputian protagonists.
- Merchandise-Driven: Many rides dump guests into their themed gift shops.
- Pet Gets the Keys: In "Piraten in Batavia", there was the same scene as in Pirates of the Caribbean, with several prisoners trying to coax a pet into bringing them the keys to their cell. Only it's set in the Dutch Indies, and the pet is a monkey instead of a dog.
- Pirates: The park's pirates-themed dark ride, "Piraten in Batavia", was notable for not featuring the usual Caribbean setting. It instead takes place in the Far East, during the 17th century Dutch colonization of Indonesia, with a pirate raid on Jakarta (known as Batavia until 1942). A German-speaking Pirate Parrot animatronic could be seen greeting guests atop a street lamp at the ride's entrance. The ride was destroyed by a fire in May 2018, then was rebuilt and reopened in July 2020.
- Product Placement: The park is sponsored by brands such as Mercedes-Benz, Gazprom, Milka and Nivea, and it shows with the brands' names attached to some rides and buildings (like the "Mercedes-Benz Hall"). Not to mention the shops of said rides.
- Rollercoaster Mine: "Alpenexpress Enzian", the first rollercoaster to be built in the park (in 1984). The mine that speeding train goes through is named "The Magical World of Diamonds" and features dwarves and Clockwork Creatures, a dragon most notably. The area is shared with a log ride and there's a walking path inside as well.
- Sunken City: "Versunkene Stadt Vineta" in the Scandinavian district. An exhibition with a sound and light city model and a hammy animatronic bearded storyteller that tells the legend of the curse that sank the mythical city of Vineta, the Baltic Sea's equivalent of Atlantis.
- The Last of These Is Not Like the Others:
- Almost all of the roller coasters were built by Mack Rides, except for two. Silver Star is a Bolliger & Mabillard hypercoaster, while Wodan is a wooden coaster created by the American based Great Coasters International.
- The Panoramabahn is this for two reasons: it's built by American manufacturer Chance-Morgan, and the trains are all the company's C.P. Huntington model, which is explicitly based off an American locomotive.
- The Theme Park Version: Each nation featured in the park is represented through recognizable clichés, cultural traits and landmarks, such as chocolate shops and Yodel music in an alpine-looking village for Switzerland, Santorini Island-styled houses, a temple of Poseidon and the Trojan horse for Greece, fish restaurants and a stave Church for Scandinavia, Delftware and windmills for the Netherlands, a statue of Joan of Arc for France, winter-related fairy tales and The Space Race for Russia, and so on and so forth.
- Windmill Scenery: The Dutch district is the Land of Tulips and Windmills, of course.
- World Tree: The "Wodan" rollercoaster is themed after Norse Mythology. Guests enter the ride through the roots of Yggdrasil, the mythical tree that connects the nine worlds in Norse cosmology.