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Mundo Amazonia: Exploring Bellewaerde Park’s new themed area for 2024 | Planet Attractions
     

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Mundo Amazonia: Exploring Bellewaerde Park’s new themed area for 2024

Belgium’s Bellewaerde Park is investing €21m in a new themed land for 2024. Erik Huijing visited Mundo Amazonia ahead of its opening next month to get a behind the scenes look at the upcoming addition to the park




Mundo Amazonia will open to the public in March   Credit: Erik Huijing

A lot of hard work is currently being carried out in Ypres, Belgium, where a new themed area for Bellewaerde Park is being built.

The new zone - Mundo Amazonia - is anchored by a previously announced Spinning Rapids attraction from Swiss manufacturer Intamin, with three other attractions also included.

Last week, the park presented these new attractions and the new zone to the press and guests during a tour of the construction site.



At around noon, guests gathered inside the station building of the new water attraction for a short presentation by director Stefaan Lemey and the unveiling of the names of the themed area and its attractions.

The Spinning Rapids attraction has been dubbed 'Amazonia' with the new attraction to be found in the South American/Brazil-themed Mundo Amazonia.

Bellewaerde is investing €21m (US$22.5m £17.9m) in the new land, with the largest share - €14.5m (US$15.5m, £12.3m) - invested in Amazonia.

In addition to Amazonia, a children's rollercoaster called 'Brazilian Buggies' and a children's log flume attraction dubbed 'Rio do Cacao' will also be featured in the land, while the existing log flume attraction 'River Splash' is undergoing a retheming under the name 'Rio do Coffee'.

The land also features F&B options, with a catering point called 'Tropical Take Away' serving South American snacks such as tacos and nachos. For merchandise, guests can visit 'Samba Souvenirs'. The land also includes a new toilet building.



Spinning Rapids (also called 'Spinning Rafts') are a well-known water attraction where guests slide down a large water slide in round boats.

The Intamin Spinning Rapids 'Amazonia' attraction is the first of this type in the Benelux region. The ride also contains several elements that make this attraction a world first.

Among its offerings, Amazonia is the first Spinning Raft where boats are raised twice, after which they slide down by more than 100m (330ft) each.

The second lift is a vertical rotating lift of over 26m (85ft) high, something that has never been seen in an attraction of this type.

The second slide ends with a halfpipe element - something traditionally associated with water slides in swimming pools. This however is the first halfpipe to be built in such a water attraction.

The ride’s station also offers a surprise. Just before rider’s leave station, the boats will make a sudden free fall of 5m (16ft) in the closed room. Overall, the ride has a total length of 540m (1,770ft) with a ride time of around six minutes.

Acting as a family attraction with some thrill content, Amazonia allows riders a minimum of 1.2m (3.11ft) in height to board one of 14 boats, offering an hourly capacity of up to 960 people per hour.

During the press event, the park also provided insight into the budget for the attraction. Of the €14.5m spent on Amazonia, approximately €9m (US$9.6m, £7.6m) is for the attraction itself, while the remainder of the budget goes towards structural foundations, infrastructure, the station, decoration and the queue line.

Lemey also offered an example of additional costs with the water treatment plant for the attraction, with the addition costing around €500,000 (US$536,000, £427,000).



The new themed zone has room for a new rollercoaster, which will replace the Zierer-manufactured Keverbaan, which opened in 1981 and closed in 2022.

In its place, Brazilian Buggies is a children's rollercoaster from Italian manufacturer Zamperla.

With a maximum height of 4.6m (15.1ft) and a maximum speed of 27kmph (17mph), the new addition is the perfect first rollercoaster experience for children, who can ride from a minimum height of 90cm (3ft).

The ride also contains a number of nods to former Keverbaan. The trains, for example, are modelled after a Volkswagen Beetle. In total, an investment of nearly €1m (US$1.1m, £854,000) has been made into the new children’s coaster.

On the other side of Amazonia, work is underway on Rio do Cacao. This mini-log flume attraction from Switzerland’s ABC Rides is installed as a child-friendly version of the existing log flume.

The attraction makes a small loop and includes a small descent. Just like Brazilian Buggies, Rio do Cacao is also accessible to children 90 centimetres tall. For this small water attraction, just under €500,000 (US$536,000, £427,000) has been spent.

On the other side of the land’s main path is the station of the existing log flume River Splash, which was manufactured by Reverchon in 1980. The ride is incorporated into Mondo Amazonia with a new name - Rio do Coffee. As part of the retheming, the ride’s station has been completely demolished with a new one currently under construction.



Bellewaerde Park was originally a natural park but it was only a few years after opening that animal enclosures and attractions were added to the attraction. Over time, landscape, animals and attractions have become the park’s three pillars.

In Mundo Amazonia, extra emphasis is placed on the landscape, with hundreds of trees and thousands of shrubs currently being planted in the themed zone.

To immediately give the zone a green and natural feeling, the park has chosen to plant not only small trees that are yet to grow, but also trees that are already 18m (59ft) high.

The park has chosen to populate the land with local tree species including the Elm for which Ypres is known, as well as Alder, Hornbeam, Maple and Oak. In the spring, Mundo Amazonia should immediately look lush and green, like a rainforest.

Despite housing animals, the park has deliberately chosen not to add any to Mundo Amazonia. Committed to the wellbeing of its inhabitants, Bellewaerde consciously places noisy attractions away from any enclosures. As such, the park is set up with most of its animal enclosures situated in the centre of the park, with major attractions closer to the edges.



Last year, Bellewaerde Park also invested a record amount of €17m (US$18.2m, £14.5m) in two new family attractions, two animal enclosures, a playground and a self-service restaurant. This year that record amount will be broken by €4m (US$4.3m, £3.4m), with Mondo Amazonia part of a larger investment masterplan for the park.

Bellewaerde Park currently attracts around 750,000 visitors per year. With this new theme zone, the park hopes to see approximately 10% visitor growth. In the coming years, with further investment the park plans to grow visitor numbers to approximately one million people annually.

Mondo Amazonia and its associated attractions will open to the public on Easter Saturday, March 30.

Original article translated and republished with permission from author Erik Huijing and Dutch news website Pretwerk.nl. Read the original version here


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Mundo Amazonia: Exploring Bellewaerde Park’s new themed area for 2024

Belgium’s Bellewaerde Park is investing €21m in a new themed land for 2024. Erik Huijing visited Mundo Amazonia ahead of its opening next month to get a behind the scenes look at the upcoming addition to the park




Mundo Amazonia will open to the public in March   Credit: Erik Huijing

A lot of hard work is currently being carried out in Ypres, Belgium, where a new themed area for Bellewaerde Park is being built.

The new zone - Mundo Amazonia - is anchored by a previously announced Spinning Rapids attraction from Swiss manufacturer Intamin, with three other attractions also included.

Last week, the park presented these new attractions and the new zone to the press and guests during a tour of the construction site.



At around noon, guests gathered inside the station building of the new water attraction for a short presentation by director Stefaan Lemey and the unveiling of the names of the themed area and its attractions.

The Spinning Rapids attraction has been dubbed 'Amazonia' with the new attraction to be found in the South American/Brazil-themed Mundo Amazonia.

Bellewaerde is investing €21m (US$22.5m £17.9m) in the new land, with the largest share - €14.5m (US$15.5m, £12.3m) - invested in Amazonia.

In addition to Amazonia, a children's rollercoaster called 'Brazilian Buggies' and a children's log flume attraction dubbed 'Rio do Cacao' will also be featured in the land, while the existing log flume attraction 'River Splash' is undergoing a retheming under the name 'Rio do Coffee'.

The land also features F&B options, with a catering point called 'Tropical Take Away' serving South American snacks such as tacos and nachos. For merchandise, guests can visit 'Samba Souvenirs'. The land also includes a new toilet building.



Spinning Rapids (also called 'Spinning Rafts') are a well-known water attraction where guests slide down a large water slide in round boats.

The Intamin Spinning Rapids 'Amazonia' attraction is the first of this type in the Benelux region. The ride also contains several elements that make this attraction a world first.

Among its offerings, Amazonia is the first Spinning Raft where boats are raised twice, after which they slide down by more than 100m (330ft) each.

The second lift is a vertical rotating lift of over 26m (85ft) high, something that has never been seen in an attraction of this type.

The second slide ends with a halfpipe element - something traditionally associated with water slides in swimming pools. This however is the first halfpipe to be built in such a water attraction.

The ride’s station also offers a surprise. Just before rider’s leave station, the boats will make a sudden free fall of 5m (16ft) in the closed room. Overall, the ride has a total length of 540m (1,770ft) with a ride time of around six minutes.

Acting as a family attraction with some thrill content, Amazonia allows riders a minimum of 1.2m (3.11ft) in height to board one of 14 boats, offering an hourly capacity of up to 960 people per hour.

During the press event, the park also provided insight into the budget for the attraction. Of the €14.5m spent on Amazonia, approximately €9m (US$9.6m, £7.6m) is for the attraction itself, while the remainder of the budget goes towards structural foundations, infrastructure, the station, decoration and the queue line.

Lemey also offered an example of additional costs with the water treatment plant for the attraction, with the addition costing around €500,000 (US$536,000, £427,000).



The new themed zone has room for a new rollercoaster, which will replace the Zierer-manufactured Keverbaan, which opened in 1981 and closed in 2022.

In its place, Brazilian Buggies is a children's rollercoaster from Italian manufacturer Zamperla.

With a maximum height of 4.6m (15.1ft) and a maximum speed of 27kmph (17mph), the new addition is the perfect first rollercoaster experience for children, who can ride from a minimum height of 90cm (3ft).

The ride also contains a number of nods to former Keverbaan. The trains, for example, are modelled after a Volkswagen Beetle. In total, an investment of nearly €1m (US$1.1m, £854,000) has been made into the new children’s coaster.

On the other side of Amazonia, work is underway on Rio do Cacao. This mini-log flume attraction from Switzerland’s ABC Rides is installed as a child-friendly version of the existing log flume.

The attraction makes a small loop and includes a small descent. Just like Brazilian Buggies, Rio do Cacao is also accessible to children 90 centimetres tall. For this small water attraction, just under €500,000 (US$536,000, £427,000) has been spent.

On the other side of the land’s main path is the station of the existing log flume River Splash, which was manufactured by Reverchon in 1980. The ride is incorporated into Mondo Amazonia with a new name - Rio do Coffee. As part of the retheming, the ride’s station has been completely demolished with a new one currently under construction.



Bellewaerde Park was originally a natural park but it was only a few years after opening that animal enclosures and attractions were added to the attraction. Over time, landscape, animals and attractions have become the park’s three pillars.

In Mundo Amazonia, extra emphasis is placed on the landscape, with hundreds of trees and thousands of shrubs currently being planted in the themed zone.

To immediately give the zone a green and natural feeling, the park has chosen to plant not only small trees that are yet to grow, but also trees that are already 18m (59ft) high.

The park has chosen to populate the land with local tree species including the Elm for which Ypres is known, as well as Alder, Hornbeam, Maple and Oak. In the spring, Mundo Amazonia should immediately look lush and green, like a rainforest.

Despite housing animals, the park has deliberately chosen not to add any to Mundo Amazonia. Committed to the wellbeing of its inhabitants, Bellewaerde consciously places noisy attractions away from any enclosures. As such, the park is set up with most of its animal enclosures situated in the centre of the park, with major attractions closer to the edges.



Last year, Bellewaerde Park also invested a record amount of €17m (US$18.2m, £14.5m) in two new family attractions, two animal enclosures, a playground and a self-service restaurant. This year that record amount will be broken by €4m (US$4.3m, £3.4m), with Mondo Amazonia part of a larger investment masterplan for the park.

Bellewaerde Park currently attracts around 750,000 visitors per year. With this new theme zone, the park hopes to see approximately 10% visitor growth. In the coming years, with further investment the park plans to grow visitor numbers to approximately one million people annually.

Mondo Amazonia and its associated attractions will open to the public on Easter Saturday, March 30.

Original article translated and republished with permission from author Erik Huijing and Dutch news website Pretwerk.nl. Read the original version here


 



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