Attraction Review - Winter Wonderland

You know how you know it's Christmas in London? A few thing: the funky Christmas decorations are up down Carnaby Street, the buskers are now belting our their best rendition of All I Want For Christmas Is You and every cynical Londoner is complaining in unison about how shit and gross Winter Wonderland is...before biting the festive bullet and joining the rest of the tourists for an overpriced stein and a sausage. It's one of my fav London Christmas traditions, so this weekend we donned our thickest fur coats and headed to Hyde Park for our first injection of seasonal joy for 2016.

This was probably my fifth or sixth year of visiting, and whilst the place has steadily expanded year after year it was definitely noticeably larger this year. There's an obscene nine coasters here this year, including the world famous Olympia Looping (renamed München Looping for some stupid trademark reason). One plus of it being bigger this year is that it seems the paths have been massively widened to allow a little more breathing space. Despite their best efforts, it was still absolutely rammed during my visit (the place must be an absolute goldmine, I'd love to know what they take in a day!).

That said, the atmosphere was buzzing and it really put me in the Christmassy mood! First things first though, and the main reason I wanted to revisit this year was to get another ride on Olympia Looping (not calling it München Looping, I refuse. Stupid) so I weaved my way through the crowds, parted with an eye-watering £9 and sat my bum back in the seats of the coaster train after just over a year of riding it at Oktoberfest in October 2015. And it's so weird to think that such a legendary sought after coaster is now here, just hanging out in Hyde Park like it's no big deal at all!

I remembered the restraints were a little brutal on the shoulders due to the g-force so I made sure to hunch them a little. And good job too - the ride ops, efficient though they are, are absolute machines with little time for faff and pleasantries: just shove the restraints down and send the damn train! Yh, they're not friendly, but they're a living embodiment of German efficiency.

So again, super weird going up the lifthill and being met with the London skyline instead of the Munich one, and still forceful as ever. Not top ten material for me like many other enthusiasts have been commenting but still a damn good ride. £9 is obscene though, so one and done for me (although I'll probs be back before Winter Wonderland departs again for the year).

Anyway, we spent the rest of the night just faffing around, eating overpriced food and taking it all in. The beer gardens are always really lovely to just hang out in, and I always make sure to take a peek at the ridiculous massive animatronic thing (anybody know if it's made by the same people who made the massive gorilla thing in Hollywood Boat Tour at Phantasialand?) Also on the list for my next visit is the always awesome Alpine Hotel and maybe one of the Ghost Trains (definitely less of these here than previous years!).

So yh, despite the expected pains in the arse like overcrowding and overpriced attractions, we had a really fab time just wandering around soaking up the atmosphere and getting in the Christmas spirit!

Talk later xoxo,