Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Tivoli Gardens is a well-known amusement park in Copenhagen, Denmark. The park opened in the summer of 1843 and is one of the longest operating amusement parks in the world. The park was originally known as Tivoli & Vauxhall Gardens (a reference to Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens in London from the 17th to 19th centuries). Tivoli's founder, Georg Carstensen created the park as a diversion from politics. He asked the Danish king, Christian VIII, for land. The king granted him the charter for the park, which was located until the on 15 acres on a fort slightly outside of the city of Copenhagen until the 1850s. Today, Copenhagen encircles the park which now has become an integral part of the city’s way of life.
Upon opening, Tivoli’s collection of attractions included exotic buildings that were designed with a flair for the Orient. They had a theatre, stages for concerts, restaurants, gardens, and traditional rides such as a merry-go-round and a scenic railway. After the sun goes down, Tivoli Gardens lit up the night with illuminations. The most famous illumination is the "Tivoli Globe" which comes in many colors and is a century old. The park continues to have fireworks shows that reflect off Tivoli's beautiful lake.
Nimb is of one of Tivoli's most recognizable buildings. Built in 1909, this building is for park guests who are looking for the “royal treatment.” The building looks like the Taj Mahal but inside park guests will find one really comfy hotel with two restaurants, a bar with a fancy wine cellar, and a business conference area.
Among the stages and theaters park goers can find at Tivoli, one of the best known is The Pantomime Theatre, Tivoli's open-air silent stage. Each and every night, the park presents a silent show about the love triangle between classic Columbine, Harlequin and Pierrot. In 1943, Nazi supporters razed a lot of Tivoli's iconic structures, including the concert hall. Temporary buildings were put up and it wasn’t long before the park was back in business.
Not only well known for their gardens, illuminations, and iconic buildings, their rides are spectacular as well. The park is best known for its wooden roller coaster, a Thompson wooden coaster called Rutschebanen, or as some people call it, Bjergbanen (the Mountain Coaster), built in 1914, but not before there were three other prior versions from 1843 through 1902. It is one of world's oldest wooden roller coasters that is still in operation. A ride operator must control the ride by braking the coaster so the train won't go too fast down the hill. It has been designated as an ACE Coaster Classic.
At one time, the park had the Turmbahn, a Mack Rides wood coaster built in 1921. After years in Copenhagen it was sold. Another defunct roller coaster in the park that deserves mention is Mariehonen, or Ladybird. This 1974 roller coaster was the first Zierer Tivoli coaster ever built and as the model line suggests, it was named after the park. Also built that year was Karavanen (Caravan). This steel sit down coaster was also built by Zierer. Next, Odinexpressen (Odin Express) a powered coaster built by Mack Rides was added to the park. This coaster reaches a speed of 37 mph on its 984 foot long track.
As other parks in Europe have done, Tivoli paired with Bolliger and Mabillard to add Daemonen (The Demon). This floorless steel coaster was added to the park’s ride collection in 2004. It features an Immelmann loop and a zero-G roll among its inversions. Slangen (also known as Kometen), was removed to make the needed area for the new roller coaster. During the holidays, the Jule Expressen (Christmas Express), an indoor powered coaster built in 2008 by Technical Park appears to entertain crowds. This powered coaster is only operated during the Christmas season. It’s an unusual Rocket Reindeer model powered coaster.
The Star Flyer, a chair swing similar to the SkyScreamer rides in the United States opened in the park in 2006. Over 250 feet tall, it was built by the Funtime Company. The ride offers panoramic views of Copenhagen. In 2009, Vertigo, a looping plane ride, opened at the park. Finally, the most recent ride, Aquila, became part of the park’s collection of rides. Built in 2013, the giant swing ride and spinner uses centrifugal force to pull up to 4gs. There are plenty of other flat rides and classic amusement rides among the park’s collection as well. In addition, there are many projects the park has worked on to improve and add to the park. For instance, a hotel was introduced to the park in 2010. It has 402 rooms of many different styles. The most recent is called the Edge, which will revitalize and create year-round activities at Tivoli and the surrounding areas of the city of Copenhagen. The first phase of the project began in 2013. The park also plans to add new rides, shows, and other entertainment so that they keep up with the founder Georg Carstensen’s promise that “Tivoli never will be finished."
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