FERRARI HAS announced the construction of a theme park near Barcelona. Called Ferrari Land, it will cover 75,000 sq m, which will include the fastest and the highest rollercoaster (vertical accelerator) as befits the manufacturer of the world’s most iconic sports cars. The Ferrari-themed resort will have a five-star hotel decorated in the style of Ferrari and will also feature a driving simulator. The resort already attracts four million visitors each year. The sports car maker hopes to replicate the success of its Ferrari World theme park in the UAE, which opened in 2010 when the first F1 race was staged in Abu Dhabi. It is the world’s largest indoor theme park and the first with a Ferrari theme, located near the Emirate’s Yas Marina racing circuit. Anyone flying into Abu Dhabi can’t miss the giant red roof with the world’s largest Ferrari prancing horse shield.
The theme park features more than 20 Ferrari-themed rides, including the Formula Rossa rollercoaster in which you “strap yourself into the F1 cockpit and hold on to your soul”. There’s also the classic amusement park ride of a G-Force tower, the “journey into the heart” of a Ferrari 599 12-cylinder engine, and the Fiorano GT Challenge in which competing Ferrari F430 Spider coasters compete on twisting parallel tracks. The crowning experience is the four-dimensional Speed of Magic fantasy ride.
The other popular auto-themed park is in Germany. The Autostadt—The Amusement Park for Automobile Lovers—is built and run by Volkswagen near their factory in Wolfsburg. With over two million visitors a year, the Autostadt is more than just a car museum.
Visitors will find super-modern architecture, driving tracks for adults and children, boat rides, car design simulation and a display of some world-famous automobiles. One of the most popular features is Driving Tracks, where any adult with a driving licence can drive on a hilly, angled course that covers 15,000 sq m. The only restriction is that a professional driver from Volkswagen must also be present as a passenger. For car enthusiasts, there’s also the CarDesign Studio where visitors can design their own cars.
The ZeitHaus museum in Wolfsburg’s Autostadt is the most frequently-visited car museum in the world—over 50 different brands representing the world of automobiles are housed here. These cars set the standard as far as technology, design, production methods and concept are concerned. They provide an overview of the most important eras in the development of the car.