As another one of the
Efteling's gems, Fata Morgana takes rides on a journey through the
mysterious, sinister and yet fairy-tale like world of the 1001 Arabian
The unobtrusive story is being told with
great élan and finds its series of climaxes in a follow-up of a Moroccan
emperor's party, a treasury guarded by a giant, a storm sequence and a
revolving chamber/corridor in which laser beams try to destroy your boat.
One remarkable feature of the story is the fact that it is completely open
to interpretation and thus does not necessarily end well. The storm and
revolving chamber may mean the downfall of the city, but is might as well
mean the downfall of the rider: everyone can fill in the details for
himself and exactly that is what makes a good dark ride even better. The
Efteling dared to show us quite sinister things, without the comical
undertone found in other rides like Disney's Pirates, and it works.
Apart from the excellent way of telling
the story (“a great feeling of thumbing through a storybook” indeed),
the theming is absolutely fantastic. The building, situated on the
lakeside, and the square in front look great and they really set the
Moroccan tone for the rest of the ride (although the queue and boarding
hall are indeed a bit of a let-down). The theming inside is faultless and
every little detail (and there are a whole lot of them) fits in perfectly.
All is lit beautifully and the accompanying pieces of wonderful music
stress the tone of the each scene even more. Plus, to let you escape the
present completely, some scenes even use scents to maximize their effect.
All in all, Fata Morgana is a dark ride
of exceptional quality, stimulating all of your senses and drawing you in
completely. Expect the very best and you won’t be disappointed: being
almost two decades old, this ride is anything but a Fata Morgana.
It is indeed ironic that in a
park where other dark rides are touted as the best in the world, the one
they always miss mentioning is my absolute favourite.
Where it succeeds is in attention to
detail, and an enveloping atmosphere that you don't want to leave. Some of
the scenes are genius in their originality - where you pass under a giant
character is particularly memorable.
But variation is the rides middle name...
there is something for everyone - and mesmerising with it.
It may not be the ride on everyone's
lips, but it's absolutely superb - and if you a connoisseur in lavish and
stylish dark rides, this is most certainly for you.