Hold tight for a 112mph rollercoaster ride in Ferrari Land at PortAventura World

So who better to test-drive Kids Area in Ferrari Land, Spain, than my two junior thrillseekers?

While I am strapped into Red Force, Europe’s tallest and fastest rollercoaster, my children can get their kicks from Junior Red Force, the park’s newest attraction.

At PortAventura you are a height, not an age.

Theme park workers wield large, chrome measuring sticks. No amount of tip-toeing or hair gel will help inch you through. Safety is paramount here.

As I’m accelerating to 112mph in five seconds and hurtling spacewards, I’m rather regretting being taller than 140cm.

Back on Junior Red Force, my kids Kris, 11, and Bea, eight, are having just as much fun.

They are soaking up the live show featuring a contortionist, trampolining basketball players and a girl who balances upside down by her teeth while spinning hubcaps on all limbs.

Some of the rides are a little too young for my two.

But they loved the 4D cinema ride flying behind a Ferrari as it navigates the best driving roads in the world.

We clipped the Great Wall of China and got our toes wet circling the Statue of Liberty.


They suited up to change an F1 car’s wheel during a pitstop and drove around a mini Maranello — Ferrari’s real home in Italy.

But the best thing about Ferrari Land? By the afternoon, the queues had vapourised and we were free to bounce between the rides without waiting. That’s unheard of in a theme park.

I have visited Ferrari Land in Abu Dhabi and Spain’s version is just as good.

It is closer to home, the heat is slightly more bearable and the queues are shorter.

We stayed for three nights, also taking in the wider PortAventura theme park and the fun Caribe waterpark.

It is massive — on a Disney scale — with themed areas including the Far West, Angkor, China, Mexico and Polynesia.


My daughter loved the Tutuki Splash and Grand Canyon Rapids water rides, a welcome soaking under the Spanish sun.

And my son is still goggle-eyed talking about the corkscrew twists on the Furius Baco rollercoaster.

Begrudgingly, I joined other extreme thrillseekers as they got their kicks on the two other colossal rollercoasters, Shambhala and Dragon Khan, a frightful knot of twists and stomach-wrenching loops.

We stayed at one of the on-site hotels, Mansion de Lucy, a 5H take on a Wild West luxury home.

The kids loved the private swimming pool, drinks and nibbles at dusk. It is upmarket for a theme park hotel — but still very much grounded — child-friendly and has excellent staff.

With some theme parks, you can often squint and imagine them closed and derelict.

Not so with Ferrari Land and PortAventura. I saw staff picking up litter when it wasn’t their job and showing a real sense of pride in the park.

Ferrari Land is so new it has more shiny red paintwork than Katie Price’s make-up bag.

GO: Portaventura

Jet2.com and Ryanair have flights from Stansted and Thomas Cook from Gatwick. Fares from £53 one way.

STAYING THERE: PortAventura has five on-site hotels with prices from £185.60 per room, per night at the Hotel Caribe, sleeping up to four.

Rooms at the Hotel Mansion de Lucy from £442.20 per night.

All include unlimited entry to PortAventura, one-day access to Ferrari Land and discounts for PortAventura Caribe Aquatic Park.

See portaventuraworld.com/en or call 0808 234 3399.

Only ten per cent of visitors are from the UK.

But I reckon that will increase when word gets out.

At theme parks it is difficult to keep everyone happy all the time.

But with the new Kids’ Area, there’s something for everyone — whether you are a Ferrari-loving kid or a Passat-driving dad.


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