Beating the winter blahs has taken on a whole new meaning in a former Soviet aircraft hangar turned Caribbean-themed park called Tropical Islands.
The hangar, the size of three-plus football fields, first opened in 2004 south of Berlin. Every year since then, the park has added rides and pools and spas and now a 200-room hotel that’s packing in those chilly Germans.
Artificial sunlight, balmy temperatures in the 80s, drinks with paper umbrellas, waterslides, 13 bars and restaurants, a beach, a rainforest and a miniature golf course keep guests warm, happy and entertained — while the weather outside is frightful.
This little bit of tropical paradise in the middle of Europe also features seven spa zones inspired by different areas of the world, including Africa and Thailand.
A park like this somewhere south of Chicago or east of Pittsburgh might be the perfect February antidote to snow and sleet.
— Gay Nagle Myers