France Plans ‘Napoleonland’ Amusement Park To Boost Tourism


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Would you go to an amusement park where you could watch battle reenactments and ski through a mock battlefield strewn with carcasses? A French politician seems to think so.”Napoleonland” is the brainchild of Yves Jégo, a former French minister. As the name suggests, the park’s theme will be the famous French military leader. The idea hasn’t gotten off the ground yet (it needs about $280 million in funds), but it is already being projected as a rival to the Disneyland in Paris, The Telegraph reports.

Jégo plans to build the park — which will also house a museum, a hotel, shops, restaurants, and a congress centre — on the site of this last triumph: Montereau-Fault-Yonne, just south of Paris, The Daily Mail reports.

The park will not only be about touting Napoleon’s successes. Attractions will also include a daily reenactment of the 1815 Battle of Waterloo (in which the Duke of Wellington ended Napoleon’s rule in France), with visitors perhaps taking part in the reenactments, a water show recreating the 1805 Battle of Trafalgar (where Admiral Nelson decisive routed a French and Spanish coalition), and a recreation of Louis XVI being guillotined during the revolution – the precursor to Napoleon’s rise to power.

But in our opinion, the greatest attraction will be the ski run, which will take visitors through a battlefield “surrounded by the frozen bodies of soldiers and horses”. 

“It’s going to be fun for the family,” Jégo told The Times of London.

But the rationale behind Napoleonland is more than economic. Despite being one of France’s most decorated leaders and the best-known Frenchman after Charles de Gaulle, there is no national museum dedicated to Napoleon, according to The Economist. In 2005 the government even boycotted the bicentenary of his victory at Austerlitz amid protests over his reintroduction of slavery in the French West Indies. Jégo calls it “rediscovering our roots and our history.”