The alpine town of St. Gallen in Switzerland is planning a theme park modeled after Heidi, Switzerland’s famous children’s literature export.
The park, which will be known as Heidi Alperlebnis, is a $98 million (100 million Swiss franc) investment in tourism to St. Gallen. It is expected to open in 2020.
The attraction will be an interactive experience that hopes to fully immerse visitors in the Heidi world. Actors will lead visitors to milk goats, build wooden stools, and meet “locals” in a 19th century Swiss alpine town. The park will also feature film projections and a “3D voyage to Frankfurt.”
The mountainside theme park will be accessible from Tannenboden village via a new cable car. The village is also investing in new underground parking and hotels for visitors.
When the theme park opens, it will not be wholly unique. Heidi Alperlebnis will actually be about 15 miles away from another Swiss Heidi attraction, Heididorf in Maienfeld. That theme park recreates the 19th-century town where Heidi and her grandfather lived in the story and refers to itself as the “original” Heidi attraction.
However, developers told The Local Switzerland that “the new project will not represent any competition to the existing Heididorf but will complement it.” Heididorf already receives about 150,000 visitors per year. The team behind Heidi Alperlebnis is hoping to draw in 200,000 visitors every year.
Heidi, written by Johanna Spyri and published in 1881, is considered by many to be Switzerland’s most famous piece of literature. It tells the story of a young orphan who is sent to live with her grandfather in the Swiss Alps.