Last week we were very fortunate to be invited to Alton Towers with the children, and to say they were excited would be an understatement! On Friday evening we laid out all the clothes, packed a bag full of
bribes car snacks, and planned to set off at the crack of dawn the following day.
And so on Saturday morning we set off, on time for the first time in our lives, and although the weather was a little gloomy, the children were in great spirits.
Until the car broke down. Again.
After our usual wait on the hard shoulder (you seriously could not make this up), the car was towed home, into the garage and we had four very disappointed children to contend with. Thank god for chocolate!
Thankfully my lovely Mum and Dad offered to lend us their car, but due to it only being a five seater sadly Harry couldn’t come. We didn’t tell him, obviously, and he was completely oblivious having fun with my parents , but wow the Mum guilt was tough!! Either way, on Sunday morning we set off again and, even better, the sun was shining!
For those who are unfamiliar with Alton Towers, it is one of the UK’s biggest theme parks located in Stoke on Trent. Not only is it home to some of the biggest and scariest rollercoasters, but also to Cbeebies Land, the most magical place for children with all of their favourite characters and rides.
With so much to see and do, our biggest decision was which ride to go on first!
The girls were desperate to go on the Get Set Go Treetop ride, the best way to see Cbeebies land from the comfort of a tree top carriage.
This is one of the most popular rides at Cbeebies Land and yet we were through the queue and on the ride within fifteen minutes.
The girls were in their element on this ride which, to a four and five year old, is quite high up and my little thrill seekers loved every minute!
New for this year is the Furchester Hotel show and, as one of the girls favourite programmes, we were eager to get in there early.
The show takes place in the Furchester hotel, and there are signs to tell you how many minutes until the next show so that you’re not hanging about for too long.
We were unable to take photographs inside of the show but it was a great experience that had the children up singing and dancing, running around trying to find cookies for the hotels special guest, and watching in awe at the fantastic puppetry and interactive screens. I didn’t even need to ask if the girls had enjoyed the show, their little faces and the sound of their laughter told me all I needed to know!
Another new ride for 2017, is the Go Jetters Vroomster Zoom ride.
Eva is a huge fan of Go Jetters, and as well as being excited about the ride, she was just as excited about posing with the characters!
One of the things I love about Cbeebies land is the fact that there are so many opportunities to take photos and, for me as a blogger, capturing those memories is priceless.
Unfortunately as much as the girls were wiling to pose with the plastic characters, they weren’t quite as keen when it came to the real thing!
After a very short wait we were on the ride, and with four to a spaceship the girls took charge, leaving Lewis and I in the back.
With the ability to make the spaceship go up or down by pulling on a lever, it goes without saying that we were flying high for the duration of the ride.
One of the things we really wanted to do this visit was visit the Big Show Fun Time arena, a brilliantly colourful area where you can watch shows, play games, meet characters and enjoy your lunch.
Each day the show times are listed at the entrance so that you don’t miss out. We were lucky to catch Tree Fu Tom, which the girls really enjoyed.
The Big Show arena is the perfect place to have a sit down, or in Lewis’s case to update his social media.
I have to say that all of the staff at Alton Towers were nothing but polite and helpful, but none more so than a lovely lady who, on seeing that the girls were afraid of one of the characters, sat down beside them to reassure them.
By some miracle she even managed to persuade Megan to get a little closer to them, and even more miraculous, to give them a high five!
Although there are so many picnic spots located in Cbeebies land, we chose to take our picnic over to the lake, where we could eat with a view.
We have never explored the gardens at Alton Towers before, but whilst we waited for our lunch to settle we decided to have a wander down there, and they really are spectacular.
The gardens are so peaceful, and you really wouldn’t believe that something so beautiful and serene was located so close to the noise and excitement of the theme park.
We could easily have wandered around the gardens for hours, although after a short walk the children were ready to get back on the rides.
Whilst Gaz and Lewis went back on the rollercoasters, the girls and I took the cable cars back to Cbeebies Land.
Although my girls are primarily all about the rides, there is so much to see and do that, even without the rides, you could fill a whole day there. Around every corner is something new, and it was lovely to hear the girls excited shouts of, “Look at this!”, and “Watch me!”.
Nina’s Science Lab was a big hit with us, a real hands on experience that makes learning fun. It would also be a great place to duck out of the rain!
Another lovely feature is the Something Special Sensory Garden, where you can walk around, touch and smell the many plants and flowers, and follow the interactive activities.
Anyone who knows Eva will agree, that most of the time she looks distinctly unimpressed, even when she is smiling inside, her face tells a completely different story. So I can’t tell you how lovely it was to see her really enjoying herself – smiling…..
And being silly….
Out of all of the rides, our favourite was definitely The Octonauts Rollercoaster Adventure.
When you’re four and five, the idea of going on a rollercoaster is ridiculously exciting, especially one that goes surprisingly fast!
The girls favourite part was the big blue whale which shoots up water and sprays you on the way down!
When it comes to children, there is nothing worse than standing around in a queue all day, so it was such a relief that we were able to go on one ride after another, never queuing for more than fifteen minutes.
For me as a parent, my favourite thing about Alton Towers is that there is something for everyone. With a ten year age gap between Lewis and Harry, it’s very hard to find days out that cater to him and the little ones. So in that way, Alton Towers is perfect for us, and whilst we enjoyed Cbeebies Land, Lewis and Gaz had the best time in the main park.
I also love that even though he is thirteen, and way too cool for Cbeebies, Lewis humoured his little sisters without a single word of complaint.
After a long and exciting day it was time to go home, and with the children more than a little bit tired and grubby, we said goodbye to Cbeebies Land.
For anyone who hasn’t been to Alton Towers, especially those whose children are big fans of Cbeebies, I would absolutely recommend it. We had the best day, one that we shall remember for a long time, and in the Summer, with a new car and with Harry, we will definitely be back!