Sunday 5 May 2013

Thorpe Park for all the family

Thorpe Park holds a special place in my heart, I grew up just 15 miles away and thus it has always been there. Granted it was very different when I was a little girl but I have superb memories the Magic Mill, Phantom Phantasia and  late entry tickets a hour before closing time. Fireworks night was always another special time and then in more recent years I have enjoyed taking my young children.

Nowadays Thorpe Park is billed as the nations favourite Thrill park but I'd like to share with you a side of the park that has appealed to my JJ for the last 10 years. I asked him tonight what his favourite memory of the park is and it made me smile when he said it was the 'Storm in a teacup', oh how I remember going on that same ride again and again about 4 or 5 years ago.

Extreme thrills and white knuckle rides
It just shows how time changes things though, as I asked JJ to look at the Thorpe Park website and see what he was looking forward to riding when we go in the holidays and apparently it is all about the extreme thrills now. Near 10 year old's like rides like the looping 'Colossus' and soak-inducing 'Tidal-wave'. All I can say is that I will be taking my 35 year old thrill-seeker brother with me when we go, he can ride the scary ones with JJ and the girls and I will take a more relaxed approach to our day.

The tidal wave, yes the riders are in the middle of that water!

I know my brother will be in his element and with 11 extreme thrill rides to go on he will not be bored the whole day long. I predict we will arrive as the park opens at 10am and leave as we get the desperate looks from the tired staff to please go home! That is unless we decide to try out the new Crash Pad accommodation which is on site at the park. Breaks start from just £64 per person for a 2 day package which sounds like a good deal to me.

Thorpe Park really does lead the way in the UK when it comes to extreme theme park thrills.The new ride for 2012- The SWARM is the UK’s first winged rollercoaster, SAW – The Ride (2009), the world’s first horror movie themed rollercoaster, Stealth (2006), one of Europe’s fastest and tallest rollercoasters and Colossus (2002), the world’s first ten inversion rollercoaster, as well as attractions such as Rush (2005), the world’s largest Speed Swing and Slammer (2005), Europe’s first Sky Swat.  I have to be honest and say they all just fill me with dread just thinking about it but I know for many this is their idea of heaven.

New for this year
OK, so I've already mentioned THE SWARM ride but what I didn't say is that from this year you can now experience it backwards. That's right the last 2 rows mean that you brave it backwards. Fearless riders on THE SWARM won’t know what’s coming as they spin 180° and plunge 127ft into an apocalyptic wasteland, speeding unknowingly towards the wing of a genuine plane wreckage in reverse. And with a terrifying new near-miss that will see THE SWARM burst through the mangled metal of a devastated billboard, THE SWARM is sure to terrify even the bravest of thrill seekers!......  and that firmly counts me out!

So what is there for smaller children?
Whilst younger children like my near 6 year old twins are not Thorpe Parks core target market they are actually still catered for pretty well. We have all had some fun at 'Neptune's beach' before and the girls are up for trying out the 'Wet Wet Wet' water slides this time.

I'm sure we will go on the classic Flying Fish and Loggers Leap.  I must have ridden the Loggers Leap ride at least 100 times, this has always been a favourite of mine.

Flying Fish on the left and Loggers Leap on the right

Having looked at the ride list on the website the girls and I have worked out that there are 10 rides that they can both go on (being just over 110cm tall) and that is plenty enough to fill one day out with two little 6 year olds. JJ being just that bit taller can go on everything as he is over 140cm.

We all agreed we would try out the newly refurbished X ride as this sounds like fun, we are challenged to thrill our senses with a race through light and sound that will plunge us into a mix of intense colour and music.  I think I need to see exactly what they mean, as the photos form the ride do not give much away either -

What does it cost to visit?
You can book directly with Thorpe Park and booking at least 7 days in advance online will save you about 30%, adult tickets cost from £30.24 and children from £23.52 (under 12).

My kids are really looking forward to their visit to Thorpe Park and if we were not already away this May half-term we would have gone then. I predict the weather will be good so why don't you start planning your trip to Thorpe Park?

Disclosure: I have received complimentary tickets for my family to visit Thorpe Park in the summer and as such we are very excited and I was happy to write this and get planning for our trip.  I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest.
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