THEY SAY: Derbyshire’s Best Family Day Out. The wide range of rides and attractions makes Gullivers Kingdom one of the best theme parks for children in the UK.
WE SAY: Fab day out. Great family feel to the park. Good value for money too.
IF you want a theme park without the teenage crowd, Gullivers Kingdom is for you. There’s three parks across the country and so far we’ve only sampled the one in Matlock Bath. However we love the family-feel about the place and will definitely make a trip to the others in Warrington and Milton Keynes.
The family theme park is aimed at children aged between three and 13 so was perfect for our party which included children from the age of two to nine. It’s very family orientated, there are no bars and no alcohol is permitted. Unlike other large theme parks, you won’t come across groups of teenagers, as not one guest who isn’t part of a family can enter.
There’s everything from teacups and a pirate ship to a log flume and rollercoasters.
I didn’t have to pay for my two-year-old daughter Jasmine, as those shorter than 90cm go free, yet she could still go on 11 of 23 rides and enjoy all of the shows, play areas and interactive experiences.
For Oliver (four) and myself, tickets totaled £30, which was brilliant value for money for a full day out. I spent more at Hull Fair the week before, within the hour!
My son loved Western World, where you can explore little buildings, including a bank, a church and a jail. He also loved operating the diggers, which surprisingly didn’t need extra money to operate.
It also has to be said that the staff on each and every ride were friendly and helpful – with one staff member even charging my phone for me. (Can’t be without it too long or I come out in a rash!)
The theme park is set on a hill, so you do need a bit of energy to get around it, but it offers amazing views over Matlock and was probably the only form of exercise I got in 2015!
TIP: There’s a chairlift and a travellator and you can get your pram on both to make the uphill sections easier.
The other added bonus is car parking is free.
If you enter your child’s height here, you can see if there are any ride restrictions for them before you go.
I was in two minds whether to allow my children on the log flume or not. They’re only four and two, but they wanted to go on so we gave it a go. It was lovely at first on the flat stretches – but as soon as we made our way up I knew it was a bit of a mistake! Lets just say we only went on it once!
There isn’t a hotel on site at Matlock Bath. We decided to stay over and make a weekend of it. We chose the Bateman’s Mill Hotel, just a 20 minute-drive from the park.
A warm and friendly welcome awaited us when we checked in at the 18th-century converted mill, and our massive family room was really comfortable.
The next day, we enjoyed a full English breakfast before setting off back home. Staying over turned a day out into a memorable weekend away.
Need to know…
LOCATION: Temple Walk, Matlock Bath, Derbyshire, DE4 3PG
OPEN: March to December, excluding November.
PRICES: Children measuring under 90cm go free. £15 if booked online for those taller than 90cm.
- Wheelchair hire
- Cash point
- Dedicated smoking areas
- Mother’s feeding room
- Microwave facilities in the restuarants
- Baby change rooms in each area of the park
- First Aid point
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