On Tuesday we visited Flamingoland during a school inset day.
We’ve been to Flamingoland a couple of times over wintertime (we’ve visited open sections including the zoo, a few of the smaller rides, and the swimming pool), but this was our first daytime visit together.
We arrived early. We were third in the queue and let through the gates at 9.30am. We picked up tickets and waited again just inside the park where we were invited to play a free game of horse racing. Boy 1 won this and got a small fish teddy prize. He was very happy. There were meerkats and pirates in costume dancing and building excitement, and then a countdown from 10 to 1 before being let into the rides area.
As it was an inset day, most children were back at school, and throughout the whole day, we never had to wait more than one ride to get on. All the boys are over 1.22m which meant there were only a few rides they couldn’t go on. However, after having a go on Navigator, Boy 2 and 3 decided to stick to smaller children’s rides (hands up in the air all the way :-)). Boy 1 took great delight in trying all the grown-up rides he could, with Dad and I in tow.
I’m a thrill seeker, but since having the boys have mellowed, and rides sometimes make me feel ill and sore. However, I was keen to try new experiences including;
Hero – this is the scariest ride I’ve ever been on. You climb up a ladder and are then tipped forwards into a flying position. There is a cage behind you, but nothing holding you in, so when you twist upside down, it really felt like I could fall. My hands slipped up and down the metal grips due to the sweat from my nerves. At the end of the day, I had to go on again to conquer my fear. This time I really gripped hard with my feet and felt a bit safer, but I didn’t enjoy it.
Pterodactyl – this was the second scariest ride. If just by myself I would have felt less scared, but swinging round at 151 feet in the air with Boy 1 (when my prime role is to keep him safe), getting blown sideways by the wind, pushed way beyond my comfort zone. It was fun watching Dad have a go 🙂
Kumali – a ride going 56mph with four inversions, and dangling feet. Boy 1 and I were sat on the front of this and I really enjoyed it.
Cliff Hanger – one of Europe’s tallest vertical drop ride, this shoots you up high into the air at a speed greater than gravity, and then lower you back down. This was similar to a catapult ride I’d been on with my sister at Blackpool.
Velocity – the UK’s first and only motorbike ride in which you reach 60mph speeds in 2.8 seconds. I liked the broom broom sounds before catapulting off, and felt very safe being locked in tightly.
Mumbo Jumbo – this ride pulls in excess of 4g, a force close to those experienced by jet fighter pilots, and has a 112 degree vertical drop (when dropping, you tip back in under yourself) – this was completely new for me, but didn’t feel much different to other roller coasters I’ve been on.
Flip Flop was the only extreme ride I didn’t try this time. It spins, swings, and has forces of up to 5g.
Although Navigator put the two youngest boys off, it was Boy 1 and I’s favourite ride. It has a 105 ft semi circle track with a 360 degree spinning disk. Looking at it you think it would make you feel sick, but we went on over and over at the end of the day whilst the brothers were in a soft play that Boy 1 was too tall for. It’s comfy and fun after the first go where you think you’re going to fly off the sides.
You can see great pictures and some videos of the rides on the Flamingo land website.
We took a picnic lunch, and the staff were happy for us to collect this at lunchtime and eat it on benches inside – where shows are held on the pirate ship throughout the day.
During the afternoon we had a good look round the zoo, and enjoyed cable car and monorail rides. The boys preferred to spend time in the park rather than watching shows. Later we looped round to try to have a go on the Lost River water ride which starts as a gentle riverboat safari, but turns into a sixty-foot plummet into a plunge pool with resulting tidal wave. Dad and I were pleased that the radios had broken and it had shut down.
The day went so quickly – we could have stayed longer than the 5pm closing time, and if you’ve not been before I recommend two full days to get round everything properly.
The branding and theming of the rides is really well done. I liked the formula one indoor area, including the toilets with tyre sinks. I hadn’t realised from our winter visits that there is a splash park and soft play for younger children. There were lots of places to eat with a variety of foods on offer such as fast food, a fish restaurant, a diner, an eat as much as you like pizza/pasta restaurant, a tea room, a sports bar and a pub. Drinks-wise there were places you could get a Costa or Starbucks.
Thanks to Dad for driving us there and back, especially whilst we fell asleep after spotting rogue sheep on the moors.
Have you been to Flamingo Land? Which are your best bits?
#FlamingoLand #Hero #Pterodactyl #Kumali #CliffHanger #Velocity #MumboJumbo #FlipFlop #Navigator