This was our first visit to Paulton's just before the beginning of the summer holidays. We have always found it too expensive to consider going but there was a promotion on their website at the end of June, which made it worth doing. We went for 2 days and stayed at one of the hotels suggested as part of the promo.
Neither my husband nor I are huge amusement park fans, but we were both very impressed by Paulton's. We mainly stayed in Peppa Pig World as it was more appropriate for our 3.5 year old, however, there were plenty of other things to do with him in the other parts of the park. He loved the trampolines and the bouncy castle. He even loved the mini rollercoaster called the Frog, I believe. The wavy slides you go down with a sisal mat was a huge hit! I lost count of the times we climbed those stairs!!
Note: they do not allow scooters in the park.
Yes, there were a couple of downsides:
Queues: The queues were pretty bad when we first arrived at around 11am - especially in the blazing sun (there is no shade in Peppa Pig world, so I highly recommend bringing a good hat on a hot day). However, we noticed that after 3pm, the queues dramatically reduced and it was really easy to go around the different rides with hardly any waiting at all. We found it far more relaxing because we had the luxury of being able to go back the next day. I would certainly recommend going for 2 days if you are coming from far away like us.
Lockers: There were lockers everywhere which was handy and the charge was £1. Fine up to this point, but the £1 is not returned to you if you need to pop and get something from a bag in the locker for instance, so it's not such a great solution unless you plan with this in mind.
Food: This was the biggest disappointment for us. The website boasts a variety of eateries, but unfortunately all that was on offer was a very poor selection of sandwiches, pasta and burgers, all with a very "fast food" feel. The "diner" felt like a Mcdonalds. You would think that in 2013, they would have adopted more of a healthy approach to food and offer at least one nice, sit-down family restaurant. I would strongly recommend bringing your own snacks, if not your whole lunch, as there are not many options available. I also noticed that all the half-way decent looking sandwiches disappear and are not replenished after not long after lunch and people wanting a later lunch are not really considered.
Entertainment: The highlight of our first day was the fantastic clown and my son was desperate to see him again the next day. As he was only on twice and as we were with friends, we weren't able to get back to that area in time. We really wished he could have been on three times as it was high season and the children absolutely loved the show!
The long and the short: I definitely recommend going, but look for a deal to save money on the entrance and bring your own food!!
To the management: Do something about the food!!
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