We have a Merlin annual pass so this was on our hit list. Thankfully parking is included with the pass so that wasn't an issue. I'd really been looking forward to going and read all the hype so was expecting quite a lot, we managed to get there on the last day of the Christmas decorations, it was cold and rainy but that didn't overly bother us. I thought that it would appear more festive but it didn't. All the staff in costume were friendly enough playing their parts. The Merlin Tower was alright but I don't think it's worth paying the extra.
The princess tower was advertised for younger children upto 8 years (my son is 5) and I wondered why they were asking if we were sure we wanted to go in, I thought this seemed quite sexist as they only asked us and not others with young girls. As it happens it was a very 'girly' experience of not very bright princess looking for prince in shining armour story, and that's all it was a story. As it happens he really enjoyed it and his 18 month old sister did too, I think it would be one to take the little ones to while the older ones go in the dungeon!
The highlight of the day was the duelling gentleman show, this was done with a good sense of humour for both children and adults and there was the added drama with booing and cheering as well. Well done to them.
If you walk across the walls allow plenty of time and take a drink, it's one way and an awful lot of steps, it's worth it for the amazing views though.
We took our buggy and quite quickly realised we weren't going to use it for most of the day as most places were inaccessible (castle gives it away really) and there weren't many places to leave it, especially in the rain. As it wasn't busy we parked it in the one undercover buggy park and left it there for the day and just used a carrier, thankfully we'd taken it with us.
I'd visit again in better weather to give it another chance as the weather did get colder and windier as the day went on, we gave up on the bird show as it was really windy and they only had one bird out, again I don't know whether this was because of the weather.
Overall it left an impression on us and we want to go back as we're sure we've missed loads but not entirely sure what. If you're going to go don't pay full price as there are always offers and I think I'd possibly look at the two day special offers (I think it was 2nd day for £1) so you're not rushing as there wasn't much on when we went and we were still there until closing. Overall a very mixed feeling.
Needs better signposting for accessible routes and lifts were difficult to figure out in the watermill (couldn't get the doors open for ages)
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.