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“Budget day out for families with plane-mad kids”

East Midlands Aeropark
Ranked #12 of 83 things to do in Derby
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The Aeropark is both an aviation museum and a viewing area where you can study the preserved planes of yesteryear or watch the modern airliners of today taking-off and landing at a growing international passenger and cargo airport. Within the Aeropark there is a viewing mound where the top of the viewing mound is just 170 meters north of the main east/west runway of the airport. The Aeropark at East Midlands Airport is located in the north-west corner of the Airport site close to the village of Castle Donington. It is well signposted from the Airport's main entrance.
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
46 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Budget day out for families with plane-mad kids”
Reviewed December 3, 2012

A windswept field featuring a few old planes might not be everyone's idea of fun but if you have plane-made kids, this can keep you (and them) occupied for hours. On display are Vulcan, Nimrod, Vampire, Lightning and other craft plus a SeaKing helicopter and lots more. Whether you have access on to any of them depends on the number of VOLUNTEER staff on duty (go on the 'open cockpit' or 'air ambulance' days if you want to make sure you see inside a plane or two). Many of the craft are currently being restored and if the person restoring them is around that day they will often talk you through the aircraft's history or let you have a peek inside. The bizarre-looking Armstrong Whitworth A.W.660 Argosy 101 is usually open and there are seats inside and a video to watch. Plenty of information panels give you details of the planes you see and you can usually walk right up to the planes and often marvel at how huge they are!

There is a mound with picnic tables overlooking East Midlands Airport's runway so you can see planes take off and land (take a picnic). The mound is next to the perimeter fence and the airport's security guards and fire truck regularly drive past on their rounds and will often wave at young kids!

There is a hanger with a few displays and a cafe selling a limited and cheap range of teas, coffees, ice creams and sweets but not any 'proper' food as such so take your own!

The entrance fee is minimal - I think it's £3 for adults and £1 for children - so this makes it a budget day out but is best for families who can make their own fun and can find the fascinating in everyday or historical objects. You don't need to know much about planes to enjoy a day out here, just wrap up warm and enjoy!

Visited August 2012
3 Thank Liz B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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176 reviews from our community

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English first
Burton upon Trent, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
235 reviews
124 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
Reviewed December 2, 2012

East Mids Aeropark. I found it very interesting with many displays. a pleasant place for a visit. A must for aeroplane entheusiasts.

Visited September 2012
1 Thank bigjohn2_uk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Derby, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed October 15, 2012

Planes a bit old now that are there but the nimrod is a good addition! interesting for kids, just wish there was a cafe there or something! loads of people go up there to watch planes now you cant see them in the airport, so a cafe would be a great idea!

Visited June 2012
1 Thank kp_editions
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leicester, UK
Level 5 Contributor
61 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“A good place to visit for plane buffs”
Reviewed September 25, 2012

I visited with my daughter (2 years old) as we were due to fly on holiday soon afterwards. The range of planes, helicopters and ground installations is good. The large pieces, Vulcan and Nimrod, attract the eye but you can clearly see and appreciate the smaller items.

The viewing mounds provide a good place to see planes taking off from East Midlands Airport and my daughter found this very good. They are a bit exposed and the larger one could be a bit risky in bad weather.

One point for people with small children is they are likely to get bored, although there was a bouncy castle on the day of our visit which paciifed well.

Visited September 2012
1 Thank Davewilko
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 5 Contributor
50 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Something that could be alot better”
Reviewed September 18, 2012 via mobile

Have been here a few times and everytIme I go I always think the place could be so much better, you can't really get close to the planes and there are steps up to the planes that could allow people to get closer and have a look inside the planes, there should also be a play area for children as they do get bored after you've looked at the planes which takes about 15 mins there's nothing else really to do, also a small cafe might be an idea as there is no where to get a drink or something to eat, could be alot better, shame really.

Thank Burtony
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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