After reading the reviews we almost didn't go, but as it's close gave it the benefit of the doubt.
Went with my 2 1/2 year old and she loved it! The discovery centre was good, had a few things broken but not loads like past reviewers have found, the leaf kick projection wasn't working which was a shame. We found all staff extremely friendly. Lots of people have said it's to scary for kids...i think you need to present it in an interesting exciting way, if you are exclaiming 'wow look a badgers set' or 'look a giant ant...wow' then they are more likely to be interested instead of scared, my daughter was fine going round it all. The treetop adventure is fab, loads to climb on etc although there were some parts my daughter wouldn't go on as she was scared BUT it does very clearly say it's for 4 years and over, so you take your kids on at your own discretion. I think the shrieking bird is scary for kids, but it's nature and wildlife...you don't take your kids here if you don't want them to learn about that.
Outdoors.....the woodlands, trails and walks were lovely, you could never get round them all. I found the areas very clean and well presented (a few signs missing but hey) the barefoot walk was a highlight - again people have said not suitable to young kids but my 2 year old went thru fine and there was a bit at the end to wash your feet. Unfortunately we couldn't find the fairy labyrinth...really wanted to see that, could really do with being signposted better, the map they give you to be honest is not that easy to follow. Lots of wildlife to see. There is an outdoor area for water play, you press a button for water that flows into a bit that leads onto another bit with things to lift etc to let the water through, this was a big hit with my daughter, we spent ages there, she loved pressing the button for the water then watching as it made its way down the stream. There was an actual pump and water wheel but the pump bit was broken, real shame as she would have loved this!
Obviously the train was mother big hit...we went on a few times, it's free and the conductor was very friendly. The outdoor play area was great, very well maintained and loads to go on for all ages, we walked around the waterside lake and it is a beautiful location.
The indoor soft play, which is actually plastic, is a bit tired but to be honest you don't go for the softplay.
Overall we found conkers to be a great day out and I think its worth the money, there is lots that we didn't get times to do aswell. If they ensured it was all working it would be even better. But we will defiantly be visiting again.
Also...the obstacle course thing for the older kids looks fab but that will be for when she's older.
If the management team read this I would like to point out the disabled button to open the main exit doors was broken too.
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