1 May 2013

I AM an Overcomer!


Last week, my kids gained a new-found love for my blog. Why? Because we got the opportunity to go to one of their "favourite places everrrr" - Thorpe Park.  If you haven't been to Thorpe Park, you haven't lived.  Apparently. 

Before I bore thrill you with the details of our day out, I thought it would be polite to introduce you to our party:
OH: over 40, repressed thrill-seeker

Me: over 40, total wuss

Tween 1: 12 yrs old, 147 cms, not keen on big rides

Tween 2: 11 yrs old, 141 cms, brimming with confidence

The Boy: 8 yrs old, 127cms, adrenaline junkie

As you can imagine, the build-up to this day was huge!  All 3 kids had spent the entire week pouring over You Tube clips, deciding which were the best rides and even writing an itinerary for the day. I, on the other hand, had spent every night dreaming about unsafe rollercoasters and conjuring up excuses for not attempting any of 'The Big 5'!  I spent the 40 minute journey to Thorpe Park in silence; already feeling sick from nerves, the cacophony of excitable voices coming from the back seat wasn't helping.  Once through those gates, there was no going back....

One of the things which slightly concerned us about Thorpe Park, is that The Boy - my adrenaline junkie - wouldn't be able to go on many rides.  I had heard from various sources, that "there is no point in going to Thorpe Park with children under 12 years of age".  How wrong they were!  Although you do need to be a minimum of 140 cms for The Big 5 (Swarm, Stealth, Colossus, Nemesis, Rush) there were plenty of other rides that children over 120 cms are allowed to go on.  He enjoyed: Quantum, Zodiac, X , Tidal Wave - all having adequate thrill-factor (thank goodness!) and on top of that, all 3 children could go on Flying Fish, Loggers Leap, Depth Charge, Storm in a Teacup, Mr Monkey's Banana Ride, Rumba Rapids and their favourite - The Rocky Express.  Almost all of these rides can be enjoyed by children over 90 cms (accompanied by an adult).




There were various places to eat around Thorpe Park, which pleased me as I had decided not to complicate things by trying to organise a picnic in my slightly anxious state: KFC, Burger King, Pizza Hut, Mexican, BBQ, Noodle Bar, to name but a few.  We ate at the 360 Bar and Grill which was perfect for our needs and gave us a place to shelter from the torrential rain which hit us around midday.

So the question I know you're all dying to ask.....did I brave any of The Big 5?!  As we had Fast Track tickets to every single one of these rides, it would have been rude not to try at least one; in fact I had promised my family that I would, so I couldn't let them down now, could I? Having studied each ride closely, even down to watching the people exiting the ride, to guage what level of fear they were displaying, I plumped for Nemesis.  The OH pretty much had to force me into my seat and once in, I did lean over and hiss: "If I weren't strapped in here so tightly, I would be getting off right now"  But I loved it!  Like a giddy teenager, pumped full of adrenaline, I grabbed Tween 2 and forced her to come on it again!
 
And then there was no stopping me.....Swarm was next and of course I screamed "like a girl" (according to Tween 2) but that's part of the fun, isn't it?!  Next up was Colossus: famous for being the world's first rollercoaster with 10 loop to loops, and this one was probably my favourite. Why? Because it felt like the biggest achievement for me - I had finally conquered my fear of rollercoasters!


But enough about me.  Here's what the kids thought.....

Tween 1: "X was my favourite ride because it was fun but not too scary.  Last time I went to Thorpe Park it went backwards and that was the best!"

Tween 2: "I liked Stealth the best (yes, she was braver than I - no way you'd get me on that one!) because it was fast and I liked the feeling of being lunged back into your seat when you go up the hill (0-80 in 2.3 seconds to be precise!). I gave it a 10/10!"

The Boy: "Zodiac was my favourite ride because it went upside down over and over again and it was really fun!"



Any advice? 

Do: Arrive early - the rides open at 10am and don't really get busy until around midday. 

Do: Purchase the rather unattractive-looking rain capes -you will be very thankful for them after riding Tidal Wave! 

Do: Wrap up warm - unless you're going in the height of summer, it's pretty exposed and once you get wet, it's very cold!

Do: Look for deals on entry tickets - book 7 days in advance and you will save 30% on tickets but better still, purchase a bottle of Frijj and you can gain 2 for 1 tickets (visit Frijj on Facebook for more info).

Do: Go to the loo before you arrive - they are pretty scarce around the park.

Do: Ask stall-holders for directions - they are very helpful and the park isn't all that well signposted.

Don't: Wear jeans - my kids told me not to, I went against their advice and regretted it!  You will get wet and jeans will stick to your legs and retain water for approximately 4 hours.




Disclaimer: Thorpe Park provided us with 5 entrance tickets and 5 fast track passes for the purpose of this review.  All words and opinions are our own.




















18 comments:

  1. Well done you for overcoming your fears of roller coasters and the like ! I remember going to Thorpe Park with the school many, many years ago now. I imagine it's all changed since then. I always liked the log flume and the 3D cinema but it's probably all changed now ;0) x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Charlie. The log flume is still there but sadly I don't think the 3D cinema would satisfy the kids' desires these days!

      Delete
  2. Well done, you! Am impressed with your bravery! I know we had the height issue with the kids at Alton Towers a couple of years ago. We said we wouldn't go again until younger son is over 140 and daughter is over 120. They are both way over now, so I expect we will have to brave it this summer! x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alton Towers is our next port of call...Tween 2's birthday is the plan!

      Delete
  3. My Aunt learnt the no jeans rule many years ago. Big man needs to grow another 15cm then.... Glad you had fun x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes the 0.9 m is a minimum. Won't take long!

      Delete
  4. Now that made me smile..... I loved how you were so nervous arriving there but then ended up riding on some of the monster rides and loving it. Well done you - you are a much braver girl than I. Great that there were also plenty of rides for your kids too in the end. What a fab day out! X. (ps thank you for your comment on my latest post - it was lovely).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am telling you, it took a lot of courage to get on the first one!

      Delete
  5. Great review of Thorpe Park JW X

    ReplyDelete
  6. I haven't been to Thorpe Park for years, although my older kids have and they always enjoy themselves. Great review x

    ReplyDelete
  7. Very helpful review, especially in terms of height for the good rides. Also, I wouldn't have thought about the jeans thing. I suppose the pencil skirt is also not a good idea. I've never been to Thorpe Park -- sounds like one to check out!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oh you must! Would love to be the fly perched on your shoulder when you do the rides! That could be quite hilarious!

      Delete
  8. Well done you, I have a new-found even bigger respect for you (as if I didn't have sufficient before)! I don't think I could ever get on a rollercoaster now. Teacups are more my thing. Great review post, Suzanne xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. the storm in a teacups are brilliant. My faves are the static ones, not too much whirring! x

      Delete
  9. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hurray! You brave lady! All these reviews are making me want to go on Stealth actually! Brilliant review and some good tips. Flimsy shorts and a poncho are definitely the best thing for water rides!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Wow! you are a very brave lady. I totally agree on the ponchos, whatever anyone else says. Having wet cold miserable kids is not something I relish, so we made sure we all had a poncho! I know some thing that's being a wuss and you probably saw lots of those hard core adrenalin junkies braving the Tidal Wave in just a t-shirt and crazy jeans! They did regret it after though. I just wish I'd taken photos of the endles rows of dripping t-shirts on every fence and some folks literally ringing out the water from their sodden gear!
    Let's hope I get to meet you at Britmums if you're going? We can compare notes on tweenagers too! x

    ReplyDelete
  12. Typist is not one for rollercoasters. she used to go to theme parks once a year as part of brigade camp - she spent the entire time nervous, and when on a ride would shut her eyes! Unless there was water involved - then she happily went on anything without any fear! Strange hey!

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for reading. Your comments make my day! x

UA-39296960-1