Disclosure: We were provided with complimentary tickets for the purpose of this review.
We were invited along to spend a day at Drayton Manor, and had a great day out. They girls have been longtime fans of Thomas Land so they were very excited to be visiting again – and also looked forward to enjoying some of the other rides in the park that they are now tall enough for.
We started our visit with a ride on Winston’s monorail ride, which gives you a great view of Thomas Land and is a good one to visit before the queue gets too long. Exiting through the huge Thomas & Friends gift shop, we headed out of Thomas Land to explore the rest of the park before lunch – managing to catch the balcony show on our way out of Thomas Land.
The girls had a great time going on some rides that they hadn’t tried before, with the Flying Dutchman being a new firm favourite – I shared a boat with Lydia and she loved every minute. Her arms were flying in the air as she squealed with delight on the Buffalo Coaster, and both girls had great fun on the Jolly Buccaneer ride too.
We ate lunch sitting on one of the many picnic benches that are situated along the edge of the lake, having grabbed ourselves four fish & chip meal deals from the lakeside takeaway shop. They were really yummy – and had great curry sauce too – the only negative thing about our lunch was the long queue to be served, and the fact we had to pay typical theme park prices.
Once we finished our lunch, we headed back to Thomas Land to enjoy the girls favourite rides, and of course try out this years new ride – James’s Red Balloon Ride! All four of use loved this new ride with is best described as flying teacups – you sit in the hot air balloon basket which spins on the spot, and then each basket goes up and down, and the whole ride spins around. You can speed up the spin of your basket by turning the disc in the middle.
We were lucky with the weather most of the day, but the skies opened with around 45 minutes to go until closing time, which had the side effect of shortening the queues dramatically! This allowed us to go on quite a lot of rides in the last hour of the day, as guests with younger children who were already starting to flag by then obviously decided to head home.
Even before the crowd thinned out, the queues weren’t too bad throughout the day anyway – especially in Thomas Land where the queue lines are quite short and they can get quite a lot of children on each ride at once.
Both Georgie and Lydia had fun riding most of the rides in Thomas Land, with Troublesome Trucks, Rocking Bulstrode, and Jeremy’s Flying Jets being declared the best rides ever! We even managed a second go on the new James’s Red Balloon ride before the rides closed, and the girls and myself actually had the whole ride to ourselves.
Overall it was a great day out at Drayton Manor; at 4 and 6 years old, our little thrill seekers really enjoy the variety of rides they are able to go on. For younger visitors, there are some tame toddler rides, a fab soft play area, huge outdoor play park, and of course you can also enjoy a walk through the zoo as well.
There are some great deals available when buying tickets online, and you can now also visit VertiGo which is a high ropes adventure course, with a tots version too – for just £2 per person.