A Day Out At Diggerland, Kent

We were sent a complimentary family ticket for Diggerland for the purpose of review. All thoughts and opinions are our own.

We are always looking for fun days out for the kids so when offered the chance to review the nearest Diggerland park, I had to say yes. Whilst I knew it would be much more Jack’s thing, I thought it would be a lovely day out for all of us at Diggerland, Kent. I wasn’t wrong. If I had the foresight, I probably would have agreed to not go in the middle of this heatwave we’ve been having – multiple drink and ice cream stops were needed – but nevertheless we (especially Steve and Jack) had a good time.

As you enter, there are eating areas and a soft play area on the right – these are the only eateries on site although there was an ice cream van further down the site. This is worth remembering if like us you had to keep going back to get drinks or something to eat – it can be a fair old trek from the other end of the site.

Jack and Steve first of all took the opportunity to try some of the digger games they had – knocking down pins, hooking ducks and such like – above you can see them digging out bricks. Jack took Steve on as he was just a little too small to go on unaccompanied but he still enjoyed himself lots – it was nice to see them getting some proper Dad and son time. He then somehow persuaded me to go onto the Spindizzy ride – it obviously made an impact on him as he wrote all about it at school the next week – which spins you around really fast. Jack really enjoyed it, I did too until I got off and felt really dizzy – perils of those kinds of rides though, right?

We then headed down to the other rides and attractions at the other end of the site – more digging for Jack and his Daddy, more driving in that sort of transport. Jack kept seeing more and more things he wanted to go on – and Steve often joined him!

The kids took every photo opportunity they could get too – posing on any digger related item around the site!

Jack even took the class learning owl – and her baby! – onto one for a picture!

We’d had a lot of fun digging and playing and riding and decided to go on a couple more things before we left. We didn’t do the dodgems as they cost an extra charge on top of the fee you pay to get in so we stuck to the rides and attractions included in the ticket price. Jack had a lot of fun spinning around on the Dig-A-Round before deciding to take it easy with me and take in the scenery from up high on the Sky Shuttle. It offers fantastic views of the River Medway of Rochester and its historic, 11th century cathedral and the 12th century castle which you can take in from 50 feet up.

After all those fun and games, it was time to head home and say goodbye to Diggerland. We had a great time – even if it was quite hot and it is very open – and plan to go back again in the future, perhaps with Jack taking a friend. Jack headed to the gift shop and bought something which he and Olivia have been playing with every day since they arrived home.

Overall we had a great time. If you are considering a day out there, I would recommend perhaps taking some drinks or things with you for round the site as it can be quite a walk back to the refreshment centres. Also I’d perhaps make a plan of action of what I was doing round the site as I found we kept doubling back on ourselves as Jack saw something else that took his fancy that he wanted to go on.

With prices remaining unchanged since 2014, I feel Diggerland in Kent is a great option for an affordable day out if you have a child of a suitable age. Jack loved it and really wants to take his friends back and do even more.

The best budget family days out this summer

The summer holidays are right around the corner – are you prepared?! We’re sharing some of our favourite budget family days out, so your summer is packed full of fun and excitement – without spending too much money!

Check out your village or town website

Let’s start really local! Your town or village will usually list a whole host of events you and your family could get involved in – and they’re usually FREE! Free is always good in our book. From summer fairs to charity days, they’ll be all kinds going on over the summer holidays in your local area. Don’t forget your local green areas, too. Local councils can put on free events during the summer holidays that are family-friendly, so check out your local council’s website for more information.

Take advantage of coupon sites

Coupon sites always have fantastic deals for families to take advantage of. Whether it’s discounted meals out at your favourite local restaurant, cinema trips or experience days, you should start your search on one of these sites. They’re easy to redeem and use and best of all? You might end up doing something you’d never thought of in a million years. It’s a win-win strategy.

Take a trip to the library

Free to get in, your local library is the perfect place to spend a few hours reading. There’s usually a children’s’ corner where they can sit comfortably and get lost in a book of their choosing. Reading will help them build their vocabulary and imagination at the same time – perfect for a rainy day!

Invite a tree to tea

The Woodland Trust is inviting everyone to throw a Tree Party. Their free online fundraising pack comes with a variety of activities for you and your kids to play. With downloadable wildlife spotter sheets, tasty picnic recipes and finger puppet cards – you’ll have hours of fun. And it’s a wonderful way to educate your children about the significant role trees play in our ecosystem. (Get your free pack here)

Visit a gallery or a museum

Galleries and museums are usually free of charge (check before you travel) so this day out would just cost you the petrol in your car! Both museums and galleries have new and exciting exhibitions throughout the year –, particularly in the summer holidays. Pack a lunch so you don’t spend out unnecessary money in the on-site café while you’re there. A cultural day out indeed!

Take them for a swim

Many council leisure centres offer free swimming if your children are under the age of 16 in the summer holidays. This is a great activity for everyone to let loose and have fun.

Pick a nearby town to explore

Draw a circle in a 5-mile radius of your house and let your kids pick a local town to explore. All you’ll need for this is your car or public transport. Exploring a town right on your doorstep can be exciting and you never know, you might find your new favourite spot!

This post was written in collaboration with Money4yourMotors – the UK car buying service that comes to you!

Our First Family Day Out At Paradise Wildlife Park

I’ve mentioned before that I am currently an ambassador for Paradise Wildlife Park – I have been gifted with an annual pass for myself and my family so we can enjoy what Paradise has to offer throughout the year. We’ve visited a few times since my ambassadorship started – just before Halloween and we also visited at Christmas time to meet Santa which I shared on social media.

A couple of weeks ago, we decided to take our first proper family day out and we decided to visit Paradise. Based in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, it is just under a 40 minute drive from our house so makes for the perfect escape when we are getting a little cooped up in the house. After a few weeks of me barely venturing outside, I couldn’t wait to get walking round the park and seeing all the animals.

Due to it being out of season, some of the kiosks weren’t open – and because of the avian flu, there were no bird shows – but this didn’t detract from our day at all. We still loved seeing all the animals; even the birds through their protective cover; and taking a look at all the fun things the park had to offer. We actually chose the day that it snowed a little so it was bitterly cold and quite deserted at the park – it was actually quite nice to be able to see the animals and attend animal talks such as the red panda talk without having to battle through loads of people.

Since we last visited, the penguin enclosure has now been opened and Jack really enjoyed seeing them. It was so nice to finally see the area in action that we have seen being created for months now. Jack enjoyed finding out that he was as tall as an Emperor penguin!

Some of the animals chose to hide inside due to the weather and I don’t blame them, it was probably a lot warmer and a lot more comfy than the bitter wind – but we enjoyed the animals we did get to see and Olivia even enjoyed herself, listening to the sounds of the animals and cooing away – when she wasn’t fast asleep from all the pushing, that is!

I can’t wait until Olivia is a little more alert and can really enjoy visiting the park like we do, its such a great place to visit. I’m definitely going to be visiting in Easter – if you’re local, why not pop down too?

Make It A Year To Remember With Merlin Annual Pass | Sale On Now!

I am a Merlin Annual Pass Blogger Ambassador, I was given a Merlin Annual Pass to create this post with my family and I was not paid to do this post. If anyone would like to confirm any details in the post, please email info@merlinannualpass.co.uk

It’s January once more and we all know what January means, don’t we? SALES. Merlin are no different and currently have their annual January sale on for Merlin passes until the 13th of February 2017.  From just £109* per person in the spectacular New Year sale, this amazing offer is one you don’t want to miss out on.

A Merlin Annual Pass opens the door to 32 magical worlds across the UK- wherever you live, you are guaranteed a passport to fun! You can get to experience some of the UK’s biggest and best attractions, including the Coca-Cola London Eye, THORPE PARK Resort, Dream Works Tours Shrek’s Adventure! London, Chessington World of Adventures Resort, Alton Towers Resort, LEGOLAND® Windsor Resort, SEA LIFE Centres across the UK and many more. Not only that, Passholders can unlock special benefits and discounts.

If history is your thing, watch it come to life in re-enactments at Warwick Castle, see some amazing underwater creatures at SEA LIFE centres across the country, visit the celebs at Madame Tussauds in either Blackpool or London or perhaps gaze over London’s beautiful skyline on the Coca-Cola London Eye?

With plenty of new additions coming in 2017, this is the year to make the magic happen! In May, the LEGOLAND® Windsor Resort will challenge guests to become Masters of Spinjitzu at the all new LEGO® NINJAGO™ World where families can join their favourite NINJAGO heroes in a series of training activities before putting their Ninja skills to the ultimate test on LEGO® NINJAGO™ The Ride – something Jack will love!

 The Gruffalo is set to bring a brand new experience to Chessington World of Adventures Resort in 2017! Expect excitement, an awesome adventure and lots of fun. There will also be a new CBeebies Land Hotel at Alton Towers resort, uniquely designed for young families and bursting with music, stories and adventures for little ones to enjoy. Plus, the UK’s only LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre Manchester is re-launching with a Ninjago themed area that little ones will love!  

With a Merlin Annual Pass, you can entertain your children at optimum times of year without any of the stress! It’s time to say yes to fun and creating special lifetime memories!

Premium Merlin Annual Pass holders get priority entry to all of Merlin Entertainments’ UK attractions, automatic membership to the Merlin Holiday Club (an exclusive club with magical treats for Passholders who stay overnight!), discounted entry for family and friends, invites to exclusive Passholder preview events, complimentary standard parking at Resort Theme Parks and a Privilege Pack containing three £5 off Fastrack vouchers** for a single use at selected theme parks and three Share the Fun vouchers where a friend can join holders for £15 each.   

The BIG New Year Sale started at 10am on Sunday 1st January 2017 and will be ending at midnight on 13th February – why not find out more here and grab your pass now?

 

Santa Is Coming To Paradise Wildlife Park TOMORROW!

I am a Paradise Wildlife Park Blog Ambassador and have been gifted with an annual pass in return. From time to time, I will let you know what events will be coming up at Paradise Wildlife Park.

Christmas is fast approaching and as a blog ambassador for Paradise Wildlife Park in Broxburn Woods, I am so very excited to let you know that Santa Claus will be arriving tomorrow from 10.30am (Saturday 26th November) and you are all welcome! He will then be in his grotto at Paradise from 17th December right up to Christmas Eve.  Tickets cost £4.50 for park visitors on top of your normal entrance fee.

santa-with-reindeer

Santa not only delivers to humans but also to all of the creatures at Paradise Wildlife Park too, did you know that? Let’s hope the animals have been nice instead of naughty!

In his sleigh pulled by snow white horses, Santa will be opening Paradise’s Christmas Craft Fayre before joining his reindeer in the Park and taking his place in his magical Christmas Grotto! Don’t forget to check out the Christmas Craft Fayre too!

santa-paradise

You can visit Santa every weekend at Paradise from the 26th November and every day from the 17th December until Christmas Eve. He will be in his Grotto from 11:30am – 12:30pm and 3:00pm – 4:00pm. He’s in major demand though so please book your place as soon as possible. Tickets cost £4.50 each and can be booked now on the Paradise Wildlife Park Website –  and everyone who visits Santa will, of course, receive a present. 

pwp-christmas-tiger

A note about Paradise Wildlife Park

Paradise is an award winning, family run Wildlife Park set in the beautiful surroundings of Broxbourne Woods in the Hertfordshire Countryside. It has been voted Hertfordshire’s Top Tourist Attraction and has a Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence. It is home to over four hundred exotic wild animals and Paradise also offers a huge range of family friendly experiences – On Safari Adventure Golf, Formula Fun, Woodland Railway, Paradise Lagoon, playgrounds, Tumble Jungle and lots more.

They are very proud to be the leading zoo in Europe for animal experiences with over thirty incredibly popular (pre bookable) exotic animal experiences, from ‘Feeding the Big Cats’, ‘Shadowing a Keeper’ and ‘Meeting the Meerkats’ to ‘Tickling a Tapir’! Getting close to the animals and educating through fun and they are deeply proud of its status as an active supporter of animal welfare and conservation.

They have made contributions of over £5,000,000 to conservation projects and wildlife causes in the UK and around the world and are part of the European Endangered Species Breeding Programme with successful African Penguin, Lar Gibbon, Cotton Top Tamarin, Silvery Marmoset & Red Ruff Lemur births in the past year alone. They were also the first zoo in Europe to receive a double Platinum Award for funds raised for the EAZA Tiger Conservation Initiative and are Platinum Award winners for funds raised for the Lemur and Madagascan EAZA appeal and they are an active member of the British, European and World Association of Zoos.