On one of the hottest days of the year we headed off to Pleasurewood Hills in Norfolk.
It’s a bit of an institution in Norfolk – a childhood favourite steeped in memories, so I was hoping it would live up to expectations. It’s 30 years since Pleasurewood Hills opened its doors and so what a great time to take a trip back. I remembered rollercoasters, the smell of fresh donuts and the Pirate Ship. I didn’t want to find, rickety old rides and chip fat!
I really wasn’t disappointed! In fact I will go so far as to say it’s one of the best family days out I’ve had for a long time. The beautiful sunshine did help but it was the well laid out, bright, clean and fantastically fun park that clinched the deal. I was a bit worried about Arthur being too young but there was a huge amount for toddlers – loads more than I expected.
Unlike many places toddlers are not an afterthought and there was loads for him and his little buddy Lily to enjoy. They went went on mini rollercoasters, boat trips, trains and other mini versions of the big rides. There’s also the new Woodies tea cup ride and loads of others for them to enjoy. Granted we should have read the boating lake signs which told us ‘small children may be frightened’ as it involved pirates, strobe lights and darkness but to be honest that was our fault and they didn’t seem too bothered by it all.
We sat on the grass and watched the sea lion show, had an icecream and nothing felt like a rush. There were no huge queues and it was just easy.
I also loved the fact there was loads of places to picnic and every where was clean and tidy. There are also lots of picnic benches and you don’t feel pressured into buying their food which is always a plus.Some areas may have needed a lick of paint but in a way it added some charm. Bit like the seaside towns you visit as a child – all the more endearing for their slightly peeled paint. They’re ploughing a lot of money into the park so I guess it takes time to get round to every part.
I couldn’t resist a ride on the iconic water flume and my friend jumped on another ride – can’t remember it’s name but it was big and fast and swingy! We all went on the train and Arthur loved the whistling and there was a competitive tractor vs motorbike race early on in the day! The motorbike won – well done Lois!
The carpark is huge and easy to use with staff on hand to guide you, not only into the right area but actually into your space – that’s good service and despite going on a busy July day the park didn’t feel packed or crowded.
The only thing I would say is that they could do with another set of toilets along the way and may be a couple more staff. We waited a long time for an icecream despite there not being a huge queue.
I was really impressed, it lived up to my expectations and even surpassed them. The old classics were there together with lots of new and exciting rides and attractions. I want to go back and try out Hobs Pit – billed asone of scariest rides in the UK and opening soon.
I would recommend it to families with children of all ages and I’ll definitely be going back.
There’s loads happening – here’s a taster of what’s new at Pleasurewood Hills this year:
As part of a £3.5 million investment pledge, Pleasurewood Hills has four new rides for 2013.
Hobs Pit - one of the most scary rides in the UK – not for the faint hearted – coming soon.
Pleasurewood Paddlers – the return of the pedalos to Pleasurewood Lake.
Woodies Tea Party - a traditional family tea cup ride.
Moby Dick – climb on board for mariners fun for the youngsters.