Reviewed by Becky Linsell
My family and I, being my husband, my eight year old son and my almost two year old twins have been to Gullivers World Theme Park and Hotel in Warrington, Cheshirethis weekend. What fun we have had!
We drove there and it was easy to find, being close to the M62 motorway and it was well signposted (with brown signs) both off the motorway junction and the local roads. It is about ten minutes drive off the M62 junctions either 8 or 9. We arrived at Gulliver’s and it was easy to park, there was lots of car parking in close proximity to the entrance of the Park, not like some places that we have visited that you have to park miles away.
We were staying at the Gullivers Hotel which is next to theme park. It has its own car park. We went into the hotel and although it was early, our room was ready for us and they were more than happy for us to check in, which made it so much easier. It was a quick and easy check-in and the receptionist was very pleasant and friendly. She noted that we requested two cots in our room and asked us whether we would need anything else. We were made aware of where the restaurant was in the hotel and when it was open for dinner and breakfast.
Our room was huge! We had a family suite which was towards the rear of the hotel, overlooking the play area. It was decorated in a contemporary style, which was bright and fresh. The room was very clean. It had a king sized bed, along with single bed (with pull out bed underneath it). However the best bit – was the kids’ area. The kids were so excited, as the room had its own children’s tree house themed Den (which had a curtain pulled across to separate it from the main room,) complete with two bunk beds, both of which had their own TV.
Being a family of five we have many a time booked a family room in other hotels – only to be squeezed into something that was half the size as this room and it has been a bit of a struggle to get around. This was not the case here, with the room being so large we could have fitted our double buggy in if we had needed to (and a whole lot more bits and pieces), how refreshing!
In the main part of the room, there was a large TV along with DVD player. I understand that you are able to borrow DVD’s from the hotel if you wish, although we did not have the time during our stay.
The bathroom was gleaming and had lovely touches such as an orchid plant next to the sink, Bayliss & Harding Handwash and Shower Gel. Making it feel luxurious, as well as family functional and practical.
As we took our bags to the room, one of the housekeeping staff who was just walking up the corridor, asked us if we would like some juice and then brought to the room a bottle of orange squash and plastic glasses for the kids. Just perfect, before we headed off to the theme park.
We decided after a quick recharge after our journey that we would head over to Gullivers World Theme Park. It was only a couple of minutes walk to the entrance to the park from the hotel (and that was with two toddlers!) There was a small queue to get into the Park, which moved very quickly.
As soon as we walked through the park gates the kids eyes lit up – they were mesmerised by the show that was on the stage. Singing and dancing with characters on the stage, at the Band Stand. After watching the show for a few minutes, we studied the map of the Park and all commented on what rides we wanted to go on. Having kids of different ages, it is often difficult to find somewhere where there is entertainment suitable for all of the age ranges. However at Gulliver’s they cater very well for children in the age range from 2 to 11.
The park is well sign posted, you get your own copy of the park map on entry and there are of large maps all around the park. Despite the fact that the park is really large, we found it really easy to find our way around. I have to mention also, that we found the park very clean and during the day I saw lots of staff walking around picking up litter.
The park is split into different areas and in each area there are a number of rides to suit all age ranges. The park was quite busy as it was a sunny Saturday afternoon however, we found the queues relatively short and were able to get on the rides we wanted to and more than once in some cases! The rides are clearly marked (as is the map) with the height requirements and whether accompaniment of an adult is necessary.
We went on far too many rides to mention each of them individually; the park has so much to entertain the whole family from water play and sandpits to long flumes and roller coasters. Our personal favourites were the Gulliver’s World Railroad near the main entrance (my two year old boy – loves trains), Flight of the Pteranodon in the Lost World (my eight year old son and my husband both loved this!), Veteran Cars in Alice’s Wonderland (my two year old daughter – who loved the music, the steering wheel and Peter Rabbit) and my favourite had to be the log flume!
We had lunch in the Park, getting sandwiches’ and drinks from the Cafe. It was busy (it was lunchtime) and there were not any tables left at the Cafe but that was not a worry to us, as there were lots of benches around the park. We found the food of reasonable quality and price for a theme park. I did see that were some picnic areas whilst walking around, so for those more organised than myself it is possible to take some food with you.
Having young kids particularly, finding toilets quickly and easily is always important to me, as is plenty of baby changing facilities, as there is nothing worse than having to queues for ages. I am pleased to report that there plenty of toilets around the park (with baby changing facilities,) keeping queues to a minimum.
After spending the day at the theme park, we were starting to flag and so we decided to head back to the hotel. It was lovely not having to drive back after such an exhausting day. The hotel staff were very friendly and made conversation with us and the children, making us all feel relaxed. We were staying over the Mother’s Day weekend and the hotel had programme of entertainment set for the children that evening for those who wanted to take part, card making, a visit from Gully, a film with popcorn and milk and cookies before bedtime.
Breakfast was included in our stay and whilst the staff were friendly and obliging, the food selection was limited and later on the restaurant was very busy, although there was plenty of room between the restaurant and the conference room (which they set up with tables etc…). There were lots of highchairs available too.
It is a family hotel and this is what they succeed at, a great play room next to the restaurant and bar, with a multitude of games for all ages and a play area outside including a small crazy golf area. Quiet the hotel isn’t, but it is full of happy families, with kids and parents enjoying themselves in its relaxed atmosphere.
I think most parents would agree that if the kids are happy, generally you are happy. Well our kids just loved it here, but you know what, so did we! We hope to come back another time – great family accommodation and lots of entertainment on the doorstep to keep us all happy.
Entry Fee into the Theme Park is £17 per adult, £17 per child and free to those children under 90 cm in height. You can also buy a combined ticket for the Splash Zone (next door). Ticket prices are cheaper if you book online 2 days in advance.
Stays in the hotel for the Family Fun Package (2 night’s accommodation, breakfast, entry into Gullivers World and into Splash World) start at £139 per night based on 2 adults and 2 children sharing.
For more information or to make a booking visit www.gulliversfun.co.uk/warrington.
Gullivers World, Warrington, WA5 9YZ