28 March to 19 April 2015
Reviewed by Gemma Ingham
My family and I visited Stockeld Park in Wetherby, Yorkshire on a beautiful sunny April day for the Easter Adventure and had a lovely time. The park is located not far from the A1(M) and is very easy to find with plenty of signs directing you there. Parking was easy and it was quick and hassle free to get our tickets. We had a day pass that basically allows you to do everything within the fee except go on the electric scooter trail that carries a separate charge.
We started off in a large central area from where you can access all of the park. My 2 and a half year old chose to walk around the Enchanted Forest first of all, so off we went to start our magical interactive walk.
The Enchanted Forest is a beautiful serene forest walk filled with interactive sculptures, statues and musical installations. As it is the Easter adventure at Stockeld Park we had been given a little sheet with things to do like find rabbit statues hidden around the forest or find eggs and answer clues. It makes the experience slightly different if you have visited before.
Throughout the Enchanted Forest are a few play areas. One I would say is for older children as it involves climbing on nets and ropes, but the others are suitable for all ages. My daughter’s favourite was a Noah’s Ark themed playground that is basically a gigantic sandpit with boats to climb in and on, slides, wooden animals to climb on and swings. We spent at least an hour in this playground alone.
My daughter loved the interactive musical installations on the walk such as the huge xylophone, and particularly liked running over the bridge while a troll voice spoke to us from underneath it. The walk really captures children’s imaginations and references numerous fairy tales along the way.
After the Enchanted Forest we went inside the Woodland Café to use the toilets where we came across some indoor activities such as a giant inflatable bouncing pillow, a huge bouncy castle and a play house. It was a beautiful day outside so there was no need to play inside but it’s good that this is available so you have somewhere to keep the kids occupied should you encounter bad weather. Based within the gift shop is also a craft area that would be useful for rainy days to keep the kids entertained and dry.
We also visited the Ice cream parlour, which is priced very reasonably considering how lovely the ice cream is. We sat outside on the picnic benches to relax a while. The benches are situated in a large expanse of grassed area which is perfect for letting the kids run off some energy and has a couple of football nets set up.
We then made our way to a farm themed play area where my daughter could climb onto good quality wooden tractors, pretend to drive them, and go down the slides. In this area is also a very, very large inflatable slide, outdoor bouncing pillow and go kart track, all of which were a bit too old for my toddler to go on but seemed to be well used by slightly older children.
We moved on to the electric scooter rides. The scooter trail runs the same course as the enchanted forest but is separated by barriers. You ride round in a group with 2 staff members at the front and back so feel safe you would have help if something went wrong. Some scooters have little seats so that a smaller child can ride with a parent, while older children can ride on their own. Everyone has to do a small figure of 8 practice run before allowed to set off on the scooter trail.
Finally we tackled the maze. Following the Easter theme, there were sheep scattered throughout the maze with a letter on each that you could collect to fill in the activity sheet. There is a diagram of the maze before you enter and a few other diagrams scattered around it showing the way out, but it’s quite a large maze so still takes a bit of effort to get around it even having the diagrams there!
Throughout the maze you come across a bridge, a tower you can climb up and get a really good view of the whole of the park, a globe, two Tardis’, musical instruments and there are various voices that speak to you as you move through. We found our way out within 30 minutes but there were other people that seemed quite lost!
We were shattered after our day so decided to visit the gift shop and go home. There was a roller skating rink situated in the central part of the park that we chose not to try as we were too tired but everyone on the rink seemed to be having a blast! The gift shop had all the usual things you’d expect for sale in it along with some really yummy sweets, and I found it quite reasonably priced.
All of the staff members we encountered throughout our visit were friendly and professional and the grounds of the attraction are well maintained, modern and very, very clean. Stockeld Park is definitely a quality attraction for families of all ages and I would highly recommend it. I will certainly be visiting again and again.
Tickets cost £12 (individual day pass), £42 (family day pass) – excludes electric scooters (£5 per circuit).
For more information or to book tickets visit www.stockeldpark.co.uk.
Stockeld Park, Wetherby, Yorkshire, LS22 4AN | 01937 586333