Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Our Experience of Tayto Park with Young Children ♥

The day after our stay at the d Hotel in Drogheda we went to Ireland's first and only proper theme park, Tayto Park. I have to admit, I wasn't expecting much of the place, having been let down by other family-orientated attractions in the past and well, sometimes things in Ireland are just a bit crap compared to other places I've been, but it was amazing!


We pulled up to Tayto Park on a gloomy and drizzling day and we greeted by a huge, wooden rollercoaster and the distant sounds of people screaming in delight. Tyler immediately stated he wanted to go on it, sadly for him he needs to grow another bit... maybe next time buddy!

Still, there was plenty for him (and me!) to do in the park and off we went eager to enjoy our day out, despite the rain. Jacek and Beau were with us too and I ended up feeling quite sorry for Beau as we quickly realised that there wasn't going to be much for him to do - there wasn't even a baby swing in sight. We got on with it though and he did end up having a good day too, thankfully. I hate having him in a buggy all the time if we're out and about - and on a rainy day too, but luckily the sun came out after an hour or so and he was able to be up in arms in between the showers.

Entry to Tayto Park is €15 per person (children under three go free and if you book online you get €2 off), we were lucky enough to have had complimentary passes from our stay at the d Hotel. We also paid another €30 for all day wristbands for Tyler and I, which I think is a far enough price as this gives you full access to all the rides.

Armed with a map we got our bearings of where things were and where the rides Tyler could go on were and off we went. Almost every ride in Tayto Park is height restricted - thankfully Tyler was tall enough to go on some rides with me and also some on his own.

The area of the park which we explored the most was the Eagle's Nest Adventure Zone, mainly because Tyler was able to go on all of the attractions there either with me or by himself.

We had great fun on the Shot Tower, Rocking Tug (in the lashing rain!) and the Honey Pot Bears (I was feeling a bit sick after that one!) and he was able to go on the Leap Frogs and Carousel by himself.

The park itself is laid out really nicely, with lots of areas to explore and plenty of places to have food or grab a quick treat. We had lunch in The Lodge Restaurant which had plenty of seating available and hot and cold food on offer. Two soups, two sausage rolls, four sandwiches and two drinks cost around €25, which I thought was okay actually for feeding four people. I took a particular shine to the carousel in the park, it was a lovely, classical style one and was by a little stream that goes through the park so the setting was lovely too.

There's so much around the park to keep kids entertained too apart from the attractions. There's the talking tree, which I'm guessing someone mans and can see out from it with a camera to see who it's talking to - imagine the job description! There's also the Vortex tunnel - I think I saw two of these in different parts of the park, the play and splash - bring a spare change of clothes and little towel for the kids to dry off and two playgrounds - one suitable for children under six and another huge one which Tyler couldn't get enough of.

The larger playground really is amazing - for the kids, as a parent you'd really want to have your wits about you with it and there were times when I couldn't even see Tyler due to all the tunnel slides and hideaway areas. There's plenty of seating right by the playground for parents but I honestly couldn't sit down for trying to keep an eye on him. He absolutely loved it though and was raving about the slides for ages after.

One ride which Beau did get to enjoy, and which he really couldn't get enough of (he cried every time it was over) was the Steam Train Express. This was a lovely little train that went around a small part of the park and it stopped at a Wild West themed place. Beau would have ridden around on it all day had we have left him.

We of course had to take some obligatory photos with Mr. Tayto before we left the park. We didn't get to go the Tayto factory as we had a three hour journey home to Cork ahead of us, but Tayto lovers can visit and see where Taytos are made.

Tyler was promised a slushie before we left the park too and we just had to get some in the Mr. Tayto cups. These were €5, which is a bit pricey but it was a novelty and we won't be back at Tayto Park for another few years so we didn't feel guilty about treating ourselves. Beau found them amusing too and that's always a good sign!

Entry to the park comes with free face painting and arts and crafts for kids and this is located in a lodge near the zoo. There was a list of things for the kids to choose from and Tyler chose to be a dragon - and a very scary one he was too!

As the face painting was right by the zoo, Jacek took Beau off for a little wander while I waited with Tyler. The queue for the face painting was long at all though and he was finished in no time. In fact, whilst we were at Tayto Park, we didn't really have to queue up for anything and it was great as it can be hard to keep and excited four year old entertained whilst waiting for rides. I didn't see much of the zoo myself as we had to leave for the long drive home but Jacek and Beau seemed to like what they saw.

We had an amazing day out at Tayto Park and I'd happily go back, I just wish it was closer to home, we need something like this down in Cork! Tyler absolutely loved it and it was great to give him a day out just for him, because lets face it, poor Beau got the raw end of the deal - he did love being up in his daddy's arms looking at everything though.

There were other areas of the park which we didn't really get to do anything in, mainly because of height restrictions, but there's plenty in the park to keep kids happy and entertained for hours on end. I actually wish we could have had more time there. I think it's well worth the money and really is a great day out, maybe not for babies, but for kids three and up it's ideal and we'll be back one day to ride the rollercoaster .

2 comments

  1. Tyler is very brave going on all these rides. We went for Matthew's 4th party last year but he didn't want to go on anything other than the train and the huge playground. It may be a different this year as we have been to Drayton Manor Park at Easter and he went on many rides with us. Though he would never go on his own. xx

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    1. Tyler is an absolute daredevil, always has been. I was the same when I was a child. Aww, bless Matthew, some of the rides are quite daunting. I'd love to take my boys to Drayton Manor some day.

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