Theme Parks in British Style

British-style theme parks offer a traditional family day out which guarantees fun for all. Teenagers, and other thrill seekers, will find plenty of high-tech, white-knuckle attractions whilst little ones will enjoy their own less exhilarating but equally absorbing ‘pink-knuckle’ rides and entertainments. This list highlights some of the UK’s best leisure parks together with their most popular attractions.

Legoland, Berkshire

With more than 50 rides and a variety of interactive Lego-built attractions and adventures, Legoland has plenty of fun to keep the family happy. Duplo Valley Splash & Play, a large outdoor water-play experience for younger children, is one of the latest additions alongside the spectacular Star Wars gallery, the build-your-own Lego Hero Factory, and the awesome Dragon Coaster ride. There’s also a chance to see the amazing Legends of Chima 4D Movie Xperience.

Alton Towers, Staffordshire

Seasoned stunt riders will be eagerly awaiting their first chance to get to grips with The Smiler. This new 14-loop rollercoaster (a world first) moves at a terrifying pace accompanied by blinding lights and ‘mind-manipulating’ optical illusions. With 50 more rides available, and a host of other attractions such as The Sanctuary scare-maze and a relaxing Charlie and the Chocolate Factory boating experience, visitors to Alton Towers are unlikely to find boredom a problem.

Thorpe Park, Surrey

Fans of The Swarm, which opened last year, will be queuing to try out the latest twist where the final two rows of seats now ride this winged rollercoaster backwards. Suspended over the track, plunging down 127 feet, and hurtling through a series of near-miss collisions, this rollercoaster ride definitely ranks as a braveheart challenge. With many of Thorpe Park’s other attractions, including the ‘Saw Alive’ horror maze, competing for top-billing in the fear factor stakes, even hardcore adrenaline enthusiasts will be put to the test.

Flambards Experience, Helston, Cornwall

A leading West Country theme park, Flambards has its own high-octane Big Ride Zone where you will find The Shuttle space craft, The Hero rollercoaster, and the dizzy spinning Thunderbolt alongside other less-demanding experiences. There is also Ferdi’s Funland for a collection of more traditional rides, and an indoor One2eleven play area offering lots of creative opportunities. Flambards also has a zoo, a Victorian Village, and a Britain in the Blitz exhibition to explore.

Blackpool Pleasure Beach, Lancashire

Owned by the same family since opening in 1896, Blackpool Pleasure Beach knows what visitors expect from a classic British theme park. This season’s new attraction is the Wallace & Gromit Thrill-O-Matic which promises a four-minute adventure ride through a variety of famous W & G film scenarios. Elsewhere the colourful Nickelodeonland has lots of rides and interactive experiences for toddlers, whilst older children can seek out high-tech rides such as Infusion, a five-loop ride in which they will also encounter a considerable number of whirlpools and waterfalls. If it proves too far to travel, families are sure to find very reasonable accommodation at a hotel near Blackpool.

Chessington World of Adventures and Zoo, Surrey

Chessington has ten different ‘theme worlds’ to explore. Here kids can experience fantasy and dreams in the Land of Dragons and Toytown, or sample the exotic and darker delights of the Mystic East and Transylvania. And, in Egypt’s Forbidden Kingdom, visitors get to ride the wildly spinning Rameses Revenge – getting very damp in the process. The latest attraction is Zufari, an African quest which explores the continent’s ‘extreme terrain’ whilst riding in the ‘ultimate off-road truck’. On the journey, visitors meet live zoo-animals such as giraffe, rhino, flamingo and antelope.

Oakwood Theme Park, Pembrokeshire

Oakwood’s Megafobia, voted third-best rollercoaster ride in the world, is the thrilling centrepiece of the park’s 60 or so rides and attractions. Younger kids will love Oakwood’s latest addition, based on Peter Pan’s Neverland, which contains ten new rides including the fearsome Crocodile Coaster and Hook’s House of Havoc.

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