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Gulliver's Kingdom, Matlock Bath

1520drop20tower_3.jpgWINDING GENTLY UP the slope of a picturesque hillside in Matlock Bath, Gulliver’s Kingdom is a family theme park especially aimed at children aged 5-13 years old.

Gulliver’s is bright, cheerful & friendly and has a really good mix of rides, play areas & other activities. There are some height restrictions, but most rides are suitable for most children (and grown-ups too). The park is arranged in themed areas. The Wild West at the top of the site was one of our favourites, and a splash or two on the log flume was quite a nice way to cool off! The Drop Tower nearby shoots you up in the air then lets you fall.

A bit hair-raising, but good safe fun with some great views out across the valley provided you’re not too scared to open your eyes. If you’re after a quieter alternative, the Dodgems, Lazy River raft ride or the Carousel are all good options. We visited on a hot summer’s day and all the water-squirting activities were very popular.

The Switchback Rollercoaster was great fun (though three consecutive rides was enough for me), but I gave the Pirate Ship a miss to let my tummy settle before we let the children chill out in the sandpit and scamper through the Dinosaur Kingdom. There are also special rides
for the under-fives.

The park is a manageable size and you can comfortably get to most of the rides & play areas you want without having to hike far. Fuelled by
donuts and ice cream we were happy walking up and down, but there’s also a moving walkway going part the way up, and a lovely quiet chairlift ride running from top to bottom. There are plenty of food-stops and lots of places to picnic if you’ve packed your own.

At just an hour’s drive away, Gulliver’s Kingdom is an easy and highly enjoyable day out. With over 30 rides, it is also good value for money. If you fancy heading a little farther afield, Gulliver’s also has theme parks at Milton Keynes and Warrington which we plan to explore when we get
chance.

By Nichola Pell

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