If you are looking to do something fun this summer with children in the East Midlands, then you must visit Wicksteed Park which is located in Kettering! Wicksteed Park is not only a fun amusement park, but they also offer caravan and camping facilities on 16 acres (6.5 ha) of land right in the heart of the park. This park is packed with a mixture of traditional attractions and modern-day play equipment!
Did you know that there are a lot of free playgrounds around the park if you choose not to purchase either tickets or an all-day, unlimited ride wristband? Of course, if you want to enjoy the attractions, you will need to purchase via their ticketing office or save 15% if you purchase the ride wristbands online in advance! There is also an indoor soft play centre for under-eights (separate fee applies).
The place is well signposted and there were plenty of parking spaces. I was very impressed as the whole park was filled with blooming flowers, and looked very clean and well kept. The park is always open for use and a parking fee applies. Their attractions open from 11:00 am and food outlets open from 9:30am. You can always arrive early in the park before heading off to explore the park and animals.
On our trip, it was raining cats and dogs (typical British summer!) but it didn’t ruin our Zip Wire experience. The Zip Wire is situated near the free playground and is easy to locate. We had to weigh ourselves before we headed off to our safety talk and to put on the harness. As Ms C was under the minimum 30kg, she was not allowed to go on. So it is best to check your child’s height and weight before booking online. We then made our way up to the summit of the purpose-built activity tower before flying down the zip wire! Initially, I thought we would zip down individually but I was delighted to find they have three wires in parallel so all three of us (Mr C, Mr K and myself) could zip down together. It was great fun zipping across at the same time and I later found out that they are the UK’s longest three-line zip wire. Another surprise was that we landed gracefully on our feet at the end of the tower and were greeted by their staff members. This thrill experience is great value for money at only £4.50 per person.
Once back on the ground, we tried a few rides like the Carousel, Lighthouse, Snakes & Ladders and many more! Both of my children enjoyed these gentle rides/slides and they were right up their street.
We then made our way to the Clip ‘n’ Climb which is a separate charge from the normal ticket price. Of course, you can just visit Clip ‘n’ Climb if you don’t have enough time to explore the rest of the park. For this experience, participants have to be over the age of four. We were all booked in and this was my first time climbing! I really debated whether to give it a try and in the end, I did two climbs and called it a day! I found it tough going but all the children made it look really easy! There are 28 different challenges across a range of colourful and unique climbing walls. Both children had fun and enjoyed it a lot! Mr K and Mr C also did the Leap of Faith (extra charges of £2 and must be at least 1.2 metres). They both loved the thrill of jumping and had so much fun!
After a pit stop for lunch, we made our way to their Splash zone and took on boating on the lake and canoeing! The place is so vast with plenty of wildlife like the swans, geese, ducks and peacocks around the 30-acre (12 ha) lake. Mr C was our Captain and he was steering us around the lake. It wasn’t the nicest weather but we had a lot of fun boating around the lake. We then made our way to the self-peddle Monorail! I didn’t expect to have to peddle but it was a great workout for my legs!
Later, both children went onto the canoe in the Children’s lake before heading taking a ride on the train. This is a 2 ft narrow gauge railway which is one of the most iconic features of the park today and its track runs around a large section of the park, taking in gorgeous countryside and beautiful wildlife habitats.
Before heading home, we made our way to the Thrill zone and whizzed around the racers and soared high on the paratrooper! There are three roller coasters and they were all closed due to the heavy rain but it was re-opened in the afternoon as the rain cleared. The weather did stay clear for the last two hours before the closing time and we managed to squeeze in a few rides before the park closed.
There are over 30 exciting rides and activities and with 147 acres of beautiful rolling parkland which make it perfect for a game of Frisbee or a big family picnic. We all enjoyed the place and would definitely recommend. The tickets are inexpensive especially as you only need to pay for what you want. The place was not overly busy so we didn’t have to wait long in any queues. For some rides/activities, we managed to go on them multiple times as nobody else was waiting, such as Wicky’s Mini Rangers, Laser Xtreme and many more! For more information about Wicksteed Park, please visit https://wicksteedpark.org/
Disclosure: We were invited to visit Wicksteed Park for the purposes of writing this review, however, all thoughts and opinions remain our own.