Dear Mummy, one of my wishes came true this week when we visited Paultons Park. Set at the edge of the picturesque New Forest National Park, Paultons theme park is located in the village of Ower, Hampshire. The location makes it a great weekend getaway for families wanting to mix the theme park with an expedition into the forest. Everyone knows that Paultons Park is the home to Peppa Pig World but it’s much, much more than that.
Occasionally Paultons Park holds special events and we were invited down for the PJ Masks super weekender to meet my heroes over the 20th and 21st August 2017. Being a PJ Masks superfan I was thrilled to visit our local theme park and meet Catboy, Gekko and Owlette in person.
Paultons Park is essentially 3 theme parks in one set amid 160 acres of beautiful landscaped gardens. The park has over 65 rides, including the newly opened Lost Kingdom, Critter Creek and of course the world-famous Peppa Pig World. There is also a whole host of other things to see and do like the 4D cinema, the Victorian carousel, trampolines, go carts, rollercoasters for adults and the wildlife areas.
The park is small enough that if you’ve planned ahead you can easily visit it in one day, but I would definitely consider a second day. My mummy used to visit when she was a child and remembers visiting the playgrounds and seeing the wide range of birds and animals on site. It’s changed a lot since she was there in the early 90’s however the cast iron gates and the gardens are still remain.
We arrived at the park exactly at 10am, when the park opens, and despite it being the summer holidays, the whole parking experience, ticket collecting and entering the gates was very smooth without a single queue! (Shame we couldn’t say the same for leaving the park, with the poor traffic management, but that’s my folks gripe as I slept through the whole debacle in the car). We set off straight away to meet my heroes and they were found at the event field next to the Cobra rollercoaster.
We queued for around 30 minutes but I had fun watching the PJ Masks from the barriers and running around on the grass. My folks also took the opportunity to enjoy a takeaway coffee from the kiosks which were open nearby. PJ Masks music was blaring and most of the children had made the effort to dress up as their favouitre characters. Rainbow Productions were responsible for the huge PJ Masks Mascots and they did a great job during the day keeping the queues moving steadily.
A temporary stall had been set up to purchase our professional photographs with a PJ Masks pop-up shop and we found the staff very helpful and friendly despite the queues and crowds snaking around the field. We had spent the morning with the PJ Masks and it was time to enjoy the rest of the park. Our whistle-stop tour took us around the Lost World, Critter Creek and Peppa Pig World, however my mind was still on the PJ Masks and I carried on wearing my costume until I got too hot, much to my folks amusement!
We briefly flew through the Lost Kingdom only stopping to go on the Boulder Dash ride and watch the rollercoasters as the heavens opened as we were eager for lunch. (Notice my grumpy face above as I was hungry). We can’t wait to head back to this prehistoric area when I’m feeling a bit braver to go on the rest of the rides in this dinosaur lovers paradise!
We stopped by Critter Creek on the way to Peppa Pig World. It’s where you can discover all kinds of colourful creatures collected by Professor Blast. There’s the Cat-O-Pillar rollercoaster which looked a bit too daunting for me so I opted to go on the less scary Expedition Express train.
I loved walking around the real life bug emporium called Beastie Burrow, which houses fascinating and unusual insects, lizards and fish. We walked into the large cave to spot creepy crawlies during a rain shower and took cover. Critter Creek is a lovely area and there are large green spaces and gardens nearby which make a nice spot for a picnic.
Peppa Pig World
The park’s big appeal is transporting children to the magical world of Peppa Pig and it definitely was a highlight of our visit. With music from the show being played constantly throughout the park, children are immediately immersed in this fantasy world. We could write a blog post on this area alone and would love to go back when the new rides open in 2018. At the far end of Peppa Pig World, Mr Bull and his construction team are busy building Peppa’s Castle and other amazing attractions!
There are 7 fun Peppa-themed park rides as well as Peppa’s House, Madame Gazelle’s School House, George’s Spaceship indoor soft play, Muddy Puddle’s outdoor water splash park, Mr Potato’s outdoor adventure playground, Peppa’s gift shop and also the opportunity to meet Peppa and co. characters! Phew! During our visit in the afternoon we managed to go on a couple of rides but you could spend a whole day in this area alone, so we ran out of time unfortunately.
In the late afternoon we enjoyed lovely warm sunshine, so I spent a long time enjoying Mr Potato’s Playground. It’s one of the best playgrounds I’ve ever come across and the whole area has springy artificial grass and rainbow pathways. Mr Potato’s Playground also leads to Muddy Puddles which is a wet play splash area.
You can’t beat the traditional children areas, like the playgrounds and trampolines, climbing frames and funfair rides that Paultons Park offers. During our visit we didn’t have enough time to queue for some of the popular rides so we found ourselves being drawn back to these areas. My folks were impressed by the overall cleanliness of the park, the friendliness of the staff, the fact that most of the toilets had children’s seats and lower sinks and there was so much included for the ticket price. Its great that you can take a picnic into the park, but an alternative is also dinning in the numerous cafes and restaurants (14 in total) that they have on site. The Wild Forest Restaurant looks great. The only thing we didn’t enjoy was the shuffling through the gift shop on the way out to get to the exit. It would be nice if Paultons Park would make an alternative route for families to leave the park especially on busy days.
We enjoyed our trip to Paultons Park and can’t wait to return, they fact that they had my heroes there just made it extra special and a trip I won’t forget!
Halloween is just around the corner and we can’t wait to visit after last years adventure!
Love Bella x
Disclaimer: We were offered free tickets to attend the PJ Masks event at Paultons Park, in return for an honest review. All photos, purchases on site and opinions are our own.