If you read my post about our holiday at Twitchen House, you’ll know that due to our lack of transport we had to try to find a day out for my little girls 3rd birthday that we could get to easily on public transport. We chose Watermouth Castle which was about half an hour away catching two buses, but this was door to door and as an added bonus we got 20% off entrance with our bus tickets.
On entering the castle there is a route to follow that takes you through different rooms that have been set up with scenes of Victorian life, a bit like a museum and a model train room. There is also castle dungeons to explore.
Pushchairs are not allowed in this part and we were asked to leave ours outside where somebody would come and take it to the ‘buggy park’ where we could collect it once we’d finished inside. As my little girl is 3 now we decided to leave the pushchair in the buggy park for the rest of the day and collect it when we left. It was perfectly safe there and undercover too.
(I didn’t ask but I think you might be able to skip the inside bit altogether if you’re visiting with a baby and want to keep the pushchair, as there is a gate into the castle grounds at the side that is used as the exit)
My little girl was not impressed with the tour of ‘Victorian life’ to be honest and made her feelings very clear by repeatedly telling me “I don’t want to be here, I want to go home” lol. I think the rooms with the animated people just freaked her out a little. Because of this we decided to skip going down into the dungeons and used the
escape exit door that was available for people who wanted to do just that after the first part of the tour.
We came out of the castle into a lovely little courtyard with a cafe with indoor and outdoor seating where we enjoyed a delicious cream tea. This is also where the gift shop is and the water show extravaganza where you can watch a brilliant water and lights display. (A bit like waltzing waters if anybody has heard of that).
We then took the walk down into the main part of the park. Along the way there were little boxes with buttons to press, inside the boxes were little animations. Some were cute whereas others were a little bit creepy and dated and it did kind of get to the point where we gave up pressing them as we didn’t know which one we were going to get.
The theme park is set in a beautiful natural valley with some breathtaking views of the North Devon Coast.
Down in the main bit of the park we had a play with some of the old fashion games that were scattered about and sat and had our lunch in the lovely picnic area where there was another cafe and a cute little park for kids to play on. My little girl then chose a pink ice cream from the little cafe and we headed off to get lost in the maze.
Once we found our way out (which wasn’t really that hard) we headed over to the water rides and I got to play ‘passenger’ whilst my little girl pretended she was driving me round and round on the seal ride.
I wanted us to go on the river ride but as soon as we got to the boat and were about to get in, my little girl freaked out and refused. It looked so relaxing as well. 😦
Instead we went on the spinning cups!
The snail ride was next on the list and it really lived up to its name as it was soooo slow! We had to walk up a steep hill to get to it so it was actually nice to just sit a relax after the climb though. The ride went through a little tunnel which had loads of cute animated teddy bears in it which my little girl liked.
After the snail ride we went down the hill again into the big adventure park. I was a little bit disappointed with this though as it seemed aimed at slightly older children even though the theme park on the whole felt like it was more suited to younger ones.
There is a few rides for older children in the theme park, plus crazy golf and a ‘water wars’ area where you can fire water bombs at each other though. And I suppose it’s good to have the adventure park for the older ones too but I just felt like a section of it should have been made suitable for toddlers.
Before we left we headed to ‘Gnome Land’ where there were lots of little gnome houses and animations. My little girl liked that this section had a slide which was quite big, but because it was built into the side of a hill she didn’t have to climb any steps to get to it so it was perfect for her. We also went searching for gold in the little water and sand set up that was there. There was also a tilting house which really throws you off-balance but we had a lot of laughs trying it out.
Overall we really enjoyed our day here and hopefully we will go back one day and do all the things that we didn’t manage to do. If you live locally to the castle or local enough to go multiple times during the year, then they have a deal where if you pay £2.50 when you are leaving, you can get a photo pass that allows anyone in that picture to return for £2.50 per visit for the rest of the season which I think is pretty cool.
For more info click here to visit the Watermouth Castle website.
Let me know if you’ve been here and what you thought of it in the comments below.
And if you have any recommendations for any other fun family days out in Devon then let me know them in the comments too.
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