I remember Alton Towers as a thrill seeking, adrenaline pumping place full of long queues and unhealthy food. Never once did I think it was suitable for a 2 and a 3 year old.
Alton towers has changed a lot since I last went (pre-children) and I was really shocked to see that they now have a mini sealife centre which was brilliant and a 4D cinema showing Ice Age. We took along a friend of ours who the girls call “Uncle Sweep” and with the parent passes in hand Hubby and Uncle Sweep managed to get on quite a few rides.
The Parent Passes work by one person standing in the queue whilst the other stays with the kids and then they swap and the other person gets to go (almost) straight on to the ride.. It worked well for us because most of the kids rides needed one adult per child because of the girls heights. When it was getting later into the afternoon I sent the men off to go and conquer Rita and Thirteen whilst I took the girls into the Ice Age cinema and into Wobble land, which by the way is the best bouncy castle type facility I have ever seen and I just wish I could have jumped on there with them. With Alison coming in at 92cm it meant she was just able to get on some of the rides and it certainly made the day more fun, I would recommend checking out the height restrictions on the rides before you go so the children are not too disappointed.
Our day was packed full of fun and the girls went on quite a few rides, in fact we stayed until the rides all closed down and they still wanted to go on more. We didn’t get around to all of the rides that we would have liked to have seen and there was nearly a whole kids bit that we didnt go to but the day was still so busy. I wish we had looked at local hotels so that we could have gone back the next day, you could even buy a ticket whilst you were there to return the next day for £9 or £15 for any other day.
Tips and Tricks for a great day
£5 refillable drink flask- we shared one between the 5 of us and definitely got our moneys worth
Money off vouchers can be found in Guest services they had food, drink and snack vouchers as well as vouchers for the shops.
£20 Photo pass- this allows you to buy 5 photos or photo gifts
Alton towers have also brought in a new all you can eat pass for £22.50 per adult and £12.95 per child, you would have to make sure you are really hungry to take full advantage. I suppose if you arrived when it opened and stayed till late and ensured that you had breakfast, lunch and dinner then it would be worth it, you can also get snacks including the donuts, pancakes and waffles as well as drinks (no bottled drinks or alcohol).
If I was going to take the girls again I definitely think we would stay over somewhere and look at weekend breaks to make the most out of it because there was so much we didnt see and we could have taken our time and walked through the gardens and enjoyed the surroundings more rather than rushing from ride to ride.
I think the biggest surprise of the day was the girls behaviour, they were brilliant, they didnt whinge in the queues and they didnt have a single temper tantrum. The only thing that they argued about all day was who would sit in the front of the Phil and Teds but that was easily controlled.